Timeshares can be an enjoyable ways to spend some of your travel time, whether alone or with friends and family. Not only that, but from the investment side of things, they can be a great deal if done properly and with the proper knowledge to hand.
However, all too often, regular people fall victim to time share scams; usually because they don’t recognize some of the key signs or how to steer clear of the more dubious proposals. In fact in the past few years, time share scams have cracked the top 10 complaints lists.
Below, we’ll take you through three ways to avoid time share scams and the costly consequences that come with them.
1. Don’t Sign Anything Initially
By initially here, we mean signing anything at the presentation. Oftentimes when people are first getting into the timeshare market, companies will invite them to stay over at said property, usually in exchange for just sitting through a presentation. This sounds find in theory, but many companies end up “overselling” and pressuring potential buyers into signing contracts at the presentation itself, saying that the deals are hot and going fast and you don’t want to miss out. Never sign anything without giving yourself time to consider the deal, and consult a legal professional who understands contract law.
2. Talk With Other Owners
It’s best not to trust the word of the company selling the time share. They’re interested in selling you something, and will oversell the positive features of the time share and downplay or wave away any negative aspects.
Instead, have a chat with other people who already own the time share and are much more likely to be honest with you about their experiences. Be sure to ask them about any issues they may have had with regard to things like availability of the time share, maintenance issues, or problems with the company itself.
3. Know What Companies to Avoid
A big part of avoiding a time share scam is recognizing some of the signs associated with less than reputable companies involved. With that in mind, avoid companies who have 900 numbers to call, or who engage in hard sell tactics. Definitely stay away from those that offer seemingly outrageous prizes in exchange for your attendance at the sales pitch. Legitimate companies will probably offer a free night’s stay while you attend, or perhaps a small gift card. They won’t be offering things like a brand new car, and even if they did, it’s not a prize you will see. Avoid such offers and don’t engage if you are asked to pay for your prize, another red flag.
Keep these things in mind and you’ll be much less likely to fall victim to a time share scam.