There are news reports from literally all over the country about people get ripped off — scammed — by what are known as timeshare exit companies.
I’ve long said that timeshares are defective products.
Even if you love your timeshare, anything you buy that is hard to ever sell is not a valid product in a market. There should be a market both to buy and sell something. Timeshares, sadly, are good on the buying side — you can buy them very easily — but they’re bad on the selling side. They’re almost impossible to get rid of, even if you’re trying to pay somebody to take it.
Reports: People all over the country being ripped off by timeshare exit companies
If you go to any vacation area where there are a lot of timeshares, you’ll see billboards and people promoting how they’ll help you get out of that timeshare — those are the timeshare exit companies.
The Better Business Bureau has put out a recent alert on this, that these companies are just con artists.
They charge you huge fees up front and say they’re going to get you out of your timeshare, guaranteed. The only guarantee is that you’ve paid them big money up front — often with no results — and you’re still obligated to that timeshare.
In a recent example reported by Detroit’s WXYZ, a company called Vacation Consulting is accused of scamming an elderly Michigan couple out of $14,000.
This is not an isolated incident. According to the Better Business Bureau, another group of timeshare exit companies in Missouri bilked hundreds of customers from 46 states out of more than $2.2 million
Be realistic about getting out of your timeshare obligation
You should know that it is extremely hard for you to ever be able to get rid of that timeshare and you have to be prepared for the fact that you’ll feel lucky, in most cases, if you are able to give it away — literally.
No matter what you’ve paid into your timeshare, the best thing to do is to go stay at your timeshare during the week(s) you have there. There will be other people there who love timeshares. Offer yours for free to somebody who is there.
Maybe you’ll get rid of it that way.