Maintenance fees get a lot of bad press and so it is worth clarifying what they actually cover and their purpose.
Firstly, maintenance fees make it easier for the owner. If you had opted for full ownership you would have to organize your own maintenance. By buying a timeshare, you divide the costs of maintaining your property and avoid the hassle of contracting personnel, which can be very tricky in a foreign country where you don’t speak the language.
Maintenance fees also protect your investment by repairing any damages incurred by yourself of other owners, preventing wear and tear and the general decline of your property. Within your particular timeshare unit, a percentage of the fees will cover the replacement of utensils, appliances and furniture to guarantee that when you arrive, your apartment is a wonderful as the day you bought it. In addition, your maintenance fees cover the costs of the upkeep of common areas such as the pool, spa, club house etc.
A common complaint is that maintenance fees increase; however, with a little logic one can see that such increases are inevitable in accordance with inflation, cost of manpower and the kinds of repairs that will need to be made as a property gets older. Reputable companies will maintain the increases at a reasonable level, but many new companies have been criticized for high increases.
Finally, never stop paying your maintenance fees. As they are a legal requirement implemented to protect all owners, you may face prosecution if you were to simply stop paying your maintenance fees. Similarly, you would not be able to access your property and would lose out on your original investment. If you can no longer visit your timeshare, you would be better off renting or lending your timeshare to people you know than breaching your contract.