Need For More Consumer Protections
While federal and state regulation of the timeshare industry has been in existence for decades, specific regulations concerning the timeshare resell market does not yet provide the buyer with the adequate consumer protections.
High Pressure Sales Tactics – Legal Cause To Cancel A Timeshare Contract
Timeshare resort companies are legally prohibited from using high-pressure sales tactics to force you to buy a timeshare membership. Timeshare companies will sometimes misrepresent and overstate the value of a Timeshare through the use intimidation and sometimes even make fraudulent claims, all of which is illegal, and therefore, under contract law, can result in the recession or voiding of the timeshare contract.
Retaining a lawyer to challenge the timeshare agreement may allow you to terminate your timeshare agreement and sue for damages.
Common And Unlawful Sales Tactics
Enticing you into attending a time-share presentation by offering free meals, gifts or trips.
Representing to you that your timeshare membership will go up in value over time.
Representing to you that you will be able to sell or rent your timeshare whenever you wish and effectively without limits.
Representing to you that the seller will buy your timeshare back from you should you be dissatisfied with your membership.
These examples of Illegal sales tactics can be legally challenged under the laws of fraud and undue influence. Under some circumstances, your attorney may even be able to claim and prove financial elder abuse.
Beware Of These Timeshare Reseller Scams
With financial desperation comes the emergence of unscrupulous companies that financially prey on the financial fears and vulnerabilities of people, especially the elderly. And nowhere is this truer then in the timeshare resale industry.
Reseller Fraudulently Promising To Resell Your Timeshare To Another Buyer
To accomplish this, the scammer promises they already have a buyer ready to purchase your timeshare or a promise that they will be able to sell the timeshare for a great price. Neither of which is true.
The scammer tell the timeshare owner that they to advance upfront fee—usually via a wire transfer—to cover closing costs, services, taxes, timeshare maintenance or what other fees they can dream up. Once you send the money, it’s gone.
- Use caution with an unknown person contacts you by phone, mail or email offering to help you sell your timeshare.
- If you receive an offer from a resale company to resell your timeshare never let them pressure you into making a decision, without first, performing your own due diligence. This begins with getting as much information as you can from the resale company: their company name, address, phone number, and their business identification number. Call your state attorney general and provide them with the information. They will check to see if there are prior complaints against the company.
- Always be skeptical of deals that are too good to be true. Stay away from sellers that offer money-back guarantees or use intimidation to get money from you.
- Ask questions and research information regarding the company’s background, history of resale or rental success and who at the company, if anyone, will handle the closing and at what cost.
- Ask if the company holds a real estate brokers license in its home state. Check with the state real estate licensing agency or www.arello.com to verify the information.
- Understand that, despite what some salespeople may tell you, there are no guarantees that your timeshare interest can be resold or rented at a particular price or within a certain period of time. Resale of property is not an overnight process. If you have listed your timeshare with a resale advertiser (rather than a licensed broker or sales person), any buyer or renter inquiries will usually come directly to you.
- You should never pay up front for a title search or comparative analysis/appraisal. You don’t need it, and it’s another way for companies to collect advance fees or to appear more legitimate.
- Don’t believe solicitors who tell you it’s easy to resell your timeshare at a high price, especially in the lousy real estate economy of 2008-2011. There are plenty of timeshares on the market, some for as little as $1.
- Always resist paying by money order, cashier’s check or bank transfer. If a company is not legitimate, your money will probably be gone forever.