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The FTC and state consumer protection agencies have shut down dishonest timeshare resellers for bilking timeshare owners out of millions of dollars. If you’re selling a timeshare, listen carefully for the promise of lots of money quickly and a request for an upfront fee. Those are two key signs of timeshare resale scam — and someone you don’t want to do business with.     

In one recent case, Vacation Property Services claimed to represent big-name companies eager to buy timeshares for business travel and events. The company guaranteed timeshare owners hefty returns if they moved quickly on the offer. But first, the company said the owner had to pay from $500 to $2,000, via credit card, in “registration” and other fees to seal the deal.

Timeshare Resale Scams Infographic

Timeshare Resale Scams
Infographic

The company’s promises of ready buyers, fast sales, big profits and money-back guarantees turned out to be lies. What’s more, the timeshare owners were stuck with debt on their credit cards from paying the “fee” after the company told them that the sale would be complete — and that they’d have their money — by the time the credit card bill came.

If you own a timeshare, question any offers to help you resell it. Be skeptical of companies that:

  • claim the market in your area is “hot” and that they’re “overwhelmed” with buyer requests
  • say they have buyers ready to purchase your timeshare — or promise to sell your timeshare within a specific time
  • guarantee you’ll get big returns on your resale
  • require you to pay fees upfront — even if there’s the promise of a “money-back guarantee”
  • don’t provide a contract — or provide a contract that doesn’t accurately reflect conversations you had   

Read about buying and selling a timeshare, or check out our infographic to see how timeshare resale scams typically work.

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2063 Comments


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The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

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We don't edit comments to remove objectionable content, so please ensure that your comment contains none of the above. The comments posted on this blog become part of the public domain. To protect your privacy and the privacy of other people, please do not include personal information. Opinions in comments that appear in this blog belong to the individuals who expressed them. They do not belong to or represent views of the Federal Trade Commission.

From_BC
February 23, 2017

Also watch for offers, emails, and fake documents from "American International Investment Group" and "Champion Properties" operating out of 650 NE Holladay Street Suite 1600, Portland, Oregon, 97232 Tel: 503-914-2766 Fax: 503-345-6898 [its actually a Regus virtual office] using a fake site called champrops.  com (a WHOIS search shows it came into being only 2 weeks ago and the admin info lists people and addresses in the US and Australia) and americanint.  com (supposedly of Beaverton, OR). Their bogus contract contains this telltale phrase "Escrow further warrants and guarantees that the Total Rental Price, less 5% Company’s Fees due from Lessor, plus any and all applicable reimbursement(s), shall be paid to the Lessor at closing via Cashier’s Check to be sent FedEx Next Day Delivery or via Bank Wire..." Contact names are various including Sebastian Rost, Niva Flanagan, Samuel Wu, Andrew Del Bosque. They had all the correct contact info for our time share in Mexico including phone numbers, addresses etc. - likely purchased from a list, but still disconcerting. They made contact in late Dec 2016. We just referred it to police and posted this note as an FYI.

IsabelC_NYC
April 11, 2017

In reply to by From_BC

I also have been contacted by a Freddie Vegas from American International Investment Group, Inc. about a timeshare sales my parents own in Cozumel. I have not signed any contracts from them, being the skeptical New Yorker that I am, and now I am so glad I found this bulletin board!
jrtrusting
January 14, 2017
jrtrusting: I have been trying to have my Mayan resort to be rented since 2011 through GMC. every yrear i have to pay 200-300 to keep my membership open. Last year I was told that it was sold to Latitude 23 and new management. I have paid another $200. They are recommending to sign up for their executive membership to have my units to be the priority. I opted to sell, I was told they can sell within 6 months, i have paid additional $2300. Until now i have not heard any progress. What is d best way to sell a time share? any of you can recommend any legitimate company that will not bleed you out.
E
January 23, 2017
Has anyone heard of TIMESHARE CONSULTANTS or VI NETWORK INC? Are they a scam?
really too good
January 26, 2017
Has anyone every had positive results selling your timeshare
mis
February 03, 2017
anyone ever hear of all american real estate
timeshared
February 10, 2017

In reply to by mis

I was recently contacted by them. They claim they want to purchase the rights for 15 weeks (accelerated use) ... not sure they are for real...
Reynaboo
March 08, 2017

In reply to by mis

Yes. All American Real Estate contacted me a couple of weeks ago to purchase my Diamante timeshare in Mexico. They are working with an escrow company called American International Investment Group, which has a fake website and an F rating with the Oregon BBB. Both claim to be located in Oregon, but everything is pointing towards being a scam.
Dummy
June 27, 2017

In reply to by Reynaboo

They are a scam. Been dealing with a them for months got me for 40000. And now trying to figure out how to pay back credit cards for the wires. I thought that I was a pretty smart woman found out much different now. I pray that the Feds can take these horrible people down. Because I almost lost myself because of this and my daughter almost didn't get to have her dream wedding.
FTC Staff
June 27, 2017

In reply to by Dummy

You can help law enforcement by reporting this to the FTC at FTC.gov/complaint. The information you give will go into a secure database that the FTC and other law enforcement agencies use for investigations. The comments you put here on the blog don't go into the law enforcement database.

 

Duh
October 02, 2017

In reply to by Dummy

What was the name of the fella you where working with? Was it Joe, Travis, Chris?
Wish I knew
February 09, 2017
Capital One Service Group, Inc and Evolution Capital Inc are timeshare scam companies located in California . I won't disclose the amount that was swindled but I would like to add their name to the growing list.
LVBajan
February 14, 2017
Does anyone have information on Montgomery MA Properties in Las Vegas or Abelon Group in Charlotte, NC? Supposedly, Abelon Group in the closing agent on timeshares sold by Montgomery.
ermccarthy
March 06, 2017

In reply to by LVBajan

Did you end up moving forward with this company? Is it a scam?
curious
March 07, 2017

In reply to by ermccarthy

I am interested too as I have been contacted by Montgomery MA Properties too...
backpkrbob
March 17, 2017

In reply to by LVBajan

What happened with Abelon Group closing? I am now in contact with Abelon Group who is trying to close a sale of my property with broker NC Investment Co in Asheville, NC. Would really like to know. I have a bad feeling. Thanks
DJ Ice
February 24, 2017
Got a call from First American Estate Planning LLC 1stamericanestateplanning.com supposedly in Phoenix, Arizona. They offered to buy my timeshare and sent me a proposition in an e-mail. They have all of my information so it is either UVC directly trying to scam people out of money or they are selling it to scammers. This is the 5th time I have been contacted and the name of the business and website change every time. The offer was twice what I paid and the conditions state that a 6% commission must be paid to the title company at close. I did not go through with it since I don't send money to people that call me out of the blue, but this website came up pretty high on google when I searched timeshare resale scams and everyone's experiences on here seem to be in line with what is happening in my case. I offered to meet them in person and exchange the funds, both ways, in cash or offered to let them subtract their fee from the title company. Last offer I gave them was to use an accredited title company that has licenses in both Arizona and my state to exchange the funds, but they decided that none of those options were acceptable. Good luck to everyone else out there... if it seems to good to be true...
Epatriciag
February 26, 2017
Been contacted by a Derec Vanderbilt from "International Brokerage" interested in purchasing my timeshare at a good but not ridiculous price. So far no one has asked for money, assured me there'd be no fees but I'm skeptical. A google search doesn't come up with anything though they're supposed to be sending me a link to their website and a contract to review. Anybody heard of them or had any experience with them?
mariejolie
March 08, 2017
Wow seems like a lot of you guys got really screwed and I'm very sorry to hear this.. I live in Puerto Vallarta, a girlfriend of mine her husband is now serving time in USA for doing this kind of scam.. Maybe the exchange company like RCI, II and others should send warming email to all their members??
Annie
March 07, 2017
Anyone know anything about a company called Oakwood Property Management out of seattle, along with Esrow One Inc out of seattle and the Resort Planning Group...each has as simple as it comes websites and if i google search and get onto street views not a single one of these locations is visible via an actual business location.
rusty
May 16, 2017

In reply to by Annie

I am dealing with these guys currently, did You end doing business with them?
Debbie
March 09, 2017
Has anyone dealt with Olympiainvest.com? They recently contacted me to rent several weeks of my Mayan Palace Time share. They so far have not asked for any money up front, however, I am feeling a little skeptical about the deal. They say they are going to pay my delinquent maintenance fees and also pay me $42000.00 for 10 weeks of useage. They say these weeks are coming from the "back end" of my contract. 5 regular weeks and 5 bonus weeks. Basically, 5 years of rentals from the end of my contract. The contract is life-time (99 years),so I am questioning why they want the years so far in the future. After reading comments above, I am guessing that I may be asked to pay money when the Title company contacts me. When they first called, I told them that I needed more information from Olympia Investors and that I was not willing to continue with the Title company until I hear back from Olympia. Does this sound like a scam to anyone else?
TH
April 26, 2017

In reply to by Debbie

I've had contact from same company with same approach. What happened on your deal.
not gonna be a…
March 09, 2017
Has anyone been contacted by Enrique Sanchez or Lic. Sanchez Hernandez at the SEACSC? They claim to be investigators or prosecutors working with PROFECO to help take these scammers to court. They have access to all my information and claim they can get me 60-80% of my money back from the UVC contract because UVC sold all my personal information. I think I smell another rat! Has anyone else had issues this these guys? I'm doing my research, but would love to hear your experiences.
Can't believe …
March 24, 2017
We were scammed by Corporate Timeshare Network in November. The Sales Rep was Nicole Goodrich. We paid $1899.00 for the rental of our weeks to corporations. Corporate Timeshare Network, LLC 7600 Southland Blvd. Unit 101, Orlando, FL 32809 Phone 866-669-1110 corporatetimesharenetwork.
FTC Staff
March 24, 2017

In reply to by Can't believe …

You can report this to the FTC at FTC.gov/complaint. The information you give goes into a secure database that the FTC and other law enforcement agencies use for investigations. The comments you put here on the blog don't go into the law enforcement database.

Paulettedd
January 19, 2018

In reply to by Can't believe …

I received a call from CTN this last week. I am researching to see if they are legitimate. What has been your experience with them?
Cheryl
April 01, 2017
Has anyone been approached by Paramount Commerce? They called me to go to a marketing discussion today. I am very suspicious because there have been so many scam calls. Does anyone know an honest company?
Blonde not stupid
April 02, 2017
Winterfield Funding. I have received letters from these creepers. The # on my letters is 888-323-9217. I, also, have a reference #. Same fictitious address as another 888 # on a scammer alert site. I own timeshares. So many people get scammed by these moralless vultures. The only way to receive money for your timeshare is to sell it yourself and transfer title via a lawyer. Most legitimate companies will charge thousands of dollars to reach a settlement with your resort to release you from future responsibility. Most resorts sell points now. Fixed weeks are much easier to sell, especially if they are in a red week. I stalk the sales office and talk to potential buyers. When I am ready to sell, I know my pitch. When I do not use my resorts, I rent or trade them. People need to do their homework before any substantial purchase. I am a 20 yr owner. If anyone is in the market to buy, record all conversations!! If only I knew then what I know now. Have foresight, not hindsight.
FAE4
April 06, 2017
CERTIFIED TRAVEL CONSULTANTS out of "Las Vegas" or "Atlanta Georgia" (they told people both) ARE A SCAM... they charge a fee upfront and say they will give you a 90 day guarantee ... but in small print it says, they will relist it for another 90 days if it doesnt sell in the first 90 ... NO 90 DAY REFUND POLICY IN WRITING, unless you get it in writing... as we did..... BUT THAT DOES US NO GOOD, as they dont follow up on it, or return calls, nor has anyone reported that they actually "sold" theirs that i know of to date.
Two Grandmas
April 06, 2017
I, too, received a call from a company named Brokerage America, that seemed too good to be true. I was offered $35,000.00 US for Mayan Palace in Nuveau Vallarta, Mexico. No money was asked up front, and I questioned Anthony Cruz, the caller, about this, saying I was not interested in pursuing this if there was. He assured me that the money I would have to pay would happen after I had received the money mentioned above. Then I am to sign a contract, but one of the paragraphs said that I would be reimbursed for the money I had to pay up front for the transfer fees. Whoa!! So,Anthony puts me in touch with his supervisor(?), Richard Brown, who has been with the company for 12 years. and guarantees that this money will come back to me. I said No and that is where we are at this point. The company seems legit, with music when waiting on hold, a receptionist who answers the phone, etc. But I don't know how to confirm if they are or not, so I have to assume they are not. I would really like to sell this thing. We bought it under false pretenses from Mayan Palace on the Riveria. They are scam artists, also, as far as I am concerned. We have never, ever, used it and don't intend to. They said they would rent it for us and we would get the money from these three weeks. Never happened. Has anyone heard of Brokerage America in New York City? Or Counties Escrow in Cleveland Ohio? Who knows, maybe they are for real, but I am not willing to risk $4000.00 CDN.
LT
May 23, 2017

In reply to by Two Grandmas

I was approached and offered 37K for 10 rental weeks of my contract at Fiesta Marina in Cabo and also unsure they are legit. They are asking for a 5% fee too. here is a bit of info: Has anyone been approached: I have a Genesis contract (15yrs) and received a call from All American Real Estate, LLC wanting to buy 10 weeks off the backend of my contract for a high price. I then received a Contract from American International Investment Group in Oregon signed by them with a buyer (lessee). I sent questions I had via email to All American Real Estate, LLC in Oregon and received a v-mail from them stating they prefer to tell me on the phone vs. emailing me which sent up a red flag... maybe they don't want a paper trail. Also once you sign a legal binding contract you could be in for paying more money than you already are for your current contract.
pgupta011
April 19, 2017
I got a call from someone from company "Timeshare by Owner". The guy said that they could resell our weeks for a good amount of money. The catch was that we had to shell out upfront $999 "documentation fee". Number is 888-669-9781. I declined, but they probably find enough people falling for this.
Nancy P.
April 29, 2017
Be careful for Altavista realty in Chicago. They have a website, phone number you can reach and email. They tell you they have buyers. They offer huge amounts of money...but a small detail, you have to pay an amount for the paper work etc... Stay away from these guys. Do not send any money it is a scam
kaikai
May 22, 2017

In reply to by Nancy P.

Nancy: i am involved in a transaction with Alta Vista Realty and they have collected a $995 fee from me but know they say i need to pay the tax on the sale in order for it to go thru. How far did you get with them in order to know you were being taken?
AZJewel
June 10, 2017

In reply to by kaikai

SCAM...if anyway you can stop payment do so. Run, don't walk, away from this "deal." Never pay upfront fee. Always say, "you'll get paid when I get paid." Do not under any circumstances give them your checking acct or charge card info. If you already have, check your statements daily to be sure no additional charges or withdrawals have been made. May even want to "close" said acts.
Jess
April 30, 2017
We went to a timeshare "talk" in Cancun where they kept serving us drink after drink and lowering the price and we stupidly bought 2 weeks in Cancut in a presidential suite on a gorgeous beach, the maintainance fees are $2200/year! Almost caused a divorce. We just bought in Jan 2017 and this month (April) a woman from "International Realty Corporation" out of Chicago has a client who wants to buy my 2 weeks for $33,000 more than I paid. Very excited at first but now worried. I suppose if we said we will use our own title co we would never hear from them again? And we would NEVER send money. She said the buyer would pay all fees and penalties. Can't find them on a BBB search.
jazzy
May 02, 2017

In reply to by Jess

I am dealing with the same thing with International Real Estate Solutions Inc. Also in Chicago. I was skeptical so I read these stories. I've done my research and i cannot find any info on this business on the internet. The address seems to exist but it's a suite # in a tall office building. There's no BBB info either. Do your research. Be smart. Think- is it too good to be true...?
brandim1
May 10, 2017

In reply to by jazzy

I was approached by the same company last Friday. Can't determine if they are legit. He claims the family run business is at odds and one brother is trying to buy out the others by having more controlling interest. Would your time share happen to. E with sunset group?
trackeye0313
June 01, 2017

In reply to by brandim1

We have also been approached and own with Sunset group. We are skeptical as well and will be sure to read the fine print and take into account other tips mentioned. Will update after our next encounter with them if it goes any further.
Monty
May 15, 2017

In reply to by jazzy

They have a tiny little brick office, you can find it in Google Maps Street View at 1447 W 18th St, Chicago, Illinois.
Swissmiss
June 05, 2017

In reply to by jazzy

I also was contacted by International Real Estate Solutions. The payment model explained to me is that a client of theirs would pay me for the unit and then I would "release" (pay) the commission to them. After reading this string of comments, I had a friend go to their office in Chicago and check it out. The address on my paperwork 100 N LaSalle, Suite 1300, Chicago. Well, there is NO 13th FLOOR nor suite 1300 in the building. The building management has now been alerted and is investigating as well. RUN FAST, RUN FAR from any "offer" from IRES!! They way this version of the scam works is that you would be presented with a cashiers check. In return you would then make a legitimate commission payment to them - either a cashiers check or a wire transfer - all before your bank realizes the initial cashiers check is fake. If you supplied a cashiers check yourself, the money is gone. If you did a transfer, then they get access to some of your banking information. Hope this is helpful!
FTC Staff
June 05, 2017

In reply to by Swissmiss

This information would be very useful to law enforcement.

Please report it to the FTC at FTC.gov/complaint. When you report it, the details go into a secure database that law enforcement uses for investigations.

The comments you put here on the blog don't go into the law enforcement database.

VILLA DEL
June 06, 2017

In reply to by jazzy

Hi Group Involved with International Real Estate Solutions. I strung them along, had numerous conversations, dug into them, their professional licenses etc. Didn't find anything so signed a commitment to sell. Just got official documents from West United Services LLC as Title agency. Also in the Chicago area. Also have a professional Ill license. If it's a scam it is VERY sophisticated and long running. I plan to string the title company along and see if they hold water.

AZ jew
June 07, 2017

In reply to by VILLA DEL

Go no further in your dealings with this company. We have strung them along for 2 months. They kept offering more money! Bottom line is this advice from our attorney "I did a little bit of digging and found the information below. I would stay away from this group. Sounds like they will ask you for money at the end of the process (e.g., at closing "unexpectedly the mexican govt wanted money for the mexican federal resale tax permit. 4200.00!”)
Gabby
July 26, 2020

In reply to by VILLA DEL

So did you ever end up selling or losing money? I have been doing the same with Bull & Bear Properties Gabby
Jamie
August 10, 2021

In reply to by Jess

We have been approached by this company offering us $90k for our timeshare. Did you end up doing business with them? What was your experience? Thank you!
Buzzards Bay
May 11, 2017
American Travel Plaza Inc wants to rent my timeshare to their clients for 10 weeks, which they claim they will back out of our contract. 10 weeks equals 5 years. They claim as renters we pay nothing, they take 8% and the renters pay the maintenance fees $1099/week. Total for the 10 weeks is $39,000. Is American Travel Plaza out of Alpharetta , GA a scam? If so how do they get their money if their clients are paying for everything. I guess they may ask for certain fees after a contract is signed? Can someone enlighten me as to how they will scam me?..