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Thread: Undercover boss

  1. #41
    I applaud the move to upgrade the former Sunterra (and other brand) locations to new, higher standards. But realize that the improvements are being done on the owners dime - not Diamond's (except for the time they actually own & pay the fees for). Nothing inherently wrong with that IF that is what the owners desire. If they don't want it then the upgrades may raise fees to the point that they want to get out. That is not a good outcome.

  2. #42
    Cloobeck looked like a total egotistical idiot!!
    And did ANYONE notice the poor sales girl he was berating for lack of training was unable to find a single vacation for her callers because either there was not availability at the resort the caller requested or no availability for the dates the caller requested?
    We almost bought into DRI as former Sunterra owners and I am SO glad we passed. As a matter of fact we paid a company to take our timeshare off our hands - no more maintenance fees, extra assessments, "no availability"!! From now on we can pay for the vacation we want, where we want to go, when we want to go, and not feel shackled by our timeshare! If any of you search the resort where you own a timeshare you may just find you can book a vacation there through places like Expedia and Orbitz!

  3. #43
    If you watch this episode with Mr. Cloobeck and are tempted to buy a Diamond Resorts International (DRI) timeshare property or points in their “Club” make sure you do your homework. Skyrocketing maintenance fees and tremendously high assessments have been part of our experience as owners at the Point at Poipu in Hawaii. When you buy, expect to have it for life and your children will be saddled with it because you won't be able to sell it. We haven’t been able to even give it away. This could be you. In my opinion, buyer beware of Diamond Resorts International. See COPP Home Page and Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/pointatpoipu. Also, do a search of Diamond Resorts International complaints and see what you come up with.

  4. #44
    Senior Member dougp26364's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by timeos2 View Post
    I applaud the move to upgrade the former Sunterra (and other brand) locations to new, higher standards. But realize that the improvements are being done on the owners dime - not Diamond's (except for the time they actually own & pay the fees for). Nothing inherently wrong with that IF that is what the owners desire. If they don't want it then the upgrades may raise fees to the point that they want to get out. That is not a good outcome.
    IMHO, this is simply the part of timeshare where change is constant. The landscape is always changing and sometimes it's difficult to stay ahead of the power curve.

    In the past I've seen a lot of posts about buying cheap and trading expensive. IOW, buy something like an inexpensive South African week (or Sunterra points) and use it to trade into the Hyatt's, Marriott's, Westin's, DVC's and Hilton's of the timeshare world. Let the suckers pay the high MF's for the right to book first while the smart timeshare consumer pays the cheapest fee to get the most out of their ownership.

    There's absolutely nothing wrong with that plan but, you have to have an exit strategy to execute it perfectly. You'll always need to be thinking about selling what you currently own and exploring ownership in other resorts. Things change constantly. What was once a good inexpensive exchange week may no longer get what you want or, in the case of Sunterra properties, it might not be inexpensive anymore.

    You've got to be able to read the tea leaves and jump before the hand is dealt. Some are good at this, others are asleep at the wheel. In this case, I think the economy played a part and some who would have dealt their old inexpensive ownerships got stuck holding the bag as the resale market came to all but a stand still.

    While I still hold to the idea it's best to own what you can use (modified from own where you want to go to include the proliferation of points based programs). It can be tricky if you own a low cost, low maintenance timeshare that gets gobbled up in the consolidation of timeshare management companies going on since the economic collapse.Try to jump after the consilidation and you're likely to be stuck as others can see what's happened and stear clear. Think of it like picking stocks before they become popular choices. It's NOT an easy thing to do.

    I doubt many saw this coming. There's been a major upheavel of sorts with the poorly run companies running aground in these tough economic times. strong timeshare companies have decided it's easier to buy and upgrade the weaker companies vs building new resorts of their own (DRI and HGVC are prime examples of this).......resulting in higher cost for those who were content with the low cost/low maintenace timeshares they owned.

    These are tricky times for the frugal timeshare owner bent on buying low and trading high. You'd better be paying attention and move before it's obvious. Otherwise, you'll be one of those complaining about a takeover and new, higher MF's to go along with the new shinny upgrades at the old inexpensive resort you once owned.
    Our timeshare and other photo's at http://dougp26364.smugmug.com/

  5. #45
    Doug - You hit the nail on buy to use (not necessarily buy where you like) now. The better points systems are the only way to get value from trades.

    The other option, used carefully, is buy where you want to go. Less flexible but if you really like it a good choice. Buying a location just planning to trade is a losers game now for certain.

    If you aren't in a good points system then renting is the best way to "trade" (and you don't even have to own if you don't want).

  6. #46
    Quote Originally Posted by hummmm67 View Post
    If you watch this episode with Mr. Cloobeck and are tempted to buy a Diamond Resorts International (DRI) timeshare property or points in their “Club” make sure you do your homework. Skyrocketing maintenance fees and tremendously high assessments have been part of our experience as owners at the Point at Poipu in Hawaii. When you buy, expect to have it for life and your children will be saddled with it because you won't be able to sell it. We haven’t been able to even give it away. This could be you. In my opinion, buyer beware of Diamond Resorts International. See COPP Home Page and Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/pointatpoipu. Also, do a search of Diamond Resorts International complaints and see what you come up with.
    When we bought our timeshare in 1990, it was a beautiful new property, now it is run down and is one of the properties shown on the Undercover Boss episode(Powhatan Plantation). Our maintenance fees ($1233), exchange fees( now $189 with RCI), and RCI membership ($90/yr). That all adds up to $1511/yr plus special assessment fees (sometimes as much as $500/yr because the property needs a lot of renovations). All of those fees made us decide to get rid of it now while we have the option. We paid a company $4295 to transfer our deeded timeshare out of our names forever! It took 3 months and they took care of our 2012 maintenance fee that was due during the process. As I previously stated most timeshares are available on Expedia for a weekly rental - maybe that's why there is no availability when you call for a reservation? If you look on Expedia you can get a 7 night vacation at Powhatan Plantation for $1778 in a 2 bedroom, 2 bath unit. That is only $200 more dollars than our annual fees without special assessments and we can pick the week we want to travel. Or you can stay at The Point at Poipu in a 2 bedroom, 2 bath unit for $2414.51. That may or may not be more than your maintenance fee, special assessment fees and if you are a member of DRI or RCI, their fees, but to me it is worth it to book when we want and not have to spend hours searching for an available week or desirable unit, and if we aren't able to vacation one year we don't pay! I am thankful not to have that "use it or lose it anxiety attack" when my weeks/points are about to expire!

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