When does a condo make more sense than DVC?

chalee94

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 14, 2006
Not much crossover between DVC owners (stay at WDW for a few weeks) and condo purchasers (live in Orlando for at least 6 months or so).

There are a lot of options for short term rentals in Orlando - it's overbuilt and so it's difficult to rent a condo to even break even while you are away. (Not sure if the COVID boom in Orlando driving higher home values has had much impact on the short term rental market. Maybe it is changing.)

Timeshares would tend to be a much better option IMO for the 6-10 week scenario that you are proposing. I have a $1 timeshare (low upfront cost) which is easy to trade into nice 2BR/2BA timeshare villas in Orlando. Between the ease of trading into Orlando and the rental options from a timeshare trading company like Interval International, leveraging it for nice stays for 6-8 weeks during non-holiday weeks in the fall/winter is very workable. For price and quality with no need to be onsite on Disney property, timeshares are the more natural cost-effective alternative for a lot of us when presented with your scenario. That's all we're saying.

I looked for other threads and came up with this one...but it also turned into a timeshare discussion...(that's just how it goes) - but it does link to an older thread which discusses some possibilities/costs of condo ownership also:

Purchase DVC or property in Orlando? | The DIS Disney Discussion Forums - DISboards.com
 

DVC Doctor

Member since 2001
DVC Gold
Joined
Mar 19, 2014
Current status- We own just over 800 points, and plan to add on more at some point. Current dues are ~$6K.
Assuming you sold all (with possibly keeping RIV) then that is worth about $100,000 (assume $125pp) and the $6k per year is $500 per month.

You can easily buy a nice condo or townhome that you own (assume you pay less than $250k) and use as much or little as you like, get the real estate depreciation, and also this is a true investment as DVC is a timeshare and not a real investment.
 

robinb

DIS veteran
Joined
Aug 29, 1999
We have discussed but I would only buy in FL to be near Disney. But DH isn’t really that interested in that so we think about SC beach area if we decide to buy a condo to vacation in…and rent out when we are not there.

But, even if we did buy a condo near Disney, we would still keep points,,,,just not many so when we could Spend the night here and there…and Not have to Uber or drive when we wanted to visit Epcot for a festival, etc.
I have a friend who lives in Reunion. Before Covid he and his wife would Uber all the time to Epcot. It wasn’t a big deal.
 

RoseGold

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 21, 2020
There are some people here who are experts in other timeshare systems, but it isn’t really our focus here. If I were considering that route, I would research the heck out of it.

I ultimately decided against the one I had been considering because I didn’t think it was flexible enough for my current style of travel, and I didn’t have a good exit strategy for it.

DVC has a large advantage over other timeshares with how easy resale is. Of course, this was helped by DVC’s management and relationship with the parks, both of which I have serious concerns with right now.
 

Travel60

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 8, 2012
We've owned DVC since practically the beginning (currently 1200 pts). About 7 years ago we bought very nice 2 BR condo on Florida coast --- DH idea, he said it was a 3-year test of whether we liked.it. What he didn't say was "...liked it enough to stay 6+ months so we could move residency from our high tax state".

I think the longest we stayed was 3 1/2 months. I want to spend Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter with my kids/grandkids and I'm not spending the hot humid summer down there. Hard to get 6+ months.

Another consideration for us was management of the condo association. At our first meeting after buying, financial reports were presented that made NO sense. DH got involved on board and we learned how bad it was. Actually in violation of Florida condo laws. Also learned that condo management companies are either quite expensive or totally incompetent or both. Our association upgraded (paid more) for an on-site manager (really a dues collection and bill paying clerk). DH trained at least 3 of them but the management company paid them so poorly and had such antiquated systems that they soon quit.

Then there was contention with some owners over every penny of dues increase. These are wealthy people who are used to owning or managing their own business and are not used to working with others and consensus building. We actually had to get lawyers and engineers involved to perform the engineer-recommended waterproofing (to prevent what happened to the condo that collapsed a couple of months back).

We sold in early 2020. Several other snowbirds who bought about when we did have also sold since then. We've used our DVC points to isolate at HH, VB, and SSR during Jan, Feb, Mar.

If I was going to buy in Florida again, it would be a single family home not near Orlando and not near the beach due to climate change and rising water tables. But, I'd rather be in Hilton Head or Savannah.
 

Bjaiken77

Mouseketeer
Joined
Feb 19, 2021
This is interesting, as we were looking at purchasing a condo in FL before DVC entered our field of vision. The reason a condo didn’t make sense for us is because of the time/effort/money/headache aspect.

We are smack dab in the middle of our careers. After we travel to visit our families and do some vacation activities outside FL, we only would have a couple weeks to spend in FL every year. DVC was a cleaner way for us to still get down to FL and stay every year without the hassle and maintenance cost associated with a condo. We may feel differently as we approach retirement.
 

HappyDisneyWife

Powered by pixie dust... and espresso ;)
Joined
Jan 5, 2020
Not much crossover between DVC owners (stay at WDW for a few weeks) and condo purchasers (live in Orlando for at least 6 months or so).

There are a lot of options for short term rentals in Orlando - it's overbuilt and so it's difficult to rent a condo to even break even while you are away. (Not sure if the COVID boom in Orlando driving higher home values has had much impact on the short term rental market. Maybe it is changing.)

Timeshares would tend to be a much better option IMO for the 6-10 week scenario that you are proposing. I have a $1 timeshare (low upfront cost) which is easy to trade into nice 2BR/2BA timeshare villas in Orlando. Between the ease of trading into Orlando and the rental options from a timeshare trading company like Interval International, leveraging it for nice stays for 6-8 weeks during non-holiday weeks in the fall/winter is very workable. For price and quality with no need to be onsite on Disney property, timeshares are the more natural cost-effective alternative for a lot of us when presented with your scenario. That's all we're saying.

I looked for other threads and came up with this one...but it also turned into a timeshare discussion...(that's just how it goes) - but it does link to an older thread which discusses some possibilities/costs of condo ownership also:

Purchase DVC or property in Orlando? | The DIS Disney Discussion Forums - DISboards.com
Thanks very much! I guess it just seemed like with all the people in the 1000 point club, and discussions about “Disney retirement plans” there would be more people out there who’ve considered the 2, since DVC costs more …& yes, we’d have a sizable down pay for a condo/home if we sold all our points (which I am not ready to do yet). Just was curious about others’ thoughts on how they continue deciding to add on. And I can definitely see the value in some nearby timeshares 👍
 

HappyDisneyWife

Powered by pixie dust... and espresso ;)
Joined
Jan 5, 2020
Assuming you sold all (with possibly keeping RIV) then that is worth about $100,000 (assume $125pp) and the $6k per year is $500 per month.

You can easily buy a nice condo or townhome that you own (assume you pay less than $250k) and use as much or little as you like, get the real estate depreciation, and also this is a true investment as DVC is a timeshare and not a real investment.
It’s true. And that’s what gets my wheels turning every time we add on, yet every time we have still decided it still made more sense for us to continue with DVC …but I think we’re coming to the edge of our “comfort zone” in that respect and curious how others decide it’s worth it.
 

HappyDisneyWife

Powered by pixie dust... and espresso ;)
Joined
Jan 5, 2020
There are some people here who are experts in other timeshare systems, but it isn’t really our focus here. If I were considering that route, I would research the heck out of it.

I ultimately decided against the one I had been considering because I didn’t think it was flexible enough for my current style of travel, and I didn’t have a good exit strategy for it.

DVC has a large advantage over other timeshares with how easy resale is. Of course, this was helped by DVC’s management and relationship with the parks, both of which I have serious concerns with right now.
Thanks for your input! I agree that DVC has a serious leg up on other timeshares, and I am also curious to see how current changes affect the future (of DVC & the parks- both!).
 

CarolMN

DVC Co-Moderator
Moderator
Joined
Aug 18, 1999
Before you buy a condo, insist on seeing past board minutes as well as the annual budget, bylaws & history of any special assessments, and especially the current status of the reserves. A LOT of the associations have kept fees low by not funding adequate reserves / necessary maintenance. Don't buy someone else's problems!!
 

havoc315

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 22, 2010
It's really apples to oranges.

But in terms of pure finances, a condo is the better investment:
- Condo you can rent out whenever you are not using it, year round.
-Condo is not limited to the duration of a DVC contract. It will appreciate in value more, and unlike DVC, the value won't disappear at the end of the contract.

Buy a $250,000 condo today.. in 50 years, it may be worth $1-$2 million or more.
Buy $250,000 worth of DVC points... in 50 years, they will be worthless.
 

HappyDisneyWife

Powered by pixie dust... and espresso ;)
Joined
Jan 5, 2020
We've owned DVC since practically the beginning (currently 1200 pts). About 7 years ago we bought very nice 2 BR condo on Florida coast --- DH idea, he said it was a 3-year test of whether we liked.it. What he didn't say was "...liked it enough to stay 6+ months so we could move residency from our high tax state".

I think the longest we stayed was 3 1/2 months. I want to spend Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter with my kids/grandkids and I'm not spending the hot humid summer down there. Hard to get 6+ months.

Another consideration for us was management of the condo association. At our first meeting after buying, financial reports were presented that made NO sense. DH got involved on board and we learned how bad it was. Actually in violation of Florida condo laws. Also learned that condo management companies are either quite expensive or totally incompetent or both. Our association upgraded (paid more) for an on-site manager (really a dues collection and bill paying clerk). DH trained at least 3 of them but the management company paid them so poorly and had such antiquated systems that they soon quit.

Then there was contention with some owners over every penny of dues increase. These are wealthy people who are used to owning or managing their own business and are not used to working with others and consensus building. We actually had to get lawyers and engineers involved to perform the engineer-recommended waterproofing (to prevent what happened to the condo that collapsed a couple of months back).

We sold in early 2020. Several other snowbirds who bought about when we did have also sold since then. We've used our DVC points to isolate at HH, VB, and SSR during Jan, Feb, Mar.

If I was going to buy in Florida again, it would be a single family home not near Orlando and not near the beach due to climate change and rising water tables. But, I'd rather be in Hilton Head or Savannah.
Thank you so much for sharing!! Wow. Owning a 2nd property can definitely be a challenge. We figured as long as our DVC dues were less than we’d pay to keep up a vacation home, we’d be coming out ahead… but reminding me of your issues with the HOA does make me value the convenience of DVC eve more. Thankfully you kept your points & have been able to continue enjoying their use!!
 

HappyDisneyWife

Powered by pixie dust... and espresso ;)
Joined
Jan 5, 2020
It's really apples to oranges.

But in terms of pure finances, a condo is the better investment:
- Condo you can rent out whenever you are not using it, year round.
-Condo is not limited to the duration of a DVC contract. It will appreciate in value more, and unlike DVC, the value won't disappear at the end of the contract.

Buy a $250,000 condo today.. in 50 years, it may be worth $1-$2 million or more.
Buy $250,000 worth of DVC points... in 50 years, they will be worthless.
Yes, it definitely is (🍏🍊)… and you’re right on all points, but I guess that’s why I’m asking why people continue to choose DVC (well over 1000 points), or if they finally switch “to the other side” and buy one of the many nice condos nearby- just curious to the thinking. We know how we got where we are points-wise, and we’re happy with our choice so far… but knowing we want to buy more always makes me re-evaluate a little.

My question was posed mainly out of curiosity for other people’s reasoning… not a “what should I do” type post 😉
 

havoc315

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 22, 2010
Yes, it definitely is (🍏🍊)… and you’re right on all points, but I guess that’s why I’m asking why people continue to choose DVC (well over 1000 points), or if they finally switch “to the other side” and buy one of the many nice condos nearby- just curious to the thinking. We know how we got where we are points-wise, and we’re happy with our choice so far… but knowing we want to buy more always makes me re-evaluate a little.

My question was posed mainly out of curiosity for other people’s reasoning… not a “what should I do” type post 😉
Plenty of non-financial advantages to DVC. Variety of accommodations, including non WDW. Not being responsible for upkeep. Being on-property. Getting WDW on-site perks.

It’s almost like asking, what’s better… renting a cabin by a secluded lake, or booking a hotel suite in Paris. Totally different things.

Purely in terms of $$$, a condo is a better investment. But there are other factors besides $$$
 

HappyDisneyWife

Powered by pixie dust... and espresso ;)
Joined
Jan 5, 2020
Plenty of non-financial advantages to DVC. Variety of accommodations, including non WDW. Not being responsible for upkeep. Being on-property. Getting WDW on-site perks.

It’s almost like asking, what’s better… renting a cabin by a secluded lake, or booking a hotel suite in Paris. Totally different things.

Purely in terms of $$$, a condo is a better investment. But there are other factors besides $$$
Fair enough 😉

ps. I’d probably take the Paris suite, while my hubs would take the lake… can we do a split stay?! 😂😂
 

RoseGold

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 21, 2020
Thanks very much! I guess it just seemed like with all the people in the 1000 point club, and discussions about “Disney retirement plans” there would be more people out there who’ve considered the 2, since DVC costs more …& yes, we’d have a sizable down pay for a condo/home if we sold all our points (which I am not ready to do yet).
I have a whole lot of points. Certainly enough to have bought a condo.

I chose DVC because I only wanted to hold a few years, I wanted to go all out while I still had a princess, and I wanted a way out that wouldn't cost too much. If I were to sell all my DVC right now, I'd be up five figures, even with the dues paid.

I'm still open to DVC for the concept of a week or two in Florida in half-retirement, something like that. a 1BR at SSR doesn't seem so bad to work from.

I lived in several Airbnb/Vrbo during Covid, with a storage unit and a mail service. It was actually pretty fun. With the cost of those kinds of rentals, I'm not sure I ever see myself buying anything I don't want to stay in several months of every year.
 

Travel60

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 8, 2012
We never rented out our condo....our association rules allowed only one rental per year with a minimum time (maybe 30 days). They didn't want the condo to turn into a hotel. Plus, I furnished it nicely and renters don't take care of your things like you do. Something to consider if you think you will buy and rent.
 

Paul Stupin

New DVC Member
Joined
May 8, 2016
We have discussed but I would only buy in FL to be near Disney. But DH isn’t really that interested in that so we think about SC beach area if we decide to buy a condo to vacation in…and rent out when we are not there.

But, even if we did buy a condo near Disney, we would still keep points,,,,just not many so when we could Spend the night here and there…and Not have to Uber or drive when we wanted to visit Epcot for a festival, etc.
My wife and I thought about it as well, but ultimately decided that nothing we could find would match the fun, theming and sense of total escape you get on property.
 

Connect

TODAY'S HEADLINES

Top