It may have seemed a good idea at the time. You’ve likely even enjoyed some pleasant vacations there. Now, however, you’re thinking of abandoning ship. There’s only one thing you need to know: What is that timeshare really worth?
How to Arrive at a Selling Price
The value of a timeshare depends on two critical factors. The first of these is its location, but while that’s important, it’s only half the story. You also have to consider the week for which you’re trying to sell it. Time at a ski resort will be worth a lot more in December than it is July.
Consider the Competition
By scouring listings and advertisements, you will learn the asking price of comparable timeshares at your resort for the same week or one close to it. Your figure must be competitive while leaving some room for negotiations. Most buyers expect to do a bit of haggling. However, beware of pricing yourself out of the market. Go too high, and people will feel there’s no point in making an offer. Remember that the lowest asking price will usually attract the highest degree of interest.
In case the figure you arrive at causes your timeshare to languish on the market, you’ll have to be prepared to lower your expectations. You don’t want to do this too often, however, or people will begin to wonder if something is wrong with your unit.
Evaluate the Economy
In a recessionary period, a timeshare is a lot like residential property: When purchased in a flourishing economy, its value is sure to have sunk. In fact, in the current financial climate, many timeshares have lost as much as 70 percent of their original value.
Remember the Marketing Hype
If your timeshare was experiencing heavy promotion at the time you purchased it, you probably bought it at an artificially inflated price.
Most new timeshares profit from aggressive marketing efforts on the part of their developers. Such enticements as free tickets to Disneyland and low-cost Caribbean cruises cost them money that they do not intend to lose permanently. Instead, they add those expenses on to the new timeshare’s asking price, and the purchaser pays the difference in the end.
It’s also important to realize that once they have sold every unit, many developers cease all marketing efforts. When they do, interest in the resort is lost and demand goes down, although the existence of a resale program can ameliorate the situation to some extent.
Is the Resort Still Popular?
In the eyes of many buyers, a partially empty resort is flying a big red flag. If yours contains a number of abandoned units, the value of your timeshare has probably fallen.
It’s a Buyer’s Market
When pricing your timeshare, it is vital to compare it only to similar units on the resale market. Many purchasers are aware that they will not be incurring the developer’s original marketing costs. Pay careful attention to what other resellers are asking. That is your true competition.
Fools Rush In
If you are in a hurry to sell, be careful not to blind yourself to potential pitfalls. There are companies out there that will try to take advantage of your need for haste. These are easy to recognize by the fact that in exchange for the promise of a quick sale, they often require the payment of a fee up front.
In the end, it will not be impossible to sell your timeshare. Accepting the fact that you most likely will not get back what you paid for it will allow you to price it properly for a quick and timely sale.
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