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Holiday Property Bond - anyone have any feedback?

(38 Posts)
nicecupofteaplease Fri 04-Oct-13 09:34:29


We are considering investing in this but just a bit wary as their website and brochure are very opaque and we are not entirely convinced by it. Essentially it looks to be set up for older couples, but I wanted to see if anyone with a young family has invested and what your experience has been.

I'm guessing that you wouldn't get very much for a family of 5 during school holidays compared to what you could afford as a retired couple who could book holidays outside peak times. Hopefully I'm wrong!

Does anyone have a copy of a points chart they would be willing to share? It's not on their website, nor in the brochure you send off for (which looks just like a hard copy of the website with lovely photos but zero financial info - I just find it a bit odd when they're trying to encourage you to invest thousands of pounds not to be more transparent)

Thanks in advance

mummymeister Fri 04-Oct-13 11:59:53

sorry, I have only ever heard bad things about this. it was very popular in the 70's and 80's with Judith chalmers doing the adverts and it was seen as a step up from owning a caravan. the criticism I have heard is that if you can only go in school hols then you are limited and it is full of older couples. the reason that you aren't getting much financial info is because they don't want you to see it. why are you thinking of it? what advantages did you think it would have? compare the cost to one holiday a year in the UK if you can in a sleeps 5 and I think then you will not want to go for it. sorry to be so doom and gloom but know a lot of families whose parents have them.

Lonecatwithkitten Fri 04-Oct-13 13:52:59

My parents have a bond which my daughter and I travel on. We have visited all three sites in France. As an only child with a single parent finding friends is essential to DD. if you travel in the main school holidays there are loads of kids at the sites and once in the pool it is really easy to have friends to play with. Often parents own the bond and do the travel points free thing and allow their children and grandchildren to use the points.
I don't have points chart, but a rough guess a week in Brittany in August you would need 15,000 points though the canaries would be a lot less then.
The properties are consistently of a good standard think equipped from John Lewis. Often they are in old buildings so can be quirky. Always loads of towels, tea towels etc. kitchen equipment is good and if you want to push the boat out and say bake a cake they have food processors and mixers in reception that can be borrowed.

Snowgirl1 Fri 04-Oct-13 14:03:18

My parents have a bond and bought it instead of a timeshare as it can be passed on through a will when they die, whereas a timeshare right would just end when they died (or at least this was the case when they bought their bond).

I've used it once - loads of their properties seemed to be geared towards families, ie. lots of bedrooms, so I'd it may be that older people buy the bond but take the whole family away. We went outside the school holidays and there were people of mixed ages and people with children.

You have to pay a charge each time you use one of their properties and I can remember thinking that we could probably have got a last minute deal for less than the whole trip cost - but the standard of accommodation and equipment was better than your average holiday rental.

caroldecker Fri 04-Oct-13 16:14:01

Anything that does not provide you with full details you can read in your own time and discuss with family/friends etc is dodgy.

jellibelli Fri 04-Oct-13 19:47:22

My parents too are bond holders and my DB and I can use it too and like Snowgirl it will pass on to us in due course.

We think it is great and have had many successful holidays between us. DB has no children so he and DPs tend to travel outwith school holidays so often go 'points free' while we tend to hog the points and go in the school holidays. The last few years we have all gone away for Christmas together in one of their bigger properties which has been fab.

If you are decided where you want to go to in the school holidays especially in UK you might need to book early but we are not that organised and are happy to go wherever is free. We know where ever we end up is going to be great accommodation and plenty of stuff to do and see. There are definitely other children and teens around but none of us have ever been anywhere where we though it was crowded and too many people.

I have always thought it is excellent value in the school holidays as the price you pay doesn't increase during the holidays. We went non HPB this summer in August to Cornwall and paid £1200 for a lovely cottage of HPB standard with a pool but if we had gone to Cornwall with the HBP it would have cost Something like £400 for the week. confused

I thinks lot of investors are older and have the spare ££ available but it is definitely not an old fogeys hangout! The quality is fab all onside restaurants we have used have been great too, the pools are always clean and any maintainable issues that we have been aware of have been dealt with within the day. Helpful, friendly staff, an all round pleasure.

I would find out more if I were you from people with the facts. Why not go along to an open day? I know when DP invested they were told that the most common occupation amongst bond holders was .......... Accountants!

FriendofDorothy Sun 17-Nov-13 20:39:37

Hi, my Dad has just invested in the HPB and my sister and I are now also bondholders. Those people who have used the system how easy is it to book free places? That is the only thing that worries me about it!

Islagiatt Sun 17-Nov-13 20:53:08

Pal of mine looked into in and very nearly sent off a big cheque, but then had another friend look at the details and although the quality of accomm is good, they charge something like 25% of the initial investment as a fee. So think if you invest £20k, they immediately take £5K in fees, - but they still give you 20,000 'points' but the underlying value is based on £15k.

There is also then user charges per week on top to pay. Make sure you get all the details and a full breakdown before committing.

FriendofDorothy Sun 17-Nov-13 22:00:16

Yeah we have all the details. It is complicated but we think it will work as there are three of us who will all be able to use the properties.

jennifer2013 Fri 20-Dec-13 16:08:24

We have been bondholders since 1993!Time whizzes by! We started off with the minimum investment which enabled 2 of us to stay in a variety of smaller properties(studio, flat, appartment) in peak periods, and 1 or 2 bedroom properties abroad or at off peal times, according to the "points value" of the property. 1 point = £1 value of investment. Over the years we have increased our investment as money permitted. Children came along and we have stayed at a whole variety of sites in Britain and abroad, in peak and off season. The sites are all lovely, in great /interesting locations: all different, in keeping with local architecture and history, child friendly ones with great onsite facilities: pool(s), tennis courts, games room; some with croquet lawn or pitch and putt golf etc. The apartments/ cottages are all furnished to a very high standard and you always know it's going to be very good and comfortable. We really like self-catering, but some sites have very nice restaurants. We have often had friends to visit or shared our appartment/cottage and all had a really great time. We chose HPB after being initially interested in Time-share or buying a holiday cottage; more flexibility in location and dates. The Usercharge is a no-profit charge, and you only pay when you use a property. You do have to book ahead to get properties in school holidays, but if you're more flexible there are lots of opportunities, even last minute "points-free" options. Our children, now grown up, have loved going to HPB properties, have their favourites and our daughter has chosen to go to one of the French ones on honeymoon! Our Bond investment will pass on to them. You can't compare it with a "stocks & shares" investment, although it's certainly doing better than one of my parents investments which has decreased considerably over the last 10 years!! You DO get fabulous holidays in beautiful locations - enjoy!

sausagefortea Fri 20-Dec-13 16:48:33

My mil is a bond holder - almost from the start of the scheme. I think its brilliant! Very reputable company. Very easy to deal with, great costumer service. My MIL (and late FIL used it lots, we've used it lots both pre and post kids. It's perfect for kids as the accomodation is always of a consistently good standard and in a good location. Now my DC are primary age its especially great as the past few times we've gone they've made friends and spent the whole time having a whale of a time. The most relaxing holiday as they're happy....I've read whole books!!!!

Lovely places in the uk, lovely places abroad. You also have access to tenancy properties which are points free. And can do last minute points free hols if its within something like 60 days of the hol.

Think every year you get more points so the longer you're in the more points you get given each year. So even if the initial investment may knock down a bit with starting fees over time you should recoup your money.

Biniorella is probably the most popular with families (Majorca) and for that you do have to book well in advance in general for larger properties. But you can still get properties height of summer for 2 bed apartments last month for bini. There is always something on offer though for the summer hols (constant in France, Portugal, etc).

It's really not just full of older aged people at all. Even when we used to go out of season pre-kids we never felt that.

You do pay a user fee - so say £350 for the week for bini in August on top if your points. I'm not sure it's cheaper than other holidays - although can be if you're out if season - bug its so dependable and good standard. I always know we're going to have a lovely headache free holiday.

I should really be a rep for HPB I think its really great!

lyndie Fri 20-Dec-13 16:54:55

We are bondholders, as are my parents. The standard of properties is unreal, as are all the extra bits they provide like games, sports equipment and activities. Have you visited any properties? They usually do tours and you can see for yourself the standard of the accommodation. If you don't enjoy your first holiday you can get all your money back!

FriendofDorothy Fri 27-Dec-13 21:06:03

Can anyone tell me whether they properties have things like cots and highchairs?

wonkylegs Fri 27-Dec-13 21:39:53

My ILs are bondholders. We've been on various holidays with them. They are good and generally reliably furnished/facilities to a good standard etc. I think sometimes they are expensive for what they are though.
We've definitely stayed in some with babies and there were cots/highchairs available I think arranged in advance.
They can be full of retirees but they often bring their families with them so there are kids.
I was disappointed that the one in Portugal didn't have aircon and not many have dishwashers which as I hate washing up even more on holiday is a bit of a shame.

JJF2014 Fri 03-Jan-14 15:17:51

Can anyone shed any light on how this works as an investment? My parents have been bondholders for many years. It worked well for them but now they want out as they feel they are more suited to other types of holidays (e.g. non sc or holidays exclusively for older people). They say they invested around ~£11k in the bond, but the cash in value is now only ~£5k. Does this sound right to those of you who are bondholders? Because the cash in value is so low, they want to transfer the bond to my siblings and I. To answer the OPs question, my experience of HPB has been pretty good. I'm a named person on the bond so have used it a handful of times. The properties are of a high standard and customer service is good. User charges are low when you consider the good quality of the properties and range of facilities. The only issue for me is I am not organised enough to book far in advance and you really need to do this if you are restricted by school holidays.

Sixtiesqueen Fri 03-Jan-14 18:14:30

My friends have one. They pay £2k per year in service charges even though they shelled out £12k initially.

They are quite limited in where they go on holiday. The accommodation is really lovely (4-5 star) but I've been to two of them and they are never very well located, ie the beach isn't very good or they aren't near the beach.

I'd avoid.

GinOnTwoWheels Tue 07-Jan-14 13:40:13

My friends have one. They pay £2k per year in service charges even though they shelled out £12k initially.

So you pay an initial huge fee, plus £££s per year, and this allows you what? A 2 week holiday in a specific property? And it appears that there is no return on the investment? If you want to sell, you will get less back, not more?

This makes it seem really poor value to me - you could just use your £2k to rent a villa/apartment/hotel room at a location and time of your choosing every year, surely.

what is the advantage, apart from not having to choose and book somewhere - but you would still need to get flights and they might not be the best prices if you are tied to a particular period.

I just don't get the attraction, or am I missing something?

jennifer2013 Wed 08-Jan-14 18:24:19

£2k a year Service charge?????????????????????
You don't pay a service charge with HPB!! You pay a user charge for the week(s) you actually use the accommodation, eg £287 (studio) To approx £513(sleeps 6 -8)Uk per week. You have to get the facts from HPB direct or go and visit a site in PERSON. We have always found the accommodation to be first class

mottywood Mon 03-Mar-14 13:18:49

weve had our HPB point for about 25 years - in fact it was the current Chairman who sold them to my Mother. It is in effect an insurance policy registered i believe in the Isle Of Man so has to be passed on after your death, hence I inherited mine. Im just about to book our 5th trip to Turkey - ten mins walk from the beach, big villa and private pool. There is no yearly service charge and if you book late you dont always need to use your points (which stack up quickly) just pay your service charge. Weve never had any problems with any of the holidays and I always let them book my travel as the few times ive looked for cheaper options I couldnt find one.

blacktreaclecat Wed 05-Mar-14 12:25:21

My parents have been in HPB for 20 years now and it is great. We have had many happy holidays and have just booked our first holiday as a family of 3 ( me, H, DS who ei be just 2), at Biniorella in Majorca. We have booked a cot and high chair no problem. The user charge for this is £350 ish and 8000 points.

justicewomen Thu 20-Mar-14 23:43:17

We are going to the HPB site at Constant in the Dordogne later this year.

My parents have been bondholders for years and our family have used the points / and points free to visit Madeira, Brittany, La Gomera, Tuscany, Portugal, Spain and all over the UK.The sites are very different but usually very attractive.

So, my son loves site like Madeira with lots of sports and pools whereas I loved one in Yorkshire with few facilities but a lovely location.

The villas/apartments are usually in traditional style buildings and very well equipped. Generally all the clubhouse facilities are free (like tennis courts, snooker, DVD libraries) and the customer service is excellent.

We could not afford to become bondholders but Im looking forward to our future holidays with Mum and Dad

grandma3plus1 Sat 22-Mar-14 08:05:57

I've had HPB points for over 20 years and am very happy with them. Most of the negative points in this thread seem to come from people who are not bond holders and are passing on hearsay. I've never met anyone on an HPB site who was dissatisfied. There is no annual charge and the user charge, incurred only when actually renting a property, is to cover running costs, for gardens, pools, staff etc. My family will be renting a 4 bed villa on La Gomera next January and it works out at about £120 per person per week for the accommodation. We just had a week on Tenerife paying over £3000 for a villa which had endless problems and was really not as advertised. My point of comparison is to look at renting villas of a similar type and size in the same area and invariably they will cost anything up to 2 or 3 times the HPB user charge, without the security of knowing that you will be getting a high standard of property with no worries about maintenance and with many extra facilities to suit all ages. Any problems are solved pretty much instantly and you can always be sure of a high standard of equipment and cleanliness. Children are fully catered for and considered when properties are built/converted.
The best thing to do, as advised above, is to go to an open day or get one of their people to come and see you. You can always look round one of the UK properties to get an idea of the standards on the sites. I don't remember them being high pressure sales people and I have never found them to be anything but helpful. I believe the RAF Benevolent Fund use HPB because they always have good facilities for the disabled on every site.

Cutlass27 Sat 26-Apr-14 13:56:03

I agree with grandma3plus1. We are just considering buying a bond and have gathered all the information and had a representative call with us. There is little point in talking about something if you don't have the CORRECT facts which unfortunately is the case with some of the contributors.
Ginontwowheels doesn't seem to realise that part of the package is the ability to book holidays "points free" where you pay the service charge only. Also concessionary long stay holidays where you use points for the first week only, pay the full service charge for the first week only and then pay 70% of the service charge for the remaining 3, 4, or more weeks that you stay.
There is little in this world that suits everyone and HPB I believe will suit some people particularly if you are retired with children, grand-children and have the health to travel and enjoy holidays though to my mind this is not a pre-requisite.

amispeakingenglish Sun 27-Apr-14 16:44:29

I was wondering, I have 4 teens and booked hols are a problem with the rooms as I have one son, do you think it would be of benefit, I haven't got money to throw around. What worries me is the flights, what are the prices like through HPB agency? What happens if you book a holiday and then can't get flights? Do you need a hire car if staying in a villa? I was thinking of booking a home visit but do they try and leave with you money in their pocket? If I invest I would like to go abroad this summer with me and the teens, can they bring a friend? This is a lot of questions but I wanted some answers before booking the home visit.

OldBeanbagz Mon 28-Apr-14 09:00:18

My ILs are bondholders and we've used their points a few times. We've even managed to take holidays in school holidays.

All the sites are incredibly well run with great facilities for both adults and children. We've generally organised our own travel though i know the ILs used HPB agency when they went to La Gomera.

It seems more useful for older people who are able to travel outside of school holidays and get the benefits of 'points free' bookings.

DH and i considered investing but decided we like the freedom of choice when it comes to booking holidays. We like to try new places and often travel long haul.

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