When we go on holiday to a foreign country, many of us like to learn a bit of the local lingo, even if to just cover the very basics. Timeshare is not that much different, in that you can help yourself to get by better by being a little conversant with some of the lingo. Whether you are looking to buy on the timeshare resale market or hoping to sell timeshare on, understanding some timeshare terminology can give you a distinct advantage. Here’s your A-Z guide of timeshare speak.

Accrued weeks – this is when you have weeks left over from the previous year, that you can add to your entitlement for the current year.

Banking- this refers to being able to store up any unused points or weeks for use at a later date.

Cooling off period – this is the period of days in which a timeshare buyer may retract a purchase, without incurring any penalties.

Biennial – refers to owners who use their timeshare every other year.

Developer – this is the company who owns the timeshare resort or is responsible for its construction and selling of it.

Exchange – a common term used in timeshare, it defines the option to trade one timeshare week for another.

Fixed unit – this relates to having the right to use the same physical unit each year.

Fixed week – with this, you have the right to the same week for using timeshare each year.

Floating week – this is not fixed, so you can use your week at any time, according to availability.

Fractional ownership – often associated with the luxury end of the timeshare market, this is deeded property based on the division of the property into shares. Owners can purchase several weeks of vacation.

Levy – these are fees charged by a timeshare resort for the use of a particular week.

Lock-off unit – also called a lockout, this is a unit that can be sectioned off to create two or more units.

Maintenance fee – this is what timeshare owners have to pay to cover the costs of the upkeep of the resort.

Points – this represents timeshare ‘currency’, to determine the value for seasons, resort locations or unit sizes of timeshares.

Red week – this refers to the peak season at a timeshare resort.

Resale – timeshare resale is a key feature of the vacation ownership market. Resale refers to property that is sold on the secondary market to a third party.

Right to use – this relates to a timeshare owner’s right to stay at a unit for a given number of years, with no real estate interest involved.

Special assessment – this may be a charge incurred by a timeshare management company to cover major repairs or refurbishment.

Vacation club – this term is commonly used when referring to timeshare, and often describes a resort location, organisation or programme, or other holiday and travel services.

Week 53 – resort developers are usually assigned this week for their exclusive use at the resort.

Zero tolerance – while not a specific timeshare term as such, it does sum up the attitude that timeshare owners or sellers should have if they come across pushy or suspect individuals operating in the industry.