Pros and Cons of Mountain Resort Timeshares
Did you know there are some poor saps who donâ€™t live within driving distance of a mountain? Imagine! What does a person do in the winter if they canâ€™t snowboard?!
Some individuals have had the misfortune of moving away from this beautiful land; yet, their love for the slopes still flows fervently through their veins. Others have formed an addiction to winter sports despite the man-made snow at â€œresortsâ€ in the Midwest or on hills (referred to as mountains) in the East.
What do these people do when they need a snowboarding fix on a real mountain? They come west, of course. Some people come sporadically, visiting one year and then returning again several years later. Others venture this way only when there are cheap hotel rooms available. The richy-rich buy a vacation home. And other people, perhaps the most economical and die-hard athletes, buy timeshares.
For people who are serious about snowboarding or skiing every season, a timeshare is a pretty genius idea. So is booking your lodging early to save big bucks!!! We like the Marriott Deal: offering Free Internet + Breakfast Book now and save!
How it works
By paying a lump sum upfront, you can buy the use of a specific unit at the same time each year. Usually, timeshares are available for week-long increments. Each year, timeshare owners are expected to pay an annual fee to cover the cost of maintenance. The average price to buy a timeshare is $19,000 and the annual fee is usually around $600.
Pros and Cons
Pro â€“ You can save big bucks on travel expenses
Most timeshares have full kitchens and in-unit laundry services. This means you can cook most of your meals at home instead of dining out three times a day. This can save you a lot of money. Also, you wonâ€™t have to worry about going to coin-operated laundry facilities that charge you an arm and a leg to wash your clothes.
Pro â€“ You are guaranteed a vacation each year
By purchasing a timeshare, you have pretty much locked yourself into a vacationing lifestyle. Most of the avid, transplanted snowboarders and skiers make it a priority to hit the slopes at least once a season. If you already plan to venture this way once a year, why not make it the same time each year?
Pro and Con â€“ You can trade your timeshare and travel
Some people claim they get bored traveling to the same destination each year. We canâ€™t image how anyone would tire of these mountains, but to each his own. If this (for some bizarre reason) does happen, you can always trade your timeshare with another timeshare owner. This will give you the opportunity to travel to a new destination. Swiss Alps, anyone?
When trading timeshares, most people turn to online resources. These sites can be helpful, but costly. Most charge an annual fee to use their site (about $100) and a fee for each transaction (from $40 up to $340).
Con â€“ Unloading an unwanted timeshare can be difficult
It can be a challenge to sell a timeshare. There are websites available that help with the selling process, but most have a listing fee, annual membership fee, and offer no guarantee of a sale.
Also, there is a lot of fraud associated with timeshare sales. A scammer will offer to sell your timeshare for an upfront fee. An owner pays the fee but never hears from the scammer again. Therefore, be extremely cautious of anyone asking of upfront payment if you do choose to unload your property.
If you arenâ€™t using your timeshare, canâ€™t sell it, and feel like you are wasting your money, you can always donate it for a year. This way, you wonâ€™t feel like the year has been completely wasted. There are lots of online charities that accept timeshare donations. But donâ€™t get your hopes up; there is no IRS deduction for timeshare donation. And, you still have to pay the annual maintenance fee.
Con â€“ A timeshare is a long-term financial commitment
Most timeshares are perennial â€“ meaning they donâ€™t have an expiration date. You can expect to pay the annual maintenance fee indefinitely. As jobs come and go, families grow, and lifestyle changes happen, this can turn into a big financial obligation.
We canâ€™t say whether or not a timeshare is a good idea for you. We can say that hitting the slopes as often as possible is a good idea for everyone!
Guest blogger Dr. Mary Tejada is a Tampa, Florida hair transplant doctor. She is originally from Denver and greatly misses the winter sports. Dr. Tejada recently bought a timeshare; her only concern now is that a week wonâ€™t be long enough!MORE MOUNTAIN WEEKLY NEWS HIGHLIGHTS: