The costs associated with the maintenance of any property is a fact of life. Whether buying a timeshare or a full-ownership property, looking after your investment is just common sense. Over time things deteriorate, general repairs need to be made and improvements are necessary. The common point people tend to forget when complaining about their maintenance fees, is that you get what you pay for.
With timeshare properties, the advantage you have is that the fees are divided between all of the owners, so you find that you are neither left with the burden of the full costs nor with the hassle of organizing any repairs. A common myth is that these fees are artificially high. While that may be the case with some of the smaller, emerging companies, most reputable established operators regulate their maintenance fees and are able to keep costs down due to economies of scale. Nevertheless, it is certainly something you should consider and clarify when purchasing a timeshare.
Perhaps the most important point to remember about maintenance fees is that you are investing in your future comfort and that of your family for years to come. The fees not only cover the maintenance of your particular unit, but also ensure the quality and condition of the common areas, including the pool, Jacuzzis and so forth – the elements that help make your vacation the luxury product you bought into in the first place.
Another significant myth is that maintenance fees are optional. This is a potentially dangerous misconception as stopping payments on your timeshare maintenance could actually cost you a lot more in legal fees in the long run. It is also counterproductive as you will no longer be able to enjoy the property you have already paid for.
Many people also believe the myth that timeshare sellers do not notify buyers about the maintenance fees. Again, while this may be true of disreputable companies or outfits that are deliberately out to mislead you, the legitimate timeshare industry is regulated in many countries. For example, in Mexico there are regulations stating that charges to be applied to the client, including taxes and extra fees must be explained plainly.
The key point to remember is that maintenance fees are an essential way to secure your investment – just make sure you read all the documentation you are given regarding your purchase and there will be no surprises.