The majority of timeshare owners are likely to enjoy a positive experience from this type of holiday arrangement. The threat of being exposed to fraud or scams is a real and unwelcome one, however, as a number of victims recently discovered in a scam that operated to con timeshare owners out of cash on three levels.
Police in Spain’s Costa del Sol have, thankfully, recently arrested 56 people in connection with this timeshare resale scam, but it has caused a lot of misery, heartache and financial hardship for the victims involved.
The first part of the scam involved fake telesales operators calling up timeshare owners and offering them attractive prices if they considered selling their timeshare. Since many owners are not familiar with the procedures of how to sell a timeshare or the Spanish law involved, lots of owners accepted the offer. Owners were asked to pay administrative and public notary fees.
Once it became obvious that the timeshare owners had been conned, a second tier of scammers got involved by contacting the victims and claiming to be lawyers. The fake lawyers said they were setting up an action group so owners could get their money back, but required cash upfront to assist them in their endeavours.
Finally, a third wave of fraudsters then contacted the victims pretending to be court officials, declaring that cases had been resolved in court, but the victim would need to pay fees in order to obtain their cash settlement.
Officials believe that this targeted and sophisticated scam was earning the fraudsters between £3.5 million and £4.5 million each year, fleecing £35,000 from the timeshare owners. The criminal investigation is still ongoing in the Costa del Sol, but uncovering this scam will be viewed as welcome news for any timeshare owner.
Although such incidences are not likely to affect the majority of timeshare owners, it does go to prove how important it is to know who you are dealing with when it comes to anything related to timeshare. As well as being cautious about receiving phone calls or emails out of the blue from people looking to buy timeshare off you at attractive prices, any owner should be wary when asked to hand over money upfront.
If you are thinking about selling your timeshare, but have no knowledge about how to sell a timeshare, then it is always advisable to seek expert opinion from recognised agencies and brokers who have the experience and know-how to guide you through the process – safely and securely.
- Friday, 27 March 2015 07:25