One of the main concerns people have when thinking about buying a vacation property is whether or not timeshare is a scam. It is worth mentioning that the principle concept behind timeshare is not fraudulent, although you can become susceptible to a deliberate timeshare scam. That is, a genuine timeshare company offers legitimate purchases and your money is safe. What happens is that timeshare gets a bad reputation from companies who misuse the timeshare model or set out to deliberately defraud the public, as will be discussed below.
One of the most distressing types of timeshare scams is when buyers are tricked into purchasing a timeshare that will never be built. Interested buyers pay for a unit based on the fact that the resort will be completed in the future, only to find that the company goes bust, disappears or can’t get the correct permits to finish the properties. Pre-sales can be a tricky area, because that is when you get the best deals from reputable timeshare companies. The cost of a timeshare at pre-sale can save you a lot of money and you often get the pick of some exceptional properties. So, the best advice is to only buy a pre-sale timeshare from a company that has a track record of over 10 years. Avoid any new business ventures as it is very likely they could be scams.
Another area where people fall into a scam situation is during the presentations. Any presentation that offers a gift that is excessive and that seems just too good to be true is very likely to be a scam of some sort. There have been incidences where a timeshare company offers a grand gift like a car for attending a presentation. The catch is that you have to pay $50 dollars upfront for its delivery. When your car arrives, it is a toy car. While this kind of scam is not defrauding you of thousand of dollars, it is a scam nonetheless.
Resale is another type of scam that can leave owners very frustrated. Resale scam companies target timeshare owners and call them or send a letter claiming to have a buyer for their property. Sometimes the owner is not even thinking of selling, but having been offered a great price, agree to sell. The fraud happens when you pay a fee to receive the details of the buyer or pay a bogus surveyor to write a report that is supposedly required. It goes without saying that the buyer decides not to buy and you lose money.
The main thing to remember when avoiding timeshare scams is to do some research into the company you are dealing with. Nowadays, the internet will give you a pretty good idea of what you are dealing with. Timeshare is a great product and it would be a shame for buyers to miss out on fantastic deals because of the bad reputation created by the minority of companies.