When you’re doing your estate planning, it’s only natural to want to leave your adult children the property where you’ve spent many family vacations. However, when it’s a timeshare property (generally at a hotel or resort), it’s crucial to consider it carefully.
Let’s look at some issues with bequeathing these properties so that you can better determine whether to include them in your will. Of course, it’s always important to discuss any real property with those to whom you intend to leave it to find out whether they even want it.
Consider the cost of maintaining the timeshare
If you leave your timeshare to a loved one, they will take over the contract and the annual costs. Make sure they can afford to keep the timeshare – remembering that the costs will only rise in the future.
If your heirs decide they don’t want the timeshare and/or can’t afford it, they can issue a formal disclaimer. Typically, this involves sending a letter to the estate’s executor and the timeshare company stating that they will not take over the contract.
If they make that decision, it’s best not to use it, even if the contract is paid up for a few months longer. This could potentially negate your disclaimer.
If no one in your family wants your timeshare and you no longer – or rarely – use it, you could sell it and give them the money instead -– or spend the money on yourself. This would save the time, cost and stress of the timeshare having to go through probate.
Some timeshare companies are easier to deal with than others, so it’s best to start dealing with this sooner rather than later. This is just one reason why it’s wise to have legal guidance as you develop your estate plan.