Most timeshare owners are simply unaware of the impact of timeshare maintenance fees and are often hesitant to ask, thinking that it just “comes with the territory of owning a timeshare. As timeshare is a long-term investment, it means that you’ll be paying such annual dues for a long, long time. Therefore, it is important to know what they are for, as they are part and parcel of the responsbility of owning a timeshare..
The operation, maintenance and management of a resort is evenly divided among all owners through the annual membership dues.. The fee is inclusive of reserves to pay for non-recurring costs like furniture, landscaping, external upgrades, appliances etc. and other costs in maintaining the resort as it deteriorates, same as your own costs for maintaining your house or car. Cost is determined by the developer or HOA (homeowners association). As such, it should be noted that when a developer manages a timeshare, the upkeep charges may be temporarily borne by the developer as a marketing investment. However, when the HOA takes over after some period, the fees may immediately rise without warning.
The cost of maintenance fees differ in accordance with the location and resort. Charges usually range between $200 to $1,000. According the American Resort Development Association, the average fee is around $400 a year.
Of critical importance is that when getting a timeshare, the fee cannot stay fixed for the rest of your ownership tenure (which can be a lifetime, if its a deeded property).. I’ts inevitable that the $400 annual fee today will rise in the 20 years that you are part of the timeshare club. This is the case at present, with many resorts increasing their annual maintenance fees that it reached a point where it doesn’t appeal as much to customers. In some rare cases, it can even become more expensive to own in annual maintenance fees when compared to a non owner that just rents the unit for a week.
It is therefore essential that you do the necessary research and ask pertinent questions before buying a timeshare.
The timeshare company you are doing business with should inform you firsthand of the maintenance fees involved in your timeshare. Don’t wait until the last minute to ask about it. You should ask beforehand so that you wouldn’t have to suffer the consequences in the end.