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Explain It To Me Like a Five-Year Old...

BulldogzRus

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So I'm not sure if I'm making this too difficult on myself, but I've been visiting the Marriott Aruba Ocean Club the past 6 years. I always went in "low" season usually mid-September to October. Pre-pandemic the rates were approx. $1300-1850/wk. for a 1BR Villa, Oceanview but now are trending a good $500-1000 more because of demand. We're not really picky as long as it had the full kitchen which was nice to have, and the views have always been nice regardless. I've been using the same owner to rent from the past 4 times and she always charges less than market asks, so I usually offer a little more making sure to at least cover her maint. fees in rental. But it takes some emails back and forth to confirm dates, worse is last time I visited she had mistakenly given me my previous confirmation code and Marriott Front Desk was refusing to let me into the room, despite it being booked under my name and for that week. They literally we're playing the "we need to see/hear the new code directly from you, although we can see it here in our system" game. It took a call to the States and fortunately she picked up, but I sat on the phone long distance for almost 30 minutes while she looked for the new one.

Having said that, if I instead bought a floating medium (18-49) for say, $5-6k and current maint. fees of $1450, is it easier to just go that route? I love going there so it isn't like I'd regret it, but my understanding is that she usually had to see what is available, if you own one do you have access to some sort of rental calendar you can book ASAP if it is open? I mean, if I'm almost paying $3k a week as of now to rent, at a $5-6k purchase price then within two years I'm only paying for maint. and my airfare, correct? What I mean is, even w/yearly increases of approx. 5%, a good 20 years later my out-of-pocket to go there is still around $3500 in maint. fees which most likely would cost less than paying to rent it for a week, no?

Anything I seem to be missing here? Obviously my understanding is that getting the cheapest buying price is preferable then simply absorb the fees. What would be any hidden costs I'm missing specifically regarding the timeshare?

Thanks so much in advance!
 

claraj

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This should be moved to Marriott thread to get more responses. I'm not real familiar with owning Aruba, the only advice I have is to buy resale, which sounds like you already know about.
 

Hindsite

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Your right on track with your approach. Compare what you actually spend to the timeshare purchase cost over 5 and 10 years. I prefer to up the maintenance fee increase to 10% just in case there's more inflation.
Look at the redweek website to compare market rates for when you want to go.
The next step is to consider exchange costs using II, $99/ year plus $249/week (worst case) exchange fee. In case you will want to use that at any point. Then you're going to look into buying a 2bed lock-off platinum season and use that to get 2 x lower season weeks for the one set of maintenance fees.
Lots to look at, basically the risk to you is the enduring liability for maintenance fees, even if you decide no longer to use the week.
 

BulldogzRus

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Then you're going to look into buying a 2bed lock-off platinum season and use that to get 2 x lower season weeks for the one set of maintenance fees.
Can you give me some more info on this as to what exactly I'd search for??
 

rickandcindy23

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Can you give me some more info on this as to what exactly I'd search for??
If you buy a gold season lockoff in Aruba at one of the Marriott resorts, you can get two weeks from it by locking off, paying $95 to Marriott to book it as two weeks, and you can do back-to-back weeks and stay twice as long, or you can book the studio at another time. You could always rent the studio reasonably to offset the total maintenance fees as well.

advantagevacation.com has some listings
Of course ebay has listings as well.
 

BulldogzRus

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If you buy a gold season lockoff in Aruba at one of the Marriott resorts, you can get two weeks from it by locking off, paying $95 to Marriott to book it as two weeks, and you can do back-to-back weeks and stay twice as long, or you can book the studio at another time. You could always rent the studio reasonably to offset the total maintenance fees as well.

advantagevacation.com has some listings
Of course ebay has listings as well.
Thank you so much for this wonderful advice!!
 

rickandcindy23

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Hindsite

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In general, if you are going to rely on exchanging via II, the advice is to buy a high season 2-bed lock-off, as that gets you the best exchanges in II. The maint fees are the same no matter what season you own, it is sensible advice, as long as there isn't a big premium with the purchase price compared to a mid (gold) season. Other advice is the buy where you want to go, so an Aruba week would suit what you want.
That said, if you want to travel not in peak season then you will do just fine with a gold season week. For example, you could use the 1-bed part and then rent out or deposit to II the studio part.
 

BulldogzRus

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In general, if you are going to rely on exchanging via II, the advice is to buy a high season 2-bed lock-off, as that gets you the best exchanges in II. The maint fees are the same no matter what season you own, it is sensible advice, as long as there isn't a big premium with the purchase price compared to a mid (gold) season. Other advice is the buy where you want to go, so an Aruba week would suit what you want.
That said, if you want to travel not in peak season then you will do just fine with a gold season week. For example, you could use the 1-bed part and then rent out or deposit to II the studio part.
Truthfully I wouldn't be concerned about exchanges, my wife and I absolutely love Aruba, and the Ocean Club is perfect for us (location, amenities, less crowded i.e. chairs, and access to the Stellaris gym). We also love Gold timeframe as it's far less crowded, we like not having to wait in long lines at either pool bars or restaurants and the beach has less people. If a deal were to come up for high season I'd def. consider it in addition to, but as of now we enjoy spending the holidays at home! We don't really need a 2BR, but I'm intrigued by the option of that lockoff 2-week stay for one maint. cost!

In your experience, are these prices only negotiable if being sold via personal vs. real estate holding company? I assume supply/demand comes in to play, but it's hard to know if someone is willing to negotiate because they want to get out ASAP as most don't show how long they've been listed.
 

rickandcindy23

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Negotiable to a point. You need to pass ROFR, if Aruba has ROFR, and that can be tough.

I would buy a good trader, Palm Desert Marriott platinum season, or another Marriott, like Grand Chateau in Vegas, maybe even Willow Ridge in Branson, and use that to exchange into Aruba. A good trader can easily get gold season in Aruba in a 1 bedroom.
 

BulldogzRus

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Negotiable to a point. You need to pass ROFR, if Aruba has ROFR, and that can be tough.

I would buy a good trader, Palm Desert Marriott platinum season, or another Marriott, like Grand Chateau in Vegas, maybe even Willow Ridge in Branson, and use that to exchange into Aruba. A good trader can easily get gold season in Aruba in a 1 bedroom.
Per another post:
Marriott’s Aruba Ocean Club* 30 days and *No Waiver Fee*
Marriott’s Aruba Surf Club* 30 days and *No Waiver Fee*
https://advantagevacation.com/marriotts-right-of-first-refusal-terms-and-policy/

So let's say someone or even an agent has a $10k listing and I offer their asking, where does ROFR then come in? Do I wait the 30 days and they say yes or no? If so, if I finance and they say no am I covered? Same w/cash, simple refund?
 

Hindsite

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Truthfully I wouldn't be concerned about exchanges, my wife and I absolutely love Aruba, and the Ocean Club is perfect for us (location, amenities, less crowded i.e. chairs, and access to the Stellaris gym). We also love Gold timeframe as it's far less crowded, we like not having to wait in long lines at either pool bars or restaurants and the beach has less people. If a deal were to come up for high season I'd def. consider it in addition to, but as of now we enjoy spending the holidays at home! We don't really need a 2BR, but I'm intrigued by the option of that lockoff 2-week stay for one maint. cost!

In your experience, are these prices only negotiable if being sold via personal vs. real estate holding company? I assume supply/demand comes in to play, but it's hard to know if someone is willing to negotiate because they want to get out ASAP as most don't show how long they've been listed.
If you get a gold week lock-off and just use that for your stays, sounds sensible, then you could lock it off and book 1 week in the 1-bed and the 2nd week in the studio side. That only needs you to buy the week and pay maint fees and the lock-off fee to MVC and you can book them consecutively, subject to availability.
That's nice and simple and gets you started with the resort that you love in the season you love.
You can add II at a later date if that suits you.
 

Hindsite

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So let's say someone or even an agent has a $10k listing and I offer their asking, where does ROFR then come in? Do I wait the 30 days and they say yes or no? If so, if I finance and they say no am I covered? Same w/cash, simple refund?
You make the offer it is accepted and then the seller/agent prepares the documentation, which is submitted to MVC and they decide whether to exercise ROFR or not. If they do, the seller gets the price from MVC and the buyer is left with no purchase. If they don't exercise then the buyer gets the week.
You don't pay for the week until it has gone through the ROFR process, so you don't loose out. Avoid financing if you can as that kills the value you get from usage, if you do finance, get the best rate you can for the shortest time.
 

Hindsite

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@BulldogzRus If you've got good info from these forums (and some entertainment!), add the $15 annual TUG membership to your analysis and link your membership to your profile. Then you can come to the Mall with the cool member kids. If you get lifetime membership, I think you can choose whether to go to Taylor Swift or Culture Club gig and stay out all night, but that's above my pay grade.
 

rickandcindy23

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ROFR.net is a great resource for Marriott transactions. Also Disney and Westin. TUG member owns the site, TUG members report their experiences.
 

BulldogzRus

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ROFR.net is a great resource for Marriott transactions. Also Disney and Westin. TUG member owns the site, TUG members report their experiences.
Seeing quite a lot of Failed for the Ocean Club over the past few years. Does that mean someone puts in the offer, it goes to Marriot for ROFR and that means it was rejected at that sale price by Marriott? If so, does the seller then relist it based on what Marriott states it is actually worth?
 

SteveinHNL

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Thank you so much for this wonderful advice!!

Although you would be getting 2 weeks out of your owned 2BR lockoff, be aware this means doing exchanges through Interval International, so there are additional fees for that (is it $249 per week?) in addition to the lockoff fee, and the unit sizes may not be the same for each of the 2 weeks you stay.
 

dioxide45

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Although you would be getting 2 weeks out of your owned 2BR lockoff, be aware this means doing exchanges through Interval International, so there are additional fees for that (is it $249 per week?) in addition to the lockoff fee, and the unit sizes may not be the same for each of the 2 weeks you stay.
Marriott to Marriott/Vistana exchange fee is $164.
 

rickandcindy23

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The OP was wanting to buy Aruba to stay there, but I did advise that he/she buy a platinum trader because gold season is not tough through exchange in Aruba.
 

rickandcindy23

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Seeing quite a lot of Failed for the Ocean Club over the past few years. Does that mean someone puts in the offer, it goes to Marriot for ROFR and that means it was rejected at that sale price by Marriott? If so, does the seller then relist it based on what Marriott states it is actually worth?
Marriott basically gets to steal (maybe too harsh to say steal) it from the buyer. Marriott is now the buyer. It's fine and dandy for the seller but not for the buyer. The brokers, now they do get a good chunk, so no loss for the broker.

Marriott upholds resale value this way, but they also get cheap resale inventory back to re-sell at inflated prices. It's a win for Marriott to buy these up.
 

SteveinHNL

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Marriott basically gets to steal (maybe too harsh to say steal) it from the buyer. Marriott is now the buyer. It's fine and dandy for the seller but not for the buyer. The brokers, now they do get a good chunk, so no loss for the broker.

Marriott upholds resale value this way, but they also get cheap resale inventory back to re-sell at inflated prices. It's a win for Marriott to buy these up.

I've always believed ROFR could be overcome by inserting custom provisions into the contract, such as the seller retaining the option to rent back from the Buyer in odd years for payment of MFs. I'm sure Marriott couldn't honor that and would have to pass on the ROFR. If Seller later waives that right after closing, well isn't that nice.
 

Hindsite

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Although you would be getting 2 weeks out of your owned 2BR lockoff, be aware this means doing exchanges through Interval International, so there are additional fees for that (is it $249 per week?) in addition to the lockoff fee, and the unit sizes may not be the same for each of the 2 weeks you stay.
As they are happy with Gold season, and if they can use a Studio, and move rooms mid-trip. All they need to do is lock-off and pay the MVC fee to lock-off and then book the 1-bed and studio sections for consecutive dates directly in MVC, so no need for II if they can make that work.
 
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