Boy, theres a loaded question. Timeshares will cost
anywhere from $500 to $40,000 for one week. The industry average for all
timeshares sold direct from the resorts (keep in mind: all timeshares
sold means blue weeks as well as red weeks, studio units as well as two
bedroom units) is $10,080. O.K., heres the scoop. The junk usually hangs
out in the real low end of the price range, just hoping for someone to come
along and not know any better. The $40,000 stuff is usually something really
special like the Christmas/New Years time frame in Vail, Colorado. And, of
course, you bought it right at the resort. A professional resale broker will be
able to find the bargains for you. But as a rule of thumb, $4000 to $8,000 for
a red week will generally buy you a really nice place thats easy to
exchange around for other places. Prices go up and down, but thats the
general range. Certain very prime locations and certain resorts may command a
little higher price, of course.
Annual Maintenance Fees
Youll have a maintenance fee each year. Maintenance
fees cover you for: maintenance of the grounds and common areas, interior
housekeeping such as maid service, insurance for storm damage or liability,
utilities, management, replacing furnishings and appliances every few years,
replacing broken items, and a reserve fund set up to cover the time when
its time for a new roof, etc. All of these things are necessary to ensure
your investment stays up to par. Then, if and when you go to resell it, you
have a good looking, well maintained property. One note on maintenance fees:
Some people say that this is one disadvantage of owning a timeshare. Not so.
Lets say you rent your vacation by staying at a hotel or renting a
vacation home. Are you paying for the cost of maintaining that hotel or
vacation home? Youd better believe it. Its all built into the rent.
Think of maintenance fees the same way as money you spend to maintain your own
home. Its money well spent that will come back to you. Maintenance fees
will generally run from $200 to $450 once a year, depending on the resort you
own, the amenities there and the size of the unit you are purchasing. Also,
keep in mind that with timesharing, there are no hidden hotel taxes
or occupancy taxes. These taxes alone can add $150 to $250 to the
cost of your hotel bill.
RCI and II Membership
If you want to belong to one of the major timeshare exchange
companies, Resort Condominuims International (RCI) or Interval International
(II), theres an annual membership fee (about $90) and a fee if you want
them to make an exchange for you (about $125).
About the Timeshare