Fractional Ownership - The Environmental Benefits

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					Fractional Ownership - The Environmental Benefits
The potential for fractional ownership to transform life experiences via
the lower cost and variety of leisure assets is well know. A subject that
is less-often discussed is the likely environmental benefits of
widespread adoption of fractional ownership.
What is Fractional Ownership
For those not familiar with the concept, fractional ownership involves a
group of people purchasing an asset that they do not want or need to use
all of the time. They buy a "fraction" of the asset that entitles them to
the amount of time that they need to use it. This is typically used for
leisure assets such as second homes, yachts, cars etc. although it finds
another application for functional items such as expensive business
equipment or tools.
What Are the Environmental Impacts of Owning Leisure Assets
This varies depending on the type of asset you are considering. Second
homes occupy valuable land, sports cars consume scarce natural resources,
and yachts put pressure on the limited and fragile coastal environment
through the construction of marinas and associated service. All assets
consume energy and resources as part of their manufacture.
Second homes can also cause resentment in local communities especially if
they are left empty for much of the year. They are seen to be driving up
the cost of local real estate whilst contributing little to the local
How Can Fractional Ownership Help
It is estimated that the average second home is only occupied for 4-5
weeks in a year. Sometimes owners will fill up the remaining weeks by
renting the real estate out but the difficulties of arranging changeovers
and keeping the home in a state that is suitable to rent discourage many.
The use statistics for yachts and boats are the same if not worse. The
desire to own a sports vehicle may result in it being used on a regular
basis. It might be preferable to own something more practical and
economic for regular use, and keep the fractionally-owned sports vehicle
for occasional trips.
There is obviously the potential for more than one person/family to own
the typical leisure asset. Most people (excluding the retired) would be
able to share the use of a leisure asset with 3 others without
significantly impacting on the opportunities to use it. A degree of
compromise is required on use at very popular times, but the upside is
more flexibility to have other holiday experiences or even buy additional
fractional leisure assets. One problem with outright ownership of leisure
assets can be the pressure to use them whenever you can, when you might
want to do something different.
Fractional ownership also helps with pressure on local communities from
second home ownership. As more people can share a smaller number of homes
the affect on the local real estate market should be less. A fractional
ownership second home will typically be occupied more frequently and will
therefore contribute more to the local shops, restaurants, leisure
facilities etc.
A Word of Warning
This article takes the view that fractional ownership will result in
fewer leisure assets overall. It is possible if the concept really takes
off that the increased number of people able to afford fractional leisure
assets will actually increase the number of second homes, yachts etc.
that   are purchased. In this case the environmental benefits won't have
been   achieved but there will be a lot of happy people!
Neil   Robertson owns a fractional ownership website where you can read
more   great articles on the fractional ownership of real estate, yachts,
cars   etc.