Renting a timeshare is an often-overlooked option when planning a holiday. Timeshares offer guaranteed vacation weeks in beautiful locations around the world. And best of all? They’re often cheaper than booking one-off vacations each year.
But before you go renting your first timeshare, here are some things you need to know.
Simply put, timesharing is like buying holiday time. It’s a form of vacation rental based on a shared ownership model of a property. Multiple owners of the property are allotted times, usually in one- or two-week increments, during the year when they have sole use of the property.
Essentially, timeshares allow people to buy the use of a villa or suite at a resort for the same week or weeks every year at a fraction of the price of owning it all year-round, without the hassle and costs of year-round maintenance.
The timeshare model is applied to a variety of properties from apartments and condominiums to campgrounds and vacation resorts. And as a part-owner of the property, you can use it yourself, rent it out, or allow friends to stay during your allotted time. There are several types of contracts and levels of ownership for the property that governs how the timeshare will work.
Timeshare contracts can be shared deed contracts or shared lease contracts. A shared deed contract involves the ownership of the property divided equally between everyone involved in the timeshare. A shared leased contract has the same arrangement as shared deed contracts, except that you’re only leasing the use of a specific property for timeshare.
There are also several types of timeshare ownership. The fixed week option allows you to select a specific week of the year to vacation on the property. With this option, you are set in stone for the weeks you have chosen, and it can be difficult to change them if there are many owners.
The floating week option is slightly more flexible in that it allows you to choose your week during a specific window of time. There is also the points system option, which is another way of accessing timesharing. Your property is graded and worth a certain number of points, which can be used to access other resorts in the same system, or sometimes can be used for car rentals, airfare, etc. To learn more about timeshare terminology, visit ARDA (American Resort Development Association).
Timeshare rentals are properties available to rent when the owner of the property is not using the week they have been allocated in their contract and place their week on a timeshare rentals by owner marketplace, usually at a low price to cover their annual maintenance fee.
The vacation rental market is flooded with accommodation options, offering a variety of experiences across a wide range of prices. For most people, the cost is a major factor when it comes to planning a vacation, and while everyone wants to enjoy an idyllic holiday with all the bells and whistles, affordability is key.
There are several pros and cons to consider when deciding on whether to go for a timeshare rental or an independent vacation rental company like Airbnb or Vrbo.
Timeshare resorts are professionally managed, and the properties are well-maintained. Timeshares offer a wealth of on-site amenities and activities and they can often work out to be great value for money. Amenities can include swimming pools, fitness centers, tennis courts and golf.
The only limitations on timesharing are that reservation options are usually limited to one or two specific weeks, and it may be slightly more difficult to book prime vacation weeks. They are also located in luxurious resorts or spacious cabins/chalets, so if you’re looking to rough it, timeshares may not be your best option.
Timeshare rentals can range anywhere from $50 per night on the lower end to $12,000 per night on the ultra-luxury side of things. Depending on many factors you should, on average, expect to spend between $50 and $1,500 per night.
Size and type of property, amenities and facilities, location and time of year all contribute to the overall cost.
For example, a weekend in a quieter, off-the-beaten-path log cabin in the Ozarks will cost far less than a weekend in a condo at a busy tourist spot like Disney World.
The cost of the rental will also depend on the time of year. Prices of properties in popular tourist destinations might be much higher during the peak season than they would in the off-season.
Timeshare rentals can also vary greatly in price from one resort to another. For example, when comparing timeshare rentals at different locales in Florida, prices can differ greatly according to the location and amenities offered. Timeshare rentals in Poinciana, Florida such as Alhambra at Poinciana can go for $500 per stay, while timeshare rentals in Orlando like Bluegreen Resorts The Fountains can cost up to $2,000 per stay.
As you can see, timeshare rentals run the gamut when it comes to pricing since most are priced by private owners, but one of the best ways to find great deals on timeshares is by booking at the last minute. Many agencies offer great specials during the off-season or when they have a last-minute cancellation and need to fill beds, so you can find some fantastic deals if you book closer to the time of your trip.
The best way to rent a timeshare is to do your research properly and find the property that fits all your needs. Find some websites that offer timeshare rentals and go through their inventory of properties to find one that ticks all the boxes for a hassle-free vacation.
Once you find a property you like, you need to find a week that suits you – sometimes the perfect property may not be available for the period you want it for.
Once you have settled on both a property and a week, simply fill in the booking form and send it off. The owner of the property or a booking agent will then be in touch with you regarding your booking.
Booking agents usually do all the liaising with the owner of the property and manage your booking, which cuts out a lot of extra hassle, but you’ll probably pay an extra fee.
If you rent through SellMyTimeshareNow, you’ll also find timeshare weeks you can “Book Now” meaning all you need to do is submit your credit card info and details, and the week is reserved for you.
Tips for Choosing the Right Timeshare Rental
Finding the right timeshare rental can be a daunting task with a wealth of options on the market, but there are a few tips to help you choose the right property.
- Choose Your Location: Selecting a timeshare rental in a location that is not in high demand can offer great savings. Instead of having to haggle over properties in exotic destinations like Thailand, Fiji, and the Caribbean, find a lovely place in an off-the-beaten-path locale for a steal.
- Book in the Off-Peak Season: Some timeshare owners drop their rates in the off-season and offer great vacation rental deals. Also look out for last-minute timeshare deals during slower months as this can result in fantastic savings.
- Shop Around: Don’t settle for the first timeshare rental you see. Do your research, select a few properties, and take the time to contact several owners or agencies to have a chat, even if they aren’t advertising the exact week you want. Many owners own floating weeks, meaning they can change their reservation to the dates you’re looking for.
Timeshare rentals can be rented in a couple of ways. They are listed on timeshare rental websites like SellMyTimeshareNow or vacation rental property sites like Airbnb and Vrbo.
When searching for properties on either of these sites, you can choose to communicate with the owner directly by using the ad’s inquiry form or contact the team of experienced timeshare specialists who can help you find the ideal resort destination, week, and unit.
And of course, if you see the vacation you want at the right price and it has a “Book Now” button, you can just book and be done.
Timeshare rentals are ideal for those looking for a home-away-from-home property to enjoy an affordable and hassle-free vacation. Timeshare suites offer all the creature comforts of home in a charming setting, with spacious living areas, patios, separate bedrooms, and kitchens for self-catering, making them a great option for families.
Add to that access to amenities and facilities, great destinations, affordability, and great value for money, and timeshare rentals may be well worth considering for your next vacation.