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Old 05-08-2008, 08:13 PM   #21
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It is true that exchanging can be a bit of a hassle - if you are trading strictly week for week AND if you are not someone who can plan very far ahead. On the other hand, if you are trading in a points-based system, you automatically have a lot of advantages, such as only using the number of points required for the specific exchange. Personally, I can say that we have easily exchanged our points ownership for many locations all over the country (Las Vegas, Palm Springs, Branson, Orlando, Williamsburg, Daytona Beach, Hilton Head, for example)and for our adult children and their families as well - probably 4-8 exchanges per year (we own more than one timeshare week).

With respect to the second point, I definitely agree that if you need only one room, especially for shorter stays, renting may be more economical.

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Originally Posted by Moemg View Post
A lot of timeshare owners talk about the great exchange ability but rarely do it . When I owned a condo we exchanged twice for an additional fee and we were downgraded into a one bedroom . We owned a two bedroom prime time . I've looked at timeshares for visiting my daughter and they do not make sense . I can usually rent a place for the maintenance fee alone .
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Old 05-08-2008, 08:36 PM   #22
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We have owned two weeks in two units in New Orleans, for years. One of the weeks is Jazzfest, which we love. Initially we used it a lot and got more than our money's worth. Then we entered maybe a 10 year period where we basically ignored it and rented it out maybe half the time.

In exchange, we visited Banff, St Rafael in France, Scottsday golf resort, donated some weeks to the kids (Tahoe and Hawaii come to mind). Then came Katrina. We have had about $2000 in assessments after insurance paid, offset by $1500 in rental receipts.

Over all it has probably been a winner. I'd sell them now, but DW tells me that once we have retired the exchange possibilities will increase, and that we wouldn't get much for them anyway. As usual, I realized she's right.

And from time to time it's really nice to spend a long weekend in NOLA eating beignets for breakfast, drinking good coffee and good whiskey, and listening to good jazz. The building for the time share is so solid and fortress-like that I never sleep better than I do there, and I'm an olympic quality sleeper.

We'll sit tight on them for the foreseeable future.
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Old 05-08-2008, 08:46 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by fnewman View Post
l - probably 4-8 exchanges per year (we own more than one timeshare week).

With respect to the second point, I definitely agree that if you need only one room, especially for shorter stays, renting may be more economical.

You sound like a real timeshare lover but to get at the real value of your investment you should mulitply your timeshare price by 5% ( that is conservative investing )to see how much that money could make invested and add in the maintenance and the costs to trade and that is your real cost for the unit . Plus timeshares are a fastly depreciating asset not the great investments the sales people let you believe .
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Old 05-08-2008, 08:52 PM   #24
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You sound like a real timeshare lover but to get at the real value of your investment you should mulitply your timeshare price by 5%... Plus timeshares are a fastly depreciating asset not the great investments the sales people let you believe .
Those are valid points, Moe, but in our case we have pretty much neutralized our maintenance with sublets. Opportunity cost is hard to gauge and they do depreciate, unlike a house. OTOH, if you look at the cost of a hotel in one of the destinations I mentioned, you probably capture a grand a week by owning.

I would not recommend a time share as an investment to anyone. But if you use or exchange it regularly it can be a surprising money-saver. We paid $11K for both decades ago.
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Old 05-12-2008, 03:57 PM   #25
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For sure, the price paid has a big effect on the 'economic' analysis. $30,000 to a developer vs $6,000 for a private resale at the same property, for example. Other factors include whether you actually forgo investing the purcahse price or would have just frittered away the same sum on something else (in that case the time value of the money would be $0!), or if you had to borrow money to buy.

As you can see, the discussion could go on and on (and has many times on various forums). I guess we can conclude that opinions vary and every situation is different. If you make it work for you, that's all that really counts.
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Old 05-12-2008, 07:51 PM   #26
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I would not recommend a time share as an investment to anyone. But if you use or exchange it regularly it can be a surprising money-saver.
Exactly my experience with fractional ownership. If you don't use it, you waste money. But if you do (as I do) your vacations require very little cash flow.
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Old 05-13-2008, 01:10 PM   #27
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Absolutely - you should not buy a timeshare or fractional ownership you are not committed to using any more than you should buy a car that you don't plan to drive on a regular basis. In the same vein, if return on investment is paramount, why would anyone buy a Lexus when a Toyota Camry would serve the purpose just as well and allow you to 'invest' the difference?
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Old 05-17-2008, 03:57 PM   #28
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... why would anyone buy a Lexus when a Toyota Camry would serve the purpose just as well and allow you to 'invest' the difference?
oooh, oooh, I have the answer to this one.

My aunt who is older and very well off, just bought a new mercedes.
The 50-60k was a rounding error in the scheme of things.
She is enjoying her life. Yeah, she coulda bought a toyota and saved 30k, but what for?

So it depends on if the purchase makes a material difference in ones lifestyle.
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Old 05-17-2008, 04:06 PM   #29
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I agree with your Aunt - some things can only be enjoyed 1st Class.
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Old 05-17-2008, 05:17 PM   #30
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oooh, oooh, I have the answer to this one.

My aunt who is older and very well off, just bought a new mercedes.
The 50-60k was a rounding error in the scheme of things.
She is enjoying her life. Yeah, she coulda bought a toyota and saved 30k, but what for?

So it depends on if the purchase makes a material difference in ones lifestyle.
That makes my point exactly. As with cars, many preople buy timeshare property because it is want they want to do with their money and fits their needs and travel desires - not because the choice generates the best ROI. Yet some who purchase a car that for those reasons will try to pick the trimshare economics to death. Makes no sense to me.
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