Are you considering buying a timeshare?

There are a range of reasons that people buy timeshares.  Could they be the perfect holiday solution for you?

Relax, time to unwind, an opportunity to de-stress, laze around the swimming pool, a change in your day to day environment, time and energy to do something different each day – these are all reasons we love to holiday.

It’s no surprise that we want to remain in that holiday-trance as long as we can.  Purchasing a timeshare is a way to buy into a holiday resort at a minimal cost. It can be an emotional or impulsive decision but sometimes it’s something you’ve been considering for a number of years.

The fact is:  Most timeshares are bought whilst people are on holidays.

We relax and unwind when we’re on holidays, relaxation decreases stress levels, reduces tensions and increases our general well-being.

We often fall in love the destination, we slip into a calm state of mind while we’re on holidays and not surprisingly, want to return to revisit that feeling.   There are those of us who love that they can be an owner in a resort for a nominal cost … even better if it’s a beach-side resort.Bali resort

There are 2 main types of Timeshares

If you’re considering buying a timeshare, it pays to understand the different options.

Fixed Week:  The buyer usually owns the rights to a specific unit in the same week, year in and year out, for as long as the contract stipulates (check if the property is owned or leased and how long the remaining lease is).

There is the predictability factor in this option: great for those who may want to take a holiday every school holidays or if their business closes over the Christmas break.

With a fixed-rate timeshare, the owner can rent out his block of time or trade with owners of other properties. This type of arrangement works best if you have a highly desirable location.

Floating week: The buyer can reserve his own block of time during any period of the year. This option has more freedom than the fixed week version, but getting the exact time you want may be difficult when other shareholders snap up many of the prime periods.

There’s an option to book at last minute, or months ahead so that you can utilise your week at a time that suits you.

Consider buying into a resort linked to an Interchange Club

Access to an Inter-change Club: This is similar to the floating timeshare, but buyers can inter-change to stay at various locations (even in other countries). There is often a minor cost involved to swap to another property but it’s a good way to go somewhere different, and often at a reduced cost.

Peninsula BeachThe Timeshare Advantage

  • Unlike a holiday home which may be vacant part of the year, you only pay the time that you use and the maintenance costs are built into your annual fee.
  • If you like predictability, you can take a guaranteed vacation destination which makes planning ahead for an annual holiday, easy.
  • Owning a timeshare is an investment in your holidays, not necessarily a financial investment but it is true that most timeshares are able to be included in your will and passed to others in the event of your demise.
  • If you use your timeshare regularly, you can definitely save money on holidays over the long term.

Our Timeshare experience

Both of us work in high-paced corporate roles and are terrible at taking holidays.  Our holidays are often long weekends with an extra day here and there, often visiting family and friends but it’s rare that we take time to sit, relax and do absolutely nothing.

Checking into a resort, lazing around the pool, reading a book or taking a morning yoga class was always on our wish list – but somehow we never made time to do it.

With Darwin just a short 2 hour flight from Bali, most people we know take advantage of Bali as super-quick a holiday destination.  Question to self: Why weren’t we doing that too?

We had talked about buying a timeshare for many years, so when visiting Bali for a friend’s ‘big’ birthday party, we took the time to attend a presentation.

The reality was, it made perfect sense to us, and today we wonder why we didn’t do it sooner … so in 2013 we bought a timeshare in Bali.

Relaxing in Bali

Do the Maths!

The buy in price for a studio apartment in a brand spanking new resort in Nusa Dua was affordable and the ongoing maintenance costs were reasonably low.  The resort had all the facilities we needed which gave us options to take a lazy holiday without it being a major travel event.

Doing the maths was about the initial buy in costs + annual maintenance fee.

Buying in Bali made total sense, the maintenance fee was locked in at the local Balinese currency which meant that outgoings were able to be kept at a minimum.  An important consideration for us!

We also had an option to bank our weeks and we could pool them which we thought was a great option.  Furthermore, we could buy additional weeks at a very low price, if and when we wanted to.  A no-brainer really!

Do we use our Timeshare?

For the couple of years we banked our weeks with the intention to save a couple of weeks to take a longer holiday in Bali when we had more time but, the reality was we didn’t make the time.

It was a ‘head slapping moment’ – make the time!

Recently we’ve made a point to take our break every year and love the opportunity to spend the week lazing away our days by the pool – our original purpose! We’ve also gifted weeks to family members as wedding presents or birthday and Christmas gifts or ‘just because’, and we love that we are able to share our holiday home.

The real benefit for us is that Bali is a 2 hour flight away, so with a couple of weeks notice we can hop on a plane and wake up next morning in our gorgeous resort room by the beach! There are plenty of resort options if we want to make use of them – dining, yoga classes and access to canoes & surf skis – or nothing at all!

We usually sign up for the resort breakfast package when we arrive which gives us fabulous breakfast options without having to lift a finger and we get straight into the holiday-zone.

Some days we’ll take a day-trip, but I’ve become accustomed to spending my day lounging by the pool, writing my next blog post, reading a book or snoozing in the warmth of the day and calling for a cool lemon spritzer every now and then – just because I can!

For us, buying a timeshare in Bali has been money well spent!

Uluwatu temple

Our advice

Like all opportunities, if it looks too good to be true, it probably is!   Be astute!   Do the maths and don’t let yourself be pressured when considering a purchase and be sure to read your contract carefully.

Have you ever considered buying a timeshare?  Do you have one, and do you use it regularly?  Share your experience with us, below.

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