The popularity of timeshares rose through the years and has spread worldwide. But unfortunately, along with it popularity, opportunistic individuals has concocted various schemes to prey on some consumers to gain an easy buck. In recent years, there has been a rise in timeshare related crimes. Just like for example the state of Ohio. Within the past two years, complaints to the Ohio Attorney General’s office involving timeshares have nearly doubled. The majority from these complaints came from shareowners who are attempting to get out of their timeshares by selling it.
According to Attorney General Richard Cordray, from 2008 to 2009, the number of timeshare complaints filed with his office has nearly doubled and if current trends continue, this year’s complaints will exceed the number filed in 2009. He added that in this tough economy, it is difficult for shareowners to resell and thus, they are turning to outside agencies to act as a broker. They are paying sometimes thousands of dollars in upfront fees to companies that promise to sell such properties, but then do not.
Take the case of a woman from Medina who had paid more than $1,100 upfront to a company based in Orlando after an agent promised to aggressively market her timeshare. After the money was paid, the woman was unable to contact the agent or anyone else at the company anymore and her timeshare was never marketed.
As many Ohioans who are looking to resell their vacation property such as timeshares are running into trouble with scams, Cordray then reminded that people not to make agreements over the phone. He also advised to insist that the company send you all the information in writing and carefully review the terms and conditions before you pay any money.