Buying DVC when you haven't ever stayed at one?

Discussion in 'Purchasing DVC' started by uconnfan4, May 8, 2013.

  1. uconnfan4

    uconnfan4 Mouseketeer

    Feb 6, 2012
    I am wondering how many people have bought in to DVC before they ever stayed at one of the properties.

    I have stayed at CR, Poly, and SOG for my past 3 trips. I am staying at WL for my upcoming one, but I have never stayed at any DVC property or even really looked at one while I was there. I did try to rent points at VWL, BCV, or BWV for my upcoming trip, but it didn't work out.

    So, am I crazy to think of buying when I haven't experienced it yet? I have read plenty about it. I have looked at pictures and more pictures. I have run numbers and considered multiple scenarios. I am planning to get down to the BW area on my upcoming trip and of course I could go over and check out VWL while I am there, but my trip is not until November and I don't know if I want to wait that long to buy.

    If you did buy before you ever stayed at a DVC property, how did you decide where to buy. I totally understand the buy where you want to stay theory and agree with that. I am considering BLT, BWV, BCV, and VWL. I am leaning toward BWV or BCV, but am not entirely sold since I have never even seen that area.
  2. AmyB2006

    AmyB2006 I'd rather be in Disney!

    Mar 15, 2013
    Well, we had never stayed in one of the actual DVC properties. We've stayed on-site at almost every hotel over the years, but no, I never physically stayed in a DVC resort villa before we bought.

    Since we've stayed at most of the hotels that DVC properties are located, we knew we loved the Beach Club environment. We love the pool, and I love the area of the Epcot resorts with the convenience it offers, and I just love being able to go across to the Boardwalk as well. So that was the deciding factor as well.

    My next purchase will be BLT.
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  4. Minniesgal

    Minniesgal DIS Veteran

    Mar 29, 2013
    We had only stayed onsite once at POR when we bought in and that was 14 years before we bought. All our other trips had been offsite to get a villa instead of a hotel room. While we have not stayed at the other resorts we have visited every one several times. We have always enjoyed resort hopping and eating there as much as park time. We don't ever eat in the parks only exception is via Napoli so we felt we knew the resorts really well. We decided to buy our home resort AKV while at dinner at Sanaa as we is p,y felt we could love a holiday just at that resort. Our kids are growing up we have two teenagers and a 10 year old so I am already seeing the end of family holidays and the start of couple holidays and we decided to buy in when we realized we live the resorts enough we could make them our holiday as much as gong to the parks.

    Now we have bought in we have had one trip and another planned for August, we still love our home resort after staying there and seeing the beauty but also some of the issues. We found we were able to look past any niggly problems and just love being at Disney so we know we made the right decision to buy in.
  5. geraghty

    geraghty Mouseketeer

    Feb 3, 2013
    we always go to wdw during busier times, so no discounts or free dining. I thought we could never afford to stay at a monorail resort, but we always wanted too. On our last trip, we would admire BLT as we passed by looking out the window of the railcar. I have not been inside the building yet, but I bought there this past February. I, like you, watched videos and looked at thousands of pictures of all the resorts.
  6. Poohs Pal

    Poohs Pal DIS Veteran<br>Beautiful and smart so she says<br>

    Feb 29, 2000
    I had stayed at all the deluxe Disney Resorts except for the vacation clubs before buying. I wanted something for Dson that was H/C friendly and would be comfortable with an extended stay. At the time SSR was the new resort so I bit the bullet and purchased 250 points(w/o having stayed there). That was 2004. Since then I have sold SSR. I now own at AKV,BLT,BWV. I plan to sell AKV after my November trip and purchase more BWV. BLT and BWV have become the most convient for getting to our favorite parks. I didn't mind buying before staying because I new at the time what I wanted and why. At the time DTD was a big draw with the Adventures Club and Comedy Club. I bought AKV because I loved AKL and the Grand Villa's are very nice. I bring caregivers for Dson so needed the space. I now just get a 2bedroom and a studio. Have found I prefer the privacy more than the GV. DD also bought SSR after one visit. Last year we pooled our points and stayed at Disney for 25 days while I recovered from major surgery. We stayed at Kidani and BWV.
    If I knew then what I know now I would have started with BWV:rotfl2: but over the years I have enjoyed every place I purchased. When I add on I will also go resale from now on.
  7. BrerNashville

    BrerNashville DIS Veteran

    Apr 22, 2011
    We had stayed at all the monorail resorts plus WL before we bought. We bought in at BLT, rooms unseen, strictly for the location. We did check out pictures of the rooms online, though, and the style was good for us. I think if you've been to Disney several times like you have, you can pretty well get a feel for the various DVC properties based on what you know of the transportation situation and pictures you can find online.

    One thing that surprised us the first time we stayed at Kidani Village, though, was how dark the rooms were. Like I said -- we knew we wanted the location of BLT, so I had never looked at AKV rooms online. We stayed there for one night right after we bought in, prior to some cash pay GF reservations we had made before joining DVC. My wife hated the dark feel to it. I didn't mind so much.
  8. lovin'fl

    lovin'fl DIS Veteran

    Jun 7, 2011
    We had our 1st WDW trip in 2003...stayed off site. Then, went back in 2005 and stayed at POR. After that trip, we went home and researched DVC and bought an OKW resale in 2006 (was cheapest resales going at that time as SSR was selling new at about $98/point). We had never stepped foot on a DVC property.

    Our 1st trip as DVC members was Sept 2006 and at BWV (booked in June of 2006 as soon as we got our membership packet). We didn't stay at our home resort, OKW, until 2009 (and only for 3 nights). We have now stayed at most East coast DVC resorts including VB and HH (our 1st trip to AKV is this December and we have BLT waitlisted for October, then we will have tried them all). We are happy to stay at any of them (but we do have an order of preference...and DH and I don't completely agree on that :rolleyes:). We have no regrets and have since added on at 2 other resorts (AKV and HH). And I hope to add on at BWV someday too.
  9. NoleFan

    NoleFan DIS Veteran

    Mar 30, 2013
    We stayed at Wilderness Lodge, Polynesian, Contemporary. Port Orleans Riverside, Caribbean Beach, Swan/Dolphin, & Beach Club all at hotels (not DVC Villas) as cash guests. Gave us a feel of different locations & resorts. We enjoyed all individually but our best memories were at Beach Club/Epcot Resort area. We bought in at Boardwalk (never stayed at that actual location but stayed in area) because of location & standard rooms gave good value for points. We also like the Downtown Disney area and thought about SSR. However, it seems you can book that @ 7mos so wanted resort that we could use the home resort advantage. Plus, we just love the Boardwalk area for family trip or getaway as a couple. Good luck! Definitely recommend, buy where you want to stay. Too big of an investment not to be 100% happy.
  10. albarellic

    albarellic Mouseketeer

    May 19, 2011
    We bought after having never stayed in a DVC resort. We took our kids during a free dining several years ago and stayed in a family suite at All-star music. We loved it, but dreamed of staying at the Contempory for our next trip.

    My sister decided she wants all of us to go with the 4 cousins. So instead of the Cont. like we wanted, we ended back at All-star Movies. But at least we were in Disney. While planning that trip with her I considered renting points, but my husband wanted the ability to cancel if we needed to. That got the bug in me to investigate DVC a little more. He asked me to wait a year, do research, whatever and then he would discuss it with me. So that's what I did. My mind was made up and I just needed to convince my husband.

    When we got back after the trip with my sister, I started reading the message boards, asking questions and learning the ins and outs of the program. By the time my year was up, I had a 14 page prospectus. I presented it to him and let him mull it over for WEEKS! It was killing me, but I know him well enough to let him think things over for a long time and not to nag or push, just to answer any question he might have had and not bring it up every chance (even though I wanted to). His original decision was to wait one more trip and buy before we go for the 4th time.

    We were already discussing a third trip for this December with the inlaws. They originally said, just let us know how much their part comes to, they'll pay whatever we say. When they found out how much the Contempory was- that quickly turned to where else can we stay that would be cheaper. So we gave them the prices for moderates, but they asked for lower prices still. So once again, it looked like we were headed back to All-stars, until out of the blue one night my husband said, "Let's do it!" We had an offer on a contract that night. It didn't pan out but another one popped up the following week that we ended up buying.

    Based on everything I read on here, I had already decided that the "Buy where you want to stay" mantra, so it was a no brainer for me that it would be BLT. Before I had fully researched it, I was thinking SSR, just based on price, thinking I can always move to BLT at 7 months. Boy am I glad that I took that year;) We have an 8 night stay booked in a standard 2BR for the first week in December. They were gone within hours of the 11 month window.

    We bought resale BLT last summer for $87 a point and the contract had 60 banked points. My husband and I took a long (kid-free)weekend to the Boardwalk in January this year. We got out of zero degree weather in upstate NY to mid 70 to 80. We had such a great time that by Sunday, my husband was asking how much it would cost to add on enough points to start a yearly tradition for the 2 of us:rotfl: He was half joking, but I can see more points in our future.
  11. disneynutz

    disneynutz DIS Veteran DIS Lifetime Sponsor

    Dec 11, 2006
    Would you buy a house without looking at it first or checking out the neighborhood? The money that you will spend as an owner will be more than many houses cost.

    We learned the hard way and bought at BLT without staying their first. If we had, we would not have bought there. We don't really care for the theming, the high point cost and the increasing dues.

    :earsboy: Bill
  12. abner1776

    abner1776 DIS Veteran

    Feb 24, 2006
    We(or should I say, "I") bought into VWL after staying at the WL but we had not stayed at any DVC resorts. It was not impulsive as we ("I") took a few weeks to decide and to convince my DW that it was a good idea.

    We ("I") have not regreted the purchase and our DD has made very good use of our points on many occassions and I think she would disown me if I ever sold our contract.

    If you are "into" the Disney "thing" then DVC makes sense and the only decision is what resort to buy into.
  13. DizBub

    DizBub Totally Addicted

    Dec 9, 2010
    We bought BLT without staying there too but we actually like it. Agree about the high point cost and the rising dues. :(
    But it's really nice to have the 11 booking advantage to get the standard views.

    If we had known about resale and had more experience we would have bought BWV for the cheap point requirements for standard view and location but it has the highest MFs.....

    Knowing what we know now, we could have bought all our points resale at SSR/OKW and been perfectly happy.
  14. ToddyLu

    ToddyLu Welcome aboard explorers- I love Mr. Ray

    Jun 6, 2008
    :) We bought sight unseen in 2009. We had always stayed at Value resorts, ASMo and Pop. We stayed at POFQ once in 2006. We were going yearly to WDW and had been to a couple of resorts like GF and WL to eat or sightsee. When we decided to buy I wanted what we could afford not so much where we would want to stay. However, my DH was very opinionated about where he wanted to stay...AKL and only AKL.

    For years he and I had been watching that bus pull up to pick up the lucky guests staying there..we just never mentioned it to each other. Our home is more of a dark decor and DH loves animals and photography...see a pattern?

    Outside of MK, I think AK is our favorite park, too.

    BWV and BCV did nothing for us asthetically and DH does not like to venture outside the Internationl Gate at EPCOT. While we eat at Bluezoo every trip now, we had not discovered that restaurant in 2009. We still wouldn't have picked it though. DH also doesn't care for swimming although he can and has been a lifeguard in past. SO SAB wasn't a draw.

    VWL--DH fought forrest fires for the gov't for 5 years before we married. WL just brings back memories of camping in national parks and that job. While he loved it (the job), spending 21 days in a forrest fires was well in his past. He is now a firefighter with our city.

    BLT--nothing about it fascinated us---I dont even know if we knew it was being built when we purchased our points. Once we got there and sa the large parking lot, and that you had to cross the sky bridge and go up the escalator to use the monorail...location for us just wasnt important.

    SSR--MIL and I had used the spa there on a trip in 2006 and when we got out of the taxi that morning for our appointments, the resort seemed massive. It was deathly still, noone out and so very quiet. Plus I like the inside corridor type resort. So while the prce was good it just didn't have the decor I liked. DH and I do however like its location and I have thought about an add-on for THV.

    OKW--we live ont he Gulf Coast and this would be too much like home. By the end of our summers here I am sick of Jimmy Buffet.

    VGC-we never go to California.

    We wanted to be on property so VB and HH were out.

    So we purchased AK sight unseen...would I recommend that...never. It is a lot of money to spend for a place you just feel so so about when you arrive. We knew enough about the vibe we wanted and like you I had scoured you tube videos and websites to "tour" the decor and rooms. Once there it was home for us and we have never ever regretted our pick. We like the indoor corridors, remote feel, theming, music in the lobby, CMs from Africa, etc. TO us this represented more of a vacation.

    Good luck with your are smart to try and visit them. GO in with the I want to spend $20,000 to stay here for the next 40-50 years and see where it takes you.
  15. boiseflyfisher

    boiseflyfisher <font color=red>I'm curious, too<br><font color=ro

    Dec 11, 2006
    We bought at VGC without ever having stayed there or at any DVC property. We had stayed at GC, though.
  16. ToddyLu

    ToddyLu Welcome aboard explorers- I love Mr. Ray

    Jun 6, 2008
    :) All of the resorts have many nuiances that cannot be seen in photos and videos...take the time to tour and you will not be sorry. It may be that you love the inside decor but the bus system to parks is bad. Maybe you DO prefer inside corridors and just didn't know that....that is what you will work out if you see them first. You have it narrowed down but I would want to be sure. I would have bought smaller contracts too...and resale. Live and learn.
  17. com_op_2000

    com_op_2000 DVC Member since '93; One Hour from WDW

    Jul 13, 2010
    DW and I knew as soon as we heard of DVC that we would buy in.
    We were staying onsite at DL-AB, took the tour, and DVC offered to use some of our monies from our onsite stay as our down payment.
    We had previously been burnted by a timeshare sales pitch, so as an added requirement, we booked within the cancellation period a weekend stay to ensure it was everything we had been told it was. We were very happy that DVC turned out to be just as we were told.
  18. DougEMG

    DougEMG DIS Veteran

    Aug 14, 2008
    We bought our points SSR and OKW points without ever being to the resorts or seeing a room model. We'd been to WDW many times though and figured they'd be at least as good as a moderate room.
  19. Caren90

    Caren90 DIS Veteran

    Jan 19, 2002
    We rented points from a DVC owner and after that stay we toured the properties.

  20. DisneyMim

    DisneyMim DIS Veteran

    May 31, 2000
    There was NO DVC when we bought. We've been members since Oct 1991 and bought unseen. We knew it would be great and we were not disappointed. We started looking into it in Feb 1991 when we first heard about it, called and nobody knew what we were talking about. Finally we received info, just artist's pictures. I had to carry those around because people thought we were crazy. I had been wanting to do this since I was very young. It just took Disney a while to come around to my way of thinking! They should have hired me years ago!! LOL!! Good Luck and....

    Enjoy The Magic!!
  21. icouldlivethere

    icouldlivethere Mouseketeer

    Jan 4, 2004
    We bought BWV sight unseen in 2009 and couldn't be happier with our choice.

    We had gone to SSR in the fall of 2008 and went through the whole sales pitch and looked at the rooms there but left undecided. When we got back home I did some research online and discovered the resale market. I then researched all of the DVC resorts trying to decide where to buy.

    In the end BWV won out for two reasons; a) the ability to book SV rooms for fewer points and b) location, location, location. By the time we went through ROFR, closed on our contract and got our points, we were already well into the 7 month booking window and I was only able to get a BWV PV room for several nights and had to take SSR for the remaining nights of our upcoming fall trip. I went on a waitlist to get the remaining nights but was unable to get them and so we had to switch resorts to SSR for the last couple of nights of our stay.

    After that trip I was so thankful I hadn't bought SSR. I didn't like being so far away from all of the parks. I love BWV! I'm so glad that's where we purchased. We have since added on there and have our name on the waitlist to add on again. I love that I can save points by booking a SV studio right at the 11 month mark and I love, love, love being so close to both Epcot and HS. So for us, doing some research and buying sight unseen worked out perfect!

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