Timeshares – the perfect opportunity to enjoy a relaxing vacation at an exotic destination every year, right? Actually, for many, timeshares are little more than a destination to disaster.
Timeshares get you annual access to a condo-style apartment in a vacation hotspot and they’re typically roomier than hotels, have more amenities and attractions, and they can cost you anywhere from $6,000 to $10,000.
But before you take the timeshare plunge, know that banks are often hesitant to finance them and developers have been known to take advantage of charging high interest rates. And make sure you love where you buy, because trading in can be a real pain as fees run as high as $150.
Finally, don’t look at a timeshare as an investment. The average return on selling a timeshare is between 30% and 50% of what you paid. Some companies offer to help you sell for an upfront fee, but beware. They are the subject of many complaints to the good fols at the Better Business Bureau. You’re better off using sites like BidShares.com and TimeShareGateway.com. Or you could always consider donating your timeshare to a non-profit – your tax deduction could total more than you’d make on a sale.