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Diamond Resorts Deeded vs The Club

Discussion in 'Diamond Resorts International - DRI' started by glgrissom, Oct 13, 2010.

  1. glgrissom

    glgrissom TUG Member

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    I am sitting in a Diamond property right now and trying to decide what to do because I own both deeded property and Club points with Diamond. They are telling me that I "should" buy more points and transfer my deed into the club. I currently have deeded property that is worth 10,000 annual points and club points of 5500 - making me an Elite level owner, which I purchased in 2 transactions - the points from Sunterra and the deeded property from the 2nd market about 4-5 years ago. Diamond is telling me that I "should" purchase a few more points and transfer the deeded property into The Club. Then:
    - I would have better access to rooms. Seems I have access to only 30% of the room inventory because of my club points level...whatever that means. If I had more points with the club I would get access to over 60% of the inventory???
    - I could trade better with II, again because I only really have 5500 points to trade with them (the deeded point would only trade week for week.
    - They also told me that maintance fees for deeded points will only be going up - and rather fast as more and more owners are exchanging deeds for the Club.
    - Maintance fees are really getting expensive - and since I purhcased they have gone up each year. With the 2 accounts we are paying almost $2000 a year now!!!! If I combine they might be a bit lower????
    My issue is I don't really want to spend more money to do this, but looking to the future - is what they are telling me true? I've learned that I cannot fully trust the salesmen/educators in these places.
    In reading these posts, some are saying that owning the deeded property is a very good thing - but I don't see value in the land as any real value because it's not worth anything either - is it? You can't sell it either way. The value is in the vacation experience and what you want to do with your travel.
    We like to trade around and see different areas - taking 2 vacations a year for a totaly of about 3 weeks now. We are 10 years away from retirement and don't have more vacation time to use anyway. With the points we are able to accomplish our goals well now with a few point to carry forward each year usually.
    We have visited about 10 different properties now through Diamond/Sunterra, enjoying some more than others - but are basically happy.
    What we are not happy about is the feeling we are being pulled into and by the "system" with no ability to really know what is the best thing to be doing.
    Back to the original question, Have others moved totally into the Club or in our case is it better to keep the 2 accounts - and is there any truth to inventory availabliity and II trading that I just learned about. I'm feeling sucked into a program that is taking us down a big expensive hole!!!
    Sorry this is so long, but it's 3AM and I can't sleep thinking about it.....
     
  2. pgnewarkboy

    pgnewarkboy TUG Member

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    Either I am not understanding you or you are not understanding the system. My apologies up front if it is my misunderstanding. I own deeded properties and am a member of the Club- both. I did not have to give up my deeded properties to belong to the Club. I am now part of the points system where I get points for my properties but still own the properties.

    The only time you have to give up your deeds is when you join a Trust. In a trust you are a part owner of all the trust properties but have no deed. You share in the maintenance fees and other expenses for all the properties in your trust. So, if there is a special project at one of the properties in the trust - you pay your share. If there is damage due to a storm at one of the properties in the trust not covered by insurance - you pay your share.

    I can't tell you which deal is better for you. Personally, I want to hold on to my deeds and only be responsible for the fees and costs relating to my specific properties. I still get the advantage of using points for all my vacations.

    Timeshare properties are not ALWAYS worth nothing. DRI bought one of my timeshare properties back from me at my original cost just before the economic meltdown. It was a great deal for me.
     
  3. Dollie

    Dollie TUG Member

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    Below is some information as I understand it with regards to Diamond ownerships. I can understand why you are confused. We have sat through the presentation at The Point (our home resort) and came away confused and with questions either unanswered or with misleading answers. I’m sure other TUGgers will add their knowledge too. Good luck and spend your time enjoying your vacations first.
    • Diamond classifies owners into three classes or groups:
    1. Warrantee-Deeded Owners – deeded owners, not part of Diamond, who deal directly with their home resort. If you sell this ownership, you are selling a deed; Diamond has nothing to do with it.
    2. The Club Warrantee-Deeded Owners – deeded owners who are part of Diamond’s The Club and use their Club points through Diamond to access their home resort and other resorts. If you sell this ownership, you are selling a deed, same as the Warrantee-Deeded Owners. You cannot sell the Club membership. The new owner would have to purchase a Club membership separately (if Diamond is still selling this type of membership which I don’t think they are). There is an inheritance exception to this.
    3. Diamond Trust Owners – trust point owners who use their trust points through Diamond to access the resorts in the specific Trust they own. They have given up their deed to Diamond; they have no voting privileges at their home resort (I think they have some sort of voting privileges that apply to the trust); when they sell, they are selling the specific trust points only. Check eBay to see what points are going for.
    • Club points and Trust points are two different things.
    • There is more than one trust; each trust has access to different Diamond properties.
    • Availability is in accordance to the number of owners in each class or group. If 50% of the owners are Warrantee-Deeded Owners than 50% of the rooms are available to them. If 30% of the owners are Club members than 30% of the rooms are available to them. If 20% of the owners are Trust members than 20% of the rooms are available to them. As these percentages change, so do the number of rooms available to a group but also the number of owners vying for those rooms also changes. For example is the number of deed owners decreases to 45% there will be fewer rooms available to them but also fewer owners vying for those rooms. If the percentage increases for a group, there are more rooms available to that group but also more people vying for those rooms.
    • Making reservations: Warrantee-Deeded Owners can generally make reservation 12 months in advance; Club Warrantee-Deeded Owners can make reservations at their home resort 12 months in advance; Trust Owners can make reservations at their home resort at 13 months in advance. This does not give Trust owners an advantage over other owners. Remember the 13 months only applies to their pool of rooms. The other two groups are making reservation from different pools.
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2010
  4. dwmantz

    dwmantz TUG Member

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    Just a thought - deeds will always be worth something to somebody, especially if they are for a valuable week. DRI points are really worth nothing on the resale market. To get rid of them, you actually have to pay DRI $250 per contract to take them back.
     
  5. AwayWeGo

    AwayWeGo TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    You Typed A Mouthful.

    Or dispose of the underlying timeshare property.

    When that happens, then -- POOF ! -- the DRI points & points-club membership vanish into thin air.

    Ditto if the club member quits paying annual club membership dues.

    -- Alan Cole, McLean (Fairfax County), Virginia, USA. ​
     
  6. dougp26364

    dougp26364 TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    DRI offers an option where the OP can keep his deeded week but, the week, for exchange purposes, is converted to a point value. So he still keep his deed, which is worth something to somebody but, he'll get the benefit of points, internal exchanges at no cost and a set value for exchanges with I.I.
     
  7. dougp26364

    dougp26364 TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    We own two units at Polo Towers. A couple of years ago, we elected to join THE Club (didn't buy extra points but paid a joiner fee of $2,995) and have been much happier with our ownership since that time. It's considerably more flexible and, in our situation, has worked better for us than the traditional weeks ownership we had. Keep in mind we only joined THE Club. We did not elect to transfer our ownership into one of DRI's trusts, which would have ment giving up our deeds (I prefer to hang onto my deeds).

    Before joining, I looked at our past usage and how much it cost to make the resrvations/exchanges we had made. I then looked at how that same thing would have played out had we been members of THE Club and what those same exchanges would have cost us. In the end, I could have made the exact same exchanges but, I'd have had left over points that could have been used for other benefits/services or, for additional vacations. Essentially, I was leaving money on the table.

    I then looked at what I believed our vacation plans might look like should we join THE Club and looked at any potential cost savings. It's been three years now and, I've covered that initial joiner fee we paid of $2,995. At this point I'm saving money vs our traditional ownership.

    Will things work out the same for you? It's hard to say. You'll need to sit down and look at how you've used your ownership over the last several years and how you think you'll use it in the future. When we converted our weeks, I did it because we recieve 26,500 points for those two weeks and because those weeks had become strictly exchange weeks. I could do a lot more with 26,500 points than I could with two 2 bedroom lock-off units.
     
  8. csalter2

    csalter2 TUG Member

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    Can't get Rid of Maintenance Fees So Easily

    If you don't pay your dues they can't vanish into the air. If that were the case then people would just stop paying their maintenance fees and be rid of their points all together.
     
  9. timeos2

    timeos2 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Lifetime Member

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    Yes, it can be that simple

    In the case of a RTU (Right to Use) ownership - vs deeded - failure to pay can result in the ownership "vanishing". There is no need for foreclosure or other costly, drawn out legal procedures as there is with a deed. And yes, that means by simply stopping payments the ownership of the points/property ends. Remember the cost paid isn't just the annual fees but also a rather hefty purchase price as these ownerships are usually at retail pricing. Most owners would expect to get something out of a resale not just end the fees.

    However in the "new reality" of the economy and timeshare resales in general an unexpected twist of this type of ownership may very well be the ease of simply ending annual fee payments to end the ownership. They can still report the delinquency to the credit agencies but the "hit" isn't likely to be too great. Funny how things can work out in very unexpected ways sometimes. A couple years ago the possibility that the seller / system could effectively throw you out of the system and you lost your purchase expense by simply failing to pay the annual fees was a real downside. Now it may be viewed as a positive as selling or giving away a more traditional timeshare is very hard to do and the relative ease of simply ending payments & having the seller /system take back the ownership is a plus!

    Nothing is certain but change as they say.
     
  10. AwayWeGo

    AwayWeGo TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    Easiest Exit Strategy In All Of Timesharing.

    I may have to re-think the entire concept of DRI & T. H. E. Club.

    -- Alan Cole, McLean (Fairfax County), Virginia, USA.​
     
  11. pgnewarkboy

    pgnewarkboy TUG Member

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    I am confident that most on TUG do not see time sharing as a real property investment. It is a great way of vacationing.
     
  12. places2go2

    places2go2 TUG Member

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    Very happy with Diamond Resorts The Club

    A few years back I had bought a few resale Flamingo Beach fixed units in St. Maarten for use during my wedding. Around the same time I bought into the club at San Luis Bay Inn and brought in some of my deeds there and at Sedona Summit into club so I became a club member and like the system. I had been depositing the Flamingo weeks into my RCI points and/or weeks account but didn't really get what I wanted. Recently I decided to give these Flamingo weeks up since the maintenance fees went up so high and the resort is in the hurricane zone so I "gave the contracts back" as they called it (they were not in perpetuity) and yes, I paid a fee on each to buy new points but at the same time converted these fixed weeks to their annual point value, and all is now in the trust. I never thought I would even consider this as an option, I have been fully deeded or have had the international contracts up until now. However the end result is reducing the cost of my maintenance fees, and I also have better access to the US collection with the 13 month reservation window. Basically I have flexibility and am not stuck with weeks I don't use and did not like the trading power of. And best of all I didn't have to hassle trying to sell anything resale. I could list even more benefits to my decision, the Club works very well for me. I only wish they had more resorts, particularly in the Northeast. Finally, once I cannot travel or if I cannot pay the fees I can just let these go and be done or give the contract away. In the end, the conversion fees were an up front cost that will pay itself back in less than two years and I have the points to enjoy at a reasonable cost per point overall for what I get, especially at Platinum. And I have to add that I am still both deeded and in The Club. All of my units except the converted Flamingo Beach/new trust points are still deeded, one account can hold both types.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2010
  13. mkschro

    mkschro Guest

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    Diamond Resorts Int'l timeshare experiment

    This and related threads about Diamond Resorts Int'l (DRI) are quite interesting. I would like to share my experience in the hopes it may help others considering a DRI timeshare or continuing one.
    1) My father bought a timeshare 5 yrs ago and has passed away. My father paid $18K for 5000 annual points: his fees are now over $1100 yearly.
    2) So I decided to evaluate the value of his DRI timeshare in the following way. I did a simple check at two different DRI domestic vacation resorts. For each of these resorts, I was able to compare booking a 2 bdrm at the resort for both a DRI and non-DRI member. (for this example, a 'non-DRI member' is one who can reserve a room as anyone might, by calling them directly and booking a room with a credit card). I was careful to determine the daily rental rate including taxes, any special offers for free days if the stay is longer, etc. I then, at the same resort, using the DRI contact number and DRI booking agent, determined the number of days and benefits, that I could reserve, for the identical room, using the 5000 points my father's timeshare earns annually.

    Note that I performed this test at two different resorts to determine repeatablility, and came up with very similar results. I booked a room as a regular non-member, using my credit card, and for an amount equal to his annual fees, I could get a 2bdrm for 7 nights. However, if I called DRI and requested to use his full 5000 pts. to reserve the same 2 bdrm, I could only reserve it for 5 nights.

    At both resorts, it was clear that I could rent the same room for more days if I was NOT a Diamond Resorts member. The main conclusion then is that if my father had avoided paying $18K for this DRI membership, he could get the same rooms at the same resorts more cheaply if he just cold-called them and reserved a room. And of course his destination choices would not be limited to DRI resorts, or their availability restrictions. He would be able to go out on the open market, through Priceline.com, or any other web-portal travel site, or reserve through a travel agent. And the $18K he spent to become a 'member', instead of winding up as salesman's commissions and 'management' fees, could have been used for marvelous vacations with his spouse and children and grandchildren. He could have stayed wherever and whenever he wanted.
    Instead, he purchased something with essentially no resale value and offered him no advantage over non-DRI 'open-market' customers, but cost him $18K for the 'privilege'. Conclusion: Buyers should beware that this timeshare 'device' INCREASES the cost of lodging and 'membership' offers no real tangible benefit to the purchaser.

    Travel is divided into lodging, food, and transportation. And for most trips, lodging is the least expensive component. Why restrict yourself to a limited venue of resorts, with restricted dates for reservation, that is more expensive than the open market? Please learn from our experience and avoid this costly mistake. It is a game that almost everyone, including your heirs, will ultimately regret becoming entangled. If you don't believe me, try this experiment for yourself. You will find your room to be less expensive per night, will be able to stay stay longer, with more flexibility, if you just call them direct!

    Remember, anytime there are salesmen, promotions offering free lodging in exchange for a presentation, middlemen, 'representatives' and special 'exclusive' reservations or collections 'agents', as exist at DRI or equivalent timeshare entities, the result will be higher costs that can only be passed on to the 'member', driving up per night lodging costs as compared to the inherent efficiencies of the open market.

    As an additional note, after his death, we called and DRI transferred us to numerous people until they finally stated that the only way his heirs could remove themselves from the annual fee obligation is to sell it (which internet googling reveals is nearly impossible as points and/or memberships are worthless on the open market). They were compassionate and honest enough to sympathize with our plight when they readily admitted that this timeshare (as well as most timeshares), no matter whether they are deeded or not, are generally unsellable and HAVE NO SUBSTANTIVE MONETARY VALUE. Let the buyer beware!

    Best Wishes.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2011
  14. csalter2

    csalter2 TUG Member

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    Nothing is engraved in stone.

    Yes. The fact that one can rent more cheaply than buying is a very disheartening. It has been a complaint. The reason for this that is given is that DRI also owns units that may have not been sold or are in default, etc. DRI still has to ensure that they protect the investment for themselves and owners by renting them out since no maintenance fees will be received for the units not in use. Thus, owners and Club members have different pots of availability than DRI has for its units.

    I must say that as owners who make reservations we can do so very early. I was able to make reservations 10 months out for this past the summer at KBC. However as we got a couple of months out there were no rooms available. Also, if there are rooms available DRI will offer points specials for some resorts to Club members. Sometimes they will let Club members use the rooms for half points. Thus, the law of supply and demand dictates costs of the renters and points for Club members on specific resorts.

    If you own the points outright and you don't pay maintenance fees, as stated in a post above DRI will take away the points and you would be released of the responsibility.
     
  15. mkschro

    mkschro Guest

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    To DRI and Carlito

    Carlito, although you may be well intentioned, you are, if your comments are truly genuine, rather gullible. You didn't really address the fundamental issue that a timeshare is basically a legal but ethically fraudulent way to extract money (and obligating future annual fees) without offering real value at all. It preys upon the less sophisticated. As the saying goes, "fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me!"

    I hope my posts prevent at lease one person from avoiding this scam.

    Best Wishes.
     
  16. T_R_Oglodyte

    T_R_Oglodyte TUG Lifetime Member

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    Alan - John's comments are not necessarily directly relevant to DRI, since DRI ownerships - for the most part - are not RTU.

    But another question is what happens with a UDI interest in a trust if the owner simply stops paying? Does that ownership evaporate the same way that a RTU would?
     
  17. csalter2

    csalter2 TUG Member

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    What portion of what I wrote do you feel was me being gullible. I was very exact by saying, "the reason given". That reason was from DRI. I never said that I at the hook. I just stated what was told to us, no more and no less.
     
  18. hvsteve1

    hvsteve1 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    The original poster sounds like he was being talked into joining the trust. The current sales pitch involves protecting yourself against big hikes in MF or,worse,special assessments which cannot be assessed to trust members. Otherwise,salespeople cannot come up with many other advantages to the trust over The Club.

    Cost of joining the trust is ridiculous. They try to sell you a small contract of new points for a lot of money. MF in the trust,depending on your resort,is substantially higher than on the deeded Club property, But---paying all this extra money protects you against the special assessment that may or may not happen at some unspecified time before the end of the world as we know it.:hysterical:

    We did move from weeks to points some years ago. It was more expensive than I found to be reasonable,but we have much better luck with exchanges and more flexibility,so that makes it worthwhile. I also like II beter than RCI,especially with what I've seen about RCI in recent years.
     
  19. timeos2

    timeos2 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Lifetime Member

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    As I would never give up my deed at my DRI affiliated resort I don't know this firs hand but my understanding is that if you buy into one of the trust systems it is a type of UDI. But there is no deed and no requirement for foreclosure for them to take the "ownership" back for a missed payment or two. Poof. Gone. Maybe tens of thousands in purchase cost gone. Plus you have no resale rights except for the underlying resort named - not the Club part (which is really the key) so effectively you have a zero value item in the market from day one after you purchase. Not for me.

    I may have misunderstood but thats the way I was told it works.
     
  20. Poobah

    Poobah TUG Member

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    Special Assessments and Trusts

    Everyone is expecting a special assessment for The Point at Poipu to fix the water intrusion problem. So we will find out first hand the obligation of the members of the trust vise the owners.

    It seems to me that the Trust is obligated to pay its portion of any special assessment. The Trust is logically an owner of multiple deeds and therefore if it holds X deeds for a given property then it owes X times the special assessment.

    If my assumptions are correct, then what is going to be interesting is how the SA is going to be apportioned. It is my understanding that the Trust Annual Fee is the average of all the MFs of the properties in the Trust. Logically then any SA should be average over all the deeds held by the Trust. So the SA will be spread across all members of the Trust. So you may have "owned" at Resort XYZ, but will wind up paying a portion of the SA for Resort ABC.

    Going to be interesting.

    Cheers,

    Paul
     
  21. T_R_Oglodyte

    T_R_Oglodyte TUG Lifetime Member

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    What you have in resale is whatever you own that has been assigned to the Club. If what you own is a UDI in one of the trusts, when the Club membership terminates that is what you own. If you contributed a deeded week, then the deeded week is what you have.

    A factor to consider in deeded menbership vs. trust is the situation/condition of the underlying properties in the trust. If you are looking at the Hawai'i trust, the reality is that the maintenance fees at Poipu are higher than at Ka'anapali, and they likely always will be because of the differences in the resort. (Ka'anapali, being more like a hotel, does does not have the landscaping and groundskeeping costs of Poipu. Also with the minimal ktichens, energy costs are lower.) So a Po'ipu owner converting to trust will end with lower annual fees than they would have for the same amount of points if they kept the deed. Also, when the special assessment hits for water damage at Po 'ipu, trust owners will not see the full impact because the Po'ipu expenses are averaged into the overall trust expenses.

    Whether that difference is worth it depends on the individual situation. But IMHO the issue of deeded vs. trust ownership is not nearly as cut and dried as often presented.
     
  22. oceanvps

    oceanvps TUG Member

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    So,
    Is there an answer now to how the special assessment of the point of poipu is being issued to the hawaii trust owners?

    The reason I'm curious is we bought a hawaii trust membership from developer in jan 2011. the very last document they brought out for us to sign was a slip of paper saying that we would be exempt from any special assesment relating to the water intrusion at point of poipu.. for 2011..... this ticked me off because this was the very last thing they had us sign (and i had specifically asked about s.a. on the tour)........ it also added to our feeling of dread about the membership in general. we rescinded when we got home.

    so now i'm curious what would have been the outcome of that s.a. for us if we had kept the membership. since it looks like its due in 2012. yikes for the owners.
     
  23. stanweeks

    stanweeks Guest

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    Diamond Resorts 18000 points available

    I have 18000 Club points available for sale. Are you still looking for additional points?
     
  24. Sundance

    Sundance Guest

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    2 deeds at The Point

    I have 2 deeds at The Point every odd year. Bought them on the secondary market for pennies on the dollar with special assessment paid in full. Great deal for us. Last year we went through the sale pitch and came away very confused and very intimidated. It just didn't sound legit. They were pressuring us pretty hard to give up our deeds for points.

    Are you saying as deeded owners we can join The Club and exchange internally within Diamond? If so, how do you do that? Is there a process we can go through without having to deal with sales people? We would love to exchange with Maui, Kona, etc. without having to go through the big exchanges.

    any advice will be greatly appreciated
     
  25. artringwald

    artringwald TUG Member

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    Smart move not giving up your deeds up for points. That would be a bad deal. To see if you can put the deeds into the Club, call 1.800.489.4758 and tell them you want to talk to sales (which is unavoidable). When we bought in 2004 they told us it would cost $4000 to add deeds to the Club. That may not be the same deal anymore. If you do it, make sure you're offered enough points to book the same category that you've been booking. Oceanfront costs 15,500 points. Don't bother asking the sales people at the Point. They usually don't want anything to do with adding resale deeds to the Club. You will have to pay $300+/year for Club membership, but it's one fee no matter how many deeds are in the Club.
     

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