Author Topic: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?  (Read 7389 times)

Sunnymo

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Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« on: April 24, 2015, 08:30:29 AM »
Hi, we are going to a timeshare presentation at a resort. Why? Mustachian holiday. $99 for 2 nights in a resort area about two hours from home.

We have absolutely no intention of buying ( have got through one previously without buying). But it has been a while and I would like your insights. What the key questions to ask and what are your best strategies for dealing with timeshare salespeople?

(As background we have been married for a few years, late 30's. One income which is six figures plus a share portfolio and some funds. We have major medical expenses coming up (we have the cash for this). But we don't want to give away too much. How much to disclose and how much to be vague on?)

So let's hear it!

Mr FrugalNL

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2015, 08:35:31 AM »
In light of your intention not to buy, the best thing you can probably ask is for another cup of coffee while you sit through the presentation.

swick

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2015, 08:37:51 AM »
Yeah...I'm unclear as to why you would volunteer ANY personal information - not their business. Sit through the spiel, take the literature, say you'll consider it without committing personal info.

Lyssa

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2015, 08:59:18 AM »
+ 1 on not volunteering any information. Stick with 'I'll consider it.' and 'As a matter of principle we always think at least a week about decisions like this.' if you want to be polite.

If you want to have fun you can insist that the only timeshare you'd consider buying is one covering the full year (would make it obvious that you buying a second home would be cheaper) or make up favourite destinations where there are absolutely no ressorts they could market to you.



BarkyardBQ

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2015, 09:29:38 AM »
Don't offer any personal info. We did this in January for a weekend in Tahoe. We sat through the 90 minute presentation, had plenty of coffee, and while my wife engaged in very curious and valid questions I did math on their little piece of paper. They love to show you your lump sum investment, what the yearly maintenance fees are and what inflation will do to vacationing in the future, they like 3.5% for inflation?

Anyway, I sat there and did the math on the sum, maintenance, and inflation costs and easily saw that if you invest that money or spend it every year you can get a better return, with no locked in money. If you invest that money for 10 years (our accumulation phase) it basically adds to our vacation funds we've already planned. The cost vs hassle is totally not worth it. Listen to the presentation and use logic to prove to yourself it's not worth it, cause the deal sounds great. At the end of it, it you find yourself considering it, walk away, they're are websites dedicated to people who will sell you their time shares for 10% of what they want you to buy it for and others who will PAY you to buy it from them.

Go in looking like you have little income, jeans and a t-shirt. Downplay your income, they will offer you a smaller "down payment" amount and I think it makes the presentation more fun.

Oh and this deal is only being offered today; did I tell you about the bonus rates we'll add for free and how we'll cover the maintenance fees?
« Last Edit: April 24, 2015, 09:34:09 AM by zdravé »

SantaFeSteve

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2015, 09:32:00 AM »
In light of your intention not to buy, the best thing you can probably ask is for another cup of coffee while you sit through the presentation.

Exactly this.  Simply thank them for their time and say no.  Done.  You should ABSOLUTELY NOT divulge anything about your personal finances unless it is a requirement to qualify for the bargain price.

Spork

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2015, 09:33:51 AM »
The most important question I can think of to suggest is "Where is the bathroom?"

This seems very important both because it sounds like there will be lots of coffee and it seems like a good means of escape.

BarkyardBQ

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2015, 09:37:44 AM »
The most important question I can think of to suggest is "Where is the bathroom?"

This seems very important both because it sounds like there will be lots of coffee and it seems like a good means of escape.

You can't escape. You have to go through the whole presentation, which is not a group deal. You get hassled by a skilled sales person, who will pitch and pitch until you finally convince them it's not for you. Then you are onto the hustler boss level, who will offer you even more deals and free gifts, when you finally defeat the boss round you will get your incentives package which usually comes with your stay. Until you close out that process you are on the line for the full price of your stay.

Thedudeabides

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2015, 09:46:54 AM »
Listen through the presentation and then tell them that you're the type of decision maker that needs time to think and analyze things...by yourself. Tell them you're going to be really frank with them and their best shot of closing you is giving you all the information and then time to process it. Tell them you get really turned off if someone is trying to help you analyze before you've had ample time to analyze all of the information and look at it from every angle. Then thank them for the information, tell them you'll think about it and walk out.

NumberCruncher

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2015, 10:01:10 AM »
"Can I leave now?"

:D

Absolutely do not tell them how much you make or anything like that. None of their business. If asked, play dumb. Just pretend you're clueless about your finances. This is what my husband does when relatives ask him how much he makes. If we don't tell relatives, we certainly wouldn't tell timeshare salespeople.

There seem to be several articles online about dealing with timeshare people - maybe take a look at those. You could even look up this specific company to get more information about their tactics and questions to better prepare yourself.

charis

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2015, 10:24:30 AM »
Tell them that the sole wage earner for your family just lost his job, and you can't afford your mortgage, much less anyone else.  They will move you through the processes quickly.

partgypsy

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2015, 10:58:50 AM »
Hi, we are going to a timeshare presentation at a resort. Why? Mustachian holiday. $99 for 2 nights in a resort area about two hours from home.

We have absolutely no intention of buying ( have got through one previously without buying). But it has been a while and I would like your insights. What the key questions to ask and what are your best strategies for dealing with timeshare salespeople?

(As background we have been married for a few years, late 30's. One income which is six figures plus a share portfolio and some funds. We have major medical expenses coming up (we have the cash for this). But we don't want to give away too much. How much to disclose and how much to be vague on?)

So let's hear it!

If you go in with that attitude (giving them information about your income, networth and asking reasonable questions) you will come out with a timeshare. The people who do these presentations do it full time, and only keep the ones who are good. Don't give them any ammo. Be rude, say no multiple times, not interested. If you are OK with it make a white lie like the company you work for are doing layoffs or something to make you less desirable, not more.

AlexK

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2015, 11:17:49 AM »
I considered doing something like this but I was afraid they might convince my wife it's a good buy and then I would be the bad guy cheapskate vs wife and salesman. I would rather just pay for my vacations.

If you do go to the presentation be sure to bring a smartphone so you can look up timeshares for sale on ebay, preferably at the same resort. They are almost worthless.

frugalnacho

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #13 on: April 24, 2015, 11:33:40 AM »
"Am I under arrest, or am I free to leave?"

matchewed

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #14 on: April 24, 2015, 11:39:39 AM »
"Am I under arrest, or am I free to leave?"

"Are you detaining me?"

frugalnacho

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #15 on: April 24, 2015, 12:57:39 PM »
Maybe you should bring something you are selling, and incessantly hound them to buy it.

SummerLovin

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #16 on: April 24, 2015, 01:18:47 PM »
I'm a happy owner but they are always trying to up-sell me every time I go to a new resort. After so many pitches, I figure why not roll with it and make the best of my time.
Do not divulge any additional personal financial information, they have enough already since you got the offer for a stay.
Be up front and tell them that you are not interested in buying and are there for the freebies.  If they persist, then do the mustachian thing and dig into their numbers.  I like to play devils advocate, and show them what it costs me if I book something on my own or stay with friends.  Regardless of what they do offer,  keep in mind that you still have to pay quarterly dues and airfare.
Ask all the questions you want until they get tired, and remind them that you are not there to buy.   Tell them that you can get what they are offering on the secondary market for half or more of the price. ( if you really are interested in the timeshare,  that is the way to get one)
Of course, they will tell you that if try to buy one that way you won't find this particular offer. That's true in some cases, since so many people have sold and bought that way, then new "products" are designed to prevent sale that way and can only be sold or passed to immediate relatives.
A timeshare is not a real estate investment, more like a car that depreciates over time, but it serves it's purpose.
Anyway if you have to sit through the full 90 min. make the best of it.

NathanP

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #17 on: April 24, 2015, 02:02:37 PM »
My wife and I go to a resort in Cancun, Jamaica, or elsewhere in the Caribbean approximately once a year making us the "perfect" customers for a timeshare. Note that we use airline points to get to our destination for near zero cost and I typically book our resort on Hotwire for a tiny fraction of the actual cost.

Anyways, we are always asked to participate in the sales pitch which typically involves breakfast plus a tour and sales pitch of around 90 minutes. The breakfast is typically of no value to us since we book our stays at all-inclusive resorts. In return we are usually offered a room upgrade or a couples massage plus time in the spa circuit. I always refuse and the concierge will typically try to guilt us into it by saying that they personally will benefit if we do the pitch even if we just say no.

The one time that we did do the presentation was at a resort in Cancun that is somewhere where I could actually see us wanted to visit year after year. The resort is spectacular, and I was honest about this fact during the breakfast and tour. Then the sales pitch came. The best advice I would give you is to know the numbers. After hearing their offer ~$25k upfront plus an annual fee of around $400 for 5-7 nights a year at this resort for 30 years, I began to crunch the numbers. 30 years is roughly "forever" so I showed the guy how the value of this plan was worth roughly $5k not $25k via the perpetuity formula (present value = (annual benefit) / (discount rate). I told him that I wanted at least an 8% return on this "investment" and showed him how much we paid for the 5 nights less the $400 we would pay for the annual fee. He also offered a plan that cost more, but where we would be given back our initial investment after 30 years. This math was also easy as I showed him how little that money would be worth in 30 years.

At this point our salesman was very frustrated and we were promoted to the previously mentioned "boss level". When the boss heard my explanation and analysis he right away retreated and said that we should enjoy or time at the resort and they understand that not everyone will buy into the timeshare. According to him the "success" rate is 25%. He gave us our vouchers for the spa and we left in under the required 90 minutes. I didn't feel like I had won anything, and vowed to never do this again regardless of the benefit.

In summary, feel free to be nice and agree that the hard product (resort) is very nice, but that you will only pay a fair price. Alternatively just say "no" and be rude...it will save everyone a lot of time.

Added in an edit: if they do offer you a fair price, really really really be sure that you want to commit yourself to this for X number of years. I was prepared to tell our salesman in Mexico that I couldn't predict the stability of Mexico for the next 30 years or whether airfare would be affordable like it is today. Summary of summary: just say no!
« Last Edit: April 24, 2015, 02:10:10 PM by NathanP »

FatCat

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Re: Timeshare presentation what are the Key Q's to ask?
« Reply #18 on: April 24, 2015, 03:45:31 PM »
I don't see how you can avoid divulging your income. You have to fill out an income form before they will talk to you. You have to admit to making at least $50k or $75k depending on the timeshare. They don't want to talk to people who can't afford it. They consider $50k to be enough to afford it.

Tell them that when you are on vacation you are barely in your room anyway so you don't care about how luxurious it is. I admit they are nice, but my house is nice too. I went on vacation to enjoy the local attractions, not a nice room.

Tell them the maintenance fee is equivalent to what you normally spend for your hotel room. Considering you have to spend $25k to buy the unit and then keep paying that maintenance fee forever, this is hardly a good deal.

Tell them you're worried your job might end soon and then you wouldn't be able to afford the payments.

Tell them that you looked at websites where you could buy used timeshares online for much lower amounts. Some people are practically giving these away.

Last time I told them I can't do it because I'm saving and investing most of my money because I hope to retire in a few years and live off passive income. That dropped the whole timeshare conversation and they showed a lot of interest in talking about that instead...

Edit:
This might not apply to you, but don't carry in name brand flashy things. If a couple comes in and the woman is carrying a luxury handbag, or the man is wearing some expensive watch, they will push HARD. Conversely if you show up in no name clothing with no name items, they seem less interested. I remember one time being dismissed early because I wasn't dressed flashy enough while a lady with LV handbag got very obvious preferential treatment. I still got all my free gifts. I don't show up looking shabby, but I don't wear obvious designer labels like a lot of people do.
« Last Edit: April 24, 2015, 03:53:49 PM by FatCat »