One of the most common questions timeshare buyers ask is “How much is a timeshare?” It is important to understand the initial and lifetime costs of owning a timeshare before purchasing one. The cost of a timeshare depends on a number of factors, including the brand, the location, the accommodations, and so forth. You don’t have to spend a fortune on vacation ownership, so it’s crucial to know how much the price tag will be. Here is everything you need to know before buying.
How Much Is A Timeshare?
According to the American Resort Development Association (ARDA), the timeshare industry had ten consecutive years of growth before the 2020 pandemic and in 2022 it recovered to those rates. Additionally, ARDA reported that the average cost of vacation ownership in 2022 was $23,940. The timeshare industry in the U.S. is valued at $10.5 billion. In comparison, the NBA’s revenue is around $8 billion. Almost 10 million households own some sort of a timeshare property or product, whether that’s points or weeks. This means that people with a vast range of incomes have a timeshare. There are over 1,500 timeshare resorts in the U.S. alone, so finding one that’s within your price range can be easy! Don’t let your travel resolutions bust your budget. To view the latest prices of timeshares on our marketplace, start browsing. You can find some great vacation deals.
Don’t forget that when you’re on a trip at your home resort, you will most likely be spending more money. Oftentimes resorts have restaurants or extra excursions that you’ll want to take advantage of, so that’s going to be an added expense.
What Affects The Cost Of A Timeshare Ownership?
The initial price of a timeshare contract differs depending on which brand you are buying with as well as where you buy it from. The price range of a timeshare can differ drastically if you buy it on the resale market rather than directly from the timeshare company. For example, you might spend more after buying a timeshare at a presentation than you would if you found one on the resale market. This is a huge factor that affects the average timeshare cost. You can save hundreds or thousands of dollars when you shop for vacation ownership on the secondary market.
Besides where you buy your timeshare, there are quite a few things that can affect how much you’ll pay for it. The brand of the timeshare is one of the biggest factors! You’ll find that how much a Disney Vacation Club timeshare costs can vary greatly from how much a Westgate timeshare costs or Marriott Vacation Club costs. Even within those brands, resort location and popularity will affect the contract price tag. In addition, timeshares at a single resort will cost more or less depending on the size and location of the villa. Amenities at the timeshare resort and the time of year for a timeshare week will also change the price. Keep in mind, every sale is different and there may be other factors involved not listed here.
Different Types of Timeshares
When determining how much timeshares cost, you need to consider which type of ownership you want to own. Deeded timeshares have an evenly shared ownership model divided between all owners. Typically, each owner has a specific week (a fixed week) when they can use their timeshare unit. Owners with a right to use contracts have the right to use their timeshares for a specific period of time, which ends when the contract expires. A leasehold timeshare (leased timeshare) works similarly to a right-to-use contract, in that the owner no longer owns a piece of the resort once the contract has expired. But, owners lease a block of time from the developer to use the property.
There are also sub-types which include, points-based, biennial, floating week, fixed week, and fractional ownership. Fixed-week contracts were the original form and although they are still around most timeshares are point-based.
If you want to learn more about how vacation ownership works check out our blog, What Is A Timeshare And How Does It Work?
Annual Maintenance Fees
One of the most apparent costs that come with owning a timeshare is the maintenance fees. Some vacation owners have to pay their maintenance fees to an HOA, much like owning a residential home. Most timeshare maintenance fees are due annually. In some cases, however, these maintenance fees may be either more or less frequent depending on the contract you buy.
If you’ve ever wondered how resorts maintain their amenities and keep everything running smoothly, the answer is maintenance fees! These fees go towards resort upkeep, property taxes, renovations, and unexpected repairs along with employee wages as well as management fees. Your vacation unit will be kept in its best condition, even when you’re not there! If you owed a vacation home all those fees would be on you. With a timeshare, you get to split them up across all owners. You get all the benefits of a vacation home without having to spend an arm and a leg.
The costs of annual maintenance fees vary by resort and unit. ARDA reported that the average annual maintenance fees in 2022 were around $1170. But, it is different between brands. For example, Marriott’s maintenance fees will be different than the cost of Hilton Grand Vacations. This payment is mandatory and if you stop paying it, you could really negatively affect your credit. If you think that annual fees will be difficult to keep up with, maybe continue searching for vacation ownership that is more suited to your budget.
Timeshares Are Not Investments!
It is extremely important to note that timeshares are not investments. In fact, they are most likely going to depreciate in value over the years. Vacation ownerships are considered luxury items, so like a car or a boat, they do not always retain their value. If you’re ever looking to sell your vacation unit, keep in mind that you will most likely not get back everything that you paid for it. We are mentioning this here because it’s valuable to know when considering purchasing a timeshare. When you’re starting vacation ownership, you are buying a lifetime of vacation memories not making an investment.
A great option to make the cost of vacation ownership work for you is by financing your purchase. Instead of paying a large sum upfront, you can divide the cost into more affordable yearly payments. Timeshare financing makes it possible for more people to afford vacation ownership! Your resale broker can provide you with options and price ranges on vacation ownership best suited for you. Financing can also have a positive impact on your credit. If you are making your payments on time, then paying for your timeshare can benefit you financially whether you want Wyndham timeshare financing or Disney Vacation Club.
Timeshare vs. Hotel
If you travel often, you may wonder what the difference in upfront cost between a timeshare vs hotel. Although you pay more upfront to buy a timeshare, if you travel yearly a timeshare ownership will save you money over time.
Timeshares frequently feature more dining and living space, as well as in-unit kitchens which are perfect for families. So instead of having to pay for multiple rooms that might not even be on the same floor in a hotel, you and your whole family can stay in a spacious villa with plenty of room to spread out and relax.
Additionally, you will also have top-of-the-line amenities and accommodations. All of these are seldom offered at regular hotels.
Not to mention, when you join many of the top vacation clubs, you are treated like family and not just another guest. You join a new community of owners who also love the brand you own with.
Most Popular Timeshare Destinations
Many buyers prioritize their home vacation spot over everything. Here are the top timeshare locations to check out on the timeshare market.
Wondering how you can travel internationally with timeshares? Read our blog: Going International? Do it With Timeshares!
Top Timeshare Property Developers
Did you know that even top brands like Marriott Vacations Worldwide have timeshares too? It’s true! Check out our top resort developers below.
- Marriott Vacation Club
- Wyndham Destinations
- Disney Vacation Club
- Hilton Grand Vacations
- Hyatt Vacation Club
- Holiday Inn
- Bluegreen Vacations
Not sure which developer you want to own with? Read our blog: The Ultimate Guide to the Best Vacation Clubs to Join.
Vacation exchange networks offer vacation owners a great deal of flexibility. Traveling to new places each year is most travel lovers’ dream, and exchange helps make that possible. Companies like RCI and Interval International specialize in offering networks of resorts to their members. For example, you could travel to Orlando with your Hilton Grand Vacation Club timeshare and then visit an Interval International resort in Hawaii the next year through vacation exchange. There are other benefits like RCI cruises and flights.
You might be curious why this is relevant to how much vacation ownership costs. In order to join these exclusive networks, you must become a member. We’ve updated the most recent RCI fees for you. Interval International also has annual dues for members to pay in order to join. These fees can be totally worth it if you’re looking to travel to somewhere new each year! Vacation exchange networks make it easy to book vacations all around the world no matter if you have points or weeks. Plus, you don’t have to buy a new timeshare to visit a new vacation destination!
Don’t Let A Timeshare Scam Cost You!
Unfortunately, since the vacation industry is a multi-billion dollar industry, scammers are drawn to it. Sometimes vacation owners fall victim to timeshare scams and as a result, can lose money. There are a few common scams to look out for, including people posing as resale companies and asking for bank accounts or social security information. As a rule of thumb, legitimate resale companies will never reach out to you out of the blue. It’s an illegal practice for resale companies, so use caution if you receive a cold call regarding your vacation ownership.
Another common timeshare scam tactic amongst scammers is convincing owners to stop paying their maintenance fees. Since vacation ownerships are legal contracts, you cannot just stop paying these fees. Failure to pay your fees can cause you to default on your vacation ownership, which can negatively affect your credit. You could potentially be denied from receiving a future loan for a home or a car. If you are struggling to pay for those yearly fees, there are options. Sometimes resorts have in-house rental programs or exit solutions. If you no longer want to use your vacation unit, you may be able to sell it on the resale market.
Timeshare Costs Q&A
Buy From Timeshare Owners Less
If you’re interested in how to buy a timeshare for less, we recommend checking out timeshare resales. Many timeshare owners list their vacation ownership for sale on our online marketplace and set the pricing. While shopping online, you can search for all brands and locations of vacation ownership—not just one. Another thing about timeshare resales is that you have the opportunity to negotiate the terms of the sale and place a personalized offer.
Additionally, there won’t be any high-pressure sales tactics with us. You can submit an offer and our friendly staff will get the process of buying a timeshare started for you. For free help, give us a call at 1-800-610-2734.
Rent a Timeshare Before You Buy
Not ready for the commitment that comes with buying a timeshare? We have a solution for you! You can rent a timeshare at all the major vacation destinations and brands. Who knows maybe you will love your experience so much you decide to buy! Start by browsing our rentals now! Have questions? Give us a call today at 1-800-610-2734.