Many years ago, clever people came up with the idea of shared ownership of holiday resorts, but on a grand scale – think of, say, 50 chalets each with a different ownership for each week of the year. That’s over 135 000 different ‘weeks’, and so you hear of unit 16, week 27 and so on. Thus, time-sharing was born. Unfortunately, as with most other schemes where a quick buck could be made, time-sharing got a bad name.
Then came along the Property Time-Sharing Control Act 1983 and things changed. It regulates the sale1 of time-sharing interests in such schemes. The Act falls under the authority of the Minister of Tourism.
- It is an offence to advertise for alienation any time-sharing interest unless it discloses prescribed information.2 According to the applicable regulations,3 this means:
- the type of accommodation concerned (e.g. self-contained apartment, caravan site, etc.);
- the legal basis upon which the time-sharing interest could be acquired (e.g. a share block company owns the resort and you acquire a share in the company);
- the total number of years for which the right will exist;
- name and physical address of the scheme; and
- if it is not yet completed, the intended date of completion.
- It is an offence to receive any consideration arising out of a contract regarding accommodation unless an architect has issued a certificate to the affect that the accommodation:4
- is in accordance with approved building plans, the applicable town planning scheme, and local by-laws;
- is sufficiently complete for purposes of utilisation, and a copy of the certificate has been delivered to the purchaser concerned.