Traditional Timeshares = No
Vacation Resort programs = Yes
We have two of the later, for that we get 1 week anywhere Westin/SPG has vacation property each year in a 2 bedroom private lockout, Cost was $22K each period, is a deedable property which means you can will it, give it etc.
The stuff they told you is no way in hell going to be nice, Our maintenance fees are 25 times that each property. That includes property tax as it is real property and deedable.
As far as buying second hand, with the SPG/Marriot (yes they are different companies but same programs) if you buy resale there's a whole laundary list of things which you cannot do most importantly to me is I cannot transfer options and points within the system. What that means is if we decide to not use one of our weeks in a year(we get 2 one for each property) I can convert those directly in hotel nights anywhere in the world there is a an SPG property(Westin, St Regis, Le Meridian etc). For example last year we converted one week, and using additional points we stayed for one week in Paris no cost at the Prince De Galles.
I have not paid for a vacation with the exception of airfare for a long time. Works for us as we travel at least 2 weeks every year to somewhere, Hawaii, Cancun, Bahamas, St John etc..
If you are serious look into those not the Traditional thing and always buy the high season at a lower price resort. For example we bought when they introduced, 1st or 2nd phase, on 2 Palm Springs properties, we get the same point value as people buying in Hawaii so we can stay there. Only catch you get first reservation choice at your home property but we book 9 months out so we never have a problem getting the room and location we want. BTW never been to our home property except to sign the deeds. It works if you work it.