What Happens to a Timeshare after the Owner’s Death?

For many people, having a timeshare is the best of both worlds. They have a guaranteed spot in paradise and its cheaper than purchasing a home or condo in that location. Even better, the responsibilities of taking care of it are left to the property manager. In addition to the many pros of having a timeshare, there are a few cons. As long as you know the risks and details before signing an agreement, your timeshare experience will be a positive one.

Timeshare Risks

Just like a home, timeshares can range in price. According to the American Resort Development Association, the average prices tend to hover around $20,000. However, the original price is far from the only price – thus, the risks.

Typically, timeshare owners are required to pay an annual maintenance fee. On average, according to Consumer Reports, this cost is around $880. Much like a purchase price, this price can varydrastically based on the property. Other fees to consider include assessment fees (e.g. resort upgrades, management or ownership changes or lapses, weather-related damages, repair, etc.).

Throw in the price of travel to the destination of choice and you can see how the cost and responsibility can add up quickly. Since getting out of an agreement can be tricky, it’s really important to know all of the costs and risks before jumping in.

Inheriting a Timeshare

There is also the important question: what happens to timeshares when you die? In addition to frequency and dates, some timeshare agreements also include a perpetuity clause, which means the timeshare is valid for the lifespan of the original owner. Upon the owner’s death, the timeshare becomes part of the estate and, therefore, the obligations are passed on to the next of kin.

If you have inherited a time share, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Immediately go over the contract.Even though the passing of a loved one never feels like an appropriate time to worry about financial and legal obligations, it is really important to go over the timeshare contract as soon as possible to avoid penalties and legal recourse.
  • Consult a lawyer.Timeshare contracts and inheritance laws are very complicated. They also vary from state to state. You will need the help of a lawyer to make sure you understand the inheritance laws in your state and the state where the timeshare is located.
  • Declining an inheritance is possible. If you are not interested in ownership of the timeshare, it is possible to decline the inheritance. If that is the case, the timeshare will simply go to the next-of-kin.

Are you a business owner that offers timeshares? If so, you know how complicated it can be from a business standpoint as well. Finding payment processing solutions, for example, can be really difficult (traditional providers consider timeshares to be “high risk”). If you need merchant services to take advantage of the many lucrative opportunities – and safely manage the risks (e.g. high chargeback rates) – consider securing a timeshare merchant account from high risk specialist. Efficiently manage your business and keep your customers’ information safe.

Author Bio:Electronic payments expert Blair Thomas is the co-founder of high risk payment processing timeshare merchant account company eMerchantBroker. He’s just as passionate about his business as he is with traveling and spending time with his dog Cooper.

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