By M. Beddingfield
Through the years, timeshares have been associated with many different types of scams, come-ons, rip-offs and cons. Now a different kind of bottom-feeder has risen to dine on the surface, the timeshare rescue service. The timeshare rescue service is a relatively new business idea and not wide spread. Yet.
Timeshare owners are looking for a way out from under the rising costs of maintenance fees and incidentals. Many are trying to sell their timeshares online or through brokers. Some timeshare owners are so desperate to dump their timeshare money-pit that they are willing to walk away and bear the consequences in the form of foreclosure and bad credit ratings.
In steps our Hero and he is well equipped to handle any situation. Our Hero could be male or female, but just for continuities sake, we will continue to refer to him as male. In many cases, he used to be a timeshare salesman, so you can be sure that he knows the timeshare industry inside and out. Now, he will be all too happy to take that pesky timeshare off your hands. Our Hero runs a timeshare rescue service.
A timeshare rescue service will enable you to GIVE away your timeshare. Basically, you will be transferring the timeshare property, not selling it. So you are going to give our Hero your timeshare and he will sell it and make money. That’s just good business right? At least, you won’t have the headache and payments anymore. Before you say “Where do I sign?” let’s look at this whole idea.
Our Hero most likely has a realtor’s license and a sterling reputation with the American Resort Development Association (ARDA). He also is most likely partnered with a title company or may even own a title company. He will be very sympathetic with your timeshare woes. He’ll tell you that he’s helped thousands with problems just like yours. He may even tell you that your timeshare will continue to decrease in value and increase in costs. Which of course is true, but in this case, the truth is a great closing point for him.
Our Hero knows lots of developers, other realtors and investors. He has people with money waiting to buy your timeshare. Generally these investors buy timeshares in bulk and either specialize in renting them out or sell them to the next highest bidder. These investors don’t buy single timeshares; it would take too much time and effort on their part.
Our Hero has connections. That sounds like a good thing for you. After all, you just want to dump that timeshare and be done with it. Here are some other points to consider.
First, your timeshare will have to qualify. Not all timeshares are created equal; some are naturally more desirable than others. If you are one of the unlucky ones who own a timeshare that isn’t in a desirable vacation spot or trendy location, you may not qualify. If your unit isn’t a certain size, you may not qualify. Even worse, your timeshare may qualify this month and not next month.
One of the problems with having to qualify is that it may be just a come on to get you interested in applying for a timeshare rescue. They say that it’s free if your timeshare qualifies, but it’s possible that you may never qualify; they just want you to think you will. Then, when you have your hopes up that you can dump your timeshare, you will be offered a paid option because your timeshare doesn’t qualify. This is a classic bait and switch scheme that works well in the timeshare world.
Next, all your maintenance and tax payments have to be up to date. Our Hero is in this business to make money, not pay your bills. Furthermore, you will have to continue to make payments while your timeshare is in escrow, which could be as long as four months. In fact, you will have to continue to make payments until all the paperwork is final and the transfer is complete.
Speaking of paperwork, you may also have to pay any closing costs, title searches, any special assessments, resort transfer fees and other fees associated with transferring your timeshare property.
And most important, before our Hero will even consider accepting your timeshare, your mortgage has to be paid in full. This is a significant detail when you are considering using a timeshare rescue service. If you paid thousands of dollars for your timeshare, which you did if you had a high-interest mortgage, it just makes sense to try other methods such as selling your timeshare or donating it to charity, before giving it to someone who will profit from it.
To sum it all up, in order for a despairing timeshare owner to benefit from using a timeshare rescue service, they have to own the timeshare, be up to date on all fees, qualify and be out of pocket any associated fees. How is this rescue? Yes, you will be relieved of making tax and maintenance payments for the rest of your life. That’s a good thing. But in my opinion, if timeshare rescue services are to be considered a legitimate business, then the timeshare owner should receive a portion of the profits.
Timeshare owners get shafted in so many ways. They get tricked into making the purchase. They pay higher than average interest fees. They pay various fees for as long as they own the timeshare, often their entire lives. The list of problems goes on and on. A timeshare rescue service seems like another way to take advantage of timeshare owners.