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Jewish World ReviewApril 3, 2000 / 27 Adar II, 5760

Bruce Williams

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Readers disagree on time shares


http://www.jewishworldreview.com -- DEAR READERS: I gave this writer's opinion that time shares were an extraordinarily poor investment. Interestingly, I received many pro-time-share and many anti-time-share letters. I offer you two, one from each camp, expressing their points of view.

DEAR BRUCE: I am one of those unfortunate people trying to get rid of my time-share week that I purchased.... I just want to get rid of it, but I am looking for an honest company that can do this for me. I am willing to drop my price down to where I have to be. -- A READER

DEAR BRUCE: I was very surprised at your strident comments regarding the purchase of time shares.... My husband and I own two time shares and have for seven years. We do not have fixed weeks and have traded to places in San Francisco, the Bahamas, Florida, Las Vegas and many other great destinations. The accommodations were so spacious we were easily able to take our two children, other families with children and our extended family.... We know other people who own time shares and they are equally delighted with their purchase. -- A READER

As I have said many times before: You pay your money and take your chances. I still believe that time shares are a poor, overpriced purchase that most buyers will regret.

DEAR BRUCE: I wanted to clarify the deduction of interest on student loans that you have mentioned a few times. It is not actually a straight deduction, and it counts as an income credit. It's not quit as nice, but it is still something. -- Michael Duchek (e-mail)

DEAR MICHAEL: Thank you so very much for the additional information. All of you are put on notice: If you feel that I have made an error or should include more information -- please advise me.

DEAR BRUCE: What are the rights of a homeowner if a highway department wants to put a highway through your house? I know that they have to give you fair market value. -- A READER (e-mail) DEAR READER: Your rights are many.

Through eminent domain, the government and certain private entities may condemn your property and force a sale. But in most jurisdictions there is a process of appeals so that either side, the condemning party or the condemned, if unhappy with a judgment, can appeal to a higher court.

The problem with this is the condemning parties have attorneys by the bushel-full, and you, the condemned, have to hire not only attorneys but experts.

Eminent domain is clearly a necessary tool -- without it there would be no straight roads or power lines, etc. But in some areas, this power has been severely abused.



Send your questions to JWR contributor Bruce Williams by clicking here. (Questions of general interest will be answered in future columns. Owing to the volume of mail, personal replies cannot be provided.) Interested in buying or selling a house? Let Bruce Williams' "House Smart" be your guide. (Sales of the book help fund JWR).

Up

03/30/00: The road back to good credit
03/29/00: Pre-tax dollars in IRA taxed later
03/27/00: Gambling on business ventures
03/22/00: Old cars as hobby, not investment
03/20/00: Tax on foreign gifts?
03/16/00: How to buy government bonds
03/13/00: Buying treasury instruments
03/09/00: Subcontractors must pay S.S.
03/08/00: Real-estate lawyers are essential
03/07/00: Don't expect compensation for ideas
03/06/00: Too rich for a Roth IRA?
03/01/00: Is time-sharing a scam?
02/29/00: Paying for nursing-home care
02/28/00: Rely on a real-estate lawyer
02/23/00: Keeping child's money safe from divorce
02/16/00: Just how important is a 401(k)?
02/14/00: Shaky partnership buying house
02/11/00: Protection by residential zoning
02/09/00: Benefiting from a reverse mortgage
02/07/00: Ensure your insurability
02/04/00: Absurd community zoning laws
02/02/00: Money or securities?
02/01/00: Can we KO a custodian?
01/31/00: Why sell a home you love?
01/26/00: Everyone needs a will
01/25/00: Will splitting stocks affect rollover?
01/24/00: Should early retirees contribute to SEP?
01/21/00: Strategies for paying off debt
01/20/00: Is 15-percent growth achievable?
01/19/00: Selling a second home
01/18/00: Running from a time-share
01/14/00: Don't be a spendthrift!
01/13/00: Who gets the house?
01/11/00: It all depends on size of estate
01/06/00: Check references before hiring an advisor
01/04/00: Savings bonds a bad investment
12/31/99: Out of state ain't that great
12/29/99: Warranty rip-offs
12/27/99: Checking up on investment handlers
12/23/99: Options good only when company's strong
12/20/99: Capital gains tax sometimes best
12/17/99: Don't give up your nest egg
12/15/99: Small-claims court no panacea
12/13/99: Termite company not liable for termites?
12/10/99: Services provided must be paid for
12/06/99: How do we minimize house-sale gain?
12/06/99: Maximize your tax shelter!
12/02/99: My neighbor won't maintain even a modicum of civility
12/01/99: Long-distance rentals a bad idea
11/29/99: Mortgage strategy A-OK
11/18/99: Students can work and learn
11/16/99: Value is what will sell
11/11/99: Y2K: No big deal for real estate
11/08/99: Real life is tough luck
11/03/99: The right time to cash a savings bond
11/01/99: Slow road for savings accounts
10/29/99: What do you want from insurance?
10/27/99: You have a right to see your tax forms!
10/25/99: Why own a house at 65?
10/22/99: Online fine, but CDs?
10/20/99: Love, honor -- and separate credit
10/18/99: Find the value of your stocks
10/15/99: Property lien prevents trade
10/13/99: Clear up debt, only then tie the knot
10/11/99: If it ain't broke...
10/04/99: Should I stick with the company IRA?
10/04/99: Get a financial education!
10/01/99: Insurance: Not much one person can do
09/30/99: Lost tickets are lost cash
09/29/99: Trusting only one financial planner
09/27/99: Adult children should help out
09/24/99: Tips for first-time home buyers
09/21/99: Use the rule of 72s!
09/17/99: Legal strategy can be a pain
09/15/99: Teen drivers drive up insurance
09/13/99: Always use an attorney!
09/10/99: Whose taxes are they, anyway?
09/08/99: How do I roll over my 401(k)?
09/03/99: How can I work out my IRS payments?
09/01/99: When your company can't pay you
08/30/99: Beware of shady viatical investments
08/26/99: Landlords vary on security deposits
08/25/99: Educational IRAs must be spent on education
08/23/99: Finding out the value of old stocks
08/20/99: How to get an FHA refund
08/19/99: 100 percent financing is a scam
08/16/99: Will I have to pay a capital gains tax?
08/16/99: Thinking about PMI
08/13/99: Short-term mutual funds a-OK
08/11/99: It's your job to shop around
08/10/99: Sometimes, roots need to be uprooted
08/09/99: 'Pre-approved' doesn't mean a thing
08/06/99: Only you can determine your investments
08/04/99: Bank IRA the lowest-risk option
08/03/99: Reverse mortgages good for the elderly
08/02/99: Get the survey BEFORE you buy the house!
07/28/99: Get a lawyer -- it's worth it!
07/27/99: If it ain't broke...

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