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A outsiders view (from on high?)

Gmonsterson

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First of all, I'd like to thank my lucky stars for finding TUG when I did...not soon enough but better late than never.
Also, the strategies here, especially buying resale and getting the options re-instated are some of the best travel advice/tactics I have come across.

Now, I'd like to say that although many are "telling it like it is" or giving a poster good advice, I think that there has got to be a situation where buying something from a developer somewhere is not the end of the world. It's going to be pretty tough for people to hear what a terrible busines decision they made when purchasing something as emotional as a timeshare. You will never convince some people otherwise so rather than argue over and over about how mr. xyz values his starpoints, leave it alone. I found this forum yesterday and it can be pretty intimidating wrtiting your purchase and getting 50 negative replies.

All that said, regardless of how people express their opinions, this forum will save a lot of people a lot of $ and problems down the road.

So without further adieu, I have a few questions for the experts on here pertaining how to make the most out of my situation.

30 days ago I bought at Westin Lagunamar (voluntary, now I know - but do you think anyone told me that!)
$15,000 for 81,000 options EOY (basically 1 week in Gold Plus season in a 2 bdrm LO). (i dont think the week or size matter in svn, do they? isnt it all about the options?) with the right to buy the other year for $8,000 within 365 days
Anyway for me it made sense...at the time. For 81k options, i can;
1. stay in cancun for 1 wk in January (37k) in a studio and then TRY for a few 3 night stays in other places across the US.
2. we can do one week in the 2 bdrm with 6 ppl, or,
3. do Cancun for a week in Jan and a week in Nov

the MF's are $1,400 and all 3 of those options are worth more than that to me. I can also rent Cancun 1 week which would cover MF's if not more and still have a week to myself.

So to me it made sense....but now I know even though it made sense to me at the time, there was a more cost effective way of going about this.

My question is since I have that option to buy the other year by Jan. 2013, do I have any chance at picking up some staroptions on the cheap and having them reinstated as a condition of me picking up the other side of my deal for $8,000. Or do I not pick up the option and pick up the other EOY from a mandatory resort?

Your help is appreciated and most welcome!

ps. there is an 81,000 option deed at WKV on E-bay now for $100...is that even possible? Since it's mandatory, if it goes for $100, that means I paid $14,900 too much for the same 81,000 options I got a Lagunamar, correct? yikes.
 

VacationForever

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First of all, I'd like to thank my lucky stars for finding TUG when I did...not soon enough but better late than never.
Also, the strategies here, especially buying resale and getting the options re-instated are some of the best travel advice/tactics I have come across.

Now, I'd like to say that although many are "telling it like it is" or giving a poster good advice, I think that there has got to be a situation where buying something from a developer somewhere is not the end of the world. It's going to be pretty tough for people to hear what a terrible busines decision they made when purchasing something as emotional as a timeshare. You will never convince some people otherwise so rather than argue over and over about how mr. xyz values his starpoints, leave it alone. I found this forum yesterday and it can be pretty intimidating wrtiting your purchase and getting 50 negative replies.

All that said, regardless of how people express their opinions, this forum will save a lot of people a lot of $ and problems down the road.

So without further adieu, I have a few questions for the experts on here pertaining how to make the most out of my situation.

30 days ago I bought at Westin Lagunamar (voluntary, now I know - but do you think anyone told me that!)
$15,000 for 81,000 options EOY (basically 1 week in Gold Plus season in a 2 bdrm LO). (i dont think the week or size matter in svn, do they? isnt it all about the options?) with the right to buy the other year for $8,000 within 365 days
Anyway for me it made sense...at the time. For 81k options, i can;
1. stay in cancun for 1 wk in January (37k) in a studio and then TRY for a few 3 night stays in other places across the US.
2. we can do one week in the 2 bdrm with 6 ppl, or,
3. do Cancun for a week in Jan and a week in Nov

the MF's are $1,400 and all 3 of those options are worth more than that to me. I can also rent Cancun 1 week which would cover MF's if not more and still have a week to myself.

So to me it made sense....but now I know even though it made sense to me at the time, there was a more cost effective way of going about this.

My question is since I have that option to buy the other year by Jan. 2013, do I have any chance at picking up some staroptions on the cheap and having them reinstated as a condition of me picking up the other side of my deal for $8,000. Or do I not pick up the option and pick up the other EOY from a mandatory resort?

Your help is appreciated and most welcome!

ps. there is an 81,000 option deed at WKV on E-bay now for $100...is that even possible? Since it's mandatory, if it goes for $100, that means I paid $14,900 too much for the same 81,000 options I got a Lagunamar, correct? yikes.

You can pick up an annual Westin Kierland 1BR, 81000 StarOptions for about $6K. Annual MF of about $800.
 

YYJMSP

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My question is since I have that option to buy the other year by Jan. 2013, do I have any chance at picking up some staroptions on the cheap and having them reinstated as a condition of me picking up the other side of my deal for $8,000. Or do I not pick up the option and pick up the other EOY from a mandatory resort?

The rule was that you had to spend $20K in new money to requalify a week, so I'm not sure if the additional $8K for the other half of your EOY would give you the option to requalify a resale property in the same deal...
 

bizaro86

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$15,000 for 81,000 options EOY (basically 1 week in Gold Plus season in a 2 bdrm LO). (i dont think the week or size matter in svn, do they? isnt it all about the options?)

When you're using your star options, the week and size doesn't matter. So your 81,000 will be as good as anyone elses. When you are paying your maintenance fees every year there is a difference however, since the maintenance fees are by size.

So a gold 2 bed at 81k staroptions pays the same fees as a plat 2 bed at 148k and a silver 2 bed at 67k. Said differently, a 2 bedroom 81k unit in gold season pays more staroptions than a 1 bedroom 81k unit in plat season. The purchase price may have been less to make up some of this difference, and it's water under the bridge now anyway. Might be something to keep in mind if you're looking at buying something else.

Regards,

Michael
 

DavidnRobin

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The WKV on eBay for 81K SOs is a 2Bd LO in Gold season - and not Plat season. $100 is a good deal - but probably will end-up higher - last real one sold for ~$2600

An 81K SO WKV 1Bd (Prem-Plat) for $6K - really? I haven't kept up on eBay as of late - and no one posts to the eBay thread anymore (I am sure FredM is thankful for that...) - but I do go to eBay sometimes...

Glorian - what have 1Bd WKV Prem-Plat (81K SO) been going for lately on eBay?
I never see them listed (or they went by me...)
 
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Beefnot

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The rule was that you had to spend $20K in new money to requalify a week, so I'm not sure if the additional $8K for the other half of your EOY would give you the option to requalify a resale property in the same deal...

Why would anyone spend $20k to requalify a week? Why not just pocket the $20k and trade through II? Couldn't one find better vacation use for $20k (first class plane tickets, direct bookings of extra nights, lavish dinners, something) than requalifying a week?
 

Ken555

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Welcome to TUG!

The good news is that you know much more about what you bought now, and are asking the right questions. I'm not sure it's worth buying the other year for 8k, though my instinct says no. I'd rather put that money toward a Platinum Kierland one or two bedroom (2-bed annual MF with 148k SO is about $1350, I don't recall exact amount).

It does sound as though you have a plan for how to use what you bought, are comfortable with the purchase decision, and intend to maximize your use in future. Enjoy!
 

grgs

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Glorian - what have 1Bd WKV Prem-Plat (81K SO) been going for lately on eBay? I never see them listed (or they went by me...)

4/18/2008 1 bd prem EY Plat 9450
4/28/2008 1 bd prem EY Plat 10100
11/28/2008 1 bd prem EY Plat 8200
11/8/2009 1 bd prem EY Plat 5757
5/31/2011 1 bd prem EY Plat 6100

As you can see above, they're not listed very often. So while two have gone in the $6K range, I think you'd have to be waiting quite a while on ebay to get one.

Glorian
 

YYJMSP

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Why would anyone spend $20k to requalify a week? Why not just pocket the $20k and trade through II? Couldn't one find better vacation use for $20k (first class plane tickets, direct bookings of extra nights, lavish dinners, something) than requalifying a week?

I believe the general consensus is that it is only worth doing this if you are planning on reaching 5 Star Elite status, as it will half the cost of getting there.

Assuming a 148K annual week goes for $40K and a EOY week goes for $20K from the developer, you would buy 2 annual's and 1 EOY from the developer and requalify 2 annual's and a whatever for around $100K. If you bought all the weeks from the developer, you'd likely spend closer to $180K.
 

DeniseM

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I can also rent Cancun 1 week which would cover MF's if not more and still have a week to myself.

I'm sorry to be negative - but I think it's important that you know this before you even consider buying another Lagunamar week: The market is flooded with cheap timeshare rentals in Mexico, so it's very unlikely that you can rent half, or even both sides of your TS for enough to cover your MF. The sales person probably told you that, and showed you how much Starwood rents those units for, but owners get around 50% of that for private rentals - IF you can find a renter. There is far more supply than demand for Mexico timeshares right now. :(

Don't feel like the Lone Ranger - most of us on this forum bought our first timeshare from the developer, and many of us spent a LOT more than you did! Me for one! :D

I DEFINITELY would not buy at Lagunamar again if I were you...
 

DavidnRobin

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4/18/2008 1 bd prem EY Plat 9450
4/28/2008 1 bd prem EY Plat 10100
11/28/2008 1 bd prem EY Plat 8200
11/8/2009 1 bd prem EY Plat 5757
5/31/2011 1 bd prem EY Plat 6100

As you can see above, they're not listed very often. So while two have gone in the $6K range, I think you'd have to be waiting quite a while on ebay to get one.

Glorian

Thanks - I knew you'd have this. Wow - the last 2 have sold for ~$6000 over the last 2+ years (assuming the sale went thru) - probably not wise to sell one of these on eBay. Have the 2Bd Plat been selling for $15K? If so, the math makes no sense, but it is eBay after all...
 

grgs

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Have the 2Bd Plat been selling for $15K? If so, the math makes no sense, but it is eBay after all...

3/20/2007 2 bd LO EY Plat 21000
4/23/2007 2 bd LO EY Plat 28799
5/7/2007 2 bd LO EY Plat 24090
5/21/2007 2 bd LO EY Plat 24000
5/31/2007 2 bd LO EY Plat 21600
6/4/2007 2 bd LO EY Plat 20800
6/11/2007 2 bd LO EY Plat 23000
7/2/2007 2 bd LO EY Plat 22323
12/18/2007 2 bd LO EY Plat 22090
1/21/2008 2 bd LO EY Plat 20000
12/21/2008 2 bd LO EY Plat 13512
12/22/2008 2 bd LO EY Plat 12212
2/24/2009 2 bd LO EY Plat 17590
2/27/2009 2 bd LO EY Plat 15712
10/13/2009 2 bd LO EY Plat 15100
12/3/2009 2 bd LO EY Plat 17100
2/25/2010 2 bd LO EY Plat 19357
3/16/2010 2 bd LO EY Plat 17100
5/18/2010 2 bd LO EY Plat 17450
5/24/2010 2 bd LO EY Plat 13222
12/21/2010 2 bd LO EY Plat 15099
2/26/2011 2 bd LO EY Plat 14400
4/13/2011 2 bd LO EY Plat 14500
8/15/2011 2 bd LO EY Plat 13255

I agree that the pricing on the last 2 one bedroom premium units is likely below market (as far as we can determine market prices). ebay would not be the venue I would use to sell Platinum WKV units.

Glorian
 

Gmonsterson

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Thanks!

When you're using your star options, the week and size doesn't matter. So your 81,000 will be as good as anyone elses. When you are paying your maintenance fees every year there is a difference however, since the maintenance fees are by size.

So a gold 2 bed at 81k staroptions pays the same fees as a plat 2 bed at 148k and a silver 2 bed at 67k. Said differently, a 2 bedroom 81k unit in gold season pays more staroptions than a 1 bedroom 81k unit in plat season. The purchase price may have been less to make up some of this difference, and it's water under the bridge now anyway. Might be something to keep in mind if you're looking at buying something else.

Regards,

Michael

Thanks for the info....definitely really helpful.

So a few questions that stem from this;

1. 12 mos out for my home resort I can book. But, do I have to book a 2 bdrm LO at that time because that's what I own? or Can I book a Studio instead for only a fraction of the points. Or would I have to wait to 8 mos for a different sized unit than what's deeded to me?

2. If 81k SO in a Plat 1 br is about $500 less MF's that a 2br in Gold season, what the heck are the benefits of paying the extra MF's for the 2bdrm?
I assume the major one is that you can book that 2brm 12 mos out? But, if my question 1 above is correct, then the Plat 1 br could also book the 2br for 81k SO at the same 12 mos period as I can....? I don't get it.
The salesguy kept waving the floor plans around saying you can split the 2br LO so I can use half and II, Starpoint, rent, or whatever the other half...I guess that's a benefit but 81k SO gets you the same reservations through SVN no matter what I think.

I think my plan will be to pick up an EOY ODD 1 br PLAT with 81K options for as cheap as possible instead of paying 8k from the developer.

Thanks again for the help.
 

tschwa2

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The reason some buy the 2 bedroom 81,000 (gold plus?) vs the 1 bedroom 81,000 (platinum) is the initial cost is a lot lower and availability is greater.

I think finding a EOY Plat 1 bed is a great idea, in fact I am keeping an eye out for one myself but most people who have them are not looking to sell and more educated buyers are looking to buy these so their won't be ones just sitting around with no takers.
 

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The answer to question #1 is no. At 12 months, you can only book what you own (i.e. a 2 bedroom and your preferred view, if applicable). At 8 months, you can book anything that is available using your staroptions. So you could book your 2 bedroom at 12 months and then cancel your reservation at 8 months, which would free up the both sides. Assuming someone doesn't grab your studio that you just canceled during your call; you could rebook the studio and use your remaining staroptions as you choose. I hope this helps/make sense.

Thanks for the info....definitely really helpful.

So a few questions that stem from this;

1. 12 mos out for my home resort I can book. But, do I have to book a 2 bdrm LO at that time because that's what I own? or Can I book a Studio instead for only a fraction of the points. Or would I have to wait to 8 mos for a different sized unit than what's deeded to me?

2. If 81k SO in a Plat 1 br is about $500 less MF's that a 2br in Gold season, what the heck are the benefits of paying the extra MF's for the 2bdrm?
I assume the major one is that you can book that 2brm 12 mos out? But, if my question 1 above is correct, then the Plat 1 br could also book the 2br for 81k SO at the same 12 mos period as I can....? I don't get it.
The salesguy kept waving the floor plans around saying you can split the 2br LO so I can use half and II, Starpoint, rent, or whatever the other half...I guess that's a benefit but 81k SO gets you the same reservations through SVN no matter what I think.

I think my plan will be to pick up an EOY ODD 1 br PLAT with 81K options for as cheap as possible instead of paying 8k from the developer.

Thanks again for the help.
 

PamMo

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The answer to question #1 is no. At 12 months, you can only book what you own (i.e. a 2 bedroom and your preferred view, if applicable). At 8 months, you can book anything that is available using your staroptions. So you could book your 2 bedroom at 12 months and then cancel your reservation at 8 months, which would free up the both sides. Assuming someone doesn't grab your studio that you just canceled during your call; you could rebook the studio and use your remaining staroptions as you choose. I hope this helps/make sense.

Huh? All of my resorts are lockoffs, and every time I book (always at 12 months), I am asked if I want to book the whole 2BR, a 1BR, or a studio for the week. I always need a 2BR, but I do know they can book a portion of the 2BR lockoff at 12 months, as they accidently just did that for one of my reservations.

If you own a regular 2BR (not a lockoff), you're right. That is what you have to reserve at 12 months.
 

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Huh? All of my resorts are lockoffs, and every time I book (always at 12 months), I am asked if I want to book the whole 2BR, a 1BR, or a studio for the week. I always need a 2BR, but I do know they can book a portion of the 2BR lockoff at 12 months, as they accidently just did that for one of my reservations.

If you own a regular 2BR (not a lockoff), you're right. That is what you have to reserve at 12 months.

Thanks. getting clearer now. I am guessing that the major benefit of the 2bdrm LO with higher MF's is for families who require 2 bdrm and therefore can book at 12 mos (possibly whole or both sides) or you reserve at 12 and switch into only half at 8 mos as stated above...however the 1 bdrm Plat can only book the 1 bdrm 12 mos out and would have to wait for 8 mos if they had a family and required the full 2bdrm...? that would make sense and a good reason families on their first purchase go with the 2 bdrm with higher MF's.

Can't wait to start learning about II...:eek:
 

gtm2011

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PamMo,
You are probably right that you could probably book less than what you own, but not more. I only own a one bedroom, so I have never been given that option. When you book the two bedroom lockoff is it one reservation or two? More than likely one. What I am saying, is could you really seperate the two later on without canceling the entire reservation and rebooking? For example, to use some of the options later at a different resort and only keep the studio after booking the entire two bedroom at 12 months out.
Jason
 

PamMo

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Jason, when I book our 2BR lockoff, it is on one reservation.

Last year, I had an early August reservation for Maui all set, and then my brother decided to host a family reunion the same week. :eek: I was able to split the reservation into a 1BR and studio (keeping my view) with no problems and at no additional cost, and rented out both weeks separately. I didn't look into changing the reservation for another time or different resort (as we were going back to Hawaii for 2 weeks in the fall), but I don't believe there would be a problem doing that.

There are w-a-y more experienced Starwood owners that know all the SVN rules. Hopefully, they will confirm that my experience was the norm.


Gmonsterson, we own several SVN lockoffs because the MF's for a lockoff are not THAT much more than a 1BR at the resorts we own, and we like the flexibility of being able to book any size unit we want. Right now, we seem to always need a 2BR, but we're looking forward to spending months at a time in Hawaii in the coming years, by splitting our units up. (It's also nice that the studio rents for more than the MF's for the entire 2BR lockoff.)
 
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DavidnRobin

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PamMo,
You are probably right that you could probably book less than what you own, but not more. I only own a one bedroom, so I have never been given that option. When you book the two bedroom lockoff is it one reservation or two? More than likely one. What I am saying, is could you really seperate the two later on without canceling the entire reservation and rebooking? For example, to use some of the options later at a different resort and only keep the studio after booking the entire two bedroom at 12 months out.
Jason

if I understand correctly - yes...
You can move one w/o rebooking
 

DeniseM

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At 8-12 mos. you can book what you own - if you own a 2 bdm. lock-off, you can reserve the whole 2 bdm, OR side A, OR side B. (BTW - this info. is in the FAQ at the top of the forum.)

If you reserve the 2 Bdm., you can later cancel one side or the other, or split them into two reservations. Sometimes you get a Rep. who seems inexperienced or nervous about doing this. Call back and get someone with more experience.

Gmonsterson - the advantage of being the owner of a 2 bdm. at the resort of your choice is that at 12 mos. out from check-in you can reserve exactly what you want - almost always.

However, if you are trying to make a Staroption reservation at 8 mos. out from check-in, there are no guarantees, and for some resorts/seasons, it's virtually impossible, because there is ALWAYS more demand than supply, so there is very little availability for Staroption exchangers. Holiday weeks, Harborside, and WSJ fall into this category.

For instance, at the Maui resorts, the reservations for President's week, 2013, were all completley booked the first day they were available to owners as 12 mos. out. There will not be any availability at 8 mos. for Staroption exchangers.
 
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bizaro86

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One way to think about it is that a 2 Bdrm lockout (at Lagunamar) is really just a 1 bedroom and a studio unit that are connected to each other. So your ownership could be thought of as a 1 bedroom gold and a studio gold.
 

PamMo

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One way to think about it is that a 2 Bdrm lockout (at Lagunamar) is really just a 1 bedroom and a studio unit that are connected to each other. So your ownership could be thought of as a 1 bedroom gold and a studio gold.

But for a lot less MF's than if you bought them separately!
 

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I like it. So the 2bdro LO is virtually necessary if thats the only one you own and you expect to travel with a family (or 4-6 ppl in general) since a 1bdrm Plat owner would have to wait til month 8 to reserve a 2bdrm LO. (at home resort)

I've read all the resources available on here, it's nice though to hear it explained from other points of view sometimes.

I find the II exchange stuff extremely confusing so look out for a new thread with some questions on that! :cool:
 
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