There are lots and lots of timeshares for sale. When you bought, you got some nice perks such as a free vacation. People just like you bought a timeshare because it seemed like such a good deal– they’d have the perfect place to vacation in the same time every year. That kind of predictability was a good idea... then. Now you’re feeling very constrained by that. The website www.homebuying. about.com says that "a sale can be difficult to achieve if your unit is a studio, or usage dates are in an off season." When you bought you were probably not told anything about what would happen when you tried to sell.
It’s not in the developer’s best interests to have you sell your timeshare. He or she has sunk a considerable amount of money into selling the units in the first place– between $2000 and $5000. According to www.homebuying.about.com resort developers sometimes offer resale programs. Salespeople working on-site do have easy access to buyers who are interested in that specific resort or chain, but their main focus may be selling new units.
So, how do you go about selling your timeshare? Begin with realistic pricing. On www.homebuying.about.com it’s noted that pricing is the driving force behind Time-Share resales. However, even bigger timeshares that allow some flexibility generally sell for 30%-50% less than their original price. You and your family may have really loved your vacations at your timeshare but this is quite a loss and is certainly something to consider before you purchase. If you are in a hurry you may resort to selling low. But if you can wait there are some other options. Let’s see if there are ways to help you sell your timeshare.
Sometimes, when a timeshare is part of a chain (and there are lots of those) you may be able to use your credits for things such as airline tickets. This may help you recover some of the financial loss you’ll experience when you sell.
Seller (and buyer) beware. The timeshare market is full of scam artists trying to make a quick buck. You might be desperate to sell but don’t trust anyone who promises you a quick sale.
List with a Real Estate Company
You can list on line with several agencies or you can go through a real brick and mortar company. However you choose to do this keep these tips in mind:
Find up what the fees will be for listing with the real estate company you choose.
What kind of commission do they charge?
Fees and commissions tend to be higher than they would if this was a "traditional" transaction.
Interview several agencies until you’re happy with what they offer and how they’ll help you sell. Check and see if there have been any Better Business Bureau complaints lodged against them. You can do this online at www.BBB.org.
Are they a member of ARDA (the American Resort Development Association)? They expect its members to abide by a set of ethical guidelines when selling time-shares.
Are you familiar with the timeshare laws. For example, up-front fees can be illegal in some states.
Are they licensed to practice real estate in the states they operate in?
Get it in writing! Have each office tell you exactly how they market your timeshare.
And, finally, before you sign a contract, compare their fees and marketing practices with those of other agencies.
You could try auctioning your timeshare on Ebay. Research it carefully before listing. Use other postings to help you make your post the best it can be. Or you could try an exchange with another timeshare owner. This doesn’t help with the sale but it could help if you’re wanting to change times or locations while you wait to sell. If you can’t sell your timeshare right away, auctioning it off could be a good short term plan because you’ll make some money on it.
Your time-share owners club may offer this as a service. In this way, you’ll be preaching to the converted. People who look at these classifieds are interested in what you’re selling. Or try approaching other owners (or posting a classified for this purpose). People who own timeshares before and after your dates may be looking to increase their time.
This is especially important if you are trying to sell your timeshare yourself. Post classifieds on as many free internet group sections that you can. Most online services such as Prodigy, AOL, etc have free or lost cost advertising. "Timeshare Adventures provides an advanced online timeshare advertising network that connects sellers with buyers by targeting audiences through Newspaper Advertisements, Search Engine Marketing, Television and Direct Mail marketing."
The website, Tug 2, gives great advice concerning resale brokers who specifically deal with reselling timeshares. They have over 20 currently advertising in their Business Ads section. These brokers will charge either an up front fee and/or a commission on the sale. Remember, you are paying for the extra exposure and their services. They recommend that if you are dealing with a timeshare broker that you do it on a commission only basis. That way they will get paid from the proceeds of the sale, just like every other real estate broker.
Selling your timeshare won’t be easy but it is possible. Follow the suggestions above and try to be patient.