December 18, 2010 — When the state of the U.S. economy in the early 70s made it difficult for condo developers to sell full ownership ‘homes in the sky’, mostly in the Southern United States, some savvy developers adopted the popular timeshare model from Europe and began converting their inventory into intervals.
That was more than 30 years ago and a lot has changed over the decades. Yet in a December 17th, 2009 article in the SunHerald.com a piece written by Mary Perez and titled “Owners hope to recoup investment” says that in the Biloxi-Gulfport area of Mississippi “Condo sales and rentals are so slow that owners at The Villas at Ocean Club in Biloxi are considering timesharing as a way to keep their units and recoup their investment.”
According to the article the condo market in the area has “tanked” so badly those units that had sold (before the big crash) for around “$290,000” can’t even fetch “$75-$80-K today”. Ouch!
Apparently things are moving forward, as the article states: “The Biloxi Planning Commission voted Thursday in favor of a proposal to change the use of the beach front tower from condominiums to timeshare units.”
Although the timeshare industry is dominated by the ‘big players’ these days, I suspect that there are many opportunities across the United States for entrepreneurial minded timeshare types who could approach a whole bunch of distressed properties, pitch the HOAs, etc. and cut some incredible marketing and sales deals.
As Leslie Granberry, treasurer of the property owners’ association at The Villas at Ocean Club, so eloquently said: “This is the most logical way to help everyone out”. And that sentiment these days, even from property owners, managers, etc. who might once have loathed the timeshare product/industry just might create the best environment and opportunity for a new wave of progressive out-of-the-box thinking developers to seize the day!
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