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Looking for your advice!!

mom2brina

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I originally posted this in the Marriott forum (we know we want that system) & was directed here.

New here & doing some research! We have always thought about owning a timeshare & been to many presentations, but ever since finding TUG many years ago, I knew we would never buy retail. (Thank You!!) The last presentation Hubby said was our last.

We are ready to buy something resale, but I have a few questions.

1. Is there a post or something that outlines each step of the buying resale process & any red flags that I should be looking for?


2. Considering a 3BR EOY or a 2BR EY. What would you recommend? Why?


3. Do you recommend buying in the location that we envision us vacationing with our kids & their families (say 10+ years out) or in a location that we feel has good trading power and/or potential for renting?

Answers to the What to Buy questions ...


1) Where do you want your home resort to be?

Ideally a beach location that is easy to get to from the Midwest (not Hawaii)

2) Do you want to visit your home resort at least half the time, or do you want to trade more than half the time?

Not sure - I don't think we can afford the 'ideal' resort & those MF's are high. Therefore should we buy a strong trader (one that is in our budget, has more reasonable MF's, and seems to be able to rent for >MF's).

3) What are your 5 top trade destinations?
Lakeshore Reserve or Oceana Palms
Newport
Boston
Las Vegas
Caribbean

4) How many people do you usually travel with?
Right now 4-5

5) Can you travel any time, or are you locked into the school schedule?
School Schedule

6) Can you make firm plans 12 or more mos. in advance?
Yes

7) Can you vacation for a full week at a time?
Yes

8) What level of accommodations do you prefer on a scale of 1 to 5 stars?
4-5

9) How much can you afford to spend upfront, without financing?
2-3,000

10) How much can you afford to spend every year for a maintenance fee that will come due right after Christmas, and increase each year?
<2,000 ideally around 1,200

11) Are you a detail oriented planner?
Yes

12) Do you understand that once you buy a timeshare, it may be very difficult to sell or give away, and you are responsible for all fees, until you do?
Yes
 
Last edited:

DaveNV

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Others will certainly weigh in on this, but here's my take on things:

If your maintenance fee budget is ~$1200/year, you'll be hard pressed to find that Marriott system that fits your wallet.

Since you are limited by the school schedule, you're competing with all the other families in the same position. This is going to limit reserving, and certainly exchanging, unless you own a fixed week at a specific resort. That's the only way to guarantee you'd get the week you want.

I'd suggest you buy where you want to go most of the time (or buy into a system that lets you easily do that) rather than trying to get a strong trader. In my experience, trading power is variable, and highly changeable. Trading power is quite an unknown thing, and if you expected to be able to trade out to a great resort somewhere else, you may not ever find you have the ability to do that. Worse, the exchange pool is limited to the weeks that are deposited by other owners - and the choice times are snapped up pretty quickly.

My recommendation would be for you to look into renting timeshares from owners in the areas you'd like to go, when and where you want to do that. If you save that proposed maintenance fee budget into a travel savings account, you'll have the ability to rent what you want, when you want it, without being obligated to trying to arrange an exchange someplace that may never come up, and without being on the hook for ever-increasing maintenance fees at your owned resort.

Take your time, and be very careful what you commit to. As you've no doubt discovered, it's very easy to get into a timeshare, but not always as easy to get out of one.

Good luck!
Dave
 

taterhed

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I originally posted this in the Marriott forum (we know we want that system) & was directed here.

1. Is there a post or something that outlines each step of the buying resale process & any red flags that I should be looking for?
Good advice abounds on TUG. Ebay can be treacherous, but there are good values. TUG members can advise on specific Ebay sellers. Best bet is a trusted broker (list here on TUG). I used Sethnoc Sellingtimeshare.net with Samuel R. Very good and knowledgeable, trustworthy etc...

2. Considering a 3BR EOY or a 2BR EY. What would you recommend? Why?
You have a good sized group and need 1br min. Studios are difficult to trade-up unless <59 days. Suggest 2BR L/O if you're trying to split. Otherwise 3br. Grande Chateau 3br L/O might work.

3. Do you recommend buying in the location that we envision us vacationing with our kids & their families (say 10+ years out) or in a location that we feel has good trading power and/or potential for renting?
The numbers you posted are not cash-positive for rentals (guestimate). Marriott's make great traders; but not so much 12 mos out on school schedule. So, maybe buy where vacation and try your luck at trading 'request first'

Answers to the What to Buy questions ...


1) Where do you want your home resort to be?

Ideally a beach location that is easy to get to from the Midwest (not Hawaii) Islands are expensive and exceed your MF #'s That leaves HHI, Florida. Tough to get good L/O, Red, beach under 5k


2) Do you want to visit your home resort at least half the time, or do you want to trade more than half the time?

Not sure - I don't think we can afford the 'ideal' resort & those MF's are high. Therefore should we buy a strong trader (one that is in our budget, has more reasonable MF's, and seems to be able to rent for >MF's).
Renting not really effective at this $$. Trading is not ideal for school/12mos at top locations.

3) What are your 5 top trade destinations?
Lakeshore Reserve or Oceana Palms
Newport
Boston
Las Vegas
Caribbean
All work well with Marriott...

4) How many people do you usually travel with?
Right now 4-5
1br min, 2br preferred.

5) Can you travel any time, or are you locked into the school schedule?
School Schedule Own where you'll use for 12mos booking. Try and trade with lock-off or request first

6) Can you make firm plans 12 or more mos. in advance?
Yes

7) Can you vacation for a full week at a time?
Yes

8) What level of accommodations do you prefer on a scale of 1 to 5 stars?
4-5

9) How much can you afford to spend upfront, without financing?
2-3,000 Not much beach/island in this. Orlando, yes.

10) How much can you afford to spend every year for a maintenance fee that will come due right after Christmas, and increase each year?
<2,000 ideally around 1,200 Ideally my MF's would be 1200, but they're not. For 2br L/o or more like 14-15.

11) Are you a detail oriented planner?
Yes

12) Do you understand that once you buy a timeshare, it may be very difficult to sell or give away, and you are responsible for all fees, until you do?
Yes

Hope this helps.
Marriott is a great system. The M. Preference in trading in II is very nice for grabbing some great trades. I bought my MGR/MGV 3br for just that reason. And, it's working great for me. But: I would never buy a trader as my primary unit when I intended to travel with family during peak holiday season and need to buy airfare in advance. If you're really into Florida with the occasional flexibility to buy late airfare.... then maybe an Orlando unit with lock-off might work. Let's say you book unit at 12 mos and plan to occupy. L/O to one bedroom and attempt to trade into Aruba. If trade comes through (last minute), just buy airfare from ORL to Aruba. Doable, but still expensive. Studio is a problem for this scenario, but pretty easy to trade-up into 1 br on short notice. Very complicated with kids and airfare and.... Florida club does allow for trades into beach resorts: despite all the noise, I booked Beachplace spring break at 6mos, but that was a studio unit. So.... ??? I'd do a cost analysis of renting vs owning a 3br Orlando/Vegas Marriott. I'm guessing that renting might just break even if you miss 1 year for some (family) reason. And, you can book anything you want, any day you want (maybe) and get the view/location you want.
 
Last edited:

WinniWoman

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Good advice above. Rent a few times and get a fixed week where you want to go when you are ready. One thing I would recommend is get a bigger unit than you think you will need. In your case- a 2 or 3 bedroom. As your kids get older sometimes they take friends along. You might want to invite another couple or family, etc.
 

missyrcrews

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Good advice above. Rent a few times and get a fixed week where you want to go when you are ready. One thing I would recommend is get a bigger unit than you think you will need. In your case- a 2 or 3 bedroom. As your kids get older sometimes they take friends along. You might want to invite another couple or family, etc.

I second the advice about getting a bigger unit than you think you'll need. Our first week was a 2 BR sleeps 8 unit. We only had Elliott at the time, with plans for one more child. That one more ended up being twins. And then there was a "surprise" 2 years after that. :) :eek:So glad we got the bigger unit!!!
 

gnipgnop

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You mention Marriott's system but have you looked into the Starwood Vacation Ownership system. We own at Sheraton Broadway Plantation in Myrtle Beach and have been very, very satisfied with this purchase (resale). We have had wonderful trades with this week and the maintenance fees are not outrageous. Good luck with your plans. It's a tough decisions but if you haven't already done so ~ check out Starwood.
 

mom2brina

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I second the advice about getting a bigger unit than you think you'll need. Our first week was a 2 BR sleeps 8 unit. We only had Elliott at the time, with plans for one more child. That one more ended up being twins. And then there was a "surprise" 2 years after that. :) :eek:So glad we got the bigger unit!!!

Oh my! Well that turned out better than expected. ;)
 

mom2brina

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You mention Marriott's system but have you looked into the Starwood Vacation Ownership system. We own at Sheraton Broadway Plantation in Myrtle Beach and have been very, very satisfied with this purchase (resale). We have had wonderful trades with this week and the maintenance fees are not outrageous. Good luck with your plans. It's a tough decisions but if you haven't already done so ~ check out Starwood.

Thanks for your input! I honestly have not checked out Starwood. We did stay at one of the Sheraton Vistana Orlando resorts before and thought it was great, but we've just had more experience at Marriott timeshares so I think that is what we are going off of.

We did end up with a winning bid on one from ebay so hopefully it passes ROFR! If not, I will be exploring other options!
 

mom2brina

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Hope this helps.
Marriott is a great system. The M. Preference in trading in II is very nice for grabbing some great trades. I bought my MGR/MGV 3br for just that reason. And, it's working great for me. But: I would never buy a trader as my primary unit when I intended to travel with family during peak holiday season and need to buy airfare in advance. If you're really into Florida with the occasional flexibility to buy late airfare.... then maybe an Orlando unit with lock-off might work. Let's say you book unit at 12 mos and plan to occupy. L/O to one bedroom and attempt to trade into Aruba. If trade comes through (last minute), just buy airfare from ORL to Aruba. Doable, but still expensive. Studio is a problem for this scenario, but pretty easy to trade-up into 1 br on short notice. Very complicated with kids and airfare and.... Florida club does allow for trades into beach resorts: despite all the noise, I booked Beachplace spring break at 6mos, but that was a studio unit. So.... ??? I'd do a cost analysis of renting vs owning a 3br Orlando/Vegas Marriott. I'm guessing that renting might just break even if you miss 1 year for some (family) reason. And, you can book anything you want, any day you want (maybe) and get the view/location you want.

Great info here! I ended up deciding to gently enter the timeshare waters with an EOY contract.
 

mom2brina

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Good advice above. Rent a few times and get a fixed week where you want to go when you are ready. One thing I would recommend is get a bigger unit than you think you will need. In your case- a 2 or 3 bedroom. As your kids get older sometimes they take friends along. You might want to invite another couple or family, etc.

Yes, that is exactly my line of thinking too! We went with a 2br EOY!
 

mom2brina

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Others will certainly weigh in on this, but here's my take on things:

If your maintenance fee budget is ~$1200/year, you'll be hard pressed to find that Marriott system that fits your wallet.

Since you are limited by the school schedule, you're competing with all the other families in the same position. This is going to limit reserving, and certainly exchanging, unless you own a fixed week at a specific resort. That's the only way to guarantee you'd get the week you want.

I'd suggest you buy where you want to go most of the time (or buy into a system that lets you easily do that) rather than trying to get a strong trader. In my experience, trading power is variable, and highly changeable. Trading power is quite an unknown thing, and if you expected to be able to trade out to a great resort somewhere else, you may not ever find you have the ability to do that. Worse, the exchange pool is limited to the weeks that are deposited by other owners - and the choice times are snapped up pretty quickly.

My recommendation would be for you to look into renting timeshares from owners in the areas you'd like to go, when and where you want to do that. If you save that proposed maintenance fee budget into a travel savings account, you'll have the ability to rent what you want, when you want it, without being obligated to trying to arrange an exchange someplace that may never come up, and without being on the hook for ever-increasing maintenance fees at your owned resort.

Take your time, and be very careful what you commit to. As you've no doubt discovered, it's very easy to get into a timeshare, but not always as easy to get out of one.

Good luck!
Dave

Thanks Dave! I'm hoping that we don't regret getting into this timeshare!!
 

taterhed

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Marriott's Grande Vista
Worldmark x2
SVV Bella 81k
Great info here! I ended up deciding to gently enter the timeshare waters with an EOY contract.
Congrats. Hope it works out for you

sent from my cell phone...
 

silentg

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Good Luck! welcome to TUG!
 
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