Is DVC for me??

Discussion in 'Purchasing DVC' started by andrewsmommy, Nov 5, 2009.

  1. andrewsmommy

    andrewsmommy Mouseketeer

    Sep 6, 2006
    I've been trying to get my head around DVC, and if it would be of value to us.

    We are a family of 4 with kids 6 and 2 1/2. We do WDW or a DCL every year. We tend to stay at the Contemporary or Poly (usually 3-4 nights) or do a 4 day cruise (DH job makes being away longer hard).

    What would be the advantages to DVC ownership for someone like me?

  2. mgroshans

    mgroshans DIS Veteran

    Sep 3, 2008
    can you book your vacations 7 or 11 months out? is one question.
  3. Avatar

    DIS Sponsor Disney Vacation Club Resales

  4. disneynutz

    disneynutz DIS Veteran DIS Lifetime Sponsor

    Dec 11, 2006
    DVC is a good deal for WDW stays only and you have to vacation at WDW every one or two years for your length of ownership.

    Do not consider any perks or DVC discounts in your study.

    Buy resale and save some money.

    :) Bill
  5. chalee94

    chalee94 <font color=green>I thought all sand was ground up

    Aug 14, 2006
    the DVC works best for people who:

    1) go to disney at least every other year
    2) prefer to stay onsite at deluxes (or at least moderates)
    3) can plan their vacations 10 or 11 months in advance
    4) can limit Fri-Sat stays since weekend point costs are significantly higher (although this may be changing)
    5) intend to use DVC primarily for staying at a DVC resort at disney (rather than trading out for other timeshares or cruises, etc.)
    6) need or prefer larger accommodations than a basic hotel room

    OTOH, there are lots of good reasons to balk at buying DVC:

    1) thousands of $ upfront plus annual fees require a certain level of financial ability and commitment (and you still need to pay for tickets and travel, etc.)
    2) commitment to wdw/fear of wdw burnout (sorta - while you can trade out, the best value is staying at the DVC resorts)
    3) DVC not as deluxe as deluxe hotels in some senses (limited housekeeping, sofabeds, no room service at some DVC resorts)
    4) prefer to stay on weekends and weekend point costs are MUCH higher
    5) financing a depreciating (sooner or later) luxury purchase is generally a poor idea
    6) happy with value hotels
    7) amenities like a kitchen and washer/dryer have no value for you
    8) you don't/can't plan vacations 6+ months in advance
    9) you enjoy hunting for deals/bargains for each trip

    If you’ll be upset when other people can pay cash for a room and get a discount or get “free” dining thrown in, then DVC is not for you.
  6. SSR

    SSR DIS Veteran

    Nov 1, 2009
    Charles' list above is excellent. I particularly emphasize number (5) on the cons list. Financing an "asset" like this at rates of 10%+ is something that warrants serious consideration and assessment of one's true finances. My .02.
  7. Crystal_27

    Crystal_27 DIS Veteran

    Apr 25, 2007
    Vicki, since you said in your post that you usually stay at the Poly or the Contemporary, I take it that you're looking at BLT as a "home" resort. Even though BLT is my home resort, I think that the $120/point that Disney is charging directly is insanity!! I would either wait until BLT hits the resale market with regularity or buy at another resort (or wait and see if Disney lowers the price for BLT). Given your post, it seems like DVC would be a good fit for your family, though. Good luck. :goodvibes
  8. DenLo

    DenLo DIS Veteran

    Jun 3, 2009
    andrewsmommy I'd ask yourself, how much you spend for your room at the Poly or CR. Rack rate for CR runs anywhere from $360 in value season in a garden wing room to $835 for a Tower room at Christmas. And suites or club rooms are more expensive. The Poly has similar prices.

    For demonstration purposes lets pick in the middle and say the rack rate is $597 per night times 4 nights = $2388 plus tax (you don't pay tax on DVC room as you own part of the timeshare). It takes about 5 to 7 stays after purchasing at a DVC resort to recoup your initial investment. And then your room only costs you the annual maintenance fee. You still have all of the other expenses you had before; park passes, food, entertainment, souvenirs, etc. We are strictly talking about room only.

    One thing is you do get is a larger room. For your family of four wouldn't it be nice to stay in a one bedroom villa with a full kitchen? You and DH in the master bedroom with a king size bed and the children in the living room on the pull out couch? For around 285 to 300 points you could easily stay for 4 nights in most seasons at a DVC resort in a 1 BR. Or if you do not go during the premium seasons, around Easter and Christmas/New Year's, then you probably could do two separate trips for a total of 7 days (split 3 for one and 4 for the other trip). Or if there is no way you'll ever get in two trips (even if one is just for you and the kids), then you could reduce your points. The 2009 MF would run between $1101 to $1511 per year on 300 points, depending on your resort.

    Here's a good place for a newbie to read up on the DVC and to see if it's for you and your family. The DVC News also has current prices and incentives.

    Good Luck. And happy reading.
  9. jelliott04

    jelliott04 DIS Veteran

    May 25, 2008
    Hi. I think the list above is great. We have been owners for only two years and have yet to stay at our home resort. We will stay in May 2010 at AKV for the first time.

    Here is my $.02. :)

    As for perks, we liked the idea of :
    1: discounted annual passes
    2: free valet as we drive and tend to eat at the restaurants in the resorts

    They took #2 away recently and it made us re-think our adding to our current points.

    I don't like that the studio rooms have a bed and a sofa bed. I like the idea of two beds, but I knew that going in. OKW studios have two beds.

    What I didn't realize is that while you get trash and towel service once during your trip, they do not give you enough wash cloths to last until trash and towel day. You only get 4. I've complained about this over and over to Disney but it doesn't seem like it is going to change. Seriously, what would it cost them to give me 16 washcloths to start with? Anyway...

    I didn't think I'd have use for the kitchen since I'm NOT cooking on vacation. However, we used to end up doing a character breakfast almost each morning. Now, I bring oatmeal or bagels or something and the kids eat that for breakfast and that saves us $$$ as well as time.

    I also didn't think I'd have use for the washer and dryer (not included in the studios) but my daughter had a small accident this last trip and it was very helpful to wash those clothes and her shoes. Most of our whites were clean and folded before we left for home! :)

    We happened to have some cash back then and we bought DVC and while I can't say if it was a good financial decision I like the idea of having our room and tickets paid for so basically once I buy the annual passes, we go for free not counting food and souvenirs.

    We used to say at either AK or POR or POFQ mostly so again I'm not sure it made sense financially speaking. We like the deluxe resorts but really AK, and the PO places are really nice and we got daily service with wash cloths and coffee. With the AP discount it often worked out to what my maintenance fees are per year now.

    I try not to think about it too much as I still can't get my head around it. We are thinking of adding on more points since we like the room of the 1 BR so I can't think it is all bad. I just don't know if it was a financially good decision. But our vacations are basically paid for (since we bought the AP's before DVC) so that is nice too, not having to come up with the $$ to go.

    I hope that helped a little but probably just gave you more questions. LOL

  10. Dean

    Dean DIS Veteran<br><a href="

    Aug 19, 1999
    It depends. If you plan to use DVC for DCL and/or the 3-4 day stay is usually a weekend, the answer it you should absolutely not buy. If the WDW stay is light on weekends, I'd consider buying just enough points for the WDW stay and paying cash for DCL. Buying for other exchange options would likewise be foolish.
  11. Sandisw

    Sandisw Moderator Moderator

    Nov 15, 2008
    The biggest advantage that DVC could offer you in the long run, IMO, is the opportunity to get a 1 bedroom villa for something similiar to what you are already paying for those 3 - 4 night trips to the Poly or CR.

    If you plan to alternate between WDW and a cruise, you would only need 1/2 the points since you would be able to take advantage of banking and borrowing.

    For example, you could probably pick up a 100 point contract resale for around $7000 - $8500. That would give you enough points to stay in a 1 bedroom every other year for at least the 4 nights you mention. Depending on how much you are currently spending for the hotels, I don't think it would take long to make that up (even given the yearly MF's).

    You could then continue with your cruise vacations like always (as some will tell you that using DVC points for cruises is not the best value)

    Of course, it is important to make sure you are comfortable with your home resort. While you can book any resort 7 months out, if you have your heart set on staying only at one place, then you should buy there.

    We bought BLT because we want to be near MK, even though are kids are older. It cost us a lot more than, say SSR would have, but we knew that we did not want to chance being able to get a SV room there at 7 months. Plus, we knew we would not be happy anywhere else and it just didn't make sense to buy a home resort that we could be disappointed in.

    Good luck!
  12. Ka-chow!

    Ka-chow! Mouseketeer

    Oct 1, 2007
    I've been periodically in the same boat and thought about joining. You have some excellent reply posts covering the major issues, especially Charles's list.
    My 2¢:

    Pros: I would call it a good "emotional" investment if you will.

    1) If you are sure you will go enough in the future, it will probably be a wash. Good financially when economic times are good but poorer when times are bad. For example, DVCers can't benefit from Disney's discounts when they must discount, but will be protected versus increasing rack rates if paying cash. And it's hard to compare the deluxe hotels to DVC properties. Just apples and oranges when it comes to amenities and service.

    People can avoid rack rates with AAA or AP discounts (in good economic times). The AP room discount, if staying at a deluxe, will quickly pay for itself .) For example...
    SSR studio
    Holiday rate: rack = $425; AP Discount = $249

    Value season:Rack= $295; AP Discount = $169

    2) Disney Inflation: However, Disney continues to increase rates MUCH higher than the annual inflation rate, for rooms, tickets, food... and DVC annual dues.

    DVC has annual dues increases about .50 - .75% higher annually than rack rates.

    For example
    1) Ticket prices:
    2000: 1 day ticket was $46. now, in 2009, it's $84.
    Are you earning 82% more now than 9 years ago?
    Do you think you will earn 82% more 9 years from now? Disney tickets will be way higher than inflation....

    And last year, despite deflation in the U.S. economy from Jan - Sept 2009, Disney increased their prices about 4-5 %. :confused3

    3) ...And Disney cuts and cuts, outsources and outsources, skimps and skimps. We just got back from a Disney cruise 2 weeks ago. 1st example: The budget cuts really showed on the Wonder compared to when we sailed in Nov 2007. It took 2 days for us to get hot water in our cabin Cat 4 stateroom.:sick: 2nd example: While paying for top dollar for 5 MSSSHP hard-tickets, Disney gave a few cheap, poor quality candy to my kids. I mean, generic Smarties? :scared1: They can't be serious. I'd be too embarrassed to give that stuff out to kids in my neighborhood at Halloween. And don't get me started about the stroller rentals...

    So basically, I've been seeing Disney raise prices more and more while returning less and less, especially over the last 3-4 years. After our last trip a few weeks ago, my feelings to Disney was just less magical than the one before, which was less than the one before that. Maybe that is short term. But I've started to think about doing ski trips again rather than the next Disney trip. Tells me something.

    Good luck with your decision. - Mike
  13. AirGoofy

    AirGoofy DIS Dad#341

    Jul 24, 2009
    I've seen all the charts, spread sheets, read posts, and even tried to figure out the math. In the end, let's face it - are you really going to figure out how to win a game of profit margins against Disney? There are too many variables to consider - annual dues, annual passes, annual increases, rack rates, promotion offers, Disney Dining, etc. - With that said, we purchased DVC resale after 5 straight years of visiting Disney once a year. And, we plan to continue to go once a year, and we have enough points that we can go twice, every other year. Two DDs 7,5 have a great time. DW and I honeymooned there 10 years ago and caught Disney fever as well.

    My 2 cents - (1) if you plan to continue to go there, then go DVC. (2) Whether you go resale or thru Disney, if you can't pay it outright, then you can't afford it. You do not want to have a negative "I shouldn't have bought that" feeling about spending time with your family on a vacation, every vacation, for many years.
  14. andrewsmommy

    andrewsmommy Mouseketeer

    Sep 6, 2006
    Thank you all so much for your replies, both here and on PMs.

    One thing that several people mentioned was the ability to plan far out from trips - and that's something that we don't do - both due to DH's work and our personalities!

    This was all such great info, and I think we will pass on DVC. But thank you!!
  15. DenLo

    DenLo DIS Veteran

    Jun 3, 2009
    You're welcome, sorry that the DVC was not for you. But congratulations on figuring it out ahead of time. Here's some pixie dust for your next trip pixiedust:
  16. Dean

    Dean DIS Veteran<br><a href="

    Aug 19, 1999
    Better to find out now than after you bought. You still may be able to stay on cash or rent from a member from time to time.
  17. Greysword

    Greysword <img src=

    Apr 6, 2004
  18. robada

    robada Earning My Ears

    Nov 9, 2009
    Call my guide she was great and can explain everything to you... her number 8882597639 and her name is Andrea

Share This Page