We are constantly being bombarded by doom and gloom messages from the media. Timeshare Foreclosure properties are flooding the market according to some sources. But, like everything you read in the papers, take this with a grain of salt. Good news does not sell papers.
But perhaps you are one of the many vacation home owners who are struggling to maintain the annual payments on their properties. This could be because you have lost your job or perhaps it was always a struggle and you have now reached the end of your tether. If you also took out a mortgage or loan to finance the original purchase, it is easy to understand why you may be worried about foreclosures.
First of all please don’t panic, no matter how grim the situation may appear. Sit down calmly and draw up a budget. It is very simple. You just list your total incoming revenue and your total outgoing expenses. This will help you work out whether the situation you are in, is temporary or long term.
If it is a temporary cash flow problem, you could consider renting your condo. A lot of vacation home owners don’t realise this is possible, but there are a number of people that don’t want to own a timeshare but would love to stay there for one holiday period. So this might be worth looking into. You can advertise your week on EBay or in your local paper.
If your financial situation means that you cannot afford to keep the timeshare or perhaps you have become bored with it, you could look into selling it on the resale market. This is not going to make you rich – in fact you will not recover your original costs. But you may make a little money and more importantly the annual fees and maintenance costs will belong to the new owner.
If you cannot face the thoughts of reselling it yourself, you can use a real estate broker but make sure you only agree to pay a fair commission on completion of the sale. Paying someone in advance removes the incentive for them to perform and actually find a buyer.
Alternatively, if your payments are up to date and you don’t want the hassle of selling, you could donate your timeshare to a charity. Not all charities accept these units but some do. They either resell them and use the cash for research or else use the condos to provide much needed holidays for cancer patients or those with similar life threatening illnesses.
Whatever you do, don’t just stick your head in the sand and ignore the situation. Some people believe that not opening the demands for payment will make the situation go away. If you ignore payment requests, the timeshare company will go ahead with legal action. You could lose your credit rating and end up being chased by a collection company for the outstanding monies due. Neither of these options will help you to sleep at night so should be avoided if possible.
It is always best to try and avoid a timeshare foreclosure but if it does happen, it is not the end of the world despite what you may read in the papers!