How did you choose your home resort? Second guessing

Discussion in 'Purchasing DVC' started by pmaurer74, Mar 21, 2012.

  1. pmaurer74

    pmaurer74 DIS Veteran

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    1. We really love the WL but I strongly dislike the decor at the VWL. Would this affect your decision? I know they will refurb at some point but I am trying to guess what our future vacations will be like. We have young kids now 5 and 2 so of course the parks right now are important.

    2. I like the idea of BCV. The location and the pool as well as decor though the villas don't seem wonderful. I have heard this is hard to get so maybe it would be good to buy there?

    3. I had never considered SSR until yesterday. The decor appeals to me. The location not as much but the lower MFs and better price points make me wonder if we can get more bang for our buck there especially as our vacation style changes over the years.

    I like a variety of resorts so I do not want to stay at the same one every year. Everyone says to buy where you plan to stay the most. We are a middle class family so we take this purchase very very seriously. I had thought of buying 2 small packages at 2 different resorts or keeping all our points at one so we can do a 2 bedroom every other year. and a studio or 1 bedroom in between years. So I am thinking around 200 points total. 120 or so for the studio one year and 250 for the 2 bedroom at SSR springs every other year.

    What would you do?
     
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  3. amcnj

    amcnj DIS Veteran

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    Well the "buy where you most want to stay" concept is just to insure that you won't be unhappy with a trip in which you had to stay at your home resort due to lack of availability elsewhere. It sounds like you have some really strong feelings about resorts and their decor, but only you can decide if such concerns will put a damper on a trip in any way.

    When I purchased there was only one Vacation Club property, Old Key West Resort, so I didn't have to worry about making such a choice! Over the years I have stayed at Boardwalk, Beach Club, and Saratoga Springs, and while every property has its pluses and minuses, I never had a bad experience and can't say I would be unhappy owning at any of them. But OKW is still my DVC "home", and I have stayed there the vast majority of my trips, and it is a place I would never be unhappy staying at.

    Do you need to travel at peak times? That may affect your ability to get into non-home DVC resorts at 7 months.
     
  4. pmaurer74

    pmaurer74 DIS Veteran

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    I know it sounds silly but decor and view have always been important to me. Since our kids will be in school and my husband is a college professor, we will travel with schools breaks most likely. This year my husband's spring break was early and we got great crowds and great weather. Next year it is later and not as good of a time to go. It seems like DVC is not as popular in the summer as the regular Disney rooms? I think on the calendar is is magic season on the points chart? I prefer the crowds ad temps for March and May but know that we will be restricted to summers for a few years in high school.
     
  5. sweetdana

    sweetdana DIS Veteran

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    Based on your post, I would buy some of wanted points at SSR. (Assuming you are buying resale.) I would try all 3 and I bet you will find, 1 that is "your home". SSR will be the cheapest, and you should be able to try the others. IMO one of the nicest (and under-appri resorts too. Having everything, from views, center location, great parking, great dining, walking to DTD, Artist Pallet, kids center, great bus system.. I am not sure if I am selling you or me right now :lovestruc )

    Maybe it will end up being your fav "home", and maybe something else will. You can buy the other 1/2 of the points in 6 months - 2 yrs, when you figure out where you love.

    Buying at 2 resorts gets you 2 diff resorts home priority. (OKW, and AK are easy to get into, but BC and WL will be tougher.)

    I intend to buy more points in another yr or 2, once I make sure which I love more with older kiddos, BC or SSR. It is a toughy.
     
  6. amcnj

    amcnj DIS Veteran

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    No, one's individual likes and preferences are not silly at all. Everyone has their own idea as to what is important. Just figure out what is most important for you and your family, what your "must haves" are, and see which resort meets the most of them.

    PS I have a relative named P Maurer, if your screen name is indeed related to a "real" name!
     
  7. jrtoastyman

    jrtoastyman Purveyor of Fine Latex Products

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    We bought at BLT because we subjectively liked it and its proximity to the MK, but we also thought that from a resale/renting of points/etc. standpoint, there would probably never be a time that a resort that was an easy walk from the MK would not be in demand. While we don't have any intention of selling our DVC now or ever, the fact that the resale market for BLT seems to be much stronger than some of the more distant resorts gave us some peace of mind in the event that we were ever in a situation where we needed to unload it.
     
  8. pmaurer74

    pmaurer74 DIS Veteran

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    This is a good point and something I am considering as well. That is why I was thinking of BCV because of its location. I agree with you about BLT but I have never been interested in the CR or BLT. I would consider GFV but it will be way out of our budget for quite some time! I told my husband that at least for now the resale points can cover our dues in case we have a bad year or two.

    I don't think I have any relative in Jersey.
     
  9. zavandor

    zavandor DIS Veteran

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    Looking at the pictures on the website I thought the same thing. BC was the least appealing to me.
    However during my last trip I went to Cape May (the restaurant in BC) and I've seen the resort: wonderful! I nearly felt in love with it.
    I was thinking to buy AKV or BWV, but at the end i bought... SSR! :D

    I've seen AKV, BCV eating at a restaurant and BCW and SSR from the outside. I ended thinking that I'm sure I'll like every resort and want to try everyone or at least as much as I can. Since I'll travel during low season (January and September the most), I think I'll be able to switch resort often so I bought at the cheapest (MF wise) resort (and found a good small contract).

    However since you plan to visit during high season you should understand what's your favorite resort since it can be more difficult for you to switch.
    Maybe you can try to rent points at the resort you think you would like more and buy only after that stay.
     
  10. drusba

    drusba I went to Iowa once, and it was closed.

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    Personal recommendations: you are a young family. You should seriously consider not buying VWL, BCV or BWV. Their end date is 2042. Believe it or not once you hit your late 50s or early 60s you will likely still be going to WDW and, if like us, even more often than you ever did before. In other words, you should consider end date a very important factor. Those resorts may have extension offers later but if they do the cost is going to be high. Also buy all your initial points at one resort and aim for eventually being able to get that two bedroom and being able to use your 11 month booking advantage for it. Once you have enough for the 2BR, then you might consider buying at another resort. Moroever, you should seriously being considering resale because prices are way lower than Disney.

    As to which resort, you need to find one that you are sufficiently satisfied with that you are willing to stay at it if for any reason you cannot switch to another at 7 months out. In other words, buy assuming that there will be times that you will have difficulty getting something you want at 7 months. There are times of year when it is easy to switch at 7 months (mid-Aug to late Sep, and much of Jan and early Feb) and times when it is very difficult to do so (major holidays, all of December) except that you will find SSR almost always open even if reserving 60 days out. There are other times when it can be difficult depending on what you want (Oct to first half of Nov and most spring break weeks) and if your heart is set on AKV concierge, AKV value, BWV standard view, BWV boardwalk view, BWV grand villas, or BLT standard view, you should assume that you really need the 11 month window for whichever one of those you want almost anytime of year. Also be aware that studios usually fill first, then 2Brs, and 1BRs are often suprisingly open when nothing else is.

    As to your decor at VWL, you should not assume that it will change when a rehab is done. The changes made when there is a major rehab usually do not do any major changes to the overall decor. For example, other than paint and carpet color and the addition of modern TVs, BWV's decor today is the same as when it was built in 1996.
     
  11. pmaurer74

    pmaurer74 DIS Veteran

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    Thank you so much for the opinions and experiences! I had thought of the early ending contracts but was wondering like you said will we still be going later? There is 30 years left at VWL and BCV so that puts me at 68 when they expire. The newer contracts I would be late 80s and doubtful I would be going still. I am not even considering buying direct. We were 2 years ago but knew we would not be able to until DH got promoted and tenured a few months ago so now we are considering it again but only considering resale!
     
  12. emilymad

    emilymad DIS Veteran

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    The first thing we considered in the resorts end year. DH and I are in our early 30s so the extra years at the newer resorts was a big deal to us. We also rarely plan vacations 11 months in advance. We ended up buying at SSR because of the low cost, the "non Disney" theme, being on a golf course, and the location for being close to DTD. We stayed there one night before a cruise earlier this year and we have a few nights booked in May. So far we are thrilled with the resort. It is so peaceful and has a homey feel which we like.
     
  13. DenLo

    DenLo DIS Veteran

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    We chose our first resort, BLT based on the fact that we once lived in a high rise condo building and loved it. And to this day miss that life style, living in Downtown Denver and walking to the stadiums and arenas, the theater district and even walking to work. BLT fit that standard in our eyes. Also we prefer a more modern decor versus the old fashion look at many of the resorts. Maybe too many trips to grandma's house when I was young--I'm not sure why, but don't really care for decor at BCV, BWV and OKW. But that's just me.

    However, I found myself sighing when I thought that we would never own at AKV, because we loved our cash stay there. Eventually we purchased points there as well.

    We have stayed at AKV, BLT, BWV, OKW, VWL, HHI and next month we'll stay at SSR. So far our favorite resorts are our two home resorts. We like them both and miss them when we don't stay there. However, we have always loved WL. There's something about that resort. The rooms are okay but, they just don't work for me. However, if we didn't already own at BLT and VWL points were for sale at the right price, I would still think about buying points there. We just really enjoy our vacation there. But spending time in the VWL villa wasn't as enjoyable as it is at BLT or AKV for us.

    To me, one the best parts about being a DVC member is spending more time in your villa. And if you don't like the villa, how can that be enjoyable?
     
  14. htmlkid

    htmlkid Gold DCL Member / SSR DVC Member

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    Our purchase was strictly price and carrying cost motivated. We purchased SSR resale cause it was cheap and one of the lowest in annual fees. Since we have stayed at almost every resort but SSR. With that being said, we have a very flexible schedule and have no problem booking at almost every resort, anytime we have had to waitlist it always seems to come through.
     
  15. amcnj

    amcnj DIS Veteran

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    The good thing here is there are really no bad choices, some may just be a better fit for you than others. The end date issue is a good one, depending on your anticipated travel years remaining.

    Good luck with your decision!


    "I don't think I have any relative in Jersey. "

    Sorry, I should have mentioned initially that my relative is in Switzerland!
     
  16. mikron

    mikron Donald Pin Collector

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    We got into DVC in 2004 when Disney was building SSR. My sister in-law worked for Disney and as family we got a discount over the discount Disney was given for SSR. We liked the DVC plan and bought SSR. We then bought resale in OKW because of the size of the units and the resort over all. Been happy with both resorts and still own both.
     
  17. luckyman_apd

    luckyman_apd DIS Veteran

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    I agree about the end date. Our decision started around End date. I KNOW we will use it in our 60's so the choice came down to AKV, SSR, or BLT. I would have been ok with SSR but the wife wanted BLT. Neither of us wanted AKV as we like to be closer to the parks. I would have liked to pay SSR price, but the boss won out :lmao:
     
  18. disneynutz

    disneynutz DIS Veteran DIS Lifetime Sponsor

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    We wanted to buy BCV and we stayed there before buying. Loved the resort, bought and enjoyed our times there but we noticed that the views weren't that great and it felt like the DVC building was stuck behind the BC like a left over.

    We stayed at SSR, OKW and VWL. SSR and OKW were both nice, we like the resorts but not enough to buy there. VWL was another story, it gave us a different feeling that felt like home, so we bought there. The views aren't great but better than BCV.

    Then we stayed at BWV. We felt like a kids on our first date, the resort is beautiful,the location is great, the Boardwalk view is the best on property and of course we bought there and stay there every December. It is our favorite resort.

    Bought AKV for something different and made the mistake of buying BLT without staying there first. We got caught up in the hype so we bought. The resort is like staying in a hi rise condo off property. Yes it's close to the MK and it has the monorail but that's about it. Average pool, view of the castle in the distance, parking lot and the roof of Space Mountain up close. IMO the building was poorly constructed and I expect increasing dues.

    Bottom line is you can't tell which resort is your favorite until you stay there. Some honestly post that they bought XX resort, hate it and never stay there, but that they have been pretty lucky getting rooms at other resorts.

    You could be spending $80,000 plus at Disney over the life of your contract for travel, food, admission ,dues and Disney extras. Buying based on dues or point cost doesn't make sense if you really don't love what you bought.

    We have 26 contracts, 5 home resorts and vacation at WDW/VB 2 or 3 times per year, extra points are rented. If we had stayed at all of the resorts before buying we would have fewer home resorts.

    :earsboy: Bill
     
  19. ToddyLu

    ToddyLu Welcome aboard explorers- I love Mr. Ray

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    :) I wanted to purchase DVC and would have really bought anywhere---so I thought SSR would be fine due to cost. Not DH, he picked AKV, our home resort. He loves animals and photography and he liked the calm, dark decor which is alot like our home.

    We had never stepped foot on that property which I would NOT recommend to anyone. We had been to WDW a number of times and new the locations and I guess really in the end the vibe/decor of the resort mattered.

    We did not like the size of SSR once we really looked at the resort. It is always so quiet there to me. DH does like the THV--so one never knows.

    We live on the MS Gulf Coast so the decor of BCV and OKW where too much like home.

    DH was a firefighter with the Department of the Interior and spent many a day fighting fires in our country's National Parks. So VWL reminded him of that and he didn't want to spend "any more time in the woods"

    BLT held absolutely no appeal except for location which obviously was not high on our list since we picked AKV.

    BWV.....clown pool...creeps DH out too especially when I show him the pics of it lit up at night.

    VB and HH we have never been too and I am lucky to get DH to travel to WDW.

    VGC--well since we live in Missisippi we don't expect to get there much.

    Aulani--please refer to VGC..

    So that is how we decided and DH is now a DVC purist and only wants to stay at AKV :confused3
     
  20. robinbutterfly

    robinbutterfly DIS Veteran

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    We are are a young family but we got BWV BECAUSE it ended in 30 years... the thought of being locked in any longer then that makes me nervous! Who knows what the dues will be then. The unknown makes me nervous.
     
  21. gojoe

    gojoe DIS Veteran

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    We had diner at Flying Fish, it was our first time to the Boardwalk. Upon returning home I did research and convinced my wife to buy. She had one condition, it had to be Boardwalk. We never set foot in a DVC Villa or talk to anyone from DVC. Oh yeah, we had a wonderful diner. We totally enjoyed our evening on the Boardwalk. Diner, performers and just plain people watching. We were in love and still are!
     

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