Why is Saratoga Springs a good value?

Discussion in 'Purchasing DVC' started by NattysMom, Sep 5, 2012.

  1. NattysMom

    NattysMom Mouseketeer

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    We are close to buying our first membership on the resale market. From reading these boards everyone says that SSR is one of the best values because of a low buy in point and low fees. My question is, why are the fees low and the buy in price low?

    Are the dues low because there are a lot of units and the costs are spread out among members more? Is the price low because it isn't located near the Magic Kingdom or Epcot? Are they low because they have less amenities or the resort isn't as nice?

    We are MK people so we're also considering BLT or VWL but we are content with split stays, studios of any type of view, and don't tend to travel at very busy times (although I do like going for Thanksgiving sometimes) so we're wondering if we should save ourselves the $30/pt difference between SSR and BLT and give up the 11 month window for the lower dues and total cost. However, I'd love to hear from experts for any catches or "you get what you paid for" tips because I've never been to SSR.

    Thanks in advance!
     
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  3. DougEMG

    DougEMG DIS Veteran

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    My view is that the fees are low because they are spread out among more owners.
    Because it is the largest resort, there are more sellers causing prices to be lower. Also as it is not next to a park it is not as popular as those resorts next to a park.

    The resort has just as many amenities as any of the other resorts. If it was next to a park it would probably be a vey popular resort.

    Ssr is a good resort for the value, but if you aren't going to be happy staying there, then the value doesn't matter.
     
  4. DizBub

    DizBub Totally Addicted

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    SSR has a fairly low buy in price and lower dues which equals the most bang for your resale buck. We had a 150 point SSR pass ROFR for $53.33 which I think is pretty low. Dues are $4.74. Looks like VWL can be had for similar costs but their dues are $5.61. BLT even with resale is selling in the low to mid 90's. It's the premium you pay to be close to MK. BLT's dues are currently $4.23. When we bought BLT 3 years ago dues were $3.60. That much raise in dues is costing us an extra $195.30 per year. It's the dues that will end up costing you over the years. Best to have low buy in costs up front and try to pay the lowest dues.

    If you don't need the 11 month booking advantage for specific dates SSR points can get you into all the resorts at the 7 month mark. We have stayed at all of the resorts at WDW except VWL so far, using BLT points. We happen to love SSR and actually want to stay there. We can't manage to get to DTD very often unless we stay at SSR so it works for us.
     
  5. drusba

    drusba <a href="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis-sponsor/index.

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    The buy in price resale is set mainly by supply and demand. There is usually a very large supply of SSR points including because SSR is about 28% of all DVC points and thus you get far more resales for it than any other resort. Also, you have a resort preference factor. The near park resorts are preferred over SSR by many and many are willing to pay more for the near park resorts to assure having the 11 month window for them.

    If you buy SSR and want to stay elsewhere you face the uncertainties of the 7 month reservation window. For about 9 months of the year (mid-Jan to just before end of Sept), you can usually get a room at a near park resort (and that even includes holiday times) except that certain things can often be difficult: BLT standard view, BWV standard or boardwalk view, and sometimes BCV in general. Also often unavailable are AKV concierge or value rooms. But generally you will find something such as BWV preferred pool/garden view, BLT lake view, and usually anything at VWL, and if you want AKL savanna or standard view, those are always open during that time at 7 months out.

    However, if your desire is to go between end of Sep and the Monday after marathon weekend in Jan, you will find that getting a near park resort can become more difficult more often (and essentially impossible the first two weeks of December and Christmas week). That is basically DVCs high demand quarter at WDW (first week of Dec is its highest demand week). Factors causing it include: (a) the food and wine festival from end of Sep to mid-Nov for which the weather is usually ideal; (b) Christmas decorations up by mid-Nov, Christmas holidays, and marathon weekend in Jan which is really five nights, Thurs through Mon; and (c) the fact that except for Christmas week and a few days around Thanksgiving, the points needed are the lowest or second lowest season of the year. Thus, if your desire is to get a room for a full week at a near park resort annually during that quarter, you really need to consider alternatives, but if you want something in the other nine months of the year and you can live without usually getting BLT standard view, BWV boardwalk or standard view, or AKV value or concierge rooms, SSR can be a good choice.

    Moreover, SSR has a 2054 end date and thus gives you a longer ownership period than BWV, BCV and VWL which end 2042 which adds to its value if you are choosing between it and those three resorts. Dues are the second lowest (next to BLT) at WDW and that is mainly a factor of having so many owners to contribute to dues and a resort that is soley DVC and thus does not have the full range of hotel services that those at near park resorts which are connected to regular Disney hotels are contributing to.
     
  6. disneynutz

    disneynutz DIS Veteran DIS Lifetime Sponsor

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    Here is my take on your questions.

    SSR is a large resort so the dues are low. Some people say that it is too spread out and it isn't near a park so it's a little less desirable. It's a condo style resort like OKW, separate buildings, parking at each building, many prefer a hotel style resort.

    SSR like OKW is a dedicated DVC resort, it isn't shared with a Disney resort so the guests staying there are DVC point stays or some Disney cash stays. DVC budgets are less than the resort budgets so things like holiday decorations are less than the other resorts.

    :earsboy: Bill
     
  7. Dean

    Dean DIS Veteran<br><a href="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis

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    Dues are lower (still high compared to other comparable timeshares) because the size allows for an economy of scall for many common expenses and the basic building design is relatively lower maint than some. Purchase price is less due to the number of contracts and relatively lower demand of the resort.
     
  8. NattysMom

    NattysMom Mouseketeer

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    Thank you everyone for your thoughtful and thorough responses. They were exactly what I was looking for to help us in our decision making process. I think we would be happy staying at any of the resorts so getting a good deal on points and dues seems to make the most sense.

    These boards are a fabulous source of information. Thanks again! :goodvibes
     
  9. juncker

    juncker Mickey Mouse for President

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    The other bonus that buying SSR gets you is the 11 month window to book a Treehouse Villa. This can be a difficult booking category as well.

    We are planning our first THV visit in 4 months! :banana:
     
  10. drusba

    drusba <a href="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis-sponsor/index.

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    That was a bonus through 2012. Currently it looks like the 15% increase in points needed for the treehouses effective 2013 is having a major impact. Thus far from January through first part of April 2013, the treehouses have been open at 7 months out and that includes MLK time, Presidents' week and the Easter weeks.
     
  11. DougEMG

    DougEMG DIS Veteran

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    It was interesting how the point cost of the Treehouses went up once SSR was sold out.
     
  12. Dean

    Dean DIS Veteran<br><a href="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis

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    I would discount any conspiracy theories related to this series of events.
     
  13. XGrumpy1

    XGrumpy1 DIS Veteran

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    SSR points are a very good value to me because of the low resale price, the low maintenance fees and the possibility of making a resist at 11 months and then moving anywhere available at the 7 month mark.

    I like to plan ahead, but like to have something secured!
     
  14. luckyman_apd

    luckyman_apd DIS Veteran

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    I think SSR is a good value. I wanted to buy there but my wife wanted BLT, so you know how that conversation went.

    Anyhow, I really like SSR, but it is farther from the parks than BLT. My wife is monorail fan, and really only likes to go to Epcot and MK. I like Hollywood studio's, and I don't mind the busses. We have only stayed at BLT and SSR previous to buying. I wouldn't consider another resort because I never stayed at them.

    While the potential to stay anywhere at the 7 month mark is there, You are only guaranteed to stay where you own. So, with that said, remember this is a big purchase and expense down the road, so I would consider visiting it if you are thinking about buying it. While the resort is very big, I found it to be a great resort to relax at. We liked the main pool and the grandstand and paddock pools. We got to be there for the re opening of the paddock pool. It's a place I know I'm comfortable with, but other resorts I haven't stayed at, I just can't imagine purchasing at a place I've never stayed.
     
  15. Mississippian

    Mississippian DIS Veteran

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    Before you decide you could be happy anywhere, why not rent some points and do a resort jumping vacation where you stay in two or three resorts. My personal opinion is that OKW is a far better buy than SSR, buy why not try both. The OKW rooms are said to be much larger. Then spend a night at BWV and another at either VWL or AKL. Yes, it's a lot of moving, but that's specifically what you are coming for.
     
  16. Brownieone

    Brownieone Earning My Ears

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    We actually like how SSR is farther from the parks (yet the parks are accessible via the buses), a little more quiet, and how we can take a boat or the walking path to Downtown Disney.
     
  17. Mississippian

    Mississippian DIS Veteran

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    There was always a market niche for SSR, they just needed 200-300 units, not 800.
     
  18. DizBub

    DizBub Totally Addicted

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    Very good advice. Agree that OKW is a terrific resort and potentially a good buy but resale is very risky these days because Disney is actively ROFRing OKW contracts. Seems like a random one or two slip through but a lot of people here have been extremely frustrated trying to buy OKW contracts.
     
  19. Sammie

    Sammie DIS Veteran

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    Actually SSR is only further away from the MK. SSR is closer to Epcot, the Studios and AK and water parks and Downtown Disney than BLT.

    Actually OKW and SSR are the two most centrally located DVC resorts on the property in relationship to everything offered.
     
  20. DizBub

    DizBub Totally Addicted

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    This is true. BLT is only close to MK.
     
  21. delmar411

    delmar411 DIS Veteran

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    OKW has a lot fewer amenities than SSR (than any other resort actually). The larger rooms do not make for this shortfall.
     

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