It is a fact of life that there are costs associated with the maintenance of any property. No matter if we are talking full ownership, timeshare or condos, you have to look after your investment. It is natural for things to deteriorate over time and you need to make general repairs, simple maintenance tasks and improvements to ensure that your property remains in the condition that you desire when you arrive to use it. What people often forget when they complain about paying maintenance fees is that you get what you pay for.
Luckily for timeshare owners, the maintenance fees are divide amongst all owners and so you don’t have the burden or cost of organizing repairs and maintenance. One myth that circulates is that in timeshare these fees are unnecessarily high. While that may be true of some less reputable companies, the big names in the timeshare industry are renowned for being pretty fair when it comes to maintenance fees, and many of the operators that manage the fees are non profit mutual benefit companies. Whatever the case, asking about maintenance fees should be on your list of questions when you purchase a second home, residence club membership or timeshare.
Something that is worth reminding yourself when you are handing over your money for maintenance fees is that you are not only investing in your own unit but you are also ensuring that the common area facilities are kept in good condition too. That means the pools, gyms, lounge chairs, outdoor jacuzzis and so on. In order for your investment not to depreciate the whole resort needs to be kept in great shape, otherwise, who is going to want to spend their vacations there?
A potentially costly myth is to assume that you do not have to pay your fees if you do not use your property. You are responsible for paying the maintenance no matter if you use your timeshare or residence club membership. This is to protect all owners. Imagine if your neighbors decided not to pay and then you were expected to pay a little more to cover their costs; you wouldn’t be very happy! Timeshare and residence club owners who do not pay their maintenance fees could face legal action and will most certainly not be admitted to their property until the fees are paid.
The myth that timeshare maintenance fees are a hidden cost is also not entirely true. Any timeshare contract or residence club membership will clearly state that you are responsible for paying the corresponding maintenance fees. You should therefore take care to read the contract before signing. In Mexico, for example, the law states that maintenance fees should be clearly evident in all contracts.