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Tell me I did the right thing (or call me an idiot)...

metsoskil

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My wife and I are both teachers and visit Florida every year in August. My grandparents are in Boca, and her Dad lives in the panhandle. We've been visiting my grandparents, then spending time at Disney, and meeting her Dad in Orlando for a couple of days for the past few summers.

We plan on doing this for the foreseeable future, and plan on doing Disney once per year. In order to get the best value, we plan on going late in August one year, then early in August the following year to be able to buy annual passes at Disney and save money on tix and parking.

We just purchased a week 33, 3 BR lockout unit at Star Island for .99 on ebay. We plan on using it this year, then trading it for something in Orlando for week 32 or 31 next year to take advantage of the APs. We know the resort, since my father owns week 52 there, and we've been a few times.

After reading the boards, my question is, should we have bought something outside of Orlando with less MF and traded in since we are not going the same week every year? I'm not thinking I made a huge mistake, since the price was right, we like the resort, and we plan on using it every other year. I'm just thinking that the block on trading that some companies within Orlando have might be prohibitive.

Thanks for any advice, comments, suggestions, etc.
 

spatenfloot

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August usually has lots of availability but you'd have to include exchange company membership and exchange fees into your cost.
 

AwayWeGo

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[triennial - points]
I Think You Did O. K.

Thanks for any advice, comments, suggestions, etc.
Shux, you like it & the (resale) price was right & it's a 3BR unit, & you plan on going there again & again (even if not every year), so what's not to like ?

As to those excessive Orlando maintenance fees, those might be exaggerated. For example, we pay $475 in annual fees for a dinky 1BR Arkansas timeshare & just under $800 in annual fees for an outstanding 3BR Orlando timeshare. By me, Arkansas is excessive.

As to Orlando not having super-duper trade oomph, so what? Any year you're using your timeshare yourself is a year when trade power is mox nix.

Plus, we've found we can rent out our 3BR Orlando timeshare for enough to cover fees plus a little something extra, then we use the little something extra to pay for outstanding Last Call & Instant Exchange reservations at other people's timeshares for our own vacations.

Is this a great country or what ?

-- Alan Cole, McLean (Fairfax County), Virginia, USA.​
 

mecllap

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Sounds pretty good to me. If you can't exchange the second year for an earlier week in Orlando to take advantage of the AP, you might be able to do some type of "getaway" for the earlier week, and extend your trip using your own week -- there's a ton of things to do in the Orlando area. For us, a week is never enough.
 

bnoble

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It's hard to go wrong owning something you want to use yourself, especially bought for such a low price. True, you might have found a unit with lower MFs that could have traded in, but with a purchase price of "free", we're only talking about saving a hundred bucks or maybe two per year after you include exchange costs, etc.
 

capjak

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Enjoy

0.99 and you will use it every year or EOY, you like the resort, been there and it is a 3 bedroom sounds like a Great Deal to me..

Enjoy!
 

lprstn

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I think you did just fine...
 

metsoskil

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Thank you for the encouragement. Like I said, I'm happy with the purchase, just wondering if it was the "best" purchase for what I have planned.

I know I won't be able to pull Marriotts, or DVCs (especially since they are switching to RCI), but what's the best Orlando trade I can hope for near Disney?

Thanks!
 

AwayWeGo

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No Need To Fret Over "The Best" When You're Already Doing Fine.

I'm happy with the purchase, just wondering if it was the "best" purchase for what I have planned.
No need to get wrapped around the axle over what's absolutely "the best" when what you've got is great & you got it for next to nothing.

Specially with timeshares for some reason, frequently an element of My Dog's Better Than Your Dog creeps into the discussion even though that's absolutely pointless & of no use to anybody. Around here, we're happier not getting into that, & unless I miss my guess so are plenty of other people on TUG-BBS.

If I had shelled out major serious big bux for some fancypants full-freight timeshare, then maybe I would be looking over my shoulder to make sure I ended up with The Best.

As it is, by buying some really nice timeshares resale for nickels on the full-freight dollar instead of paying full price to some timeshare company, I am way, way ahead of the game -- just like you. (Well, not just exactly like you. I paid way more than 99 cents for mine. So it goes.)

Enjoy.

-- Alan Cole, McLean (Fairfax County), Virginia, USA.​


 
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littlestar

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Thank you for the encouragement. Like I said, I'm happy with the purchase, just wondering if it was the "best" purchase for what I have planned.

I know I won't be able to pull Marriotts, or DVCs (especially since they are switching to RCI), but what's the best Orlando trade I can hope for near Disney?

Thanks!

There is a regional block for trading an Orlando timeshare into other timeshares in Orlando, but I'm not sure which resorts participate in that - I know Marriott does (DVC used to, but like you say, it's moving to RCI). But I'm pretty sure that block doesn't extend to all the resorts in Orlando. If you are not blocked, the best trade since you can't get Marriotts in Orlando would be Sheraton Vistana Villages. Maybe someone that owns Star Island can confirm which resorts in Orlando are blocked.
 

vacationhopeful

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Which Star Island - Wyndham or not? Star Island is II and I like the units I see using II - including exchanging back into Star Island.

Is your unit a LOCKOFF, as many of the 3bdrs are? Then you got a great deal. The 2009 MF for a nonWyndham 3bdr lockoff is $815 including RE Tax. Plus, the 39 and 40 building have just been remodelled with new furniture, granite countertops, LCD TVs and new COLOR scheme.

Plus, they will be adding a Lazy River and a couple of new buildings ... okay, that is the talk around the water cooler at the sales site.;)

Enjoy your TS.
 

metsoskil

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Thanks for the replies. I am familiar with Vistana Villages - we traded my father's small one-bedroom portion of his week 52 lock-off for a large one BR at SVV a couple of years ago, and the place was nice. Since I never looked into timeshares before now, I had no idea what I was doing when I traded into it - just got lucky I guess.

The unit we got was a 3 BR lock-off, and it is non-Wyndham Star Island. It does trade w/ II. I know that Wyndham tried to talk my father into converting his week (and his week 27 at Shawnee in the Poconos) into Wyndham points. When we talked over a round of golf this summer, it sounded like a bad deal to me, and what I've seen on the boards has further convinced me of such. Anyone have any opinions on that?

The unit # is 1114W. I'm assuming from what I've read that that is a first-floor unit in building 11. Is that correct? If so, does anyone know where building 11 is compared to the pool, etc?

Thanks!
 

vacationhopeful

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Yes, that would be building 11, first floor for the 14 unit. Will have to get out my site map to compare it to the pools (at home and I am not at home).

Which week? II has to be deposited MORE than 60 days out of usage to book reservations outside of the flexchange period. My 2009 deposit was hampered by this deposit rule as a II newbie. My 2010 searches are really pretty nice with my 2010 small studio (the A side of the Star Island lockoff - the small side).

Again, it is a nice placeand centrally located.

IMHO,
 

metsoskil

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Week 33. I'm not worried about trading it this year; I think we're going to use it. We may trade the small 1 BR unit this year if my in-laws don't join us. Next year I'll probably trade it for a week 32 or week 31 somewhere in the Disney Area so that we can get Annual Passes and save on tix and parking. I'm getting more excited reading that you have decent trade value with yours. What week do you have?
 

falmouth3

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Yes, there are a lot of TS in Orlando. But I've been very happy with mine. I purchased off of eBay about 5 years ago and I've exchanged it through RCI, SFX, and a direct exchange. I've gotten very good trades with it. Yes, it may cost a bit more than some other places in maintenance fees, but it's been very good to me.

If it's something you can use, enjoy it. It sounds like you got a great deal.

Sue
 

wackymother

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I know that Wyndham tried to talk my father into converting his week (and his week 27 at Shawnee in the Poconos) into Wyndham points. When we talked over a round of golf this summer, it sounded like a bad deal to me, and what I've seen on the boards has further convinced me of such. Anyone have any opinions on that?

I don't know about Wyndham in Orlando, but I know I would not convert a week 27 at Shawnee into points. High summer in the Poconos is the best time to be there, and with a fixed week 27, you know you can always get there in July. A week 27 is probably very rentable, too. Keep it!
 

vacationhopeful

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Week 4, Sunday checkin ... in a renovated building :D . After being with the mauve rugs for several years, I can adjust to a calming, cool, pastel color scheme.

I do believe SUPER BOWL is in Tampa on the checkout date of Feb 1st this year ...
 

Bill4728

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The unit we got was a 3 BR lock-off, and it is non-Wyndham Star Island. It does trade w/ II. I know that Wyndham tried to talk my father into converting his week (and his week 27 at Shawnee in the Poconos) into Wyndham points. When we talked over a round of golf this summer, it sounded like a bad deal to me, and what I've seen on the boards has further convinced me of such. Anyone have any opinions on that?
Converting a non wyndham week to Wyndham points ( AKA FSP points) is most of the time, not a good deal. They will want many thousands of dollars to convert your week. BUT right now you can buy a converted week (worth 150K pts) for less than $1000.

So if you really want to be part of FSP, just buy a week that is already converted to FSP and you'll likely save $2,000 - $4,000.
 

metsoskil

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Converting a non wyndham week to Wyndham points ( AKA FSP points) is most of the time, not a good deal. They will want many thousands of dollars to convert your week. BUT right now you can buy a converted week (worth 150K pts) for less than $1000.

So if you really want to be part of FSP, just buy a week that is already converted to FSP and you'll likely save $2,000 - $4,000.

When I talked to my father over the summer, I didn't even think of the possibility of resale when I told him it sounded crazy, although that makes a lot of sense. My point to him was that he uses his 4th of July week at Shawnee every year to play golf, and has been pretty happy with his NYE week at Star Island. Why pay thousands of dollars to vacation the same way you are right now? He tends to be one who is talked into such things (he bought both TS from the developers after one of those "come stay cheap for a couple days if you listen to our pitch" weekends)

Vacationhopeful, any idea where building 11 is located?
 

JudyS

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...should we have bought something outside of Orlando with less MF and traded in since we are not going the same week every year? I'm not thinking I made a huge mistake, since the price was right, we like the resort, and we plan on using it every other year. I'm just thinking that the block on trading that some companies within Orlando have might be prohibitive.....
It is certainly possible to buy something cheaper outside of Orlando, and then trade in. But, as others here have said, it adds an exchange fee -- plus considerable hassle. Also, 3-bedrooms are just not that easy to find, even in Orlando. If you like this resort and plan to stay there every other year, you did fine.

As for trading in for a week 31 or week 32 every other year, the worse case is that you can trade back to Star Island. You could also try renting your Star Island, or trading it for a non-Orlando trip, and renting something through II (a "Getaway"). Getaways are often good deals, and there is no regional block on them.

Anyone know if Cypress Pointe is part of the Orlando regional block? (John, are you reading this thread?) It's a nice resort, good location, and has 3-bedrooms.

You want to know what I think the biggest problem will be? You'll soon decide that 1 Disney trip a year isn't enough! (Especially with that Annual Pass!) Next thing you know, you'll have "The Timeshare Buying Bug" -- many of us here have it really bad!
 

metsoskil

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You want to know what I think the biggest problem will be? You'll soon decide that 1 Disney trip a year isn't enough! (Especially with that Annual Pass!)

We've already got the Disney bug bad. I figure I can get 3 trips out of this AP: our week 33 this year, my Dad's week 52, and then trade into a week 31 or 32. Disney between Xmas and NYE is crazy crowded, but it's so nice at Christmastime.

As for the TS buying bug, I can see how that can happen. I'm already addicted to sifting through the resales on the marketplace section, ebay, Redweek, etc. We'd love a small DVC contract, but I can't justify a couple thousand for a small contract that gets us a couple of days each year in a studio. We've rented points from DVC members in the past, and may continue to do so for a couple days here or there.
 
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JudyS

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We've already got the Disney bug bad. I figure I can get 3 trips out of this AP: our week 33 this year, my Dad's week 52, and then trade into a week 31 or 32. Disney between Xmas and NYE is crazy crowded, but it's so nice at Christmastime.

As for the TS buying bug, I can see how that can happen. I'm already addicted to sifting through the resales on the marketplace section, ebay, Redweek, etc. We'd love a small DVC contract, but I can't justify a couple thousand for a small contract that gets us a couple of days each year in a studio. We've rented points from DVC members in the past, and may continue to do so for a couple days here or there.
Heck, 3 trips out of one AP is a mild case of "Disney-itis"!

As for buying a small DVC membership, it's the perks that really make it worthwhile. My DVC membership gives me $125 off my Premium Annual Pass. (I think the discount is $100 for a regular Annual Pass.) You can get the discount on up to 8 APs, but only for people residing at your address. On the other hand, if your Dad's name is also on the DVC contract, he might be able to get the discount, too -- I'm not sure on this.

Also, if you own a small DVC contract, rather than having the DVC member handle everything for you when you rent points, you can transfer the points in, which allows your more flexibility in changing reservations and such. Some DVC members will transfer points for less than they want for renting points. You can only do one transfer a year, though. (Plus, there are various glitches that can happen with transferred-in points, and this can be a hassle.)
 

sfwilshire

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Heck, 3 trips out of one AP is a mild case of "Disney-itis"!

Yep! We got nearly six weeks out of our last annual passes, even working around school schedules. I'm getting new ones starting New Years Eve, but since we were already booked up for the summer, we'll probably only get about four out of them this year. With the new day passes, however, an annual pass is about the same price as a 10-day park hopper non-expiring pass.

I planned to buy a 25 pt DVC membership this year and list DD on the deed so she could benefit from the discounts as well, but I kept getting beat to all the small offerings until it was too late to get it closed in time for our trip. Discounts on six annual passes would have been worth the trouble.

Sheila
 
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