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Bermuda Timeshare Set to Undergo Reform?

Bermuda Timeshare Set to Undergo Reform?

Though mention of timeshare was conspicuously absent from this year’s Throne Speech, Bermuda’s higher-ups say that reform of timeshare legislation is in the post.

Reform of the laws governing timeshare in Bermuda is viewed by many as glaringly overdue. The last piece of legislation to address timeshare ownership was passed in 1981, which means that those owners who haven’t renewed their leases are approaching the end of their tenure. Under current laws, timeshares are good for 25 years, though the option to renew is available.

Though timeshare wasn’t one of the items under discussion in this year’s Throne Speech, legislation is now being prepared to allow owners to own Bermuda timeshares for longer periods. This article from the Royal Gazette describes some proposed Bermuda timeshare reforms.

Bermuda is looking for ways to augment tourism revenues. Hopefully they consider passing this legislation, which would bring Bermuda timeshare into the 21st century. Here’s another article about the many opportunities and challenges that Bermuda timeshare and resort developers are facing.

The Changing of the Economic Guard

The Changing of the Economic Guard

A new Chairman is scheduled to assume command of the Federal Reserve. How will this affect the timeshare market?

Do you remember who was Chairman of the Federal Reserve before Alan Greenspan spent eighteen years in the job?

Neither does anyone else.

Former Federal Reserve Chairman, Paul A. Volcker, has not slipped from our memories because he failed to leave his mark on the American economy. Volcker in fact, is credited with taking runaway US inflation from an ugly 9% in 1980 to a highly tolerable 3.2% by 1983.

It’s just that Alan Greenspan has been the chief watchdog of the American economy for such a long time—two and a half Bushes, one Reagan, and a Clinton, to be exact. We apparently assumed that despite the absence of a clutch bag and a tiara, Greenspan, was like one of the British royals, and would hold the job forever.

Not true. On January 31, 2006, Alan Greenspan will pass the torch to Chairman-nominee, Ben Bernanke. Like Greenspan, Volcker, and all who have gone before him, Bernanke will face the challenges of balancing healthy growth with an appropriately healthy measure of inflation.

The strategy is pretty simple: when prices go too high, the Fed pushes up interest rates. We stop buying things on borrowed money, and prices come back down. Of course, it’s not really simple at all. Especially since the US Federal Reserve doesn’t actually control any part of our economy except interest rates. The ups and downs in our financial system are a mixture of backlash response to changing interest rates and pure chance.

Paul Volcker accomplished no monetary miracle other than the predictable result that occurred when the Reserve temporarily kicked interest rates into double-digit numbers in order to bring inflationary growth under control once again. Alan Greenspan has been using this same technique in moderation throughout his time at the helm, and using it aggressively since June 2004, when the Federal Reserve started tightening the screws on borrowing and lending.

In the summer of 2004, the federal funds rate (the interest rate at which banks loan money to each other) was at an amazing low 1%. The prime lending rate (the interest rate at which banks loan money to consumers) was sitting at only 4%. So Greenspan and his merry men began nudging up the interest rates, in tiny, palatable quarter points. And Bernanke will have no choice, but to follow the plan—at least for a little while. After all, he can’t start out appearing to be soft on inflation.

If you are buying real estate—whether it is a new house, office building, vacation home, or timeshare property—and you are planning to borrow money for your purchase, it is probably better to take out that loan now than to wait until the first or second quarters of 2006. On the flip side, if you are the seller, this may be a good time to get your property on the market, while buyers can take advantage of current interest rates.

No real magic ever happens at the Federal Reserve. No one gets sawn in half or even pulls a scraggly rabbit out of a top hat. But when it comes to juggling acts, Bernanke has his work cut out for him filling the shoes of Greenspan and Volcker.

New “Timeshare News” Channel: A Work in Progress

New “Timeshare News” Channel: A Work in Progress

Combining results from sources like Google News and Yahoo! News, our new Timeshare News channel will provide instant access to the latest news stories from the world of timeshare.

One of the great things about our blog software is that it allows for the hosting of separate channels, in which we can create syndicated feeds from specific search results. By making subtle adjustments to the query criteria, we can offer a channel composed of the latest timeshare news found on the biggest online news sites.

The end result is our new “Timeshare News” channel. We’re still tweaking the query criteria, so bear in mind it could be several days before we get the kind of results we want. At this time, the feed is picking up a variety of old stories, some of which are seemingly random. This means we have to adjust our filter to allow for only the freshest, most relevant news stories in this channel. You can view our progress on this channel by clicking the “Timeshare News” link in the upper-right-hand corner of the Timeshare Owners’ Blog homepage.

Once these details are finalized, this channel has the potential to gather an impressive quantity of timeshare news onto one syndicated webpage. Ultimately, one will have a hard time finding a higher concentration of timeshare news stories anywhere else on the internet.

Stay tuned for more upcoming new features from the Timeshare Owners’ Blog!

Are Timeshare Resorts Beneficial to Local Economies?

Are Timeshare Resorts Beneficial to Local Economies?

According to a recent online article from the Virginia Gazette, the answer is “yes”.

A recent online article in the Virginia Gazette makes for a good read on a cool autumn night.

Joe Cantrell, vice president for finance at King’s Creek Plantation, answers a variety of questions posed by the Gazette. A decent amount of ARDA data is presented here, along with King’s Crest’s own findings. From what I’ve seen in the industry, I think that this depiction of Williamsburg timeshares could be highly analogous to the state of time-sharing properties anywhere.

Of particular interest is the discussion on the “point of saturation” – a hypothetical condition in which a particular area is over-developed to the point of outpacing the existing demand for timeshares. Though such a condition is not likely to occur anywhere anytime soon, it is somewhat refreshing to see frank discussion on this subject. Then again, it’s nice to absorb timeshare information that doesn’t rely overmuch on “warm sandy beaches” and “ice-cold mai tais”…