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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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FTC Staff
January 23, 2018

In reply to by cperkins

Did you check this company with any government agencies? If a company calls you and offers to sell your timeshare, be careful.

Read the FTC tips about selling a timeshare. Here's the first tip:

Spicer2016
January 30, 2018

In reply to by cperkins

I would like to know about Silver City Property as well. They are wanting to purchase our vacation club membership through Unlimited Vacation AMResorts
YZ
January 24, 2018
Has anyone heard of Golden Asia Realty? Exactly the same. Contacted us to buy our timeshare at Mayan Palace for much more than we paid for. Then they do the transaction through an escrow account managed by Nations Capital Inc title services, also based in NY. Then they sent you the Banamex account form. I fairly certain is a scam but wanted to confirm. The guy I spoke to today gave me his real state license. The Golden asia company can also be found on the official government website for NY real state licenses. Very sketchy but wanted to hear other opinions if any. Oh and the usual 9% commision and no "upfront cost". I'm yet to find one person that actually got the money that was promised...
biofoolish
January 26, 2018

In reply to by YZ

YZ. We got a valid real estate license # also but I tracked down the office that person works out of and spoke to the broker he says he is not involved in this transaction and is reporting it to his licensing board.
Ellie
May 17, 2018

In reply to by YZ

Golden Asia has set up an account with Citibanamex via Nations Capital, I have not seen the sales agreement yet, but I have been skeptical all the way. They are asking me to get a permit to sell form the Mexican consulate nearby...does this sound familiar or weird?
danno
January 26, 2018
Has anyone dealt with Travel Plus Acquisition (out of salt lake city) and/or The Closing Source, an Idaho LLC as escrow company regarding resale of Mexican timeshares? Their standard contract requires Buyer to pay all fees and taxes but I don't know if they are legitimate. If any one has closed a transaction with them, please let me know.
FTC Staff
January 26, 2018

In reply to by danno

Did you check this company with any government agencies? If a company calls you and offers to sell your timeshare, be careful.

Read the FTC tips about selling a timeshare. Here's the first tip:

Barnard
February 01, 2018

In reply to by danno

I have been contacted by both of the above firms. The property is in Mexico and I have now been requested to send $3700 to them to pay for a ‘business licence’ that the Mexican government now requires (as of Jan 1st, 2018), in order to proceed with the sale. This is to be pre-paid and will be refunded once the sale completes. I have not done this. I am trying to find out more information about both companies and fee before proceeding further. Have you received a similar request?
YZ
February 07, 2018

In reply to by Barnard

I did not do anything and they called me again last week to check on the status. I told them that I was not going to pay anything upfront and he told me the same thing. Basically that because I'm not mexican I needed to buy a license to be able to sell it. That he estimated it would be between 3000 and 5000. I said no thanks and that I wanted copies of their real state licenses. Have not heard back. I noticed that they did additional work on the website probably after I told them that I looked too fake
partsguy
April 05, 2018

In reply to by danno

I have a contract5 right now from them wanting to rent my timeshare for Las Vegas to a company in Mexico. They have not asked for any money upfront and they said they would not. I am hesitant to sign the contract they provided until I can get something positive about them.
Jennifer
January 26, 2018
Has anyone dealt with Golden Asia Realty in New York. They are offering $86,700 for a Mayan resort, have valid license numbers as brokers and have sent by email an Offer to Purchase. They claim the buyer is a billion dollar company that needs tax writeoffs in case NAFTA disappears. I would appreciate any warnings before going ahead with this Purchase offer.
Don't use your…
January 30, 2018

In reply to by Jennifer

We got the same request recently but from a International Sales Group in New York LLC, offering 40,000.00 for our time share in Mexico. They also said something about NAFTA and a tax write off. We are also thinking it is a scam but what if it isn't? Anne

Victim
February 04, 2018

In reply to by Don't use your…

It is a scam. I am a victim of this Mexico timeshare resale scam and lost over $100k to International Sales Group New York and the partner escrow company Emerald Property Groups Inc. Please dont be another victim of this company.
FTC Staff
February 05, 2018

In reply to by Victim

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.

dupetoo
February 13, 2018

In reply to by FTC Staff

Bridget... I filed a complaint with the FTC, BBB, FBI and the bank that I wired over $11K to Gold Coast Real Estate last year. I got responses back telling me there is nothing they can do for me. I am glad to hear that the FTC is filing these complaints, but what else are they doing to assist people who have been duped?
FTC Staff
February 16, 2018

In reply to by dupetoo

The information you reported to the FTC was added to a secure database that law enforcement agencies nationwide can search and use for investigations. You can also report to your state Attorney General, and the wire transfer company you used to send the money.

MikeD
January 29, 2018

In reply to by Jennifer

I have also been contacted by them, offering me just about what I paid for it. Very hard to find ANY information online...
Susan
February 02, 2018

In reply to by Jennifer

Are the brokers licensed individually to their home address or to the company they're working for? I spoke to someone from the NY DOS and they commented that the brokers should be licensed to practice under the organization they work for.
Di
April 05, 2018

In reply to by Jennifer

I have received an offer also from Golden Asia Realty, they claim that there is alot of scams out there and gave me all the license numbers to verify them. Has anyone worked with them?
Jennifer
January 26, 2018
Hello YX Thankyou for your comment. I do not know how they obtain those registered broker numbers and use the name of a valid company and get away wih that. Do you actually know of anyone who went through with the deal with Golden Asia and the Grand Mayan and got scammed by not receiving any amount or far less than the promised amount and who had to pay any other fees to get nothing or a small amount on disbursement. They say you are not committed to anything by signing the Purchase Order and sending the front page of your contract but is this really so. They say send the information at your convenience trying to appear not pushy or is this just another tactic to gain confidence.
LLG
January 29, 2018
We have also been contacted by Golden Asia Realty, as well as International Sales Group NY. Ryan Manly at Golden Asia is who I have been speaking with; no upfront fees, 9% commission at closing, and offer of much more than we paid. Just today was contacted by John Moore of ISG NY; no details from him yet.
PaulaS
January 30, 2018
I have an offer Brian A Harden from Blue Light Realty Management Group to purchase my Grand Luxxe property. The escrow company is American Finance SLP, LLC with the escrow officer being Ben Carmona. Any one have contact with them or their company? Both are licensed in NY.
A Friend
January 31, 2018

In reply to by PaulaS

Paula, American Finance says that they are "licensed by the Division of Licensing Services". I suggest that you call the DLS. You might learn something useful.
Susan
January 30, 2018
Network Brokerage Corp has been contacting me. Their address does not match the address with the NY Dept of State. The Sr Broker is listed is not associated with the business, instead he's listed as an individual broker. Also got an estimate from a company called Asia Realty just before hearing from Network Brokerage Corp. Asia Realty coincidentally uses a very similar document header as Network Brokerage Corp. Asia Realty is not listed with the NY Department of State. The holding company used for escrow in Mexico City is listed as an alias for Network Brokerage Corp in the BBB listing. Too many odd things going on here.
cmax
January 31, 2018
Has anyone seen one of these deals to closing? Max Polsky and Silver City in particular. would like to know if it's a scam -- or if they really close. No money has changed hands.
FTC Staff
January 31, 2018

In reply to by cmax

Did you check the companies with any government agencies? If a company calls you and offers to sell your timeshare, read the FTC tips about selling a timeshare. Here's the first tip:

Hutch
March 08, 2018

In reply to by cmax

I was just contacted by Max Polsky of Silver City Properties. He stated my original Broker Peter Lane(the one who contacted me and explained the "deal" was on another project now and wanted to know if Peter informed me about a fee to register a temporary residency in Mexxico. it will cost $4872. He told me I had to set it up in mexico or through an international lawyer or they could suggest ones for me. I have asked to have docs mailed to me have not gotten them yet. Smells like a big pile of BS! Does any one have any more info?
LLG
January 31, 2018
Received by e-mail a contract from Golden Asia Realty and have 15 days to send it back. I read the whole thing and it 'looks' legitimate. Also contacted again by International Sales Group. I asked why so many people are suddenly so anxious to buy our timeshare, and he said that it's the end of the tax year and companies need to invest the money (or something to that effect). I want to believe this is for real, but this site doesn't make me very hopeful.
Ellie
May 17, 2018

In reply to by LLG

I am interested what happened as I am in the same position as you, did you go through with the offer successfully? I t all seems good to me, but this website is making me wonder..
mars
February 01, 2018
I also have been contacted by Silver City. They just sent the do call contract. To my surprise it’s asking the seller to had over a POA to silver City for use of the timeshare. Ours is also in Mexico. Let me know if any one has closed. They are asking for 6% plus it says we pay them even if it doesn’t close.
mars
February 01, 2018
I too have been contacted by Don Campbell of Silver City again No money upfront, 6% commission. Set up trust acct with First American Ben Carmona. Looked at the contract they want you to give them Power if Attorney to use the timeshare. Gave a ridiculous amount for the appraisal. Very interesting reading these posts. I have some pretty interesting questions for this guy when I talk to him. Needless to say will not be signing anything
Pmcc1
February 02, 2018

In reply to by mars

I have been dealing with the same comas well sq Don and Ben. They quite persistent in keeping me in the loop. They explain the documents clearly BUT now I have to pay approx. $4700 for the lawyer in Mexico to pay for the costs to 5ransfer title in Mexico. All this for my Villa Del Arco Timeshare group. Am trying to find definitive on these companies??
FTC Staff
February 05, 2018

In reply to by Pmcc1

Did you check the companies with any government agencies? If a company calls you and offers to sell your timeshare, read the FTC tips about selling a timeshare. Here's the first tip:

midget
February 14, 2018

In reply to by Pmcc1

I am working with the same company and they have now asked me to wire them money for the Mexican government to be able to sale my property. Have you had this yet?
midget
February 14, 2018

In reply to by Pmcc1

Silver Properties is listed under BBB Scam Tracker. This is a scam.
Not on my watch
February 02, 2018

In reply to by mars

I have been working with Jesse Conde also with Silver City Same no up front fee but 6% commission. Also working with Ben Carmona. Husband is DetectiveSo doing some Investigating also.. No fees up front , Ben Carmona sent the application in Spanish. I told them I would absolutely not fill it out unless in english so I know exactly what I am signing. Been hesitant but Jesse has given me all the right answers. Checked attorney general, federal trade commission, and consumer financial protection bureau.
O-Dogg
February 08, 2018

In reply to by Not on my watch

I have been working with Nicole at Silver City and gotten to the point of the Citibanamex application from Ben Carmona at America Finance. Their website looks legit: silvercitypropertiesny. com/ index. but not sure if to proceed since there is no upfront money (yet). Has anyone completed the application and received the sales agreement? They haven't been hiding that I should use an attorney so unless the bank is a fraud (i.e. can't access my money) then I haven't signed anything over? thoughts?
SaulR
February 09, 2018

In reply to by O-Dogg

So did you find out? They contacted me too with no upfront fees then all of a sudden I need 3200 for tax I'd from Mexico. Sounds like scam.
Samani
February 11, 2018

In reply to by O-Dogg

I was contacted by Silver City and I'm now at the same point as O-Dogg. I've received the application from Ben Carmona. I, too, am apprehensive about going ahead. I was told that any fees/taxes would be paid by the buyer so there wasn't a request to pay any Mexico taxes. I was also advised to open a separate account to receive the wired funds. That way I wouldn't have to disclose any current account information. On Monday I'm going to ask Silver City to provide some names of sellers who have closed on the sale. All the comments I've read are from people who are in the process. I have used the timeshare each year mostly going to Mexico, but also other worldwide destinations. My husband and I have enjoyed our experiences. I wasn't planning to sell until this opportunity (?) came about. As the saying goes, "If something seems too good to be true, it probably is!" I'd love to hear from someone who has had a closing and received the funds.
The Calgary Phoenix
February 13, 2018

In reply to by Samani

I'm working with Nicole and Ben as well. I had a friend from Cancun translate the Spanish version to what the English instructions state it asks for, and from that perspective, it's good. I now await the contract, which will be reviewed with a fine tooth comb to ensure there are no hidden fees, etc. They offered basically what we paid for the membership, so that doesn't fit the standard "pie in the sky" offer one hears about. Now that Ben has send a confirmation of the escrow set-up, I'm going to run off a copy and discuss with my bank.
midget
February 14, 2018

In reply to by The Calgary Phoenix

I have a gut feeling this is not legit. Have they asked you for the $3,200? It looks like American finance SLP is a very new company and there are not ratings on it yet.
smellarat
February 16, 2018

In reply to by Samani

You won’t hear from anyone who,got their money cus it’s all a scam. Your money will go into an escrow account of a company not registered. Turn around and run then read the pages of other people’s experiences. Luckily I did lots of homework after getting application in Spanish and started checking them out with government agencies.
Anxious
February 01, 2018
Has anyone been approached by Golden Asia Realty in NY to resell a timeshare. They offer a price of $68,700 with only a 9% commission to be taken off when the sale goes through. They are the realtors for Sika a billion dollar company who wants the money for a tax writeoff. The money is kept in trust by Citibanamex bank in Mexico and forwarded when the sale closes. They say no upfront fees are required and no other costs to the seller. Is this too good to be true?
Inspector Clousea
February 10, 2018

In reply to by Anxious

I hope you get the Pink panther reference. I had hoped not to bring my info regarding Golden Asia to the internet as of yet because I wanted to try to turn the table on them before letting them know that I am on to them This is what I have found out about them. But first My story is much like the other listed. They are offering me 10x what I paid. they get a 9% comish. The buyer is a wealthy Texan, They work with Nations Capitol who creats an Escrow account in Citibanamex. They have a Mexican Law firm handeling the deal. All the paperwork looks legit. Do not wire them money. They will ask you to send them money per your time share contract stating that you must pay a transfer fee. They know this because the scammers have somehow gotten your info out of the timeshare record office. inside Job. So what Have I found out. They set up the Golden Asia Realty Co thru Godaddy.com. If you search whoisGodaddy.com, enter goldenasiarealty.com and you will see that the web site was generated in Mexico City. Owner name, Address and phone number are listed. I have not tried to call the number yet. I tried to call security within the building at the address to GARealty. They are not allowed to give out the names of tenants. From Google Earth Street View I can see that there is a FedEx office on the first floor. I called them, They have not heard that name in their building. Supposedly GAR is on the 18 floor. The contact that I have been talking with will not provide me with a license number even though he said he would twice, A picture of him standing out in front of his office, The listing of the brokers listing for NY with his name on it. I cannot believe he is still calling me. He must realise that I am on to him. If he reads this he will figure it out or try to prove they are legit. I have more work to do. will check out Nations Capitol to see if they are working with GAR. As I mentioned, I did not want to tip my hand to GAR so I wasn't going to write this as I guess they may watch this site. But I didn't want anyone falling for what I am 95 % sure is a scam. A lot of things will need to get cleared up before I am convinced. Did I mention that he said I should get an international Lawyer so we could proceed with the deal. What scammer does that. This is either the real deal or it is a highly orchestrated scam. Update to follow.
Missouri "Show me"
February 13, 2018

In reply to by Inspector Clousea

We have also been in communication with Golden Asia. I have called the NY Licensing Bureau and tried to verify the license numbers given me. As you say - so far they have not requested any $$. We received the emailed copy of the contract today - have 15 days to sign if we are going to proceed. There is a $4,800 fee that shows up but doesn't say who pays or when. We have called once and the phones were down for GAR and Nation's Capital Title but they were back up the next day. Everytime I say "this sounds like a scam, I'm out" they come back with a new person and license # to show they are legit. I was also told to hire a lawyer, and may do that. I have googled Golden Asia, checked the website for fraud in NY and not really found anything except this site. I think I'll request a hard copy of the contract - see if they are willing to use the US mail. This is crazy - it's so hard to figure out what they are after - I'm thinking identity theft but they haven't requested SS or banking #s. Is it possible to set up a "trust" in Mexico just with your name and address? We did receive "verification" of funds from Citibanamex but when I called from a number off their website their computers were "updating" and the gentleman could not confirm the account. I'll check out the Godaddy site. Thanks. PLEASE let us know if you learn anything else.
Hayward
February 14, 2018

In reply to by Inspector Clousea

Same story almost word for word.... BUT then Opps you need an RFC from Mexico ...$5200.00 US. Have tried a bunch of research but can find nothing substantial. Waiting on response from NY Attorney Generals office but not sure that they will even respond. Tough to do this type of follow up from Canada. Offer was unsolicitated so not sure how they got my name, but same story, offering over a quarter million for a VIDA timeshare.
LLG
March 08, 2018

In reply to by Anxious

It absolutely IS too good to be true. We talked with Golden Asia for a few months and were told over and over no upfront costs. Then, voila! They wanted $5,200 for a Mexican tax number. I told them NO.