Ask Stacy: What Can I Do With My Timeshare?


What's Hot


5 Reasons to Shop for a Home in DecemberFamily

Shoppers Boycott Businesses Selling Trump-Branded ProductsBusiness

15 Things You Should Always Buy at a Dollar StoreMore

Giving Thanks: Why Foreigners Find America AmazingAround The House

New Email Phishing Scam Targets Amazon ShoppersMore

50 Best Gifts Under $25 for Everyone on Your ListFamily

Why Washing Your Turkey Can Make You IllFamily

Pay $2 and Get Unlimited Wendy’s Frosty Treats in 2017Family

The 7 Worst Things to Buy at a Dollar StoreMore

What the Richest 1 Percent Earns in Every StateFamily

10 Ways to Retire Earlier Than Friends on the Same SalaryGrow

The 10 Best Ways to Blow Your MoneyCredit & Debt

The 50 Hottest Toys of the Past 50 YearsFamily

30 Awesome Things to Do in RetirementCollege

A timeshare might make sense for a select group of people - but never for anyone who has to borrow the money to purchase or might need to sell someday.

Here’s an email I got this week – I’ve gotten several similar ones over the past year.

My wife and I bought a timeshare property from Wyndham Vacation Resorts in 2008 and were “talked into” upgrading twice since then. We have had financial difficulties in the meantime and need to sell our timeshare. We have found this to be impossible. We have been in contact with rip off artists – there are many! We have contacted Wyndham about our situation and they say they sympathize with us and that we should sell the timeshare, but give no advice or direction (they say they don’t get involved in reselling or taking back timeshares). We have also been in contact with what seem to be genuine timeshare resellers and they tell us either that we can’t sell because we still owe money or that our timeshare is not worth anywhere near what we owe. Is there any help or advice you can provide to help us out? We are very close to having to declare bankruptcy and would like to avoid doing that, but in the next couple of months we don’t see any other choice. Thanks in advance for any help/advice you can provide.
~Bob

I’m sorry for your financial troubles, Bob, and I really wish there was advice I could offer that might help. But timeshares can be difficult, even impossible, to sell: especially when they’re worth less than you owe on them.

Last year I did an article/video called Buying or Selling a Timeshare? Read This First.  You should check out the entire post, but here’s an excerpt:

What I took away from this story – and what you should too

The more I researched the whole idea of selling timeshares, the more leery I personally became of the whole concept. Sure, it sounds cool to own an annual week in a fancy seaside or mountain resort. But after paying thousands up front, you also often have to pay major annual fees whether you use it or not. Then, there’s the problem I uncovered in this story: Selling your timeshare, at least for what you paid for it, could be tough, even impossible.

I’ll stop short of saying you should never buy a new timeshare because the world is a big place, people’s appetites vary widely, and there are always exceptions to every rule. In fact, I’m sure there are timeshares that have gone up in value. But personally, if I ever decide to buy a timeshare, I’ll make sure I never intend to sell it and I won’t expect much if I do. I certainly won’t finance it, and I will try to buy it pre-owned rather than paying top dollar to a developer.

You should also check out this post from just a few months ago: How NOT to Sell a Timeshare: Pay Money Up Front.

As you can see, I’m no fan of timeshares. They’re a product that’s too often foisted on the gullible with high-pressure sales tactics and virtually no secondary market.  Like a new car, they depreciate radically the moment they’re purchased. But at least a car dealer will buy back their car: As you can see from Bob’s email, his timeshare dealer leaves him twisting in the wind.

While I wouldn’t be hopeful, here are several sites that appear legitimate where you can list a timeshare:

If it doesn’t sell at one of these sites, the only way out for Bob may be to pay part or all of the money owed against his timeshare to make it more marketable, or discharge the timeshare debt in bankruptcy.

Learn a lesson here, folks: If you insist on buying a timeshare, buy it pre-owned from someone like Bob for pennies on the dollar, never from a developer.  Sure, take that free vacation, free meal, or whatever that timeshare company is using to entice you to their property, but don’t sign on that dotted line.

Stacy Johnson

It's not the usual blah, blah, blah

I know... every site you visit wants you to subscribe to their newsletter. But our news and advice is actually worth reading! For 25 years, I've been making people richer without making their eyes glaze over. You'll be glad you did. I guarantee it!

💰🗣📰

Read Next: 10 Strategies to Save Big Bucks on Amazon

Check Out Our Hottest Deals!

We're always adding new deals and coupons that'll save you big bucks. See the deals to the right and hundreds more in our Deals section.

Click here to explore 1,768 more deals!