Beginning to think I dodged the DVC bullet :(

luvthatmouseinohio

Earning My Ears
Joined
Sep 25, 2013
For so many years I've dreamed of being a member of the Disney Vacation Club. It just sounds awesome, don't it? Oh, how I wanted to "own a piece of the magic." Never being able to go to Disney World as a child, I was an adult in my mid 20's before my first visit to the Magic Kingdom and, of course, I was hooked.

We all know It takes a lot of money to make the magic happen. My ex of 23 years was the pay-as-you-go kinda guy, so DVC never happened for me. We rented a 1-BR on eBay once for a song at OKW and for a week we were livin' the dream :). No value or moderate resort for us ... lol.

Fast forward to the present and post divorce ... I've tried to rent a few times from the online brokers, to no avail. What I want is never available, and I was puzzled by that. So I went looking for other ways to rent, and stumbled upon this forum. And now, after reading so many comments from owners, I'm actually glad the ex never wanted to buy in. My main reason for wanting to be an owner was because I thought it would never be a problem to book a stay at the DVC resorts, but wow, have I been enlightened. The whole rental process is far more maddening than magical.

Don't get me wrong ... I know there are still plenty of perks to staying at DVC properties and I still see the draw for people to buy in. I was able to successfully rent a 6-night stay in a savanna view studio at Kidani during Thanksgiving week this year, through an owner on this forum actually. I feel like I hit the lottery. I could actually have rented a 3-BR at Bonnet Creek the exact same nights for a couple hundred dollars less than I got the studio for at AK, but the draw of Disney transportation to the parks, the 60-day fast pass booking versus 30 days, and seeing a giraffe from our balcony trumped the size of the accommodation. Go figure.

I appreciate so much the discussions I read on this forum, hearing the point of view of the DVC veterans to the brand new owners. It's eye opening for sure and I thank you all for sharing your experiences.
 

kedskit5

Earning My Ears
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
The key here is to buy where you want to stay. So if you wanted to stay at AKL, buy in there and book at 11 months. You can try to waitlist a reservation at other resorts and it takes persistency to get the resort you want, but many people do it. The benefit to DVC is you get first option at booking a room vs those paying cash.
 

Spark65

Mouseketeer
Joined
Sep 27, 2019
We have never had a problem booking at Disney even at less than 7 months aside from not being able to stay at a particular resort for maybe a certain number of days. I have 2 contracts that I can book at 11 months with no problems.

Like said above, buy at the resort you want to stay at, you'll most likely have a much different reply.
 
  • ClemTig

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 12, 2008
    If you buy SSR resale, you'll do fine. It may take some planning to get the other resorts, but SSR is great in its own right. You can get it for about 1/2 of the current cost of RIV and the MF are lower- much lower.
     

    Deb & Bill

    DVC-Trivia Contest, Apr-2006: Honorable Mention
    Joined
    Mar 20, 2000
    It is getting harder to book a non-home resort at seven months or less. You need to be able to book your home resort closer to 11 months out to be happy with your reservation. Other resorts are possible, but not at all times of the year
     

    quandrea

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 24, 2010
    Never had trouble booking in twelve years. Even as short as one week’s notice. With renting, there is a significant shortage of dvc owners willing to rent.

    If it’s not for you, great, but I don’t want others considering dvc to think it’s all bad. I’d never consider not buying as dodging a bullet.

    Buying dvc was one of the best things we ever did. We bought some direct, some resale and paid only $60 per point for most of our 860 points. That was during a period of 2008-2013 or so.
     

    Jetku

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Dec 21, 2009
    I think it’s also harder as a non owner since you can’t see availability. Once you have points, you can fully see all rooms available. So you can easily tweak a day here or there, or shift resorts.

    when renting, you’re just throwing a dart at the board.
     

    zakdavid

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Nov 7, 2019
    For so many years I've dreamed of being a member of the Disney Vacation Club. It just sounds awesome, don't it? Oh, how I wanted to "own a piece of the magic." Never being able to go to Disney World as a child, I was an adult in my mid 20's before my first visit to the Magic Kingdom and, of course, I was hooked.

    We all know It takes a lot of money to make the magic happen. My ex of 23 years was the pay-as-you-go kinda guy, so DVC never happened for me. We rented a 1-BR on eBay once for a song at OKW and for a week we were livin' the dream :). No value or moderate resort for us ... lol.

    Fast forward to the present and post divorce ... I've tried to rent a few times from the online brokers, to no avail. What I want is never available, and I was puzzled by that. So I went looking for other ways to rent, and stumbled upon this forum. And now, after reading so many comments from owners, I'm actually glad the ex never wanted to buy in. My main reason for wanting to be an owner was because I thought it would never be a problem to book a stay at the DVC resorts, but wow, have I been enlightened. The whole rental process is far more maddening than magical.

    Don't get me wrong ... I know there are still plenty of perks to staying at DVC properties and I still see the draw for people to buy in. I was able to successfully rent a 6-night stay in a savanna view studio at Kidani during Thanksgiving week this year, through an owner on this forum actually. I feel like I hit the lottery. I could actually have rented a 3-BR at Bonnet Creek the exact same nights for a couple hundred dollars less than I got the studio for at AK, but the draw of Disney transportation to the parks, the 60-day fast pass booking versus 30 days, and seeing a giraffe from our balcony trumped the size of the accommodation. Go figure.

    I appreciate so much the discussions I read on this forum, hearing the point of view of the DVC veterans to the brand new owners. It's eye opening for sure and I thank you all for sharing your experiences.
    How far out are you renting? If you are trying to rent close to the date of your stay that could be the issue
     

    eMoneyBug

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 1, 2012
    so youre glad you are renting vs being an owner?

    if that's the case, nothing wrong with that. Some rather buy a home and some rather rent a home or apartment to live in. either way works for them, so no worries.

    renting thru a dvc owner or booking your own is no different, some planning and perservance usually equal success on getting the location/room size/dates you want, that is a FACT
     

    luvthatmouseinohio

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Sep 25, 2013
    I think many people come to the conclusion that DVC isn't a good fit for their personal situations so it's a good thing that you recognized this before actually buying your first contract.
    Exactly! In hindsight buying in would have been a big mistake for me personally and I would have been very disappointed. Reading so many threads on this forum has been very helpful because it helps a person see not only the pros, but the cons as well. I now know I don’t have the flexibility needed for ownership to be a good fit for me.
     

    luvthatmouseinohio

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Sep 25, 2013
    Never had trouble booking in twelve years. Even as short as one week’s notice. With renting, there is a significant shortage of dvc owners willing to rent.

    If it’s not for you, great, but I don’t want others considering dvc to think it’s all bad. I’d never consider not buying as dodging a bullet.

    Buying dvc was one of the best things we ever did. We bought some direct, some resale and paid only $60 per point for most of our 860 points. That was during a period of 2008-2013 or so.
    Yes, you are absolutely right in that there is a limited number of owners who rent. If I did own, I can’t imagine ever renting!

    And I’m very happy that your decision to buy has worked out well for you. That is the goal after all 😊

    I just think I was under the assumption that as an owner you could always get what you wanted, when, where, etc. That’s pretty much the way DVC is marketed, but I’ve learned it’s often not the case.
     

    LuigiSpice

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 2, 2019
    The time of year you want to travel seems to have a huge impact as well. We plan on going the week or 2 before Labor Day and at least this year I could have booked a studio at literally any resort at 7 months (including the ever elusive Copper Creek).
     

    Philsfan77

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Mar 12, 2019
    For so many years I've dreamed of being a member of the Disney Vacation Club. It just sounds awesome, don't it? Oh, how I wanted to "own a piece of the magic." Never being able to go to Disney World as a child, I was an adult in my mid 20's before my first visit to the Magic Kingdom and, of course, I was hooked.

    We all know It takes a lot of money to make the magic happen. My ex of 23 years was the pay-as-you-go kinda guy, so DVC never happened for me. We rented a 1-BR on eBay once for a song at OKW and for a week we were livin' the dream :). No value or moderate resort for us ... lol.

    Fast forward to the present and post divorce ... I've tried to rent a few times from the online brokers, to no avail. What I want is never available, and I was puzzled by that. So I went looking for other ways to rent, and stumbled upon this forum. And now, after reading so many comments from owners, I'm actually glad the ex never wanted to buy in. My main reason for wanting to be an owner was because I thought it would never be a problem to book a stay at the DVC resorts, but wow, have I been enlightened. The whole rental process is far more maddening than magical.

    Don't get me wrong ... I know there are still plenty of perks to staying at DVC properties and I still see the draw for people to buy in. I was able to successfully rent a 6-night stay in a savanna view studio at Kidani during Thanksgiving week this year, through an owner on this forum actually. I feel like I hit the lottery. I could actually have rented a 3-BR at Bonnet Creek the exact same nights for a couple hundred dollars less than I got the studio for at AK, but the draw of Disney transportation to the parks, the 60-day fast pass booking versus 30 days, and seeing a giraffe from our balcony trumped the size of the accommodation. Go figure.

    I appreciate so much the discussions I read on this forum, hearing the point of view of the DVC veterans to the brand new owners. It's eye opening for sure and I thank you all for sharing your experiences.
    It's certainly not for everyone...we've been fortunate that we aren't usually looking for studios or hard to get dates, and usually are sure of our travel dates 11-months out, that it works for our family.
     

    AnnaS

    DIS Sponsoor/Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 7, 2001
    You are ahead of the game. It's great you know that DVC is not for you and you would be disappointed now if you had bought years ago.

    It is definitely not for everyone. There are a few here and there who regret it. Not many. Some might not be informed too. Resale restriction, do not buy where they want to stay, are not able to book so far in advance 7-11 months, want better/more housekeeping, perks, etc. etc.

    Renting is great for many without the $$$ commitment for the next 20, 30 years or so. Glad it's working out for you. Remember, look for points 11 months in advance to get your resort of choice.

    We have owned for 20 years and never had a problem booking our resort/waitlisting. If we book 4-6 months in advance, we always find a resort (SSR, OKW, AK). Now if you are looking for a holiday week, busy time - your chances will decrease in finding 5,6 or 7 consecutive nights at any resort.

    Good luck and Enjoy!
     

    tjkraz

    <img src="http://www.wdwinfo.com/images/silver.jpg
    Joined
    Feb 4, 2002
    My main reason for wanting to be an owner was because I thought it would never be a problem to book a stay at the DVC resorts, but wow, have I been enlightened. The whole rental process is far more maddening than magical.
    DVC isn't for everyone, that's for certain.

    That said, booking rooms as an owner is probably much easier than what you would read about online, and certainly easier than renting points. If you expect to be able to book any resort on 3 months notice, obviously that will not happen. But most people who commit to DVC are comfortable with the prospects of regular return visits. There is no harm or penalty for advance planning. It's very simple to book one's home resort 11 months in advance, or a non-Home at 7 months, without having other travel plans aligned. If you decide to change dates or plans fall through, cancel and book something else.

    Most owners probably agree that the cost savings over 50 years of DVC ownership are an easy trade-off for modest booking headaches.
     

    RoseGold

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jan 21, 2020
    I'm not clear what your question is.

    I just booked a Little Mermaid room at Art of Animation for $136. There is no DVC booking that will match that value.

    If your goal is the value of Disney transportation and Fastpasses, then the value resorts might offer the most value. Heck, just get an uber and stay at a good neighbor hotel and get your fastpasses. I'm not sure what other "perks" you are talking about, because you didn't say what they are, but Art of Animation has fine food, pool, transportation. I'll miss my laundry, I guess, and maybe I'll take a few more Ubers than I would at BLT.

    There are plenty of cost effective options that aren't DVC.
     

    luvthatmouseinohio

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Sep 25, 2013
    I'm not clear what your question is.

    I just booked a Little Mermaid room at Art of Animation for $136. There is no DVC booking that will match that value.

    If your goal is the value of Disney transportation and Fastpasses, then the value resorts might offer the most value. Heck, just get an uber and stay at a good neighbor hotel and get your fastpasses. I'm not sure what other "perks" you are talking about, because you didn't say what they are, but Art of Animation has fine food, pool, transportation. I'll miss my laundry, I guess, and maybe I'll take a few more Ubers than I would at BLT.

    There are plenty of cost effective options that aren't DVC.
    I didn’t have a question, but was more stating an observation regarding DVC ownership.

    Everyone has a different opinion on what “value” is. I have stayed at value resorts, moderate resorts, Disney Spring resorts, Bonnet Creek, and even OKW. The fact is each of these places have pros and cons and can offer a delightful stay.

    With that said, Disney classifies their resorts for a reason, based on amenities, etc. I can’t watch a giraffe from a balcony at the All-Star Movies. But I’ve stayed at the Movies and had a great time😊. Over time our wants and needs change and the vibe at a lot of the DVC resorts is desirable. My main point is I want the experience of those resorts, but not necessarily the commitment, so renting works for me. And I am glad now that I never bought in.

    Enjoy your trip.
     

    ziravan

    Welcome Home
    Joined
    Apr 4, 2014
    It sounds like you’re rationalizing why DVC wouldn’t be right for you.

    DVC isn’t right for many people, maybe most. But the reason you gave isn’t typically one of the reasons given by someone who’d otherwise view scoring a DVC reservation as hitting the lotto.

    Availability at 11 months is only an issue in a very few categories and then only during the busiest DVC season. You hear a ton of griping here because the members here are typically experts and we spend quite a bit of time focusing on the exceptions not the rule. “If it bleeds, it leads” is human nature.

    If you hang around this forum long enough, you’ll come across the oft-quoted “buy where you want to stay.” There are strategies avail to get the most out of DVC ownership.

    I don’t think your characterization of DVC not being a good product because booking takes effort is very accurate. Working DVC does take some effort, but that’s the case for planning WDW anyway. I don’t find DVC planning more difficult than any other aspect of planning WDW. Just like planning WDW generally, and to steal an AA phrase, “It works if you work it.”
     

    sndral

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 3, 2008
    ...We all know It takes a lot of money to make the magic happen. My ex of 23 years was the pay-as-you-go kinda guy, so DVC never happened for me...
    Fast forward to the present and post divorce ... I've tried to rent a few times from the online brokers, to no avail. What I want is never available, and I was puzzled by that. So I went looking for other ways to rent, and stumbled upon this forum. And now, after reading so many comments from owners, I'm actually glad the ex never wanted to buy in. My main reason for wanting to be an owner was because I thought it would never be a problem to book a stay at the DVC resorts, but wow, have I been enlightened. The whole rental process is far more maddening than magical.
    ...
    If you never had sufficient cash on hand to buy without financing, then yes, it can be wiser to not buy at all.
    I didn’t buy until I could pay cash, however, since I’ve owned I’ve never had any problems staying where I wanted and we often go during the most popular time for DVC - the first week of December. But I bought where I wanted to stay and I’m up at the crack of dawn at 11 months to make sure I get what I want at one of my home resorts.
    Renting is very different, the first obstacle is that the brokerage must have owners willing to rent and for hard to get resorts/views or times at 11 months they must have owners of the resort you want, not just any owners at 7 months. Even renting from a private owner as you did, you must find and vet someone w/ points available at the resort you want.
    Your rental experience in securing your reservation will be very different from an owners experience.
    ...I now know I don’t have the flexibility needed for ownership to be a good fit for me.
    IME as an owner you don’t need flexibility, unless you want to sleep around w/ your points on a 7 month booking. You need to be an uber planner - buy where you want to stay, book first thing at 11 months, then you’re done no more planning until 180 days when you make your dinning reservations, then at 60 days FPs & that’s all.
    ...I just think I was under the assumption that as an owner you could always get what you wanted, when, where, etc. That’s pretty much the way DVC is marketed, but I’ve learned it’s often not the case.
    Many have commented that the DVC salespeople, called guides, are misleading in their sales pitch when they make it sound like you’ll be able to stay at any resort at 7 months with those expensive direct points that you are considering buying, that is certainly not true, you do need to own where you want to stay and to book early to get the very popular places and views during very popular times.
    I think DVC best fits people who like to stay at the resort they own and can plan 11 months ahead. It also works for more spontaneous types if they can be flexible with dates and are less concerned about where they stay.
     

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