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Need to know what I don't know...

Cyvil

newbie
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Iowa
Here are some questions you can answer to focus your timeshare wants/needs.

If you click on QUOTE at the end of my post, the questions will open up in a new window for you to answer:

1) Where do you want your home resort to be?
Las Vegas or Orlando

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?
Trade, mostly.

3) What are your 5 top trade destinations?
Florida, Carolinas, Colorado, Europe (eventually), Carribean (eventually)

4) How many people do you usually travel with?
6, sometimes 7.

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?
3+

9) How much can you afford to spend upfront, without financing?
$10k

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?
$2k, although (of course) less is better

11) Are you a detail oriented planner?
Yes (well, my wife is)

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

I have been looking into timeshares, off and on, for several years. Each time we get close to make a decision, I find out about something else I was not aware of. That said, HGVC seems to have risen to the top of the list for us. At this point I am looking as much to know why HVGC might not be the best choice as I am thoughts about what I may not yet have looked into.
__________________
 

taterhed

TUG Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2011
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Location
Virginia
Resorts Owned
Westin WKORV OFD
Marriott's Grande Vista
Worldmark x2
SVV Bella 81k
HGVC is good.

I think Marriott is better. If you're planning on using 'weeks' vs something less than a week, the reservations flexibility advantage (HGVC) is less of an issue. With peak travel times (school) you'll need the 12 mos and the 7 day reservation. This flexibility with HGVC (less than 7 days but at 9mos or non-home resorts) was my main interest.

The main reason I would rec'd Marriott is II (Interval).
Also, Marriott has a larger number of resorts.

My suggestion: consider a 3br Grand Chateau. Lock-off and exchange the 1br for another week (or make a two week vaca the next year). Orlando and Vegas are super easy to make reservations. Lots of properties--no 1in4 or radius restrictions. Marriott has great coverage in Florida, Caribbean, and some Europe (plus II). Dues and costs are in-line. You can easily upgrade the 1br into a two bedroom unit. (no so easy with a studio).

Just my 2c
 

Cyvil

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Iowa
Thank you for that info. I had looked at Marriott, among others, but was scared off by some of the posts here. I saw that Marriott "is not good for resale," several times, and gravitated towards Hilton. I will take another look and see if I can't figure out what the hubbub is about.
 

dpete

TUG Member
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Location
Chicago
My 2 cents at this point in my limited timeshare experience is to avoid Marriott if you want to exchange your home club for others and you need to go at busy times, i.e. Christmas and spring break. Even at my Chairman level and calling 13 months out at the first second possible I am dead in the water for anywhere in the Carribbean for Christmas. From what I can tell there are too many people renting their units on Redweek or exchanging with others, along with a shortage of units in high season. I wish I would have done more research before purchasing!
 

taterhed

TUG Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2011
Messages
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Location
Virginia
Resorts Owned
Westin WKORV OFD
Marriott's Grande Vista
Worldmark x2
SVV Bella 81k
So, I agree with dpete.

IF you want to spend week 51, Christmas, at St Johns or Aruba etc... then buy a fixed week unit in St Johns.

I don't think you asked about "week 51 units in the Caribbean"

If you want tough locations (Island, Ski, Beach) on super-premium weeks (Presidents, Spring Break, Easter, July 4, Labor/Mem day, Christmas, New-Years) then, by all means, buy that location as your home resort, fixed week, fixed unit. Period. Gold, VIP, Chairman etc... doesn't matter. Those weeks are either occupied or rented for $$$$$$.

Now, your question? Vegas, Florida, Mexico, Caribbean, Europe, Colorado and Carolina beaches... in school schedule (high) but not super-high (as above) you should be fine. This is not Marriott specific, I'm speaking in general. Ask the Hilton or Westin folks in the appropriate forums: if you want super-premium, buy it. Otherwise, careful and thoughtful planning will net you your desires (with some flexibility) most years.
That's my opinion and I"m sticken to it.

If I had left my OGS in place for Marriott (I cheated and booked early for security) I could have booked anything in Hawaii I wanted. I've seen the resorts go rolling by on Flex/>70 days.

Good luck. By all means, if you have doubts. consider renting another year. Or, duck into the appropriate forum (HGVC/Marriott) and post what you're thinking about renting (next year...hypothetically) and see what the responses are.

cheers
 

taterhed

TUG Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2011
Messages
4,536
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Location
Virginia
Resorts Owned
Westin WKORV OFD
Marriott's Grande Vista
Worldmark x2
SVV Bella 81k
My 2 cents at this point in my limited timeshare experience is to avoid Marriott if you want to exchange your home club for others and you need to go at busy times, i.e. Christmas and spring break. Even at my Chairman level and calling 13 months out at the first second possible I am dead in the water for anywhere in the Carribbean for Christmas. From what I can tell there are too many people renting their units on Redweek or exchanging with others, along with a shortage of units in high season. I wish I would have done more research before purchasing!

Sorry dpete.
I just read some of your other posts. I understand your frustration now.
I think, sadly, you are a victim of 'salesman's lies'
You've been told that you could "....." and you're finding out that you can't. What you've said is true: no matter how good the property/trade is (Ritz) that doesn't mean it will trade into week 51 in St Johns.
The others are right: rent it. It will bring the $$$ needed to just rent what you need. Ritz is amazing, but trading is not an equal game. Study TUG and ask questions from the experts (not me really...) and you'll get sage advice on how to turn your Ritz into the vaca's you desire.
Learn to use that very valuable benefit and don't get discouraged.
I know a lot of folks do points rentals with their massive Ritz balances. Maybe you should research that?
Cheers!
I think Gregt might be able to help you. http://www.vacationpointexchange.com/
 

Marathoner

TUG Review Crew
TUG Member
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NYC
My 2 cents at this point in my limited timeshare experience is to avoid Marriott if you want to exchange your home club for others and you need to go at busy times, i.e. Christmas and spring break. Even at my Chairman level and calling 13 months out at the first second possible I am dead in the water for anywhere in the Carribbean for Christmas. From what I can tell there are too many people renting their units on Redweek or exchanging with others, along with a shortage of units in high season. I wish I would have done more research before purchasing!

Taterhed's suggestion is a good one. I was talking to someone last month who owned a 13 week fractional at a Marriott. He can cover all his maintenance fees and make some extra by renting out his DC points.

Presumably, you bought into Ritz Aspen because there are some weeks you want to use. Monetizing the rest and then using cash to book elsewhere that you want to go to is a good strategy. Unfortunately, your maintenance is likely quite high and you'll need to do the math to see whether this strategy can be cash flow positive.

We all understand your frustration but the past cannot be changed. There are many different ways to get value out of your timeshare and if you spend time researching and figuring out the best strategy for you, then you can maximize its value for you. But you must forget all the sales pitch ideas that convinced you to buy your Ritz timeshare in the first place. Instead, build up a mental view of what is possible and how to maximize the value of the timeshare to you through research and your personal experience.

I speak from first hand experience, that I thought my original Marriott purchase was poorly conceived for almost a decade. It turned out through research that I needed to better understand the possibilities and what I really wanted in a vacation. After doing so, my family loves the vacations that we end up scheduling.
 

presley

TUG Review Crew: Expert
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If you mostly want to stay at HGVC properties, it is a good choice to own there. I am not sure how difficult it is to get reservations at the 9 month mark in South Carolina or non Orlando Florida locations. You'll want to explore that before you buy and get disappointed. If you favor one of those locations, you may want to buy at one of those to get the 12 month booking window.

Other choices are Worldmark and Wyndham. They have lots of locations and they have high trading power in RCI if you need to exchange out of the program. They are cheaper to buy and own than HGVC. The big downside is that they will badger you to do a sales pitch disguised as an owner update whenever you stay at their resorts.
 

CCR

TUG Member
Joined
Jul 10, 2014
Messages
223
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Resorts Owned
NCV, Worldmark
I think the Marriott system is great. I am a weeks owner and like the exchanges I get in Interval. Trading out studios or 1 bedrooms for 2 bedrooms in KoOlina is awesome !! The destination points program makes people happy too but buying into that is not cheap. Probably the most affordable (but not cheap) route is buying an EOY resale with the official Marriott team and buying points along with it.

I've looked at the Hilton system several times and that group seems nice but all the hidden fees, etc. scare me off a little. I may not fully understand all the fees but I've read a few posts from Hilton owners indicating there are lots of fees in that system.

I also own Worldmark and really like that program but they definitely aren't as nicely furnished as the Marriotts. Worldmark system is very flexible with being able to book less than a week; however, getting reservations for those holidays can be hard. I have school schedules to deal with and so far have found Marriott to work out great in early June for high demand resorts like Hawaii, Thanksgiving and Christmas in lower demand Marriott resorts is fairly easy to find in exchanges too.
 
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