The recent receipt of a letter by some of our owners from a company offering to relieve timeshare maintenance and associated fees through the sale of the property – in exchange for an upfront fee – is a reminder of the numerous resale companies engaging in fraudulent practices.

All industries have unscrupulous companies preying on consumers, and vacation ownership is no different. Fortunately they’re easy to spot. If a company asks for advance payment to sell your timeshare or remove future maintenance fee obligations, you can be certain it is fraudulent.

These companies typically obtain your contact information through public records and manipulate you into sending them money or deeding over your property.

For example, a phone call from a person identifying himself as an authorized company representative can be just the first in a series of fabrications designed to steal your money. These so-called representatives will engage in high pressure tactics, saying the current phone call represents your only chance to forego your maintenance fee payments.

Don’t fall for it.

Characteristics of fraudulent resale companies include the lack of a website you can readily Google. If there is a site it may contain a PO Box instead of a physical address in the contact information. A phone number, if one is listed at all, is usually a fake. The best rule of thumb, as always, is never give money or important signed documents to companies you yourself have not contacted.