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How does Biennial ownership work at a mandatory resort?

majohnson0612

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A little clarification is requested:

I'm looking at purchasing a resale listed on the "sell my timeshare now" website. Looks like you can get some great deals without purchasing direct from a resort salesperson.

1st: Is this a reputable site? Looks like it is managed by a real estate firm.

2nd: I want to purchase from a "mandatory resort" so I can still visit other locations in the Starwood Network (not the options if I join Interval Exchange)...and I was looking at the Key West/Bella villas at Vistana Villages in Orlando. This is mainly because their maintenance fees are more reasonable and it appears you get more bang for your buck with respect to still acquiring a high number of StarOptions. I'm married and have 2 youngin's (5 & 9) that love pools. Is their a preference between the Key West/Bella villas? To my main question and reason for posting, I get how the biennial aspect works for your home resort, but how do you Staroptions work during the years when you can't visit your home resort? It appears you still get your full yearly allotted StarOptions...do you just have to use them as you see fit at other resorts in the Starwood Network Vacation Club? I take it you can exchange those to the Interval International program as well (granted you pay to join).

3rd: How does the Interval International program work in a nutshell and what level is recommended to join (I think there is a gold and platinum)? Do you have to exchange your whole yearly allotted StarOptions or can you do half/portion?

Thanks for assistance to clarify.

Mike
 

Ty1on

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A little clarification is requested:

I'm looking at purchasing a resale listed on the "sell my timeshare now" website. Looks like you can get some great deals without purchasing direct from a resort salesperson.

1st: Is this a reputable site? Looks like it is managed by a real estate firm.

2nd: I want to purchase from a "mandatory resort" so I can still visit other locations in the Starwood Network (not the options if I join Interval Exchange)...and I was looking at the Key West/Bella villas at Vistana Villages in Orlando. This is mainly because their maintenance fees are more reasonable and it appears you get more bang for your buck with respect to still acquiring a high number of StarOptions. I'm married and have 2 youngin's (5 & 9) that love pools. Is their a preference between the Key West/Bella villas? To my main question and reason for posting, I get how the biennial aspect works for your home resort, but how do you Staroptions work during the years when you can't visit your home resort? It appears you still get your full yearly allotted StarOptions...do you just have to use them as you see fit at other resorts in the Starwood Network Vacation Club? I take it you can exchange those to the Interval International program as well (granted you pay to join).

3rd: How does the Interval International program work in a nutshell and what level is recommended to join (I think there is a gold and platinum)? Do you have to exchange your whole yearly allotted StarOptions or can you do half/portion?

Thanks for assistance to clarify.

Mike

My observation has been that everything I've looked at on that site has been priced high.

You are better off looking at EBay, which of course is market driven pricing if it's an auction, here on TUG, and on RedWeek. I've noticed some sellers here and on RedWeek shoot for the moon in their listings, too. What I would do is when I found a potential buy, no matter the source, post the details in a thread here and others will quickly let you know if the price is out of line.

Sharket lists a typical Bella resale at $1,200, but that's a statistical measure, your results will vary.
 
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DeniseM

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A little clarification is requested:

I'm looking at purchasing a resale listed on the "sell my timeshare now" website. Looks like you can get some great deals without purchasing direct from a resort salesperson.

1st: Is this a reputable site? Looks like it is managed by a real estate firm.

Their prices are much higher than the rest of the market, you can do much better buying on ebay, or directly from an owner.

To my main question and reason for posting, I get how the biennial aspect works for your home resort, but how do you Staroptions work during the years when you can't visit your home resort? It appears you still get your full yearly allotted StarOptions...

During the off years (every other year) you get NO Staroptions, and no timeshare usage.

If you mean how do you use Staroptions during your usage years, you use them just like currency to "buy" reservations from SVN. At 8 mos. before check-in, you can exchange for anything available, that you have enough Staroptions for.

I take it you can exchange those to the Interval International program as well (granted you pay to join).

With II, you actually deposit a week of timeshare, not your Staroptions, which can only be used with Starwood. A II Acct. is included in your Starwood membership fee, with a mandatory resort.

3rd: How does the Interval International program work in a nutshell and what level is recommended to join (I think there is a gold and platinum)? Do you have to exchange your whole yearly allotted StarOptions or can you do half/portion?

There is a complete II and Starwood article at the top of the Starwood forum. You cannot make a partial deposit to II, nor deposit Staroptions, but if you own a 2 bdm. lock-off, you can deposit one side of the lock-off or the other - but you must deposit a full week.
 
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vacationtime1

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LisaRex

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EOY usage is just that. You get usage, which includes converting to StarOptions (the internal SVN currency for exchanging to other resorts) EOY. EOY Odd means your first usage will be 2017 and even usage means your first usage will be 2016.

You have to time your purchase correctly when you buy an EOY because once the 8 month window opens for your travel dates, it's open season for exchangers. If you buy an EOY even unit now, then nearly half of the year will have been open for exchangers by the time you close. So if you were hoping to make an SVN exchange in April 2016, you may be out of luck.

Usually EOY VOIs sell for a bit more than 50% of an annual unit. MFs are billed every year at slightly higher than 50%. So, for example, if an EY Bella unit's MFs are $1400 per year, you'll pay $730 per year + $150 SVN fee every year.

If you want to delay your usage a year or two, for $99 you can convert your usage to SOs and bank them for two years, but you must do so before June 30th of your current use year. So if buy an EOY even unit, you can bank those SOs by 6/30/16, and have until 12/31/18 to use them.

Note that banking has also caused fierce competition at the most popular exchangers, such as Westin Ka'anapali, Harborside Resort in Atlantis, and Westin St. John. Don't assume that just because you have SOs, that you can freely spend them. Everything is always subject to availability.

P.S. Key West MFs are currently cheaper than Bella's, but Bella just underwent a complete renovation. I can't help you with the pool advice, as I've never actually stayed there. I visited once but didn't really notice the pools.

P.P.S. Be sure to check out the different floor plans, too. Bella has some funky configurations. For instance, the regular 2 bdrm has a whirlpool tub...in the bedroom. Soooo 70s. (Open the link below and see the blue blocks at the top for Key West and Bella).

https://www.starwoodvacationnetwork...istana-villages/villas#two-bedroom-villabella
 
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