Buying a Timeshare – Don’t Give in to High Pressure Tactics at Timeshare Presentations

Timeshares, also known as fractional ownership, is something that has been around since the first extended family decided to save on the cost of their vacation by sharing the cost of renting a cottage or vacation property.

One of the ways that timeshares are commonly sold is through presentations. I was at one of these and was swayed by the gorgeous photos and the eloquent sales pitch and the endorsement of a lovely, well-dressed, middle-aged couple who were owners. There was also the additional pressure on me because a person I worked with had invited me and I did not want to appear to be questioning her judgment.

I actually bought into the timeshare, but the next day my sense returned and I quickly scrambled into action to figure out how I could get out of the deal. Fortunately, most states have protection in place for buyer’s remorse and I was able to rescind my purchase within a couple of days. Eventually I actually bought two timeshares, but on the resale market and not from a developer and the two of them together cost me much less than that one alone would have cost me.

If you do go to a presentation, be aware that these are the types of psychological pressures you have facing you. There is an aura of people with money who have the resources available to jet off to an exotic resort, there is a lot of hype that excites the part of you that wants to be on the glamorous locale that is being sold. Oh and on top of this, there is the reminder that this is a golden opportunity that is about to slip through your fingertips and won’t you feel silly when it does.

While this might be a perfectly legitimate timeshare opportunity, here is rule number one in avoiding being taken advantage of or spending too much money: Never buy a timeshare on the spot. If it is a good deal, it will still be there tomorrow and the next day. It certainly will be there after you’ve had an opportunity to do a little research online. These are perfectly legal presentation tactics, not unlike what you’ll find at your local car dealer, but if you are cautious you will be much less likely to come out of it with a bad deal on your hands and a hard hit to your wallet.

Some other things to watch out for in shopping for timeshares include being wary of prizes. Especially prizes that ask that you only to pay the shipping and handling. Rule number two: Never pay for anything while you are just looking at timeshares. If they are offering you a digital camera as a prize, trust me — it’s going to be a crappy no-name brand camera, not a Sony. If they are offering you a deal on accommodation, you can probably do better using Orbitz or Priceline. Remember, whatever they are offering, it isn’t free if you have to spend money.

Let common sense prevail. Do not allow yourself to be pressured into a decision and take your time before signing on the dotted line. There are literally thousands of timeshares available for resale all over the world so you won’t be missing out on anything by not signing up immediately.

Negotiate Like a Professional When Buying Your Next Home

As a professional Property Search Agent I’ve learned that 4 factors determine the Negotiability of any property’s asking price. These 4 Factors are Desirability, Comparability, Supply and Proceed-ability. Understanding how these work helps you avoid over-paying by equipping you with a persuasive argument in favour of your best offer. This enables you to negotiate like a professional, rather than haggle like an amateur.

Searching for a new property is a famously stressful experience. So when you eventually reach the point of negotiation you’re in a high-stakes game, one where you’re likely to feel as if the vendor’s agent holds all the cards. Fear of losing out naturally makes you vulnerable. Once you’ve set our heart on somewhere, all those media reports of slow markets and falling prices offer little comfort or assistance. In reality every house price will be negotiable to a greater or lesser extent.

N is for Negotiability

After months of fruitless searching you finally see somewhere you really like. It’s got everything you want in a home. Unfortunately it’s at the upper edge of what you can afford.

So how can you tell whether your dream home is really worth the asking price?

And if the price is too full, how much lower might you sensibly offer instead?

You want to know the property’s Negotiability (or N-Factor for short).

Establishing the N-Factor is not an exact science. There’s no magic formula. But Negotiability is generally determined by the inter-relationship of 4 variables: Desirability, Comparability, Supply and Proceed-ability.

D is for Desirability

Obviously you like the property – but how many others are really interested? And are any of them really interested at the current asking price? It’s harder to tell with fresh instructions. The longer a place has been on the market the lower its D-Factor will be. Changes of estate agent or multiple agencies are both tell-tale signs of a lower D-Factor.

C is for Comparability

How many comparable properties exist in your favoured area? In a typical suburban street the answer is very clear. Consequently variations in asking prices between similar houses in the same street are not too hard to assess. Character or period properties in the country are naturally more difficult to compare in this way.

I always employ a few simple principles when assessing value for clients, whether in town or country. I use UK Land Registry data which is easily available online.

Firstly I adjust recent historic selling prices for property inflation (or deflation) by postcode.

Secondly I assess fair value from the top down or the ground up. What’s the ceiling and basement price in any given street, neighbourhood or village? I’m always wary of “herd pricing” by estate agents, an inevitable consequence of the way that competition to secure vendor instructions can push up asking prices.

Thirdly I benchmark both these measures against total internal floor space. Outbuildings such as garages, stables or garden rooms should be treated as distinct from living and working space in the main dwelling.

A good Comparability analysis is invaluable. It enables you to make a reasoned assessment of what intangibles (such as a quiet site, large plot, Grade 2 listing, or thatched roof charm) are really worth to you as a premium over fair value based on the C-Factor.

S is for Supply

How many similar properties are there currently on the market? In other words how much choice do you the buyer have in practice?

The lower the S-Factor, the more important it is that you are decisive in choosing what to offer, and how best to frame your offer. Because the longer you wait the more likely you are to face competition.

P is for Proceed-ability

Are your finances ready? Are you a cash buyer, chain free or under offer?

Proceed-ability has a clear hierarchy. Cash buyers are in pole position, followed by sale agreed chain free buyers. Next come sale agreed buyers with a chain, and so on. The importance of the P-Factor is easily under-rated. It is increasingly screened at all price levels by vendors’ agents who will always favour the more proceed-able buyer.

A Working Formula for Negotiability

Property valuation is not an exact science. But we can illustrate the relationship between the 4 Factors with a simple formula:

D/(C+S) – P = N

It doesn’t matter whether this is strictly robust, mathematically speaking. What counts is the relative (high/ medium/ low) levels of the component Factors, and how they modify each other to drive that critical Negotiability.

The higher the right hand figure (N), the smaller the gap you may expect between the asking price and the selling price to be. To secure a place with a high N-Factor, you may have to pay close to the full asking price. But as that right hand figure gets smaller, you may reasonably expect a bigger gap between asking and selling price.

Using this approach has three big advantages.

Firstly, it lets you put a sensible figure on Desirability in the context of a given property type and location. Sure, it’s nice – but is it really worth XXX,000?

Secondly, it helps you turn Comparability into an effective and meaningful lever to make a reasoned case in support of an offer below the guide/ asking price to the vendor’s agent.

Thirdly, it reminds you to emphasise your Proceed-ability in your opening offer and any subsequently improved bid. Sell your property first and you’ll be treated much more seriously by vendors’ agents. They may well even favour such buyers over higher bidders who are less able to proceed.

Applying these principles should make your negotiation less daunting and more straightforward, to deliver the home you deserve at a fair price. Happy house-hunting!

Pointers On Presentations For A World AIDS Day Crusade

The first day of December is dedicated to the celebration of the World AIDS Day. Since this is a special day to disseminate information on safe sex and AIDS prevention, some non government companies and concerned groups will surely manage events like information drives in communities and schools. This is a sensitive topic. However, to loosen things down, it is better if the coordinators do a little twist on how they would present everything specifically to youngsters and teens. It is also good to hand out advertising products that are apt for their target audience.

Here are some tips that these organizations might ponder upon in considering the promotional items that they might hand out to a different classes of audience.

It is better to play safe when this issue of AIDS is concerned. If you are arranging an affair in schools, try to think of a concept where you can present the issue without hitting the low points. When it comes to handing them the apt custom items, it is good to give them t-shirts with the logo of AIDS or the pink ribbon. Other than t-shirts, it is also nice to give them pens, caps, mugs and other wholesome advertising products.

AIDS is not a usual topic that people talk about everywhere. It is a serious topic that people talk about in a serious approach. Truly, this topic is serious and should be laid down on people in a lighter way. If you are conducting an information drive on poor communities, better notify them in a manner that they will grasp and will captivate their interest too. Know the community first so you would conceptualize of the appropriate advertising product that is apt for these people’s needs. Think of something that is practical that they can utilize in their everyday lives.

Do the same with the communities in the elite and the middle classes. It is good to present them something that they can identify with. Just do a little adjustment on how the presentation to the class E and D went through and you are good to go. Again, since most of these people are working in the superior sector of the society, grant them office supply materials like pens, notepads, paperweights, mugs, and other advertising items that they can capitalize for work.