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looking for input on marriott timeshare purchase

snowgodess04

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My husband and I just picked up to timeshares and are still deliberating on what to do...keep or rescind. We are new to the whole timeshare thing, but like the idea of marriott points (yes, we bought directly) and the possibility of traveling to lots of new places. I am concerned if the price of the units and the MF are worth it. Here's what we got:

Aruba G/GV $21,590
St. Kitts G/GV $22,400 with 200,000 points

What is the realistic trade value in these properties? Are the prices and MF worth it?

thanks in advance...
 

Numismatist

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RESCIND - you can buy them resale for a lot less. Then decide how to use them. I'm sure someone else will chime in as well.
 

Latravel

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RESEARCH!

Sorry, I couldn't resist typing this since i'm tired of seeing people blindly and automatically responding RESCIND - it doesn't help the poster.

I personally don't buy resale because even the resale price is too much for just the use of one week per year at the same resort. I could rent for cheaper.

Points open up a whole new dimension to timesharing. I was talking with my husband last night about where in the world we want to go next with our points (we just returned from Italy): London & Paris, Greece & Turkey or Spain & Morocco. I was saying how amazing it was that the world is completely open to us all because of points because of our direct purchase from Marriott

It is important to research which option suits your needs. Resale is good if you want the lowest cost alternative and don't mind forever going to places where there are only timeshares. Resales can be found at really good prices now because of the economy. If you can afford more, points are good if you want to see everyplace else in the world all with just your timeshare purchase. It is also good if you have more vacations banked than you know what to do with because you can trade your unit for points (which I have done).

Good luck and the best decision is an informed one. If you just blindly rescind (like many will tell you here) you might miss out on something you will enjoy.
 

GetawaysRus

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This is always a heated topic on this discussion board. I agree that the answer is "it depends."

I also purchased direct from Marriott. I own one 2 BR unit, and can trade for 110,000 points every other year.

We purchased in 2004. Here is what we have done with our points so far:

2005 - one week at the Marriott Grand Flora in Rome (This was part of a several week European vacation. We followed this with a cruise leaving from Civitaveccia (the port for Rome) and ending in Barcelona.)

2007 - one week at the Marriott Champs-Elysees in Paris. We then sandwiched in a European river boat cruise, ending in Prague (and of course paid for the river cruise separately). We then extended our stay in Prague for several additional days at the Marriott Prague using our points.

2010 - we will be taking a 2 week South American cruise from Santiago, Chile to Buenos Aires, Argentina. We will then extend our stay in Buenos Aires for 1 more week at the Marriott Buenos Aires using points.

So far, then, we find that we are able to use our points for a pretty grand vacation every 2-3 years. Also, with the 2007 and 2010 hotel stays, we took these as Marriott travel packages (rather than simply hotel stays), adding 120,000 airline miles to my frequent flyer account each time. Using these miles (plus miles from other sources), we have also been able to take advantage of business class air seats for the 2007 and 2010 trips.

Figure out your travel plans, then make your best decision about your timeshare purchase. Overall I am pleased with my purchase from Marriott.
 
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snowgodess04

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Thanks for the input...something certainly to think about. I think we're definitely going to rescind one of the properties as we are both a little overwhelmed with learning the system, but perhaps holding on to one and learning the ropes a bit would be smart. Any advice on which resort would be better for trading purposes throughout the Caribbean and Europe/Asia?
 

gejone

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Calculate how much the points will cost you each year. Divide your annual maintenance fee by the number of points you get each year.

Then, let's assume you'll use the Marriott system for another 20 years. Divide your purchase price by 20, then divide that by the number of points you get each year.

To get the total price of your points each year, add those two together. Multiply the price per point by the number of points you receive each year. That is the annual value of your purchase. Compare that to the cost of some of the stays listed above and see how it compares. Also, compare that value to the price of renting a unit at the same resorts you purchased, see TUG Rentals.

I did not factor the cost of your money, interest lost by paying cash or financing cost if you didn't. That would be offset by the inflation factor of the room rate and maintenance fees that you will see each year. From prior posts on this board, most of the comments are that buying with the intention of using the points is not a good value. The rule of thumb is, buy where you want to go. If you want to trade a lot, buy on the resale market, you'll see some really good bargains. My personal opinion is rescind
 

alwysonvac

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Rescind And Research

You can always buy from the developer again but you will only have one opportunity to rescind.

I won’t suggest that anyone buy from a developer to get hotel points. Over time all hotel and frequent flyer loyalty programs go through point devaluation. What you can get today will definitely cost you more tomorrow due to the increased number of points required for a hotel award and increased Maintenance Fees.

Marriott Maintenance Fees - http://www.tug2.net/advice/marriottmf.htm
Marriott TS ROFR Database: http://dioxide45.tripod.com/rofr.html

When you get a chance read TUG's Timeshare 101 article on the TUG Advice page - http://www.tug2.net/advice/TimeShare-101.htm

Good Luck :hi:
 
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jlee2070

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Really, do some more research starting with this board... You will learn the "only" draw back from buying resale (vs from developer) is the ability to trade for Marriott Rewards "hotel" Points. Most say it's not worth it but make your own mind up on this...

90% of the people on this board will likely say to rescind and do more research. BUT, most on this board probably started out like you. Bought from the Developer while on vacation and then learned about the resale market. You have the advantage of doing some research while you still have the option to rescind (assuming you still have time).

Like most, I would say rescind and research. You can always go back to the developer despite what they say about 1st visit offers....
 

hotcoffee

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I am hesitant about getting into this topic. I would not attempt to advise anyone whether they should buy resale or direct. What disturbs me right now with buying ANY Marriott timeshare is the degree of uncertainty with reference to possible changes in exchanging and reservations. I was profoundly disturbed by a Marriott salesman last year when he told me that changes are coming to Marriott timesharing. He told me that Marriott is planning to implement a point system for exchanges, and then he dropped the real bombshell. He told me that Marriott intended to reduce the reservation window to 6 months for resale owners (from 12 for direct buyers). His obvious intention was to encourage buying direct from Marriott. However, it had the opposite effect upon me. I would not buy ANY Marriott timeshare, resale or direct, unless I felt reasonably comfortable that I would have a fair shot at selling it if I had to. What happens if I experience unexpected health problems (or worse). Certainly, my family might want the option of selling the timeshare. If Marriott won't accept it for resale, the only recourse would be to attempt to sell it on the open market. How many people would buy it if they knew that they would be severely penalized if they wanted to exchange their week?

It seems that most members of this forum don't believe that Marriott would ever do anything radical to hurt resales. And, that might indeed be the case. But if their salesmen really think that they can promote direct sales by telling customers that Marriott intended to penalize resale buyers, they must be lacking in intelligence.

Knowing what I know now, I would want some clarifications from Marriott about what their plans are for the future before I would buy a timeshare from them. There are other timeshare companies out there; and if this is indeed a good time to buy a timeshare, I might prefer looking at buying from another company. That is only my personal opinion.
 

pefs65

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I have learned so much on this board.
My humble newbie advice would be also to rescind and do more research also.

The best deals imho now are defintitely resale. I do not feel that the points option for hotel points are that important to me. maybe for some they are but not for me.

Like many I am still alittle spooked:eek: and angry:mad: about the uncerainty with Marriott inregards to this possible internal point system for exchanges and also the fact that they seem intent on trying to penalize resale buyers.
Or at least thats what there salespeople are pushing.

Marriott to me is the best TS for me to consider buying and i want to buy resale but like others this uncertainty with the potential to heavily penalize resale buyers makes me at times want to do nothing.:crash:
 

echino

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My very newbie advise would be:

1. Rescind immediately BOTH purchases.
2. Do not buy another timeshare, neither direct, nor resale.
3. Keep the cash. This way you get the most flexibility and the whole world open. You may rent a timeshare any time, or go anywhere by booking any hotel, at a cost which is much less than the total cost of buying and owning a timeshare, even resale one. Or not going some year and keep the cash (instead of wasting your maintenance fees) if your personal circumstances ever prevent you from having a vacation.

Just my personal opinion. I understand it may not be popular on a timeshare board.
 

m61376

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At the risk of getting some angry rhetoric from a few of the above posters, I'd advise you absolutely to rescind immediately. The fact that you are asking what to do tells me that you aren't ready to buy; you have too many questions. You have only a few days to rescind but can buy next week, next month, etc.. Take the time to learn the system and the implications of buying direct versus resale.

Keep in mind that the only thing lost by buying resale is the ability to trade for points. A prior post discussed at length why Marriott is extremely unlikely to penalize resale owners wrt making reservations at their home resort, including excerpts from resort legal documents and with professional opinions from lawyer members of Tug. Various salespeople have stretched the truth a bit in this regard.

As for the future- Marriott has hinted that they will be rolling out a points program, akin to the Asia Pacific Program, which current owners will have to buy into if they choose to do so. Resale owners may or may not be offered this option. However, the ability to trade week for week will be retained and, imho, many if not most current owners will continue to trade in II and not opt to pay the $5000 or so that Marriott is currently charging to owners of resorts participating in the Asia Pacific points program. For many reason, besides cost to upgrade, I think a lot of people will hesitate to change into this system. It offers more flexibility, but severely limits any upgrades and, in many cases, 2 BR's at one resort will only have enough points to trade into a studio week at other resorts. At any extent, I expect that there will be many Marriott owners who will want to continue to exchange at least like for like and continue to hope for upgrades and, therefore, weeks will continue to be exchanged in II and resale owners will continue to be able to reserve their owned week and exchange for other properties.

Take the time to read through lots of posts. Keep in mind that most of the more ardent direct purchase buyers bought at a time when they were offered 300,00-500,000 points up front and when prices were much lower. Today, purchase incentives are down, prices are higher, and annual MF's are higher. After the most recent point devaluation, it will now take approximately 3 trades for that European trip, and the hotel vouchers have been shortened from 7 to 5 days. Points awarded for trading remain stable over time, but MF's escalate and Marriott is free to (and has) devalued points over time, making the cost of each trade more but getting less in reality.

Admittedly, there are some people here who still feel those fabulous trips that they might not otherwise spend the money on are worth it. Some evaluate the benefit as the rack rate of the hotel and of business class travel, and that equates into $$$$'s. Others feel the monetary value to them is the way they would normally travel, including staying at some great properties but at discounted rates and taking the less classy and less comfy coach seat route. That's a decision you have to make- but you need the time to make an informed decision.

As for which property- Both are terrific properties. Admittedly, I am partial to Aruba; others favor St. Kitts. As for trading- I think Aruba Gold is a better trader than Gold St. Kitts. Because it is below the hurricane belt and has basically the same climate year round (like Hawaii), Aruba is really a year round destination. Heightened winter desirability is not because of better weather in Aruba at the time, but because so many people, esp. from the Northeast, want to go to the Caribbean from mid-Dec. through April. Last year someone posted various evaluations that Redweek gave to a 2BR July 4th week at many of the properties, including the Hawaii ones, and Aruba Surf Club weeks were number one.

Again, if you decide to rescind, make sure to follow the instructions exactly. Remember rescinding doesn't mean you can't buy directly- it just gives you the time to decide how and what to buy without the clock ticking. Feel free to ask questions along the way- and welcome to Tug :wave:
 

m61376

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My very newbie advise would be:

1. Rescind immediately BOTH purchases.
2. Do not buy another timeshare, neither direct, nor resale.
3. Keep the cash. This way you get the most flexibility and the whole world open. You may rent a timeshare any time, or go anywhere by booking any hotel, at a cost which is much less than the total cost of buying and owning a timeshare, even resale one. Or not going some year and keep the cash (instead of wasting your maintenance fees) if your personal circumstances ever prevent you from having a vacation.

Just my personal opinion. I understand it may not be popular on a timeshare board.
Actually, many have posted similar advice and some have actually sold and decided just to rent. A few things to keep in mind-
-rentals are cheap today, but will likely increase when the economy recovers
-resales are at an all time low because of the economy; it is a buyer's market if you can afford it
-going to an owned week, or one traded into by a major company like II, has security. Renting a week does involve a little risk
-owning allows you to plan in advance and not have to constantly search and make rental arrangements.
-This will sound like salesperson gibberish, but it is true- if you have it, you'll use it. You won't second guess as to whether it pays to lay out $$'s for any given vacation. Most of use can put money to use elsewhere. But if you own the week, you have more of an impetus to use it and not waste it. For many, it lights a fire for them to even take a week off from work. For others, it eliminates second guessing as to whether to spend the money. Simply booking a week at your home resort is the simplest vacation planning you can do.

I really think it makes people more apt to take vacations. Getaways are also a cheap way to supplement your ownership. I've told the following personal example a few times, but it really is true: a year and a half ago we scheduled a week's vacation in January when my daughter would be on intersession. Because I happened to see a Getaway on II at the Royal Sands for under a thousand for a 2BR for a week two weeks before my parent's 60th Anniversary, we decided it would be fun to take them on an extra trip in mid-November. A history buff, I knew my Dad would love seeing the ruins, etc.. If not for seeing a Getaway week (which would not have been possible if we didn't own a timeshare) we would have waited until January when we could have celebrated on a family trip. Well, sadly and unexpectedly my Dad passed away a few weeks after their anniversary, two weeks before our scheduled January trip. Maybe that's why I think owning a timeshare is an opportunity to create priceless memories, and is the best money I have ever spent.
 

lovearuba

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buying from Marriott

My husband and I just picked up to timeshares and are still deliberating on what to do...keep or rescind. We are new to the whole timeshare thing, but like the idea of marriott points (yes, we bought directly) and the possibility of traveling to lots of new places. I am concerned if the price of the units and the MF are worth it. Here's what we got:

Aruba G/GV $21,590
St. Kitts G/GV $22,400 with 200,000 points

What is the realistic trade value in these properties? Are the prices and MF worth it?

thanks in advance...

Biggest mistake I ever made financially was buying directly from Marriott. Depending on the resort resale might not be so bad. You have no guarantee on what can happen with those maintenance fees and virtually no rights. Read the aruba thread.
 

Pit

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Like most, I would say rescind and research. You can always go back to the developer despite what they say about 1st visit offers....
Rescind while you can. Then take the time to make a more informed decision.
 

gmarine

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Rescind without question. Unless you get half a million or so incentive points per purchase the value of trading your units for points will never come close to being worth the thousands extra you have paid.
 

hotcoffee

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-This will sound like salesperson gibberish, but it is true- if you have it, you'll use it. You won't second guess as to whether it pays to lay out $$'s for any given vacation. Most of use can put money to use elsewhere. But if you own the week, you have more of an impetus to use it and not.
This is a point that should be considered. Do you really want to buy ANY timeshare? If you own a timeshare, you are going to be motivated to take a yearly vacation whether you can afford it or not. If you don't own a timeshare, you might decide to take a local vacation (or just stay home one year). Timeshares are for people who really want to take that yearly vacation (or two), and want to go to places you cannot drive to so easily.
I think the argument that it is cheaper to own a timeshare than renting or staying at hotels can be misleading. The only way you are really saving money is if you know that you are definitely going to take those expensive vacations and stay at expensive resorts virtually every year.
 

dioxide45

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Sorry, I couldn't resist typing this since i'm tired of seeing people blindly and automatically responding RESCIND - it doesn't help the poster.
I think in most situations where a first time poster has bought a TS while on their vacation, the best advice any of us can give it to rescind. While to blindly just say rescind and buy resale may not be the best advice. To rescind is by far the best option. In many cased the person may only have a few days left in their rescission period. They only get one chance to rescind but have many more to buy from the developer.

We bought resale and it was the best option for us. We travel mostly domestically and exchanging in to and using our own TS was the best choice. One of the sale reps we had once even said we made the best decision given our vacation pattern. I understand this doesn't work for everyone; however, I don't think someone can make an informed decision about that during a 10 day rescission period (in many cases they have even less time than that by the time they post here.)
 

SueDonJ

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At the risk of getting some angry rhetoric from a few of the above posters, I'd advise you absolutely to rescind immediately. The fact that you are asking what to do tells me that you aren't ready to buy; you have too many questions. You have only a few days to rescind but can buy next week, next month, etc.. Take the time to learn the system and the implications of buying direct versus resale. ...
Surprise! Despite the fact that I am a proponent of direct purchase, I agree with the logic here and also suggest that you rescind while you can. It's better to do your research to determine if the benefits to buying direct outweigh the cost savings of buying resale before you purchase anything.

Keep in mind that the only thing lost by buying resale is the ability to trade for points. A prior post discussed at length why Marriott is extremely unlikely to penalize resale owners wrt making reservations at their home resort, including excerpts from resort legal documents and with professional opinions from lawyer members of Tug. Various salespeople have stretched the truth a bit in this regard. ...
It's true, at this moment the only yearly use difference between direct- and resale-purchases is the ability to trade a direct purchase week for Marriott Rewards Points (subject to the MRP valuation assigned to specific resorts.) It's true also that this subject is an ongoing discussion here on these message boards and most folks who participate feel very strongly about the correctness of their opinions.

What's also true, though, is that the "excerpts from resort legal documents" that have been relied upon to bolster opinions are specific to certain resorts only, and folks who own at other resorts have stated that those excerpts are not contained in their own ownership documents. One poster in particular, iconnections, can testify to reservation changes that were implemented by MVCI after purchase that were not prohibited by any of her documents and did in fact negatively impact her use.

And finally, it's most definitely true that sales people have stretched the truth, at some times to a point where it can be called a lie, in order to make a sale. A person can determine best if timeshare ownership makes sense for him/herself by gaining prior to purchase as complete an understanding of the product/program as possible, with the full understanding that Marriott has in fact implemented changes to the program at certain times that have negatively impacted the current owners at the time - whether they purchased resale or direct. There is a risk that it may happen again, and there are constant swirling rumors that it will happen again. None of us can be absolutely sure of any possible impact unless and until Marriott issues official statements - a sales person's threats don't mean much; the educated opinions of the folks on TUG are a better gauge but are also not binding.

Good luck with your decision, snowgodess04. The timesharing lifestyle is great if it fits your needs [edit] and your budget, and Marriott provides an excellent product.
 
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hotcoffee

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What's also true, though, is that the "excerpts from resort legal documents" that have been relied upon to bolster opinions are specific to certain resorts only, and folks who own at other resorts have stated that those excerpts are not contained in their own ownership documents. One poster in particular, iconnections, can testify to reservation changes that were implemented by MVCI after purchase that were not prohibited by any of her documents and did in fact negatively impact her use.
Keep in mind that they might grandfather existing resale owners into any new exchange program (if and when they implement one), and documents for new sales would reflect the verbiage of the new program. That might on first thought allow us resale buyers to breathe easier. But, I still want the right to sell my timeshare. I would resent it if they in effect took that right away from me by making the timeshare unsellable.

Furthermore, the fact that they allow their salepeople to continue to tell perspective buyers that they plan to penalize resale buyers does not reflect well on Marriott. It is, in fact, evidence that Marriott is NOT as much of a customer-oriented company that some of its apologists claim it is.
 
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Zac495

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Rescind.
I am simply repeating most others.
First - you bought on the pina colada effect (as I call it). WOW - you never knew about timeshares before. Sure seemed fabulous, huh? (well, it is, but it's not as good as during the high of the rum).

Next, buying resale is probably the best thing to do - cheaper and points can be purchased separately for the same (or similar ) cost of your maintenance fees.

Third, fees go up and up. Read the Aruba thread.

Last, there is so much to learn. Why do you want Marriott? ( I love Marriott - but do YOU?) How about Hilton? Hyatt? Wyndam? Fairfield? (forget Westgate). But my point is - there are lots of systems out there - all have their good and bad points - be sure you know what you're buying and get what's best for you.

Should you trust ebay? Maybe not. Lots of problems there. Yes, it's probably the cheapest way to go. So buy from someone reputable on TUG like Seth Nock or Boca Bum (Jim). You may pay a few pennies more than ebay (or less) , but they will close safely - as safely as Marriott/Hilton/Hyatt/etc.

GOOD LUCK. Tell us what you decide!
 

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Rescind

I'm still trying to spend the money I saved by rescinding my first purchased some 6 or 7 years ago.

Charles
 

SueDonJ

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Keep in mind that they might grandfather existing resale owners into any new exchange program (if and when they implement one), and documents for new sales would reflect the verbiage of the new program. That might on first thought allow us resale buyers to breathe easier. But, I still want the right to sell my timeshare. I would resent it if they in effect took that right away from me by making the timeshare unsellable.

Furthermore, the fact that they allow their salepeople to continue to tell perspective buyers that they plan to penalize resale buyers does not reflect well on Marriott. It is, in fact, evidence that Marriott is NOT as much of a customer-oriented company that some of its apologists claim it is.
(Hmmmm, this might be a double post because I can't find the first ....)

I agree all around except that I look at it as Marriott rewarding its direct purchasers, rather than penalizing resale purchasers. It's a small distinction, I know, and basically worthless because none of us can be sure of what Marriott's intent is with any proposed changes.

As far as Marriott being concerned with its owners not suffering a dollar loss when/if reselling, I don't think Marriott cares one whit about our financial profit/loss. Of course that's our concern as possible re-sellers down the line, but in my opinion it's not even on the radar for Marriott. I think that's why they have ROFR, actually - it's not for the benefit of the owners' continued financial value, it's so that they can scoop up inventory at low cost to them when they have a ready buyer of a specific resort/unit configuration that isn't available in developer inventory.

And finally, I completely agree with every argument against sales people embellishing their pitches with any information that is not currently in effect with the resorts/programs. Deceptive sales practices hurt the product in every instance and do not reflect favorably on the company.
 
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