Published June 27, 2018
So, you have decided that your timeshare isn’t working for you and have discovered the option of handing your contract back to the resort or ‘relinquish’ it as they say.
For many timeshare owners, annual maintenance fees are the primary reason for wanting out of their contract and this is understandable, as why would you want to continue to pay for a product that you can’t or aren’t using. Somewhere along the line you will think of, or may even be advised to, stop paying maintenance fees but this is only recommended if you are pursuing legal action against a resort and under the guidance of a lawyer.
So what can you do with your timeshare while you are waiting for the relinquishment to be completed?
Well, first you need to consider when the maintenance fees are next due. Hopefully the relinquishment process will have been concluded by then, but in the event that your next maintenance fees are looming, here are some ideas to consider:
Resorts normally send out their maintenance bills ahead of the due date which can be a few months in advance. If this is the case, there is no rush to make the payment until the deadline and your relinquishment could be concluded before then.
If you contact your resort before the deadline you could try to negotiate a deal to pay the fees quarterly or even monthly, resorts will often be glad to hear you are offering to make a payment and will be flexible to accept this request. You may then find that the relinquishment is concluded during this time and the full payment is not required.
Yes, renting a timeshare is not easy however it can be achieved. If you contact your resort to enquire about renting out your timeshare, they will explain the process, which often involves a small fee for a guest certificate. You may have to accept a rental fee that is less than your maintenance fees but this is better than being totally out of pocket. Finding rental prospects is not easy but try asking friends or family who may be interested in a cheap holiday rental.
If you are paying fees to an exchange company like RCI or II (which most owners are) take advantage of this and see whether you can find a suitable exchange. Exchanges to popular holiday destinations at peak times are hard to come by, but remember you don’t always need to exchange to an overseas destination and a short break in your home country may be easier to secure and be a cheaper alternative.
Of course, the reason you are looking to exit your timeshare is because you are unhappy with it and no longer interested in using it. However, just because you wish to relinquish your timeshare does not mean you can’t use it while you are waiting for the process to conclude. If your maintenance fees are up-to-date, then why not cash in on them? And if you do visit the resort, make sure that you don’t end up upgrading or buying another timeshare during your stay!