Timeshare resellers & quick-money promises

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Con artists are adept at selling — or selling you on  — just about anything. When it comes to timeshare resale services, they may claim to have a buyer for your property. Or that they can sell your place quickly and for a good price. But first, you’ll have to pay a hefty fee.

As part of an international crackdown on timeshare resale scams, the FTC and state law enforcement officials are going after timeshare resellers who took thousands of dollars in upfront fees from consumers after falsely claiming they could sell or rent the timeshares quickly. Today, the FTC announced settlements with Universal Timeshare, Resort Property Depot, and Resort Resolution Trust.

These companies violated the FTC Act and the Telemarketing Sales Rule by making false claims about their services in telephone pitches to timeshare owners. Universal Timeshare also called people whose phone numbers were on the Do Not Call Registry. Some consumers paid as much as $4,000 in so-called taxes, closing costs, and processing fees to these companies — and got nothing in return.

Before you allow someone to sell your timeshare:

  1. Check them out before you agree to pay them any money. See if the state Attorney General, local consumer protection agencies, or the Better Business Bureau in the company’s home state have complaints about them on file. Then, search online by entering the company name and the word “complaints” or “scam.”
  1. Deal only with licensed real estate brokers or agents. Check with the Real Estate Commission in the state where your timeshare is located to make sure the company has a current license.
  1. Get all terms in writing before you agree to anything. That includes services the company will perform; timing of the sale; fees and commissions; and cancellation and refund policies. If a company says you have to act now or you might miss out on a buyer, it’s not a company you want to do business with.
  1. Consider doing business only with a company that gets paid after the timeshare is sold. And don’t wire money or pay in cash.
  1. Be alert to a repeat scam. If a company offers to help get your money back from a timeshare resale scam  but wants you to pay them before they do anything for you, walk away. This is a classic setup for another scam.   

Read about timeshare vacation plans and selling a timeshare through a reseller to learn more. And be sure to report these and other scams to the FTC.

Tagged with: scam, vacation
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Homes & Mortgages


Can anyone shed any light on Ola Travels and their arrangement to buy vacation club memberships(weeks) and timeshares?? Is it legit? They say you dont pay their "commission" until you receive their money they wire into your account.

We were contacted by Ola Travels to purchase our timeshare at Grand Solmar in Mexico. We have to date wired over $13k which Ola states they will reimburse us. We were supposed to have the funds wired back to us plus the sale amount last week and no one can seem to locate the wire. Now we're being told by someone from a Mexican bank they want another $1100 for interest before they release our funds. What the what?

My timeshare company charges $250 to transfer a title to another person. If the "transfer" company wants thousands and is not a licensed in real estate pass them by.

Best Ways Brokerage rep “Matthew Roberts” out of Tacoma Washington keeps sending me emails offering to pay me $72000 for a vacation rental in Puerto Vallarta. This is very likely a scam. If you’re contacted by this company, immediately forward their info to FDC.

Has anyone had problems with Gold Coast Real estate? In NY? And Global Alpha capital? ? We are being Scammed by them in a Mexican Timeshare!

Has anyone done business with TimeShare Exit Team-Reed Hein? We’ve given them thousands to get us out of our timeshare. We even had to pay maintenance fees for the upcoming year along with a letter stating we were not going to use the timeshare that year. I’m getting a bad feeling about this.

Read the FTC's tips about checking on a timeshare reseller. To start:

  • Don’t agree to anything on the phone or online until you’ve had a chance to check out the reseller. Contact the state Attorney General and local consumer protection agencies in the state where the reseller is located. Ask if any complaints are on file. You also can search online for complaints.


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