The largest asset most couples have to decide how to “divide” in a divorce is their home. Close behind that could be your timeshare property.
Timeshares have developed a reputation as being notoriously hard to get rid of – even by happily married couples. Dealing with one can be particularly complex if you’re in the middle of property division negotiations.
You have a limited number of choices
Just as with the family home, a timeshare property can carry a lot of emotional baggage. You likely spent many happy vacations there. However, perhaps you haven’t used it in the last few years as you and your spouse grew apart.
As with your primary home, you have to look at it practically. There are essentially three options:
- Sell it and divide the profit.
- One of you may want to keep it and buy out the other one’s portion (or give them something of equal value)
- You both keep it and alternate vacations there (or use it for continued family vacations if you’re able to get along well enough to do that)
None of these options is without some complications. If you decide to sell it, be sure to find a reputable real estate agent who will make sure it’s properly valued. Beware of those timeshare resale companies that advertise everywhere. Of course, as with any real estate property, if one of you buys the other out, you need to make sure you can continue to afford the maintenance and other fees on your own.
If you decide to keep it and share it, you’ll need to work out an agreement that details how you’ll divide the fees and the use of the time you’re allowed to spend there under your timeshare contract. If you have children, you may want to work the timeshare schedule into your parenting plan as well.
As with the division of any property in divorce, it’s essential to have experienced guidance to help you make the best decision and minimize complications in your future.