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Old 10-02-2012, 04:08 PM   #1
wendow
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Have some questions regarding buying DVC

We are considering trying to buy a small (maybe 100 points or so) contract for SSR through resale. We want to pay cash so while we love BLT and that is where we'd like to stay, we can afford SSR.

But here is my question...I understand the whole booking 11 months at home resort vs. 7 months at other resorts. So, if we need a 2 br and we want to be at BLT, is that possible? Are there typically 2 br available 7 months out? We'd prefer a SV but I understand most of their rooms are LV so we'd be ok with a LV too. I would not want to use points for a TPV. We can go anytime of the year and prefer less busy times. We were just there mid-Sept and loved it! My kids are at an age where they only care about attractions and characters and we were able to see and do lots with low crowds.

I have other questions but I want to get this answered first as this determines some of my other thoughts. Thanks!
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Old 10-02-2012, 04:21 PM   #2
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So, if we need a 2 br and we want to be at BLT, is that possible?
sometimes, yes. sometimes, no. that's the thing about the home resort advantage.

i would highly recommend buying SSR if you are happy to stay there if BLT or whatever doesn't come through.

if you will be disappointed to be "stuck" at SSR if your non-home resort doesn't come through (and i have had waitlist requests at 7 months out that never came through), i think you might find DVC frustrating.

lots of SSR owners bought in there with the notion that they would never have to stay there. the math on that simply doesn't work.

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Are there typically 2 br available 7 months out? We'd prefer a SV but I understand most of their rooms are LV so we'd be ok with a LV too.
LV is more likely. i know some BLT owners have complained that they have been unable to book SV rooms at around 11 months out.

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We can go anytime of the year and prefer less busy times. We were just there mid-Sept and loved it!
not all "low crowd" times for the parks are "low demand" times for DVC. early december is a very busy period for DVC bookings and booking BLT at 7 months would be less likely. IMO, mid-sept would generally work out for booking BLT at exactly 7 months out...but booking patterns can change and what's true at this point may not work well in a few years. it's a risk you take.

edited to add:

for reference, here's a picture of availability for december at 7 months out:

http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2919467
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Old 10-02-2012, 04:41 PM   #3
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Yoyu would most likely be booking SSR prior to the 7 month mark and then try to move to BLT at teh 7 month mark. Chances are some days will not be available. So you would have to make the choice of waitlisting the entire stay. If it comes through, you get BLT, else you will be at SSR.

OR, you can split your stay, possibly book the the days available at BLT and keep the rest at SSR. So you may get 3 days at BLT and 4 at SSR. Then you could waitlist the last 4 days to change to BLT. You probably have a better chance getting a few days on the waitlist as opposed to the other option.

This is the bigger issue to me. If you can not make the full move, you may get stuck with a split stay trying to get what you want. If you are OK with this option or you will be fine staying at SSR even if there is one day blocking you from BLT, then SSR may be OK for you.

I hope I exaplined that OK.
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Old 10-02-2012, 04:53 PM   #4
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There are 432 2 bedroom lockoff units at SSR and only 133 2 bedroom lockoff units at BLT. So if a SSR owner is wanting to always or most of the time get into BLT they are going to be disappoint a lot of the time.

Things that decrease your chance of getting the room are things like:
- not booking right at the 7 month mark
- the more days in a row you want
- wanting the cheap view or popular view
- going during the popular DVC times of year where low point cost = popular DVC time
- the less flexible your dates are

So no one is going to be able to tell you anything remotely like 50% of the time you'll get your BLT room.

Buy SSR if you won't mind staying there if you can't get into BLT, otherwise buy BLT .

Another option for you would be to buy VWL. It isn't that much more than SSR (MF are more though) and is still in the MK area. Then even if you couldn't switch you would still be in the MK area.
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Old 10-02-2012, 05:25 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by wendow View Post
We can go anytime of the year and prefer less busy times. We were just there mid-Sept and loved it! My kids are at an age where they only care about attractions and characters and we were able to see and do lots with low crowds.
Just a thought to project you into the future a little: Unless you plan to homeschool, your kids will not always be at an age where travel is possible anytime of the year. Had we bought several years ago, we would have based our needed-points decision around anytime-of-the-year travel, too. But, next year, my daughter enters junior high, and she will no longer be permitted to take a week's vacation, no matter how "educational" we spin Disney World to the administration. Beyond that, I don't think we would willingly take them out of school for more than a day or two at this point either: A week is a lot of work for them to make up, and a lot of learning for them to miss, and it certainly doesn't make the vacation relaxing or enjoyable with so much work for them to make up and do. Our window for travel to Disney is now summers only.
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Old 10-02-2012, 06:58 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by jennybdis View Post
Just a thought to project you into the future a little: Unless you plan to homeschool, your kids will not always be at an age where travel is possible anytime of the year. Had we bought several years ago, we would have based our needed-points decision around anytime-of-the-year travel, too. But, next year, my daughter enters junior high, and she will no longer be permitted to take a week's vacation, no matter how "educational" we spin Disney World to the administration. Beyond that, I don't think we would willingly take them out of school for more than a day or two at this point either: A week is a lot of work for them to make up, and a lot of learning for them to miss, and it certainly doesn't make the vacation relaxing or enjoyable with so much work for them to make up and do. Our window for travel to Disney is now summers only.
I feel your comment (about school age children) brings up some important things that the OP should consider before purchasing into DVC. OP, hopefully your ownership will be a long and happy/healthy experience. Your children may love BLT now, but as they grow, what will be their favorite park? Will you want to get away one year for an adults only trip during Food and Wine and therefore want a BWV or BCV villa (we are doing this in less than two weeks)?

OP, I would suggest doing some experiential research. Stay at as many resorts as you can before you purchase and think into the future as to what home resort would be best for you and the future of your family. Resale is going to be there for a long time, and the prices are not going to rise. Jump on a plane, rent points at different resorts, and enjoy your research.

We did this and it took over 5 years before we bought in, but all 1350 points we own were bought for an average of under $55 per point (BWV, OKW, and SSR).

Stephen
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Old 10-02-2012, 08:52 PM   #7
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Is it true that it is hardest to get DVC rooms during the least expensive times of year? Is there data for this or just anecdotal? The reason I ask is that I assumed DVC would manage the points to normalize supply and demand as needed. Like the way they reallocated points at SSR this year to account for the popularity of the treehouse villas. So it doesn't seem right to me that they would not do something similar for more popular times of year.
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:20 PM   #8
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Is it true that it is hardest to get DVC rooms during the least expensive times of year? Is there data for this or just anecdotal?
look at my link above.

(and yes, many of us held our breath when point chart reallocations came out for 2013 and will not be surprised to see early december move into a more expensive season in the future.)
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:42 PM   #9
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You also need to review the BLT point charts for a 2 bedroom. Most of the year, a 100 point ownership interest will barely get you 2 nights in a lake view room. During magic and premier season, 100 points won't cover 2 nights.
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:56 PM   #10
chalee94
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You also need to review the BLT point charts for a 2 bedroom. Most of the year, a 100 point ownership interest will barely get you 2 nights in a lake view room. During magic and premier season, 100 points won't cover 2 nights.
i think the OP is looking for an every-other-year type plan for mostly september trips...but i'd agree that looking at the standard view charts is unrealistic for non-BLT owners.
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Old 10-02-2012, 10:43 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by chalee94 View Post
i think the OP is looking for an every-other-year type plan for mostly september trips...but i'd agree that looking at the standard view charts is unrealistic for non-BLT owners.
You mean that a SV is not realistic for non-BLT owners?

And yes, we'd be looking for EOY trip, Sept or other low time (maybe late Jan).
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Old 10-02-2012, 10:59 PM   #12
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Thank you all for raising concerns and questions. This is the kind of thing I need so I can sort through all of this.

I don't know how we'd feel if we could only book SSR since we've never stayed there. I would hope we wouldn't be too disappointed since it seems to be a lovely resort. I think I would feel the need to rent a car. I didn't care for Disney buses much at all on our recent trip but mostly it was b/c we had 2 strollers to collapse and then it just seemed to take forever to get around.

We know that 100 points will not cover a 2br but the hope was just to be able to offset the cost of renting points somewhat with some points of our own. Maybe that doesn't make sense and is a dumb move. I don't know. I just know that we rented points for the 1br we stayed in at BLT and that was $2800 and a 2br is just crazy expensive. I'd be happy to squish us all into a 1br again but our baby will be over 3yo next time we are there and so that won't be allowed. So, just trying to figure out how to get a 2br for a reasonable price.

We've been home schooling for 8 years and I don't see that changing as we are committed to it all the way through and for all of our children. But since none of us knows what tomorrow may bring, I definitely see the importance in looking ahead and trying to make a decision that meets our needs even if our vacation style changes.

It seems buying at BLT makes the most sense since that is predominantly where we'd want to be at least for now. So, now that raises new questions...can we buy a small'ish BLT contract and book 11 months out even if we have to rent some points that are owned somewhere else? That isn't gonna work, is it?

And what sort of Use Year should I be looking at if we want to travel in Sept?

Thanks for all the responses! It's very helpful to me
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Old 10-02-2012, 11:44 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by wendow View Post
Thank you all for raising concerns and questions. This is the kind of thing I need so I can sort through all of this.

I don't know how we'd feel if we could only book SSR since we've never stayed there. I would hope we wouldn't be too disappointed since it seems to be a lovely resort. I think I would feel the need to rent a car. I didn't care for Disney buses much at all on our recent trip but mostly it was b/c we had 2 strollers to collapse and then it just seemed to take forever to get around.

We know that 100 points will not cover a 2br but the hope was just to be able to offset the cost of renting points somewhat with some points of our own. Maybe that doesn't make sense and is a dumb move. I don't know. I just know that we rented points for the 1br we stayed in at BLT and that was $2800 and a 2br is just crazy expensive. I'd be happy to squish us all into a 1br again but our baby will be over 3yo next time we are there and so that won't be allowed. So, just trying to figure out how to get a 2br for a reasonable price.

We've been home schooling for 8 years and I don't see that changing as we are committed to it all the way through and for all of our children. But since none of us knows what tomorrow may bring, I definitely see the importance in looking ahead and trying to make a decision that meets our needs even if our vacation style changes.

It seems buying at BLT makes the most sense since that is predominantly where we'd want to be at least for now. So, now that raises new questions...can we buy a small'ish BLT contract and book 11 months out even if we have to rent some points that are owned somewhere else? That isn't gonna work, is it?

And what sort of Use Year should I be looking at if we want to travel in Sept?

Thanks for all the responses! It's very helpful to me
Now that I've read the whole thread, I see that we are in kind of a similar situation. We're homeschooling our kids, just made our first family trip in mid-September and loved it, stayed in a 2 BR and as soon as the trip was over started looking into our DVC options. We would be looking for every other year trips in the "slow" Disney season. Now your mileage may vary on some of this, but I just thought your whole situation and description sounded very familiar.

We stayed in an OKW 2 BR. I can't recommend that enough. It is a relatively quiet resort and the 2 BR villas are just huge (and only 217 points for a week, we rented the points for $2800 this time). The kids loved the resort. We definitely plan to make our trips in mid-September, in part because it is more affordable, but mostly because of the lack of crowds at the parks (gotta take advantage of those homeschooling perks...).

Anyway, we decided to go with SSR for our home resort because it was the most affordable and has a longer time to expiration (as compared to non-extended OKW, the next most affordable option). Both OKW and SSR not only require fewer points for their 2 BR villas, but their points cost less to purchase in the first place. If you can afford 100 BLT points, you could buy 150+ OKW or SSR points for the same cost. I think we will be happy with SSR though we've never stayed there. But I also expect to be able to reserve an OKW 2 BR 7 months out for September, and would be happy to do so. If you really want to stay at BLT, then you probably have to buy there. We thought about BLT. Being so close to MK would be wonderful. But we just can't justify the cost both in terms of the cost per point and the greater number of points required. By choosing SSR (or OKW), I feel that I am giving up the home resort advantage, because you don't need the 11 month window to book at those resorts. But its a tradeoff I am willing to make because the points are so much cheaper and that is just where we are at this stage in our life... Our vacation style and needs may well change. Maybe we will sell these points and buy at a different home resort some number of years down the road. For now, this just made the most sense for us, so I can't advise you about choosing BLT, only sharing how we arrived at our choice.

Having a car was nice at OKW, to buy groceries, to bring the stroller and all the stuff around. But the bus was the best choice to get to MK, and it wasn't a problem. Again, in part because it was September and less busy. We had a double stroller, probably easier than two separate strollers. I might take the bus to all the resorts if I had it to do again. It really wasn't a big problem with the double stroller and four kids.

We are awaiting ROFR for our SSR contract, but the use year is August. To me this made the most sense, since our points will refresh right before our trips we plan for September, and even if we take trips in other relative low-crowd Disney times like early Dec and January, there would be time left to bank if we have to cancel.
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Old 10-03-2012, 12:16 AM   #14
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You mean that a SV is not realistic for non-BLT owners?
nothing is impossible but the feedback on the boards suggests that BLT owners like to book the cheaper SV villas pretty early. some people are luckier than others , but i wouldn't count on SV villas typically being available at 7 months out.

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Originally Posted by wendow View Post
It seems buying at BLT makes the most sense since that is predominantly where we'd want to be at least for now. So, now that raises new questions...can we buy a small'ish BLT contract and book 11 months out even if we have to rent some points that are owned somewhere else? That isn't gonna work, is it?
you need the right "currency" to book BLT at 11 months out. you can use banked BLT pts, current BLT pts, borrowed BLT pts or transferred BLT pts from someone else's BLT contract - but only BLT pts will work (and the same is true at other DVC resorts). you can never book at 11 months out with non-home pts.

if you need to be that close to the MK, it shouldn't be surprising that it will cost extra. (if you were ok with staying offsite, other timeshare 2BRs or rental homes can be had for a lot less money - many are very nice - but they are not a 10 minute walk from the MK entrance.) maybe it would be worth trying a rental at OKW or SSR?

Quote:
And what sort of Use Year should I be looking at if we want to travel in Sept?
ideally, you want to travel as early in your UY as possible and you never want to travel in the last few months of your UY BUT it only becomes an issue if you need to cancel.

my UY is october, so if i booked a reservation for august 2013 and needed to cancel 45 days out, i would be past my may 31 banking window at that point and that would mean i would be more likely to lose pts if i couldn't figure out how to use them before they expire on sept 30, 2013. but if you never cancel, UY will likely never be an issue.

you may want to read (and bookmark) this for more info:

http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1942668
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Old 10-03-2012, 12:35 AM   #15
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Now that I've read the whole thread, I see that we are in kind of a similar situation. We're homeschooling our kids, just made our first family trip in mid-September and loved it, stayed in a 2 BR and as soon as the trip was over started looking into our DVC options. We would be looking for every other year trips in the "slow" Disney season. Now your mileage may vary on some of this, but I just thought your whole situation and description sounded very familiar.

We stayed in an OKW 2 BR. I can't recommend that enough. It is a relatively quiet resort and the 2 BR villas are just huge (and only 217 points for a week, we rented the points for $2800 this time). The kids loved the resort. We definitely plan to make our trips in mid-September, in part because it is more affordable, but mostly because of the lack of crowds at the parks (gotta take advantage of those homeschooling perks...).

Anyway, we decided to go with SSR for our home resort because it was the most affordable and has a longer time to expiration (as compared to non-extended OKW, the next most affordable option). Both OKW and SSR not only require fewer points for their 2 BR villas, but their points cost less to purchase in the first place. If you can afford 100 BLT points, you could buy 150+ OKW or SSR points for the same cost. I think we will be happy with SSR though we've never stayed there. But I also expect to be able to reserve an OKW 2 BR 7 months out for September, and would be happy to do so. If you really want to stay at BLT, then you probably have to buy there. We thought about BLT. Being so close to MK would be wonderful. But we just can't justify the cost both in terms of the cost per point and the greater number of points required. By choosing SSR (or OKW), I feel that I am giving up the home resort advantage, because you don't need the 11 month window to book at those resorts. But its a tradeoff I am willing to make because the points are so much cheaper and that is just where we are at this stage in our life... Our vacation style and needs may well change. Maybe we will sell these points and buy at a different home resort some number of years down the road. For now, this just made the most sense for us, so I can't advise you about choosing BLT, only sharing how we arrived at our choice.

Having a car was nice at OKW, to buy groceries, to bring the stroller and all the stuff around. But the bus was the best choice to get to MK, and it wasn't a problem. Again, in part because it was September and less busy. We had a double stroller, probably easier than two separate strollers. I might take the bus to all the resorts if I had it to do again. It really wasn't a big problem with the double stroller and four kids.

We are awaiting ROFR for our SSR contract, but the use year is August. To me this made the most sense, since our points will refresh right before our trips we plan for September, and even if we take trips in other relative low-crowd Disney times like early Dec and January, there would be time left to bank if we have to cancel.
Oh wow!! We are quite similar, huh? Too funny! We did a split stay with 2 nights at POR and 7 nights at BLT. The days at POR and the one day at BLT that we had to take the bus were awful. Buses were packed, everyone had a stroller (or 2 in our case) or an ECV it seemed. Tired mommies and sleeping babies were everywhere. We were piling our kids up on ours and each others laps to make more room for people to sit. It had to be the time we went back and forth I guess. We were so thankful that we could walk back & forth from MK or monorail to EP. But then you had a completely different experience so I'm not sure what to think of that.

Yes, I am all about using those homeschooling perks and going when the crowds are low. We walked on rides over and over and over...it was beautiful!

Thanks for sharing your experience. I have so much to think about! Can I ask...what did your kids love about OKW? What do you think they'll love at SSR? Just trying to get a 'feel' for those resorts.
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