Uncovering the Timeshare Resort Release Scam

HOW TO GET RID OF YOUR TIMESHARE FOR GOOD, AT NO COST TO YOU.

My husband and I got yet another annual maintenance fee statement from our timeshare company.  We no longer use our timeshare and we wanted out. It’s paid off but you can’t really rent or sell them successfully. So what to do with the $20,000-$40,000 investment you’ve made in a timeshare that you no longer want to pay for? 

I heard from a friend who is part of the World Ventures travel club that she was able to get out of her timeshare by writing the resort management company a letter and explaining she no longer wanted the timeshare and would like them to take it back. At first, they told her “sorry, but that isn’t possible.”  Then she called and explained that her husband is no longer working and they couldn’t afford to pay for it anymore and she would like them to take the property back.  They then agreed to take it back, and sent her the paperwork.   

When my turn came, I googled “how to get rid of my timeshare” and saw an article calling out a company that was recommended by Dave Ramsey’s timeshare exit team.  I trust Dave Ramsey so I made an appointment with them.  The company recommended in the blog post was called Resort Release out of Rockford Illinois.  We went through a few calls and were happy to find out we qualified for their service. They stated they needed to talk to both of us at the same time to get started getting us out of our timeshare. We got on the phone with a sales person and for almost an hour he walked us through the website and made us watch videos and read all of this information. He kept putting us on hold and going to check with his “approvals” department. Wait a minute, weren’t we already approved? Isn’t this what this call was for?  He kept skirting the issues and we felt like we were in a timeshare presentation! It felt really scammy. So while he was blabbing I googled “Dave Ramsey Resort Exit Team” and found another page with a DIFFERENT recommended company that wasn’t even the one I was talking to.  Then I clicked the reviews and they were horrendous

So I started pressuring our sales guy on the phone and said, look just tell us what your fees are so we can understand the bottom line.  He broke it down for us after making us write down an “inventory control number”. Very official right? 

Here were the fees to get me out of my completely paid off timeshare with no overdues:

$445 transfer fee supposedly assessed by my timeshare company

$595 title fee to transfer our title from our name into theirs

$3864 filing and administration fees

So there it is folks. For $4904 this company could take my timeshare off my hands. 

I told the guy on the phone no thank you, I would take my chances with contacting my timeshare management company like my friend did. He told me that it wouldn’t work, that they don’t take timeshares back and to feel free to call them back and check if they’d “accept us” again.  

So I did it. I called my timeshare management company, the same 800 number that is on my bill. I started by telling them I couldn’t pay the bill. They said the only thing they could do was set up a payment plan with me. I told her I’m afraid she didn’t understand, I was going to lose my job and wouldn’t be able to pay any payments.  She then offered to transfer me to the resolutions department to see if they could help me. I thanked her and agreed.  When the lady at resolutions picked up I explained that my husband had lost his job and was no longer working and I was going to lose mine and we just couldn’t manage the timeshare anymore. I explained that it was paid off and we had no debt other than the overdue maintenance fees and she said, yes, it’s called a quick claim deed. I’ll send you the paperwork, you’ll notarize it and send it back transferring the property back to us.  We’ll pay your maintenance fees and the title transfer and legal fees. I asked how this could be legally binding and she said there would be a certificate sent to us afterwards confirming the transfer.  So nothing hurting our credit, just a clean title transfer. Sounds good to me! So no more timeshare, no more maintenance fees.  I’m out $20,000 but I would’ve spent that on these same vacations over the years anyway.  It served its purpose while we had it, now we’re looking forward to being rid of it. 

There you have it. I didn’t make any money selling my timeshare. If you can, more power to you. I just wanted to get rid of it. I’m glad I was able to using this tip.

The scam these resort exit companies are running: I hope posting this helps someone else who was considering paying $5,000 for a resort exit program to profit by doing the same exact thing by transferring the timeshare into their company name, charging you $5k and then just explaining to the timeshare company that they wouldn’t be paying for it and they needed to do a quick claim deed.  What choice does the resort management company have? They transfer it for free and the resort exit company just made thousands of dollars from you for something you could have done for free if you simply used the right wording when calling the resolutions department. Don’t fall for this scam. 

 

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