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Old 12-21-2012, 04:40 AM   #61
disneynutz


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Originally Posted by BillyBuckner View Post
It seems like the discussion has drifted into whether I should buy DVC or not and whether I should stay in 2BR or 1BR. Thanks for that info, but it's not the question I really want to answer.

To redefine the question:

I want to know how hard it is to book the following room types at 7 month window, if staying early to mid Jan, early Dec, or mid Nov.

For each category do you think I can get the room at 7 months (almost always, sometimes, almost never)?

1.) BWV 1 BR (any view, but I budget for preferred)
2.) BCV 1 BR
3.) BLT 1BR standard view
4.) BLT 1 BR lake view
5.) AKV 1 BR savannah view

6.) BWV 2 BR standard
7.) BLT 2 BR standard
IMO don't hope for availability, buy where you love to stay.

Availability is fluid, new owners are added by the thousands each year and they are all competing for rooms. Disney adds and changes programs and attractions at WDW all of the time and that can affect attendance. At one time there wasn't a F&W, F&G, marathons. hard ticket events, and others. There has also been thoughts that DVC will change the point charts for December and that may change attendance.

The fewer the number of rooms in any category and the less the number of points required will book first. The studios will book before 2 bedrooms.

Allot can change during your period of ownership, better to be safe than sorry.

One last thought, allergies can be better of worse during different times of the year and are affected by how much rain and how windy it is. These factors all contribute to low pollen counts or high pollen counts. Expect the worse and enjoy the best.

Bill
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Old 12-21-2012, 06:11 AM   #62
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IMO don't hope for availability, buy where you love to stay.

Well... There are 3 places that I would like to stay at one time or another. I've been told by the people here not to buy contracts at 3 different resorts so I'm trying to gather data to pick the right one (or two) to buy at.

I think I know the answer (BWV if available) but I'm trying to validate that answer with poll data.
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Old 12-21-2012, 06:24 AM   #63
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Well... There are 3 places that I would like to stay at one time or another. I've been told by the people here not to buy contracts at 3 different resorts so I'm trying to gather data to pick the right one (or two) to buy at.

I think I know the answer (BWV if available) but I'm trying to validate that answer with poll data.
We bought at 5 resorts and rotate our stays booking at 11 months with a 99.99% chance of getting what we want. Over the years we have settled on BWV and VWL being our favorites and each resort has easy access to the parks we visit most often.

You really won't know what you like until you stay there a few times during different times of the year.

Bill
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Old 12-21-2012, 06:34 AM   #64
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So what you seem to be saying is that a Studio or 1BR will sleep 4 (2 comfortably) and a 2BR will sleep 8 (but really only 4 comfortably)?
I plan larger family trips (24-40) about every 18 months on average. I assume a couple to a real bed with no more than 2 to a room with BA access. I only count the pullouts (if I have no choice even then) for single teens or max 2 kids. As I've stated on DIS before, studios are generally aimed at 2, 1 BR at 2-3 and 2 BR at 6. Even then some 2 BR with DVC aren't reasonable for 6 adults because of the pull out as the second BR. In your situation I would assume a 2 BR long term. I would only consider 5 in a 1 BR with younger kids at AKV, BLT or possibly at OKW if your only request is for the units that have direct BA access through the Laundry. While there is a price difference, it's less than a third more and well worth it if you're going that far anyway.
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Old 12-21-2012, 06:42 AM   #65
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Originally Posted by BillyBuckner View Post
Well... There are 3 places that I would like to stay at one time or another. I've been told by the people here not to buy contracts at 3 different resorts so I'm trying to gather data to pick the right one (or two) to buy at.

I think I know the answer (BWV if available) but I'm trying to validate that answer with poll data.
If you want to stay at those only, BWV will likely be the best choice because of the standard view option, AKV the best value because of the longer RTU. However, if you plan accordingly, reserve at 7 months, don't need a specialty unit; any resort should be successful over time. You'd just have to stay at other resort part of the time. As for multiple home resorts, I'm all for it, however you do not intend to buy enough points to work well for your planned usage patterns.

I'd suggest you keep it simple, don't overbuy and see what your actual preferences are once you get experience. Or even better, a stay or 2 on rental to try it out prior to buying.
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Old 12-21-2012, 08:26 AM   #66
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Oh, one last thing....

The thing with availability and seven months - there is almost always SOME availability - and people do get lucky - but there is a huge difference between seven months on the dot (and even then, you may find a room unavailable during the middle of your stay - or even booked up before the seven month window opens) and six and a half months. Often, if you don't call promptly, rooms are gone - especially for the smaller/more popular resorts or more popular room types and at high demand DVC times of year.

There is also a lot of variation depending on your flexibility - are you willing to waitlist, or call often? Will you move mid-vacation if you can only get two days here and one day there? Are you looking for one night because your chances of that one night being available are way better than and entire week - or longer - being available? Will you move your vacation a few weeks to get the room you want? When BCV with SAB isn't available, do you book to SSR for the vacation without it really bothering you because after all, its still Disney, or are you - and your kids - heartbroken. Do you stress out about reservations and spend the weeks before the seven month window waking up in the middle of the night with "I hope I can get into BLT!"

We almost always book home at eleven months because I am a member of a few of those "seven months doesn't work well for me" groups - I stress. I'm not flexible - by the time seven months rolls around my plans are set. While I have moved mid vacation, I'd rather not be forced into it. And I HATE SSR and don't want to stay there (its a lovely resort for other people and plenty of people love it - and don't like my home - but SSR is the resort you are most likely to end up at when everything else is booked).
All good observations.

I also stress over the 11 and 7 month marks. I book our home resort at 11 months at least once a year and have been known to move at 7 months. Since we go more often and our schedule is fairly flexible it's kind of fun to see what's available on shorter notice and grab what we can. Waitlist has rarely failed to come through and can usually piece together a full week without moving.

For instance, we had the 1st week of Dec booked at SSR but cancelled when 2 nights at BLT standard popped up for Jan 7-9. Snagged a couple of nights at SSR afterwards and waitlisted for a few more. Found out that Osborne Lights will still be up until Jan 6, so grabbed 2 nights at OKW on the front end.

So now we will have 9 nights at WDW at 3 different resorts. Sure we will have to move twice but each resort offers their own set of joys and challenges. All part of the experience. Maybe not very relaxing but at least we'll be there.

We also have a long weekend booked in May at AKV and 11 nights in September split between BLT and BCV. I feel we are using our membership to the fullest......for us.

Last edited by DizBub; 12-24-2012 at 11:44 PM.
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Old 12-21-2012, 09:25 AM   #67
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I'll call at seven months and if I can switch into something I want with no hassle, I've done it. But we are happy at home and don't usually bother. I've seen a lot of posts where people really seem to be stressing about getting into a certain resort at seven months.
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Old 12-24-2012, 11:18 AM   #68
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My first thought is that since you have not stayed at BWV or an Epcot resort - or at any of the resorts that are next to parks or offer the Deluxe amenities - that it's really hard to predict what you will end up preferring. Because of that I'd skip the 3 resort scenario and pick one of what you think will be preferred and go only with that and look to book at the other resorts at 7 months. An assumption I am using is based on your previous travel and that you do have some flexibility and won't be crushed if you can't get in where you hoped to change to. By keeping your points at one resort you will also allow yourself more flexibility at different sized accommodations if you find a 1BR is too confining.

Also, since the plan is to not cover your whole 7-10 night stay with DVC points you already are working in one move. By adding a 3rd move with a split between DVC's it will be cumbersome and vacation time consuming IMO.
I agree! Buy all the points at one resort. BWV is priced right and has standard-view rooms.

Also, since the OP is planning longer trips, there is nothing wrong with spending a few days on site and a few days off. Orlando has lots of really cheap places to stay. You pay a premium to stay at WDW and I think I would get tired of paying that premium after about five days.
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Old 12-25-2012, 11:19 PM   #69
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I recommend buying one contract if 150 points is what you would like to have. Two resorts would be ok if you want to alternate resorts or have split stays, but it will be more difficult finding resale contracts of that size.

We are a family of five and own 150 points at OKW (purchased when my kids were 5, 7 and 9). We planned to start off staying in 1BRs until the kids were older, but that plan quickly changed. We switched our first DVC reservation to a 2BR and have never looked back. We would be fine staying in a 1BR, but the 2nd bathroom and real beds for everyone is so very nice. We are staying a few nights at AKV in April (no problem booking standard view right at 7 months, btw, although I once tried to switch to AKV over Thanksgiving week and could not get a standard view for all nights) and even though Kidani 1BRs officially sleep five and have 2 bathrooms, we chose to use points for the 2nd bedroom instead of savannah view in a 1 BR. We have stayed at POR and a couple of the deluxe resorts that sleep five in a standard room, and I would definitely choose a 1BR DVC villa at any resort for more than a couple of nights now that we spend more time relaxing at the resort.

We normally prefer staying at our home resort, so I don't have a lot of experience with availability at 7 months, but from what I've read there are times when it can be difficult to get certain resorts and room types at 7 months. The week after Thanksgiving and early December is supposedly one of those times, as well as F&W at the EP resorts. I would not count on being able to book standard view at BWV or BLT at seven months, but it does sometimes happen. If you are looking to conserve points staying standard view at BWV or BLT, then I would buy at one of those resorts.

Good luck with your decision!

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Old 01-04-2013, 04:36 PM   #70
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There has been a lot of good advice, but I would buy where u think you stay the most or what resort you like the best
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Old 01-04-2013, 05:19 PM   #71
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There has been a lot of good advice, but I would buy where u think you stay the most or what resort you like the best
Thanks, I certainly understand that point.

My dilemma was that there are 3 places I think I would like to stay at one point or another so I wondered if there is an optimal strategy.

I like small crowds, Christmas decorations, and cool weather. I want to do most trips in Nov/Dec (avoiding Thanksgiving and Christmas/Nee Year) but could also consider Jan 1-Feb 15.

For my DVC stays over the next 10 years, I would probably want to stay at BWV about 45%, BLT 35%, AKV 20%. But that could change. At BLT I would want SV or LV, at BWV I would take any view, at AKV I would only want savannah view.

From the feedback I have gotten I perceive that (during Fall Nov-Dec 15) getting AKV savannah at 7 months is easy, getting anything at all in BWV is hard, getting BLT-S is hard, and getting BLT-L is medium.

I think this means that if I am buying one resort it should be BWV. I think it also means that owning 2/3 of my points at BWV and 1/3 at BLT is another viable option, but that option will cost me more money.

Further, it sounds like if I buy at AKV I'll save money, but I may end up staying there so much that I burn out.

And I perceive that if I buy at OKW or SSR I am begging for disappointment.

I am dismissing VWL for Personal reasons.
I am dismissing BCV because we don't care about the pool, we do like the boardwalk, and it seems silly to pay more for BCV when BWV is a similar product (location/features) that costs less.

I didn't say this in opening remarks, but I would like to retain the flexibility to occasionally spend some nights in non-DVC hotels (using cash) if a great deal comes along, so my current thoughts are buying enough points for 7-10 nights (most likely 7-8) in 2 out of every 3 years.

IN CONCLUSION:

I think I should look for a BWV contract for 150 points or less, with intention to possibly add another contract of 50-80 points at BLT in a couple years after I have tried things out

Did I misinterpret the advice and/or misunderstand anything important in the analysis?
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Old 01-04-2013, 05:49 PM   #72
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Thanks, I certainly understand that point.

My dilemma was that there are 3 places I think I would like to stay at one point or another so I wondered if there is an optimal strategy.

I like small crowds, Christmas decorations, and cool weather. I want to do most trips in Nov/Dec (avoiding Thanksgiving and Christmas/Nee Year) but could also consider Jan 1-Feb 15.

For my DVC stays over the next 10 years, I would probably want to stay at BWV about 45%, BLT 35%, AKV 20%. But that could change. At BLT I would want SV or LV, at BWV I would take any view, at AKV I would only want savannah view.

From the feedback I have gotten I perceive that (during Fall Nov-Dec 15) getting AKV savannah at 7 months is easy, getting anything at all in BWV is hard, getting BLT-S is hard, and getting BLT-L is medium.

I think this means that if I am buying one resort it should be BWV. I think it also means that owning 2/3 of my points at BWV and 1/3 at BLT is another viable option, but that option will cost me more money.

Further, it sounds like if I buy at AKV I'll save money, but I may end up staying there so much that I burn out.

And I perceive that if I buy at OKW or SSR I am begging for disappointment.

I am dismissing VWL for Personal reasons.
I am dismissing BCV because we don't care about the pool, we do like the boardwalk, and it seems silly to pay more for BCV when BWV is a similar product (location/features) that costs less.

I didn't say this in opening remarks, but I would like to retain the flexibility to occasionally spend some nights in non-DVC hotels (using cash) if a great deal comes along, so my current thoughts are buying enough points for 7-10 nights (most likely 7-8) in 2 out of every 3 years.

IN CONCLUSION:

I think I should look for a BWV contract for 150 points or less, with intention to possibly add another contract of 50-80 points at BLT in a couple years after I have tried things out

Did I misinterpret the advice and/or misunderstand anything important in the analysis?
That sounds reasonable. I might quibble with the idea that SSR or AKV will restrict you as much as you have the impression it will but you'll have to decide how much extra cost you're comfortable with for those concerns and how much risk you're willing to take for the savings. If you buy BWV and use standard view, BWV may be the cheapest of the lot long term.
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Old 01-04-2013, 07:57 PM   #73
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Originally Posted by BillyBuckner View Post
Thanks, I certainly understand that point.

My dilemma was that there are 3 places I think I would like to stay at one point or another so I wondered if there is an optimal strategy.

I like small crowds, Christmas decorations, and cool weather. I want to do most trips in Nov/Dec (avoiding Thanksgiving and Christmas/Nee Year) but could also consider Jan 1-Feb 15.

For my DVC stays over the next 10 years, I would probably want to stay at BWV about 45%, BLT 35%, AKV 20%. But that could change. At BLT I would want SV or LV, at BWV I would take any view, at AKV I would only want savannah view.

From the feedback I have gotten I perceive that (during Fall Nov-Dec 15) getting AKV savannah at 7 months is easy, getting anything at all in BWV is hard, getting BLT-S is hard, and getting BLT-L is medium.

I think this means that if I am buying one resort it should be BWV. I think it also means that owning 2/3 of my points at BWV and 1/3 at BLT is another viable option, but that option will cost me more money.

Further, it sounds like if I buy at AKV I'll save money, but I may end up staying there so much that I burn out.

And I perceive that if I buy at OKW or SSR I am begging for disappointment.

I am dismissing VWL for Personal reasons.
I am dismissing BCV because we don't care about the pool, we do like the boardwalk, and it seems silly to pay more for BCV when BWV is a similar product (location/features) that costs less.

I didn't say this in opening remarks, but I would like to retain the flexibility to occasionally spend some nights in non-DVC hotels (using cash) if a great deal comes along, so my current thoughts are buying enough points for 7-10 nights (most likely 7-8) in 2 out of every 3 years.

IN CONCLUSION:

I think I should look for a BWV contract for 150 points or less, with intention to possibly add another contract of 50-80 points at BLT in a couple years after I have tried things out

Did I misinterpret the advice and/or misunderstand anything important in the analysis?
Your plan sounds good. Actually it's the exact split we have with our points. We have 150 BWV points and 80 BLT. We'll use the BWV for our 10-day F&W trips or for trips where we need a bigger villa. And the BLT will let us stretch those 80 points by getting SV at BLT for long weekends or 4 or five night trips.
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Old 01-04-2013, 09:53 PM   #74
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As a recent recent owner at BWV I'm finding it very difficult to book the standard view studios even at my 11 month window! I'm currently trying to make a Dec 7-14 reservation and the studios are showing booked for days I can't even book because they are before my 11 month window! The BW view studios are almost as difficult to obtain! How is this?

I know you are interested in 1 bedroom villas but as your family dynamics change you may find yourself fighting for these standard/bw view studios
If so -Good Luck- I'm totally frustrated!
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Old 01-04-2013, 10:43 PM   #75
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As a recent recent owner at BWV I'm finding it very difficult to book the standard view studios even at my 11 month window! I'm currently trying to make a Dec 7-14 reservation and the studios are showing booked for days I can't even book because they are before my 11 month window! The BW view studios are almost as difficult to obtain! How is this?

I know you are interested in 1 bedroom villas but as your family dynamics change you may find yourself fighting for these standard/bw view studios
If so -Good Luck- I'm totally frustrated!
Same thing happened to me for F&W. I had to make 3 reservations for 3 studios so I had to wait until the exact day the 11 month window opened up to make the ressies and I got shut out.

What's happening is that people are walking the reservations. So someone who wants to go the same dates as you are booking on the day that is 11 months and 7 days before Dec 7 and booking the full week, with the 7th being the last night of their trip. Then they go on the next day and cancel the first day of their trip and add Dec 8. And so on, and so on. So by the time you go on to book your Dec 7 trip, they already have Dec 7-13 booked. They just need to compete with you for the 14th.
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