Timeshare Scams on the Rise Again

The website Business News Express posted an article on March 3, 2011, written by Kris Hana, titled "Illegal Timeshare Sales on the Rise." In that article, Hana quotes Florida timeshare victim advocate attorney Susan Budowski, who warns consumers to be aware that with the resurgence of the timeshare industry, timeshare scams will rise with it.

Hana notes that Howard Nusbaum, President of the American Resort Development Association, stated “The travel and timeshare industry is seeing a resurgence of travel in 2011, terrific news for the timeshare industry.” And that has led Attorney Budowski to explain that this also brings more victims of deceptive sales practices by unscrupulous sales representatives.

Reports Hana, Budowski adds, “Unfortunately many timeshare owners are getting taken advantage of multiple times. I have seen those who have been misled or coerced into buying a timeshare and then later desperate to get out of their contract, attempt to sell their timeshare only to be taken advantage of by a resale company.”

This is evidenced, says Hana, by a recent SWAT team raid of a purported timeshare resale company by the Orlando Police Department. A spokesman for the Orlando Police Department said, “The company was taking two to four thousand dollars per customer without providing any services. The raid and arrests were a result of timeshare owners from Florida to Canada filing multiple complaints.”

Attorney Budowski advises timeshare owners that feel they have been a victim of a resale scam to contact their local authorities. She adds, “The majority of legitimate real estate transactions do not require an upfront fee to try to sell or rent a property; if a company does, that should raise a huge red flag.”

Budowski also warns of a surge in timeshare cancellation companies on the Internet and utilizing similar unscrupulous telemarketing firms to take advantage of timeshare owners’ misfortunes, reports Hana. “These companies make false claims of legal expertise and claim to guarantee refunds and/or cancellations of timeshares, and like the resale companies, require an upfront fee, many times exceeding what it would cost to hire an attorney.”
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