The timeshare industry has a long and complex history. It began as a way for people to purchase vacations in resorts, but it has transformed into a multi-billion dollar business that is increasingly complicated and regulated.
While it used to be a popular form of travel, the timeshare industry has suffered from high-pressure sales tactics and shoddy property management. Despite that, it has managed to become a very profitable industry.
Today, the global timeshare market is worth $17.3 billion annually and is expected to grow by 8% this year alone, according to ARDA International Foundation. It is a segment that is expected to gain popularity in the coming years due to its ability to offer a variety of vacation options.
It has been estimated that there are about 9.2 million households in the United States that own timeshares. This group of people includes a diverse mix of individuals who range in age and income.
Most timeshares are offered on a fixed week system, meaning that you can only use your vacation time at the same property during certain weeks of the year. This can be a big downside to many people who are considering purchasing one of these properties.
A timeshare also comes with a lot of extra costs, including fees for maintenance and exchange clubs. Those fees can add up quickly.
The average annual maintenance fee for a timeshare is about $1,090 and has been steadily rising over the past few years. This is not a problem for owners of large properties but can be a financial burden for those with smaller ones.
However, there are ways to get around these costs and still be able to enjoy your timeshare. You can sell it to a friend or family member, transfer it to another timeshare owner, rent out your property, or even give it away as a gift.
You can also use a timeshare exchange company to swap your allotted vacation time for other dates. This can be a much better option than committing to a fixed week timeshare, but it isn’t always easy to find a timeshare exchange that fits your needs.
This can be done by using a professional broker. The key is to find a company that will be willing to buy back your property for a fair price.
In addition, some developers and resort operators will take back timeshares at no cost if you want to leave them. This is an excellent option for those who are unhappy with their timeshare property and don’t want to deal with the hassle of selling it yourself.
The global timeshare industry is currently in a period of transition as it seeks to bring its billing and payment practices into the modern era. The industry is implementing new technologies to ensure that customers are billed on time and in the correct format. This can include electronic bill presentment, digital payments through credit cards or ACH and interactive voice response (IVR) on phones.