Disney Vacation Club Discuss Choosing Your Home Resort in the Vacation Planning forums; One of the first decisions a prospective DVC member has to make, after deciding to buy into DVC, is which resort they should purchase and make their home resort. DVC ...
Choosing Your Home Resort
One of the first decisions a prospective DVC member has to make, after deciding to buy into DVC, is which resort they should purchase and make their home resort. DVC members who wish to add-on face the similar issue of choosing which resort to add-on points at.
Prospective DVC members may not be aware that they are not limited to just the resorts that DVC is actively marketing, but that it is possible to buy into any of the DVC resorts, even the older “sold-out” resorts. You can buy these resorts on the resales market, as well as direct from Disney (once you convince your sales guide that you simply are not interested in the resorts DVC is actively marketing).
Now, what factors should one consider in choosing their home resort?
The most popular philosophy, and the one I personally adhere to, is “Buy Where You Want to Stay”. If you really love a particular resort, then buy into it. There are some people who have a particular fondness for a resort and really want to stay at that particular resort, and they would be unhappy if they were not able to book there. These folks should buy where they want to stay, provided that they can reliably plan and book to take advantage of the 11-month home resort booking advantage.
If a specific resort (theme/style, location, villa type and/or view) is important to you and you want the 11-month home resort booking advantage, then buy into that resort. The need for the home resort booking advantage varies by resort, villa type, view and time of year that you most often vacation.
I fall into this camp, as I am a planner and always book my WDW vacations at the 11-month window so that I can stay at the resorts that I love – BCV, BWV, VWL, and AKV.
If you don’t have a particular fondness for a certain resort, or if you’re not a planner and anticipate always booking at the 7-month window (or less), then one of the next two philosophies may be best for you.
One alternative philosophy states “Buy Where You Wouldn't Mind Staying”. This view states that people should avoid buying at a resort that they really wouldn't be happy staying at. Since the resort you buy into will be your default location should your other options fall through at the 7-month window, you should pick a resort that you would wouldn’t mind staying at; i.e., it would not make you unhappy.
Finally, others promote the idea of “Buy the best deal”; that is, whatever resort has the lowest overall cost. If any resort is fine, then buy where you get the best overall deal for total cost of ownership. Recognize that the variables for that depend on purchase cost (price, closing costs and finance charges), annual dues, expected length of ownership and likely resale value upon disposition. Keep in mind that any savings in upfront purchase cost will probably be offset by the difference in maintenance fees.
One other factor to consider is the contract length. Some resorts (VWL, BWV, BCV, HHI, and VB) have significantly shorter contracts than SSR and AKV (and now perhaps OKW). If you are older, this may not be a factor. However, if you are young, then the additional years may play a role in your decision-making. For me, I would rather have 35 years at a place that I love than 50 years at a place I would not be happy with.
How about you? What factors did you consider? Are there other recommendations or advice that you would give to prospective DVC members?
DVC Member - My Home Resorts: BLT, BWV
When we became DVC members we choose SSR because that was the one they were selling. I do like the location of the resort and the fact that we'll own it for 49 years. If I was buying today I think I'd have a hard time picking between SSR and AKV. I'm actually hoping that I can get 2 nights at AKV next December before we stay at SSR for our trip.
I will say the one main thing that bothers me most about DVC is that members pay a lot of money to be part of it and the perks aren't that great. It seems that DVC members should be givin a little better discount on items and more discounts throughout the parks. For example, DVC members can get discounted tickets to MNSSHP BUT only on certain days. Why can't we get a discount on all the days? And as much as I like getting free stuff in the mail I hated the picture/painting thing they mailed to members last year. I rather have had a shirt, luggage tag, mug....something I can actually use.
Maybe things will get better down the road.
I would definitely say buy where you want to stay---particularly if it's at one of the smaller resorts such as Wilderness Lodge or Beach Club.
Re: Choosing Your Home Resort
Well economy has picked up for us and I'm looking to see if any resale deals for about 100 pts. I've stayed ot SSR and OKW and like them both. In september I'm staying at AKL snd going to see if I would want to buy there. I'll probably get into WL sometime later in the year or early next year to see if there. If I get a real good deal I would probably jump for SSR or OKW now if it became avaiable and just work around the other resorts when I could get in.
05/2013 Animal Kingdom Lodge
01/2013 Beach Club Resort
11/2012 Saratoga Springs
04/2012 Old Key West
02/2012 Animal Kingdom Lodge
12/2011 Downtown Disney Buena Vista Palace
09/2011 Wilderness Lodge
05/2011 Animal Kingdom Lodge
09/2010 Animal Kingdom Lodge
05/2010 Bonnet Creek
10/2009 Coronado/Old Key West
05/2009 Saratoga Springs
03/2009 Old Key West
01/2009 Saratoga Springs
05/2008 Caribbean Resort
11/2007 off site
Re: Choosing Your Home Resort
For my first DVC purchase I went with the old adage, buy where you want to stay and be able to book at 11 months. Food and wine was the one where I really cared where so I wanted an EPCOT resort.