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Timeshare - Is It Right For You

Aug 19, 2008
Many people buy timeshares after a lot of research and analysis. But same is not true with some people who simply buy timeshares hearing the buzz surrounding it with poor perception and ignorance about timeshares.

Buying a timeshare is a huge investment and thus should be dealt with utmost importance. Before buying a timeshare you have to first question yourself whether is it really for you? How often do you go for vacation?

Is that place right for you to go year after year? Do you want to buy a timeshare just for vacation purpose or you are buying it as an investment?

Even if you decide to buy a timeshare property you should start your research at least nine months before you buy a timeshare. But let us weigh in various factors to know whether timeshare is really for you or not.

A vacation home might be a minor financial investment for few rich and wealthy but to many middle class people it is possible only in dreams. Middle class people badly needed an alternative to this costly investment.

The search for an alternative resulted in the discovery of timeshare in Europe in 1970's. This was a welcome relief to many people who could not afford to buy an expensive vacation home. This concept gained huge popularity with every passing year and today over two million Americans own timeshare properties which is a big number.

A timeshare is nothing but a real estate property split into many ownerships. The cost is shared among the owners. Timeshares are basically classified into two types of plans, deeded and non-deeded.

In a deeded plan the owner buys the timeshare unit and the unit for 30-40 years. It can again be classified into fixed use and flexible use. A fixed use allows only a specific time and specific number of years where as a flexible use timeshare allows you to choose vacation at any time of the year but only on first come first serve basis as many people would like to go for that option.

The other types of plan called non-deeded plan is also called right to use plan which is like a lease, you have the same facilities but only for specific period and you lose all the rights after the lease expires.

Having understood what a timeshare is and different types it is also important to dig into the facts of timeshare. Timeshares are usually common in a tourist place. The cost depends on the location and season of the year. Apart from cost of timeshare you have to pay the maintenance and various other fees also.

This also may vary depending on the location. But one good thing about timeshare is that you don't have to worry about the upkeep and maintenance of your timeshare unit. But you have to think is it really worth to pay hundreds of dollars every year in addition to the thousands you have already paid to buy the timeshare and that too to spend only one or two weeks in a year. This may be reasonable only if the maintenance fee is low which is generally not.

But if you see the other side of the coin, in long term a timeshare will be cheaper than a hotel or vacation home. If you add up the cost of hotel for thirty years and compare it with timeshare it will be way higher.

But then again, if you decide to go to a different vacation spot every year hotel may be ideal for you. Although timeshare offer exchange of properties with other owners across the states and countries it may not be that easy to do it.

Also one should compare the other alternatives to a timeshare available in that place. In some seasons timeshares could really be expensive due to their close proximity to beach fronts etc. So a quick market survey to find cheap alternative should never be ruled out.
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