Unbelievable Information on Timeshares
Almost every article I write, I begin by saying how controversial timeshare ownership is and what a truly horrendous reputation that timeshares have. Most timeshare owners, including myself, The Timeshare Guru, always pause before I tell someone that I own a timeshare. Most people immediately think that I have been scammed and try not to make me feel bad that I fell for a timeshare purchase.
Before I started The Timeshare Guru, I attended plenty of timeshare presentations. The sales presentation rooms are almost always filled thanks to the very generous perks that they offer to attend. In case you missed it, check out this post on Getting Free Stuff from Timeshare Presentations. I also did some research on the overall timeshare market. I knew that I really enjoyed my timeshare so I figured that there must be others.
I truly could not believe the statistics on the timeshare industry. The timeshare industry has such a horrendous reputation that I couldn’t and still can’t believe these figures. Here are a few good ones that I thought I would share:
Who are Timeshare Buyers?
From my previous posts, you can see tons of negative comments on timeshares. Based on my informal review, many of these comments were from people who have a negative perception of timeshares or who had a bad experience with ownership or know someone who did. Timeshares are not perfect and many people have had unfortunate experiences in the harsh reality of some aspects of timeshare information. There are definitely a lot of negative attributes of timeshares but there are also a ton of great benefits provided that you know how to maximize them.
The vast majority of people think that timeshares are scams, for those people who can’t afford a true second/vacation home or those who get roped in to a purchase while on vacation. While there are plenty of disgruntled timeshare owners, there are actually a lot of timeshare owners who really enjoy their timeshare. I absolutely love our timeshares and I am currently in the process of buying even more.
Here are a few statistics on timeshare buyers that I thought I would share:
My true belief is that if you understand the timeshare systems, you can definitely maximize timeshare ownership and get outsized value. As I stated in my other post, Economics of Timeshare Ownership, I can get 4+ weeks out of one timeshare week which equates to under $500 per week for very high- quality resorts (Four Seasons, Hyatt, Marriott, etc.) in quality destinations (ski weeks, Hawaii, Caribbean, Mexico, etc.).
For those of your that are wondering, I did not make up these statistics on timeshares. The American Resort Development Association puts out various research and facts on timeshares. It is a trade association that represent developers and owners. Some statistics may be developer friendly, but ARDA is the ultimate resource for trade information on timeshares so there is little reason to doubt its accuracy or authenticity.
Timeshare ownership will likely always remain a controversial topic. My main complaint about timeshares is their sales practices. They are simply not transparent in the way that timeshare operates. They may educate owners on the general ways to use timeshares but they generally over promise on how easy it is to trade into desirable properties, the ability to travel at peak times, the requirement to plan, far, far in advance to get those prime weeks and the economic value of their timeshare.
I also despise that they try to get people to make a significant financial decision based on a 2-hour sales presentation. They do not give potential customers the time to think about their purchase or research a financial commitment that can last a lifetime.
I truly believe that if the sales process changed and full transparency was accomplished, the reputation of timeshares may actually change. However, based on the statistics above, it appears that these sales tactics work and I highly doubt that change will happen soon.
Despite these negatives, there are almost no complaints on the quality and spaciousness of the resorts. It is very hard to vacation in a hotel after getting use to the comforts of a timeshare resort.
What are your thoughts on these statistics? What is your perception of timeshares?