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Don’t get suckered into buying a timeshare

Dear Dave,

My wife and I recently sat through a timeshare pitch at my mom and dad's community as a favour to them. We're trying to get out of debt and take control of our money, so when the salesman said we could put the whole thing on a credit card, I told him about you and your plan. He then said that he used to be your personal financial adviser and had sold you three timeshares in the past. Is this true, or are timeshares a bad idea?

— Jeremy

Dear Jeremy,

A timeshare salesman said he had been my personal financial adviser? Wow! It takes real guts, and a bunch of dishonest nerve, to spread that kind of garbage around.

No, I've never in my life owned a timeshare. I've made just about every financial mistake known to man, except that one. I've also never made the mistake of having a timeshare salesman as my financial adviser. This sounds like the kind of guy who you know is lying if his lips are moving!

I'm really sorry if your mom and dad already hooked up with this bunch. Timeshares, even with honest salespeople, are just straight-up stupid. Never buy a timeshare! The customer dissatisfaction rate with those things is sky-high, and you're pretty much stuck once you buy one. They're almost impossible to sell, because you don't really own anything.

For the money you spend to buy a timeshare, you could take several nice vacations and stay in some pretty decent places. People get suckered in to these things all the time, Jeremy, but it's a really bad idea. Don't do it!

— Dave

***

Dear Dave,

Why do you recommend that newlyweds not buy a house during the first year of marriage?

— Laura

Dear Laura,

Believe it or not, the first year of marriage is pretty tough. You'll both have to make lots of adjustments and get used to the new schedules and habits, likes and dislikes, that go along with marriage. You need to spend that first year getting to know each other even better, and exploring and developing your relationship as husband and wife. Running out and buying stuff like curtains and furniture — or making major life decisions like buying a house — can wait.

Devote the first year to deeper, more important things. In the process, make sure you're on the same page emotionally and financially. Develop a plan to make your hopes and dreams come true, and start piling up a bunch of cash for the future. Then, a year or two down the road, you can start the house-hunting process. There will still be great homes at good prices, plus you'll both have a better idea of what you want for the future!

— Dave

Dave Ramsey is America's trusted voice on money and business, and CEO of Ramsey Solutions. He has authored seven bestselling books. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 12 million listeners each week on 575 radio stations and multiple digital platforms. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.

Timeshare peril: once you buy a timeshare, it's difficult to get out

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Published September 24, 2016 at 9:00 am (Updated September 23, 2016 at 6:34 pm)

Don’t get suckered into buying a timeshare

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