If you can no longer afford your timeshare, you may be considering options for getting rid of the financial burden. One option may be giving the timeshare away rather than reselling it.

However, giving away a timeshare is more complicated than just selling the land because owners are also responsible for costs associated with upkeep and maintenance.

Donating or Gifting a Timeshare

Although you can give your timeshare away as a gift, you will have to gift it with the understanding that the new owner will take over the fees, insurance, and taxes—including any unpaid items. In some cases, the recipient may agree to pay any back-due maintenance fees in exchange for a "free" timeshare. 

You will likely want to create a contract outlining the terms of the exchange. Additionally, the management company may require you to pay a transfer fee or other fees if you give away your timeshare.

Transfers to a Charitable Organization

If an owner can’t find an individual recipient, the owner may be able to donate the timeshare to a charitable organization that can auction it off. Transfers to charity have the same implications as above and you may need to pay a transfer fee. Additionally, you can only deduct the fair market value of the timeshare on your taxes, so you may need a tax attorney help you figure out whether donating to charity is really worth the tax deduction.

Giving Up Your Property Rights

Another option is to give up all property rights in the timeshare and hope that the resort will take the timeshare back. First, the owner records a "quitclaim deed" at the local courthouse with jurisdiction over the timeshare. Then, the owner takes the quitclaim deed to the property management office and politely offers it to them. They may accept the deed and take over the timeshare.

Do I Need an Attorney to Transfer My Timeshare?

An experienced real estate attorney will be able to assist you in creating a contract for the transfer of your timeshare. An attorney will make sure that the title is clear. An attorney may also be able to negotiate with the management company or make sure that the company does not take advantage of you by charging illegal or unnecessary fees.