Questions for Canadian owners

Discussion in 'Purchasing DVC' started by Lizard Valley, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. Lizard Valley

    Lizard Valley Mouseketeer

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    Hi everyone,

    I have been reading these boards for over 3 years now, learning everything I can about DVC for the day that I am ready to purchase. I am so close to being able to post what is being submitted for ROFR (just want to wait until all the paperwork is submitted) :)

    So I have a couple of questions for the Canadian owners out there:

    1. What is the most efficient and economical (keeping in mind exchange rates) way that you have found to pay your yearly maintenance fees?

    2. How do you manage the payments you receive for points you have rented out, again taking advantage of good exchange rates?

    Any guidance would be greatly appreciated!
    Thanks!
     
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  3. keaster

    keaster DIS Veteran

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    Hello fellow Canuck! We have been DVC owners for just over a year.

    In terms of the dues, since we are in Canada, we don't have the option of paying monthly (unless you have a U.S. bank account). So we suck it up and use our American visa to pay the full amount in january and pay it off as soon as the bill comes in. Since the exchange rate is out of our control, we just roll with the punches. But we've only been members for a year, so the rate has been pretty much at par since we bought.

    We have not rented out points, and don't really plan to other than to close friends and family, so can't help you out with that one.
     
  4. DougEMG

    DougEMG DIS Veteran

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    One possibility is to set up a US Bank account in the US (setting one up a US$ account in Canada won't work), then have a PayPal account tied to your US bank account. Then you can use any of your rentals (in US$) to deposit into your US bank account from which you can pay your MF.

    I haven't actually done this myself yet as the only time I'm in the US is to go to WDW so don't have time to visit a bank.

    Is this cheaper than paying the exchange rates, guess it would depend on how much your MF fees are!

    If you do find a cheaper way though, let me know :)
     
  5. erionm

    erionm DIS Veteran

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    I believe there are a number of foreign owners that open a checking account at the SunTrust bank near Downtown Disney. They can then fund that account with the necessary funds to cover the annual dues which could then be setup for monthly payments since it's a US based bank.
     
  6. montrealdisneylovers

    montrealdisneylovers Mouseketeer

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    We have been members for almost 2 years and have had 1 maintenance fee bill to date. We used our visa card (and earned our travel points). I actually made the payment in December before our trip down. I figured if there was a problem I could deal with it while in Florida. It was no problem at all. This year I will be like all the normal people and pay in January when the fees are actually due.

    Cannot do much about the exchange rate as it is out of our control. One of our reasons for buying into DVC was to "lock in" a portion of our future Disney visits at par. We went many times when the exchange rate was 50% more. Our trips seem like a bargain now :rotfl2:

    We have not yet rented and do not expect to do so any time soon.

    Looking forward to welcoming you home!!! :)
     
  7. marie1981

    marie1981 Mouseketeer

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    I have a US bank account and a US Visa card.

    Lately, I took advantage that the Canadian $ was higher than the US $, to exchange Canadian $ into US $ and put it in my US $ account.

    In January, I use my US Visa to pay my dues. Then I pay my US Visa with my US $ account.

    So, this year, my dues will cost me less than what the people in Unites States pay !
     
  8. Lizard Valley

    Lizard Valley Mouseketeer

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    Hi everyone, OP here, Doug EMG asked me to let him know if I can up with a cheaper/better solution. So, I've done some research, and I've come up with some good stuff for us Canadian owners:

    RBC has a unique product, that is aimed at Canadian snowbirds. You can open up an RBC Bank US Access bank account right from a Canadian RBC branch. It's a real US bank account, with free cheques, and a Visa debit card, for $2.95/mth. It can be fully linked with an RBC Canadian $ bank account (free), as well as an RBC Canadian USD bank account (also free), with one sign in. This allows you to move money from your US Access account in the US to either account in Canada, instantly and online. You would use the US Access account to set up monthly payments for your mf's :)

    The other unique feature is that these are (reportedly) the only USD bank accounts that can be fully linked to your Canadian Paypal account and will allow you to move USD from Paypal into either your US Access account, or into your Canadian USD account, therefore keeping the money in USD's and not having to incur Paypal's crazy foreign transaction fees. If you're regularly renting out points, this can save quite a bit of money.

    So, I have gone ahead and set this all up :). Note: I don't bank with RBC. I just walked into my local branch, told them I wanted to open a US dollar savings account (called e-savings) and a US Access account. They knew exactly what I was talking about. Someone was available, and we got everything done in about 45 min's (including chit chat). I also opened a free Canadian $ everyday banking account, to get the debit card and be able to do online banking. The two RBC Canada bank accounts were good to go right away, the US Access application was sent to the U.S. from the bank.

    A week later, I received my US Access banking information. I called the number, and a very efficient employee from RBC Bank (USA) talked me through setting up my online banking, subscribing to e-statements, linking this account to my Canadian RBC accounts, ordered my cheques, and my Visa debit account. Easy-peasy.

    I have since successfully linked both the US Access account and the USD e-savings account to Paypal, and confirmed that I can send money both ways, with no fees. (There is a trick here, you have to use a very specific routing number for the e-savings account, and it's not the one the bank will give you, this is where the research helped). I have also sent money to both USD accounts using XE.com.

    So now, I can pay my mf's monthly, and I can accept point rental payments via paypal without paying a currency conversion transaction fee:)
     
  9. montrealdisneylovers

    montrealdisneylovers Mouseketeer

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    Genius!!! Thank you so much for sharing your information with us!!
     
  10. DougEMG

    DougEMG DIS Veteran

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    Thanks for posting this. I'll have to go to rbc and do this.
     
  11. curan69

    curan69 Mouseketeer

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    We've never rented our points. As far as MF I pay those online with my regular Canadian issued Visa card.
     
  12. SmilingGrump

    SmilingGrump Dis Dads Club Member #584

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    Ditto. We simply use our Canadian issued Visa to make the maintainance fees and for Paypal. Exchange rate is pretty steady so I haven't seen the need to set up a US issued Visa.

    We do have a US dollar account with TD but we use that to exchange money back and forth when the exchange rate is advantageous to make the move one way or the other.

    I don't believe Target Canada will be carrying the Disney Gift Card since the Canadian Government deems that as money brokerage, but I'm hoping that we'll still get 5% off Disney Gift Cards using the Target Mastercard (when it comes out) when we're in the US to take advantage of those savings, just like our American counterparts are able to. Then we'll make our payments with those Gift Cards. We'll just see what Target's rules will be when their Mastercard comes out here ... (and I really wish they'd have stuck with Visa since TD actually bought their Visa rights for the US, it would have made things much easier for we Canadians)
     
  13. Lizard Valley

    Lizard Valley Mouseketeer

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    It's interesting that you would bring up the Target card. Just for fun, I applied for the Target credit card online, to see if I could get one with my Canadian address. It was approved on the spot, received it at home within a week. It only has a 200$ limit, but hey, at least I can get the 5% discount :)

    The next time I'm at a Target, I'll probably get the debit card and just use that for the discount...now that I have a US bank account to debit from :)

    BTW, I wanted the US bank account so that I wouldn't have to pay my mf's in one shot with my credit card at the beginning of the year. I wanted to be able to pay monthly.
     
  14. stefanospops

    stefanospops DIS Veteran

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    TD offers a similar product to the RBC product. You can open up anm account with TD Bank North which is a US based account. If you leave $100 in the account there are no fees and you get free cheques and can pay bills online. Check out their site and look for a link called Cross-Border Banking. You can transfer funds directly from your Canadian account into your US account as well through Easyweb.

    We also have a US Visa that we use for paying the fees. That is the easiest way to do it IMO.
     
  15. lisaviolet

    lisaviolet Happy DVC Owner

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    I bought in in 2005. I've had the RBC US based account for many years. And I have paid my maintenance fees monthly from that account almost since the beginning of ownership. Please make sure you're clear you want US based not US dollar when signing up at an RBC. Sometimes I had to educate the employee. :rotfl:;) But I probably signed up the first year so it's probably better at this point. EDIT: reading above they obviously are more educated about it at this point. Back then - many used to tell me it didn't exist!

    They've made some changes to the RBC product in the last year. We used to be able to walk into a RBC Centura bank branch when on vacation. Now it's tied to PNC; however, you can no longer go in to the branch and do anything. You can't even put a cheque into a PNC bank machine - because it's not a PNC product. (They have other options for getting a cheque into your account - I just don't enjoy them). The only issue I have with these changes is misplacing/forgetting or having my card stolen. We forgot it once - realized it early but didn't want to drive back - and easily had it replaced at a RBC Centura branch down where we were in Williamsburg.

    Now we've been told by the phone line that if this happens they can only send one to your home. Which of course doesn't help if you're on vacation and it's stolen.

    Anyway, paying monthly is wonderful. Made my purchase seem like a totally different animal.

    And as for renting. I won't do Paypal for a few reasons. I usually use all my points but have rented a few times. I have renters send me a USPS money order (cheapest option for them in that area). It has to be the international one. And they do have a upper limit on amount. Last time I had it cashed at a USPS location in Buffalo so one could have sent me a domestic. US customers pay an outrageous price for international bank drafts/cashier's cheque. ( Here it's low to get a US dollar bank draft in comparison).
     
  16. lisaviolet

    lisaviolet Happy DVC Owner

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    Used to be waived if you kept over $700 in the account. But they might have changed it this year with the changeover with their US based business. Don't know.
     
  17. SmilingGrump

    SmilingGrump Dis Dads Club Member #584

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    Hmmmm

    My wife applied in person and she got a response requesting more information she'd already supplied 2 weeks later in the mail (Kohl's approved her on the spot lol). I guess I should tell her to apply online!
     
  18. Canadian Disney Mom

    Canadian Disney Mom Formerly Tollerwalker - originally joined July '05

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    We have been members since 2005. We have always paid our dues using our good ole Canadian CIBC Visa. We don't have a US bank account. We also don't use cash when we are travelling in the US - credit cards always give you a better exchange rate then a bank as the same uplift is not there.

    We have rented out points in the past and the renter paid by check. We also have a paypal account that is linked to both our Visa & bank account so we could accept rental payment that way as well if we chose to, but I think you need to pay a % to withdraw it from paypal. Be wary of Western Union.
     
  19. DougEMG

    DougEMG DIS Veteran

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    My first day back at work after spending two weeks down in WDW and I went into RBC and had them set up the two accounts for me today; the Canadian US$ account and the USA US$ account. Went very smoothly. Now just to wait till I get the info on the USA US$ account so I can link it up to PayPal.

    Thanks :)
     

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