The resort development industry provides the chance to experience a different culture, learn a little bit more about the world, and come back refreshed and enriched from the experience. Timeshare greatly enhances these experiences by offering products with enough space for everyone in the family to enjoy the trip – from a kitchen and dining area to separate living spaces for privacy – a world of options for destinations to travel and experiences to choose from, and the value of knowing that they have a pre-paid vacation each and every year.
The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) and the ARDA-Resort Owner’s Coalition (ARDA-ROC) consistently work to ensure that this vacation experience remains preserved and protected through robust advocacy efforts with state and federal governments, as well as providing industry education to the media, financial advisors, members, owners, other associations and consumers across the globe.
ARDA’s advocacy efforts stem from the foundation of legislative and regulatory procedures that protect consumers, which were established in the early 1980s. Even before those laws and regulations took effect, the industry saw the importance of having rules and standards to govern themselves by, and took appropriate steps to regulate their own business endeavors. By laying that groundwork, the industry created a product in which consumers are protected and a competitive industry platform was established. This consumer-led approach has built a loyal customer base of more than 9 million timeshare owners in the United States alone.
To provide even more consumer focus, ARDA-ROC – an alliance of one million-plus timeshare owners, developers and resort managers – advocates for public policy positions that protect the interests of individual timeshare owners, preserve the integrity of vacation products, and enhance the vacation purchase. This alliance has enabled ARDA-ROC to unite owners in support of legislative and regulatory policies that enable the timeshare industry to continue to provide high-quality vacation products that remain accessible and affordable to consumers.
Although the specific advocacy needs for each state is unique, there are a few key legislative pillars that the government affairs team continually concentrate on in order to protect and enhance vacation ownership.
Owner Advocacy Success in the States
Non-Judicial Foreclosure: ARDA-ROC supports non-judicial foreclosure laws which enable the timeshare owner or HOA to conduct a foreclosure sale outside of the traditional court system, saving the HOA time and money.
States impacted: Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nevada, and Utah
Resale and Transfer Legislation and Regulation: Resale and transfer companies offer timeshare owners assistance with exiting their ownership, whether it be through transferring the ownership to another party or selling the timeshare. ARDA-ROC protects owners from falling victim to scams by introducing and monitoring pro-consumer legislation.
States impacted: Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, South Carolina, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Texas, West Virginia, Virginia, and Puerto Rico.
Timeshare Owner Privacy Laws: ARDA-ROC supports responsible privacy laws for timeshare owners to ensure personal information is not shared with third parties for commercial purposes or unwanted solicitation and is kept safe from fraudulent activity.
States impacted: Arkansas, California, Florida, Hawaii, Nevada, Texas, and Utah
Transient Accommodation Tax: ARDA-ROC opposes any effort to impose an accommodation tax on the use of a timeshare unit by an owner or exchange guest. Unlike a rental or hotel room stay in which guests pay a transient accommodations tax for each night, a timeshare owner pays property taxes and other fees and; therefore, should not be taxed more than once.
States impacted: Hawaii, Nevada, Rhode Island, and South Carolina
Real Property Tax: ARDA-ROC opposes any effort to increase taxes on timeshare real estate property interests, and works to protect against any misinterpretation of property interests.
States impacted: Hawaii, Maine, Missouri, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Wisconsin.
To see an entire breakdown of all legislative successes ARDA-ROC has achieved since 2006, visit www.arda-roc.org.