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Purchasing a timeshare: What you should know

A timeshare is an interesting real estate investment that you might be considering. Before you make the purchase, there are some things you should know about timeshares. These sometimes have problems like difficulties when you want to resell the property or higher-than-expected costs associated with maintenance fees and property taxes.

Fees are common among timeshare properties, with many possible. The cost of the timeshare, utility expenses, property taxes, assessments and maintenance are just some of the extra costs you might run into. Even if you aren't using the property, you have to pay these fees or risk going into foreclosure.

Another issue you might run into is not being able to use the timeshare on the dates you want. Since you share the property with others, the best times do get taken quickly. This might mean you're unable to use the property when you have the ability to take vacation.

Timeshares are often the center of scams, too. Some people state that they can sell your timeshare, then they take a fee and never sell it at all. Or, if you choose to sell a timeshare yourself, you may discover that it is very difficult to sell. There are many timeshares available, and it's possible you might have to take a loss if you want to sell it quickly.

Since a timeshare is likely to lose value over time, it's a good idea to talk to your attorney and a realtor about the purchase you want to make. Take the time to review the contract and make sure the fees and expectations are reasonable.

Source:, "Lori Swanson: Your legal rights: Get the facts before buying a timeshare," Terri Lenz Tienz, Feb. 16, 2017

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