If you have historically been happy with your timeshare resort, and the accommodations you enjoy once or twice a year on the resort, you may be surprised to see some significant changes that alter the quality of your vacation getaway.
One of the biggest fears that timeshare owners have, is that (while locked into their owner contract), the resort will go into decline, in terms of service or the quality of resort environment and facilities. If you are a timeshare owner, have you noticed any of these seven signs that your timeshare resort is starting to go downhill?
1. The Accommodations Have Not Been Updated
When you walk into a luxury timeshare, whether as an owner or a renter, you have a few expectations of the property you’ll be staying at. One of the challenges for timeshares is to keep the accommodations new looking, by providing quality furnishings and replacing them, as they wear out. That might mean every 2-3 years, at very large and busy resorts.
If you walked into a timeshare that you bought (unseen) or rented without requesting pictures, you may be in for an unpleasant surprise. No one likes to sleep on a bed, with substandard linens, or sit on a sofa that looks like it came from a yard sale.
Some of the most inexpensive (and easily traded) resort vacations, can come with some pretty rough accommodations, that may not meet your expectations. And since the resorts depend on guests enjoying themselves, and promoting the luxury experience of their stay, outdated accommodations can be a sign of financial problems, at the management level.
2. The Outdoor Facilities Are Not Being Maintained
Part of the obligation a vacation resort has, is to provide a pleasant atmosphere for timeshare owners. The package deal, includes a great place to stay, that is aesthetically appealing, fun and safe for families to visit.
If you only use your timeshare for one-week per year, a lot can change in the period between visits. It doesn’t take long for a resort to start showing signs of wear and tear, if the spending on necessary upkeep is not being met. What does that look like? You may notice more garbage and litter around the property, or on the beach. Athletic and leisure equipment can be broken, or worn.
3. There Is Less Support Staff Onsite
If you arrive for your scheduled week(s) of vacation, and wonder “where did all the staff go?” it may be a sign that your timeshare is starting to go downhill. One of the first areas that resort managers cut back on, is support staff. That means cleaners, maintenance staff, restaurant and other service people (including security).
Salaries are a big cost to resorts, but are the staff reductions changing your experience when you stay at your timeshare? For instance, has food quality gone downhill, when you dine inside the resort? Do you have to wait a long time for an attendant, or someone to help you with a concern? There is a reason why support staff are hired to help organize and care for guests, and it is one of those things that you notice quickly.
Are hours of operation for indoor facilities (such as the business, restaurant, snack bar or fitness center) been reduced, because of low staffing? Talk to your resort about your concerns, and your vacation experience. They have a contractual obligation to provide the original experience they sold you on, when you signed on as a timeshare owner.
4. Restaurant and Beverage Prices Are Going Up
A valuable stream of revenue for timeshare resorts, is food and beverage services. In general, resort prices are higher than other less convenient options, but a sharp incline in prices for drinks or snacks by the beach, can also indicate a cash flow problem for the timeshare resort.
There is only so much room that a resort has, to markup the food and beverage prices, before guests simply seek other alternatives for meals. It’s in their best interest to keep prices reasonable. New and substantially higher prices, should be a red flag to timeshare owners.
5. Cleaning Services Have Declined
Some timeshares offer bi-weekly cleaning services, when the timeshare is occupied. Many timeshares, in an effort to reduce costs, are cleaning units only after the checkout of the guest or family. And that’s a problem for vacationers.
No matter what the resort claims, a timeshare is not used consistently, every week. So if housekeeping staff are only required to clean upon checkout, that means that the unit could be less acceptable to guests, if it remains vacant for a few weeks. Online complaints are a good way to validate your concerns; is it just your unit, or are other timeshare owners experiencing the same problem with upkeep and cleanliness of their unit?
6. Maintenance Fees Are Going Up
One of the questions that we frequently get asked by our clients, is the true motive behind rising maintenance costs. Timeshare companies like to state that damages from natural disasters, such as flooding or wind damage from tropical storms and hurricanes, legitimize rising maintenance fees for members. After all, each timeshare owner is equally responsible for the upkeep of the property, including repairs and maintenance (which is the same in condominium communities).
But vacation resorts also have liability and property damage insurance, which is required by law. So, if the damages to the resort have led to a notice of increased fees, be observant on your next visit to your timeshare. Were the repairs done? Have they been started? Or was a natural disaster simply a reason to increase fee revenue, for a timeshare that is having budgetary problems?
7. There Are More Timeshare Resort Rentals Available
This can be a good thing, or a bad thing. Let’s start with the positive aspect of increased timeshare rentals. That can imply that the resort is in high-demand, and while dealing with renters can change the culture and vacation experience for timeshare owners, it also means that there is ample opportunity to rent out your own unit, to recoup some of the costs of ownership.
Now for the bad part. Timeshare owners that are tired of their resort, or those that have had difficulty trading or swapping weeks with other resorts, will try to rent their space, to compensate for expensive maintenance fees, and unforeseen assessment charges. So, if your resort has not typically been a high-rental location, a sudden change can reflect that owners are dissatisfied with the accommodations, and/or looking for a way to sell, or transfer out of their timeshare agreement.
If you are ready to part with your timeshare, and seek out expert advice regarding timeshare cancellation, contact us at: 1-800-587-EXIT. AconsumerCredit has been the leading consulting resource for American timeshare owners since 2004, and we provide a free no-obligation consultation, to discuss your contract terms, and options.