Do you own? Why or why not?

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Eeyore's picture
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Do you own? Why or why not?

Not another DVC thread! silly

So, if you own DVC, why did you buy in?

If you were interested and decided against DVC, why?

Kristen K.'s picture
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I do own.

I can remember talking about buying into DVC at the very beginning, but I was a poor military wife at that time and we just didn't have the money. At that point I wanted it because it was new, and cool, and points were only about $80 per. I knew that I would use it, because my family had always taken several trips a year to Disney. 18 Years went by and I never stopped thinking that DVC would be a good thing for us, but I never thought we had the money. I got divorced, and remarried. I went through a 10 year "drought" where I only got to Disney twice, and that was because my Mom took me. We had a baby, bought a house, car repairs, unexpected medical expenses. I always compare that time in my life to Carl and Ellie from "Up," we dreamed of going but something else always got in the way.

Anyhow, DH and I were at the mall with a very close friend (our house mate). I wasn't going to drag the friend into the Doorway to Dreams store, but as we passed he stopped me and question our walking by. My husband "gave me up" and told the friend how much it meant to me and how I had always dreamed of being an owner. The friend said he wanted to find out about it and the next thing you know we were inside and listening to a DVC Guide give us the spiel.

There was a FANTASTIC deal going on at the time, we only had to start with 100 points (it's usually 160), only needed $500 down, got $4 off per point purchased, AND got an extra 160 developer points to spend at SSR. My husband looked at the numbers and decided we could afford the payments, and I just happened to be at the mall to break in a new credit card. So, that was it. We were there, had the down, could make the payments, and the terms were good so we did it! Right then and there, spur of the moment. I was *so* happy I cried signing the paperwork.

Four months later our vacation drought ended and we've made the trip at LEAST once a year since 2009. We now know that we'll always have a place to stay at least once a year and we don't have to worry about spending that hotel money on something else. Over the past 4 years I have paid $13,200 on my loan (I have a little further to go), but I have used $22,862 worth of room nights. I have stayed in lush 2 bedroom suites with theme park views, savanna views, and on the concierge level. Rooms that my family would have NEVER even dreamed of being able to afford if it had not been for DVC. I've also cruised on my points, and probably wouldn't have ever given that a try without DVC.

Becoming a DVC owner has not just been a cool Disney thing, it has improved the quality of our life. It has by far been the best thing that I have ever purchased, and my husband agrees that the only regret is that we didn't buy more points.

It's worth noting that we have added on to our original purchase. When my Grandmother passed away she left me a little bit of money. I decided that I wanted to use it on something that would help me to remember and memorialize her, so we added on DVC points. Every time we use those points (our California Home), we feel like she's coming on vacation with us.

That's my DVC Story mickey

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I own. I had stayed off site a few times. Then a friend invited me to stay at the Beach Club in a 2Br unit. It was a revelation. I went to bed in Disney and I woke up in Disney. Total immersion. I could walk to Epcot, my favorite park. Storm Along Bay! The Boardwalk! The Epcot resorts are the absolute best in my opinion. No more rental cars, buses, parking lots, etc. I was sold. I wanted BCV and as soon as I got home I bought from Disney. The next year I added on from Disney.

On the same trip we visited friends staying in the Contemporary in a room that seemed like a closet compared to our unit. That confirmed my thoughts.

Years later I learned about resales and I added on at almost half the price of what DVC charges at the Boardwalk. So I have enough points now. I'm all set.

BCV currently sells for more than what I paid for it. Not that I ever intend to sell.

After I added on I was point rich. I did 5 trips in 13 months. And that completed my transformation into a total Disney nerd.

I love my DVC ownership. The money is spent so all I have to do is pay the MFs which are billed to me monthly. Pretty painless. So I never have to come up with thousands of dollars for a room. So I go more often and I stay in a nicer resort than I would if paying cash. Now if they would just let us have a payment plan for the annual passes...

Anyway that's my DVC story. 10+ years now.

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Great stories! I hope to own someday!

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We own and have never had a second thought about buying into DVC. We bought in 2008. I remember when they first started selling DVC and we though, "Wow, that will never happen!" We were young , had 2 kids, and money was tight. Wish we could have afforded it then.

After 30 years I had to get a new job in 2002. As much as the swing shift sucks, my benefits increased substantially and I started getting paid vacation time/sick time/personal days. That just opened a whole new world for us.

When we did decide to buy, it was spur of the moment. We stopped at the little stand in Animal Kingdom and set up our appointment for them to pick us up the next day at our resort. We ran some numbers, figured out what we were spending, how often we wanted to come to WDW and decided it was for us , we could swing it. When we got to the DVC office at SSR, we met with our Sale Agent, Ricardo Flores and told him, he didn't need to make any sales pitch, we wanted to buy! At the time they were selling at the AK, but they still had SSR available, and Scrappy didn't think she would like AK, so we bought SSR. We got a lot of incentives, builders discount of $4000 & all the points from the years prior, so we were happy. Best thing we ever did, just wish we could have done it earlier.

We love taking our best friends that couldn't afford to go other wise and we have made them Disneyholics too!

We still pay to stay at the Poly, but we will see what the future holds ...............................

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We own. I bought it in my single days back when OKW was the only WDW on-site option. For me, I rarely took vacations and rarely did family vacations because I was on the east coast/midwest living/working and moving around and my family were all in CA. Since buying into DVC, it forces me to take a vacation and now allows for more family get-togethers/vacations. I think it was the best thing I have done for me and my family as a whole. Also has allowed family from japan to visit and enjoy WDW. We've used the Grand Villa twice now and just by utilizing that for a week at a time has essentially paid for my buy-in and more. I bought in when the minimum full option was 210 points and they had a partial option of 100 (or so) points. I am glad I went with the full option. I agree with everyone that I do not regret buying in.

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Thanks everyone! I love hearing the stories. Keep them coming!

Well, my parents could've purchased the vacation club when it first opened for like $4,000....of course that was a lot back then with small kids. Although, they would've owned it for life! I wish they still had that perk! mickey

Our story is we don't currently own. Each time we go, we always get really interested and talk to the sales people, but end up not buying. I think our biggest turn off is the maintenance fees. The up front costs for the actual points isn't that bad, but paying up to $1000 per year or more for maintenance seems like a lot.

Our other concern was figuring how hard it would be to visit other Disney sites with points, such as Disneyland, Hawaii, etc. I heard that the points didn't do much for the cruise?

I have another friend who owns and told me if we couldn't pay cash up front, it isn't worth making payments on? We've considered resale, but who knows if we ever will.

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mrhub wrote:
We own and have never had a second thought about buying into DVC. We bought in 2008. I remember when they first started selling DVC and we though, "Wow, that will never happen!" We were young , had 2 kids, and money was tight. Wish we could have afforded it then.

After 30 years I had to get a new job in 2002. As much as the swing shift sucks, my benefits increased substantially and I started getting paid vacation time/sick time/personal days. That just opened a whole new world for us.

When we did decide to buy, it was spur of the moment. We stopped at the little stand in Animal Kingdom and set up our appointment for them to pick us up the next day at our resort. We ran some numbers, figured out what we were spending, how often we wanted to come to WDW and decided it was for us , we could swing it. When we got to the DVC office at SSR, we met with our Sale Agent, Ricardo Flores and told him, he didn't need to make any sales pitch, we wanted to buy! At the time they were selling at the AK, but they still had SSR available, and Scrappy didn't think she would like AK, so we bought SSR. We got a lot of incentives, builders discount of $4000 & all the points from the years prior, so we were happy. Best thing we ever did, just wish we could have done it earlier.

We love taking our best friends that couldn't afford to go other wise and we have made them Disneyholics too!

We still pay to stay at the Poly, but we will see what the future holds ...............................

I was about to ask you why you stay at Poly if you own DVC? Do you ever use your DVC points or just stay at Poly most?

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Eeyore wrote:
mrhub wrote:
We own and have never had a second thought about buying into DVC. We bought in 2008. I remember when they first started selling DVC and we though, "Wow, that will never happen!" We were young , had 2 kids, and money was tight. Wish we could have afforded it then.

After 30 years I had to get a new job in 2002. As much as the swing shift sucks, my benefits increased substantially and I started getting paid vacation time/sick time/personal days. That just opened a whole new world for us.

When we did decide to buy, it was spur of the moment. We stopped at the little stand in Animal Kingdom and set up our appointment for them to pick us up the next day at our resort. We ran some numbers, figured out what we were spending, how often we wanted to come to WDW and decided it was for us , we could swing it. When we got to the DVC office at SSR, we met with our Sale Agent, Ricardo Flores and told him, he didn't need to make any sales pitch, we wanted to buy! At the time they were selling at the AK, but they still had SSR available, and Scrappy didn't think she would like AK, so we bought SSR. We got a lot of incentives, builders discount of $4000 & all the points from the years prior, so we were happy. Best thing we ever did, just wish we could have done it earlier.

We love taking our best friends that couldn't afford to go other wise and we have made them Disneyholics too!

We still pay to stay at the Poly, but we will see what the future holds ...............................

I was about to ask you why you stay at Poly if you own DVC? Do you ever use your DVC points or just stay at Poly most?

We use our points every year. In July we are bringing our friends & staying at BWV for several days then switching to Contemporary. We get 2 / 1 bedroom suites in DVC resorts that way we have our privacy , both have washers & dryer.

Anything we don't use one year we bank for the next.

We could use points to stay at the Poly but that would be a crazy waste of points, but some people do it.

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Eeyore wrote:
Thanks everyone! I love hearing the stories. Keep them coming!

Well, my parents could've purchased the vacation club when it first opened for like $4,000....of course that was a lot back then with small kids. Although, they would've owned it for life! I wish they still had that perk! mickey

Our story is we don't currently own. Each time we go, we always get really interested and talk to the sales people, but end up not buying. I think our biggest turn off is the maintenance fees. The up front costs for the actual points isn't that bad, but paying up to $1000 per year or more for maintenance seems like a lot.

Our other concern was figuring how hard it would be to visit other Disney sites with points, such as Disneyland, Hawaii, etc. I heard that the points didn't do much for the cruise?

I have another friend who owns and told me if we couldn't pay cash up front, it isn't worth making payments on? We've considered resale, but who knows if we ever will.

You can buy resale at SSR. Points are cheap and they have low maint fees. Then you can stay wherever you want. Unless you go during Christmas or Easter you will probably get what you want at 7 months out. If you plan to go alot, it makes financial sense.

Shouldn't use points for a cruise. Better to rent out your points and use the cash.

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Eeyore wrote:
The up front costs for the actual points isn't that bad, but paying up to $1000 per year or more for maintenance seems like a lot.

As an owner with a real estate interest in the property, you just have to pay dues. You pay for the care and keeping of your home, it's the same thing with your vacation property. Without dues being paid the property would rapidly age without any care or keeping. The dues cover staffing, repairs, refurbishments, animal care at AKL, and taxes. Last year I paid about $83 a month for my annual dues, about $2.22 per point. Different resorts have different costs per point for their dues. The cost of dues changes every year depending on the needs of the property. Over the years members have voted to not increase dues by limiting the amount of services that we get. I.e. we no longer have daily mousekeeping or valet parking included with our membership, because people didn't want dues to increase.

Honestly, DVC isn't for everyone. Families that are perfectly happy staying in the values are not going to find a monetary benefit to owning. Families that are happy always staying at a moderate are likely just going to break even with ownership. The people who really save the most money are the ones who usually stay at a deluxe property.

For MANY people that I know owning DVC is not really about a monetary advantage, and people who don't stay at deluxe resorts who only want it for a savings are not going to see the benefit. One could say that DVC has cost me more money than I have saved, because if I didn't have DVC I wouldn't be traveling as much. That's true. What DVC has really done for me is provide me with pre-paid hotel rooms for the next 40 years. It's worked out sort of like a budgeting tool for us. That means that I am able to enjoy more together time with my family, alone time with my husband, a higher standard of accommodations when we travel, and an abundance of magical memories that would have not happened without it.

Eeyore wrote:
Our other concern was figuring how hard it would be to visit other Disney sites with points, such as Disneyland, Hawaii, etc.

I am always going to have one at my home resort, because I have an 11 month booking window there. Everywhere else I have to wait until 7 months out. I was not able to get a Bay Lake Tower reservation for this June at 7 months, this year. I was also not able to get Beach Club on opening weekend of F&W Festival. There is some seasonal flux that can mean you need to have more than one option you want to use. That happens at the standard resorts as well, you don't always get your first choice pick.

As far as Disneyland goes, I had heard that if you didn't own there it's impossible to get a room. Not my experience at all. The kids and I got a 2 Bedroom Park View Villa at 5 months out using our AKL points in May. I've also had great luck snagging concierge rooms at AKL, and there are only 5 of those.

I don't find it hard at all.

Eeyore wrote:
I heard that the points didn't do much for the cruise?

No, points do not work out to a monetary advantage for the Cruise. Budget savvy owners will suggest that you rent out your points for the year, then take that cash and pay for your cruise to come out ahead money wise. I however cruise on points. I cruise on points because it's prepaid, I don't have to budget on top of what we already pay on our DVC loan or shuffle money around from one account to another, or wait and hope that someone wants to rent my points. All I have to do to cruise on points is make a phone call. It's simple, easy, and offers me peace of mind which is priceless. Plus, if you cruise on points you get gifts left in your stateroom. LOL! Another one of those intangible benefits.

Eeyore wrote:
I have another friend who owns and told me if we couldn't pay cash up front, it isn't worth making payments on? We've considered resale, but who knows if we ever will.

I read a fantastic article about "worth" on another site the other day. It said that "worth" isn't something that one person can really tell another person, because everyone's expectations and limitations are different. That means that "worth" is a moving goal post that can only be measured by the person paying. I have a DVC loan, it has been unequivocally "worth" every penny to me. Even though my loan is not paid off, I have "saved" money on every trip I have taken since becoming a DVC member. When this loan is paid off, I will most likely take out another to buy even more points.

That being said, I carry debt on other things as well. For someone who does not carry debt, I can see it not being worth it to them. For someone that doesn't want to shop around for the best loan rates, I can see financing through Disney not being worth it to them. For someone who never wants more from their vacation accommodations than a value resort, I can see it not being worth it to them. DVC isn't for everyone, and is you ONLY look at it for the monetary benefits, there are a LOT of people that it isn't worth it for. You need to be the judge of that though, because no one can really tell you how they calculate "worth", they can only offer you their opinions.

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We just bought into DVC last October at Animal Kingdom lodge. We did a lot of research and previously I came close to buying in 2008 (am currently kicking myself for not doing so). We are regular moderate resort users and in the past 3 years with 2 trips per year, have spent more money than what we just paid for our membership points. Crunching those numbers along with having an upgrade to deluxe plus all the perks....we were sold! Not having to pay for a room each trip is great and we find the dues not bad at all for what they cover.

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I agree with Kristen's comments. The one thing that I was told when I bought into DVC (from the DVC sales person - who is no longer there), was that paying cash for a cruise would be cheaper than using your points. Again, I think the convenience of using existing points and not trying to convert your points to cash to pay for a cruise/vacation is the tradeoff. I also used the Disney financing option - my initial loan has been paid off. I am paying just under $92/month right now for my association dues @ OKW. A few years ago, DVC gave me the option of extending my OKW ownership period. I elected to take the extension and pay for that (another Disney loan), rather than use that same money to buy into another resort. Not sure if that was the smartest thing or not. My thoughts were that what I paid for my extension would not buy enough points at another resort that would give me enough days.

I personally have not had any issues getting a room at Disneyland. I have had trouble getting a room at the Grand Californian. but always have gotten a room at Paradise Pier or Disneyland Hotel.

I think if you are a frequent vacationer to WDW, then it is definitely worth looking into. We have stayed at WDW and mixed in "non-Disney" excursions as well - as per the other forum posting - we have gone to Busch Gardens, Sea World and Universal.
I think it does take some pre-planning due to the booking windows for your home resort and outside resorts. And I have been lucky with last minute trips as well.

I am not sure how many DVC owners on this site have used their points outside of Disney - RCI or Buena Vista Trading Co. I personally have not, but am thinking of possibly doing something outside of Disney using this exchange one day.

Like Kristen said - it is not for everyone. It is a large commitment to take on. But well worth it in my mind.

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We own. Why? It makes me happy. Sounds silly but I love the thought that we own DVC and will have trips "forever." One trip, and the only off site stay, we were at Bonnet Creek. My husband got sucked into buying even though I wasn't for it. To pacify me he finally agreed to go to a DVC presentation. Thank goodness he saw the light!! We bought into AKL. Luckily we were able to cancel out of the BC one.We have enough points to do two weeks a year in a studio. Maybe when there are times we can only make it once we will try a 1 bedroom. Before DVC we always stayed at a moderate (usually POR). I love having the balcony. Our trips are laid back and so there is always time for reading on the balcony.

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I too own, a recent purchase via resale. I am already floored at the three trips per year I will be able to take staying in deluxe villa as opposed to the ones I took this past year staying offsite in a Courtyard or Fairfield. That, coupled with the savings on the AP makes it a great deal for me.

I have also never stayed in a deluxe resort - totally unaffordable without DVC. mickey

And yep, it is way cool to have a "home" at the Mouse's house.

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So Eeyore,

What do you think about what you've been hearing about DVC? Has it been what you expected to hear?

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Why do we own? We love Disney. I grew up going to WDW for vacation and we always stayed at the Poly.

I was able to take my family a couple of times, but not as often as we would have liked to. We stayed at value resorts and the campground.

But it was not until 5 years ago the My wife and I stayed at a the Poly. My wife was hooked on deluxes from then on. We did take the tour 5 years ago, but decided we wanted to pay cash for DVC.

The plan was to give it 2 years of saving and then purchase. However life got in the way. I ended up with cancer and spent 16 months battling it. It was a time of determining what was most important to me. Being able to take vacations with my wife and creating wonderful memories topped my list. So,one of the things that helped me focus on getting well and getting through treatment was the dream of owning DVC.

We bought DVC last month, and have 2 trips planned already.

Not the usual reason for buying DVC, but it is our reason.

I am cancer free and have been so for 18 months.

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Skidoc wrote:
Why do we own? We love Disney. I grew up going to WDW for vacation and we always stayed at the Poly.

I was able to take my family a couple of times, but not as often as we would have liked to. We stayed at value resorts and the campground.

But it was not until 5 years ago the My wife and I stayed at a the Poly. My wife was hooked on deluxes from then on. We did take the tour 5 years ago, but decided we wanted to pay cash for DVC.

The plan was to give it 2 years of saving and then purchase. However life got in the way. I ended up with cancer and spent 16 months battling it. It was a time of determining what was most important to me. Being able to take vacations with my wife and creating wonderful memories topped my list. So,one of the things that helped me focus on getting well and getting through treatment was the dream of owning DVC.

We bought DVC last month, and have 2 trips planned already.

Not the usual reason for buying DVC, but it is our reason.

I am cancer free and have been so for 18 months.

I'm so happy to hear that you are cancer free! And congrats on making your DVC dream come true! Where did you buy?

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We joined/purchased at OKW back in 1993 (sight unseen) because we love everything about Disney and vacationing at Disney. We were very pleased when we first visited OKW (again, I bought into the DVC via mail (sight unseen)), Wow! Also, at the time they had an incentive that with your DVC stay you could enter the parks for free (up to 4 people in your party) until 31 Dec 1999. Well, as you can imagine, my kids vacationed at Disney every year! Later on, as Disney kept expanding/building at BWR & SSR, we just kept adding. To say the least, we had more than enough points to make us the greatest parents around! biggrin

We've never regretted our purchase and we are always looking forward to our next visit "home". mickey

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The Colonel wrote:
Eeyore wrote:
Thanks everyone! I love hearing the stories. Keep them coming!

Well, my parents could've purchased the vacation club when it first opened for like $4,000....of course that was a lot back then with small kids. Although, they would've owned it for life! I wish they still had that perk! mickey

Our story is we don't currently own. Each time we go, we always get really interested and talk to the sales people, but end up not buying. I think our biggest turn off is the maintenance fees. The up front costs for the actual points isn't that bad, but paying up to $1000 per year or more for maintenance seems like a lot.

Our other concern was figuring how hard it would be to visit other Disney sites with points, such as Disneyland, Hawaii, etc. I heard that the points didn't do much for the cruise?

I have another friend who owns and told me if we couldn't pay cash up front, it isn't worth making payments on? We've considered resale, but who knows if we ever will.

You can buy resale at SSR. Points are cheap and they have low maint fees. Then you can stay wherever you want. Unless you go during Christmas or Easter you will probably get what you want at 7 months out. If you plan to go alot, it makes financial sense.

Shouldn't use points for a cruise. Better to rent out your points and use the cash.

I took Colonel's advice, along with the advice of others here, and put in an offer on a resale purchase at SSR. We are waiting on hearing if we passed ROFR...and I think we'll find out tomorrow (at least that's when the 30 days are up).

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Hey good luck Sparrow. I'm rooting for ya!

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Spook wrote:
I'm so happy to hear that you are cancer free! And congrats on making your DVC dream come true! Where did you buy?

We bought at Bay Lake Tower. Our first trip is scheduled for November. we can't wait.

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We always stayed Moderate and Value, depending on the deal at the time. We preferred the moderate resorts, but were quite happy to stay Value. I had to convince DH that it was totally worth it.

The upgraded resorts are great. We would never stay in a resort like these if paying cash. I finally convinced DH that we could find a contract that had 100% points banked so that we started out ahead of the game. So we bought an SSR resale, with 100% of the points banked. Twice the points for the first year! We bought after that magic fateful date, so we do have a stripped down membership, that we are just fine with. We bought DVC so that we have a place to stay when we are at WDW.

As far as booking other resorts. Just this year, at my 7 Month window (some time at the end of Feb.) I tried to book a 2 br at BWV starting the weekend that F&W starts, for 6 nights. Couldn't get it but booked BCV and wait listed BWV. Then, for the final 2 nights of that trip I wanted to book a studio at BWV and ended up booking at AKV, waitlisting BWV. Then I had to call Member Services about an hour afterward for something and they told me that my 2 br waitlist at BWV had confirmed. (Yes, 1 hour after I booked it) Then a couple weeks ago my studio at BWV, with the same view as the 2br, confirmed. Maybe we won't have to change rooms after we check out of the 2 br now. So what if we do, at least we won't have to change resorts.

Totally worth it for our family. When it is just the 4 of us, we stay in studios. That is just fine for us. We have the flexibility to stay all over the "World" and I don't have to worry about price differences, only how many points I am willing to part with for that trip.

I love the constant trip planning. I love booking and waitlisting. I find it kind of fun to be juggling 2 resorts and not be completely sure which one we will end up with until the trip is almost here. I know it sounds weird. I like that small element of surprise. biggrin

Skidoc wrote:

I am cancer free and have been so for 18 months.

AWESOME! That is a great feat!

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Skidoc wrote:
Spook wrote:
I'm so happy to hear that you are cancer free! And congrats on making your DVC dream come true! Where did you buy?

We bought at Bay Lake Tower. Our first trip is scheduled for November. we can't wait.

If I were ever to buy, I think I'd go with Bay lake tower too. I LOVE the thought of being able to just walk on over to MK awesome
We are going in November as well. Hopefully we'll have great weather!

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The Colonel wrote:
Hey good luck Sparrow. I'm rooting for ya!

Thanks Colonel...and guess what?...we passed ROFR!! stars

We got the email around 8:30 last night letting us know that Disney approved our contract!...I'm beyond excited...can't wait to complete the closing so I can break in whatever points we have remaining in 2013 and borrow a few from 2014 just to be able to go down for a weekend this summer and hear those magical words. mickey

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Kristen K.'s picture
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twilightsparrow wrote:

guess what?...we passed ROFR!! stars

yeah yeah Whooo hoooo!! yeah yeah

That's fantastic! Congrats and welcome to the DVC famliy!!

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yay yay "Welcome Home" Twilightsparrow. clapping clapping

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Congrats Twilightsparrow! Read earlier this week that Disney has exercised ROFR on many resale contracts since their March price increase. Resale prices are on the rise now too. Glad to hear your contract passed!

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twilightsparrow wrote:
The Colonel wrote:
Hey good luck Sparrow. I'm rooting for ya!

Thanks Colonel...and guess what?...we passed ROFR!! stars

We got the email around 8:30 last night letting us know that Disney approved our contract!...I'm beyond excited...can't wait to complete the closing so I can break in whatever points we have remaining in 2013 and borrow a few from 2014 just to be able to go down for a weekend this summer and hear those magical words. mickey

Awesome. You're gonna love it. Book SSR at 11 months and then rebook at your favorite resort at 7 months. Best of both worlds. Congratulations.

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