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What is a Timeshare?

Timeshares can be found where people generally like to vacation.
Many people use timeshare agreements to live in warm places during cold months, and vice versa.
The typical timeshare ownership unit is one week.
Timeshares are properties owned by several parties who use them at different times of the year, often in beach areas.
Timeshare condos, particularly those at the beach, often have pools.
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  • Written By: D Frank
  • Edited By: L. S. Wynn
  • Last Modified Date: 03 September 2014
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A timeshare is the name given to piece of real estate where a number of individuals share ownership in the subject property. As opposed to a standard home where an individual or, for example, a husband and wife share ownership, this property is almost always owned by a number of people who have no relation to one another whatsoever.

This type of property can often be found in warm destinations where people like to vacation. As an example, coastal towns and cities in Florida (Daytona Beach) and South Carolina (Hilton Head Island) offer huge numbers of timeshares. They can also be found in cold weather areas (ski resorts in Colorado) and all over the world (Ireland, Mexico, Spain) as well. Most are located in resort communities.

These properties are much more than simple hotel rooms. Typically, they include one to three bedrooms, multiple bathrooms, a full kitchen and a living room. These condominium-style units are almost always fully furnished. Indoor and outdoor swimming pools are common at most properties.

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The typical timeshare ownership unit is one week. Ownership is very similar to that of a condominium, except that it is limited to a certain week (or weeks, if a person purchases multiple intervals) during the year. If an owner's one-week time period is in demand, the price will be higher. For instance, a timeshare for a week on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, in April will cost far more than a week at the same resort location in the sweltering heat of August.

This property can be sold or passed down to heirs as with other forms of real estate. Many people not only look at their ownership as a means to have a great vacation, but they also view it as an investment. Should they decide not to use the property themselves, they can rent their time to others. Also, the value of many of these properties increases with the passage of years, so long as the destination remains attractive.

Most timeshare agreements allow owners to trade and swap locations. For instance, an owner in the Bahamas could swap his weekly ownership for a similar one in Hawaii. Many major hotel companies, such as Marriott International, manage and sell such properties at resort locations.

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anon127276
Post 3

If you buy a for sale time share for say $2,000, is that something you must keep paying every year to keep it? Or do you just have to pay the member or maintenance fees?

anon42246
Post 2

What is the value of points in a timeshare?

sputnik
Post 1

I suppose there are some variations to the original timeshare programs. There are some plans you can buy with the initial investment and yearly maintenance fee. But instead of a week at a particular location, you collect points, then use them when and where you wish.

That includes vacation properties such as condominiums, or actual rooms in a hotel. Of course it depends on the location, time of the year, and size of the room or condo you need at how many points it will cost you.

Another benefit is that you do not have to use your points every year, you can push them forward, to the next year and have more points and time to spend at a particular location. Or you can also pull points from the future, if your needs are greater in any particular year. Some hotels with these programs offer their members cheaper rates when you stay at their place and you do not have any more points. Of course this program is not suited for everybody, but many people find it practical and easy to use.

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