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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.

Carolina
February 02, 2018
has anyone heard about Kevin Daniels with R5 Realty? they are offering to buy our Mexico timeshare. they are out of Albuquerque New Mexico.
LLBell
February 07, 2018

In reply to by Carolina

We are dealing with the same company who offered to purchase our timeshare from Cancun. We are very leery because it sounds too good to to be true. They are not asking for any money yet, and said they are just waiting on title and deed docs and will set up an escrow account to deposit their funds to be paid to us in. If anyone else has heard of R5 reality, please share your experience with us.
Dan S
February 08, 2018

In reply to by LLBell

I received a call from the same person, they asked how much I'd be willing to sell my time share for. I said 20,000 they came back with an offer of 37,950, they said that they would set up an escrow account and said when the check clears to send them 6% back. Why should I pay them 6% the buyer should pay. I think this is a scam.
Alberta
February 08, 2018

In reply to by Carolina

I was also contacted by R5 (William Sanderson). He has told me over the phone that they have people interested in purchasing several units at our resort. Today he sent me an acceptance letter. I am very hesitant to sign anything. Does anyone have an update on this company? I would really appreciate some feed back.
Jon
February 09, 2018

In reply to by Carolina

Do u have thei website information. I too was called by this company. ?? Not sure if it is a scam
Anxious
February 06, 2018

Who has heard from Golden Asia Realty who deals with Nations Capital Inc.com in charge of funds through Citibanamex in Mexico. They offer a very high price for the Mayan timeshare and have a buyer billionaire company Sika who wishes to use the money for tax writeoff in case Nafta disappears. They claim to have valid licenses which in fact do appear in eAccessNY and when you check Golden Asia Realty on Google the telephone numbers they call from and put on their emails are the same. How can they appear this authentic if they are not?

YZ
February 07, 2018

In reply to by Anxious

I have (see above). The main issue might not even be this real state agency as fake as it sounds, the bigger problem might be the trust fund and how you need to pay the upfront fees to be able to sell them...
Hayward
February 15, 2018

In reply to by Anxious

Also got a ridiculous offer from Golden Asia, over a quarter million for a Vida Mayan timeshare that I have that they claim SIKA AG wants to buy. Starts off " no money upfront which we made clear when they first called. Everything was fine up until a few days before closing and then they required $5200.00 US for Mexicam RFC permit. Suspected a scam all along but played along. They have all the answers, web sites, emails etc etc. Dealing with a Robert T Edwards who is listed with eACCESSNY. We are Canadian so $5200. US is close to $9000.00 C$. Have written the Attorney General of New York and am awaiting a reply. Have also contacted Commerce Dept and they have no info but have suggested it is a scam. Also have put a call in to SIKA but just got voicemail but will try again tomorrow. Contracts have no witnesses to signatures so are invalid as real estate contracts. We previously got hooked in a same scam with a McGinnis Marketing out of Colorado for $5000.00 so recognize the scam. Have also left an email through NY FBI office and since money is crossing international borders there are a variety of laws involved including money laundering etc. Same scam under a variety of company names and escrow agencies. Golden Asian is very smooth, well laid out and very convincing. They want money I told them to take it out of the escrow account, but they claim that it must be paid by the seller personally according to Mexican law. Well a retired lawyer in Mexico City who is the aunt of a friend here from Mexico says it is all BS. They will never be able to substantiate their promises.
Don't Deaconus…
February 04, 2018
I was contacted by phone by Golden Asia Realty, followed a week later with an email and purchase offer of $195,000 for a Grand Luxxe Unit. I am very skeptical about any of these companies, including those that deal with the equity trade ins. If anyone has a positive experience with any of them, I’d appreciate knowing. Otherwise, I’ve always said if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is a scam.
PalmarSkeptic
February 05, 2018

This is just unbelievable. I have not looked at all the pages of comments (so many!) but I was contacted 2 days in a row (last week) by R-5 Realty in New Mexico, asking if I am interested in selling my timeshare in Cancun. Isn't it odd that, at least with this first page, all the requests are to buy in Mexico? What's the deal with Mexico? I love my time share but would gladly sell for the price I paid - which was offered, but the more I read and the more I think about it, it just sounds too damn good to be true. They never mentioned on the phone any fees I would have to pay but I am awaiting an email. I have not done any investigative work on R-5 but I will do so now. Has anyone had a call from them? I was very close to being scammed a few years ago (Craig's List) so I am very, very cautious now.

marjetz
February 07, 2018

In reply to by PalmarSkeptic

I received The same email from R-5 Realty. I received an email with an offer that was half again what I paid for it. Of course I am interested in selling it for this price but I too am skeptical. I ask why someone would want to buy this timeshare and was told by the agent that his client was trying to get majority shares in the company and he had to go outside to buy that much. Apparently he’s only allowed to buy 25% of ownership through the normal channels. In some ways this makes sense because I know there was a split between the owners about year and a half ago but I am still somewhat skeptical. I’m probably going to sign and send in the acceptance letter just to see what happens but there’s no way that I’ll give them any money. I would be interested to see what they told you as to the reason someone wants to buy your shares.
kitten777
February 07, 2018

In reply to by marjetz

I received a letter of intend from R-5 Realty for twice what we paid for our condo, same owner wanted to buy up 25% of the complex, then a title company 'Escrow Management, Inc. sent me an email to fill out further info., which I have not done because I can't seem to find anything about them. Did you find any further info.
Cathy_
February 15, 2018

In reply to by kitten777

his is a scam - Please call the Real Estate Commission (505) 222-9820 and ask for lead investigator Lyn Carter or his assistant Jill. The IP address was traced to Australia and Taiwan. Here is how I was contacted: I was called and informed by Anthony J Sena who identified himself as an agent at R-5 Realty. He explained that a partner of Villa del Palmar is trying to buy back the timeshares to get a controlling interest. They offered me 2x what I paid. I was sent an Acceptance Letter to review an sign (not a binding contract) and then send back with the cover letter of my original purchase of the timeshare. A contract would be drawn up and the Escrow company (in this case Escrow Management Inc from Colorado) would set up an escrow account in my name only and the funds would be deposited into said account. Once I see the funds in the account, I would sign over my interest in the timeshare to R-5 and I could withdraw the money in the escrow account. Within 15 days of me signing the deed over, I was to send a payment equaling 6% of the agreed amount to the broker agent as his commission. All closing costs were to be paid by the purchaser, along with applicable international taxes. I could not find any information online about the agent who called me. A friend told me to call a real estate attorney for advice. I spoke with one from Albuquerque and when I told her the address of the business, she said that she was familiar with that building - that it has some businesses in the lobby and condos up top "...but it's strange that the website and letterhead does not show a suite number. You would think any business would want mail to go to it." I then called a real estate agent from Albuquerque and she was able to find a real estate broker listed as Anthony John Sena, working for Tierra Investments, Licence #06087. The real estate agent then advised me to call the Real Estate Commission.
Maslo1
February 07, 2018

In reply to by marjetz

I’ve been talking to a Rachel there at R-5. She basically told me the exact same thing and I sent back that the letter of interest. She said I’ll be hearing from a title company in regards to the next steps and that an escrow account will be set up with the funds. She said they don’t take their commission until after the deal when she was 6% of the sale price. I agree it sounds too good to be true. I haven’t given them any bank information for Social Security numbers or anything along those lines. I agree that it doesn’t make sense that someone would want to buy these when they can just go out and purchase on their own.....
Cathy_McWilliams
February 15, 2018

In reply to by Maslo1

his is a scam - Please call the Real Estate Commission (505) 222-9820 and ask for lead investigator Lyn Carter or his assistant Jill. The IP address was traced to Australia and Taiwan. Here is how I was contacted: I was called and informed by Anthony J Sena who identified himself as an agent at R-5 Realty. He explained that a partner of Villa del Palmar is trying to buy back the timeshares to get a controlling interest. They offered me 2x what I paid. I was sent an Acceptance Letter to review an sign (not a binding contract) and then send back with the cover letter of my original purchase of the timeshare. A contract would be drawn up and the Escrow company (in this case Escrow Management Inc from Colorado) would set up an escrow account in my name only and the funds would be deposited into said account. Once I see the funds in the account, I would sign over my interest in the timeshare to R-5 and I could withdraw the money in the escrow account. Within 15 days of me signing the deed over, I was to send a payment equaling 6% of the agreed amount to the broker agent as his commission. All closing costs were to be paid by the purchaser, along with applicable international taxes. I could not find any information online about the agent who called me. A friend told me to call a real estate attorney for advice. I spoke with one from Albuquerque and when I told her the address of the business, she said that she was familiar with that building - that it has some businesses in the lobby and condos up top "...but it's strange that the website and letterhead does not show a suite number. You would think any business would want mail to go to it." I then called a real estate agent from Albuquerque and she was able to find a real estate broker listed as Anthony John Sena, working for Tierra Investments, Licence #06087. The real estate agent then advised me to call the Real Estate Commission.
robinm
February 18, 2018

In reply to by PalmarSkeptic

Yes I was contacted a couple of weeks ago by R-5 to sell my timeshare at VilladelPalmar in Mexico. Then I received an "offer" for almost double what I paid for it 7-8 years ago. No fees have been mentioned to me and I did not sign anything but can anyone help? I've googled the company and do not see anything at all.
Anxious
February 04, 2018
Has anyone heard from Golden Asia Realty? They offer to resell your time share for an unbelievable price to be used for tax writeoff.
2smart2scam
February 07, 2018

In reply to by Anxious

Yes, they have been constantly calling me and my wife offering to buy our Mexico timeshare for 6x's what we paid, after their 9% commission. so annoying.

Don't Deaconus…
February 14, 2018

In reply to by Anxious

Yes, a second call today. I am going to tell them to stuff it.
dcpa
February 05, 2018
Does anyone heard of International Commodity Consultants?...They have two offices located in Orlando,FL and Santa Rosa, CA. They are purchasing our timeshare in Mexico with no upfront fees. I checked them at BBB but they are not rated and also don't have any complains. We will check with the Attorney General. This International Commodity Consultants are very persistent and been call alot.
River
February 13, 2018

In reply to by dcpa

They have also contacted me. They had all my information. Yes very persistent. How did you make out on this purchase? Are they legit?
njames
February 06, 2018
Evergreen Equity Investments - waiting for a call back - San Diego office - legit?
jppatches
February 07, 2018
has anyone heard of NBR real estate. They work with CCW Holdings, a title company.They are offering big bucks coming from chinese investors and work through "lawyers" in Mexico.
FTC Staff
February 07, 2018

In reply to by jppatches

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:

Francesca
April 16, 2018

In reply to by jppatches

Yes, I have heard of Network Brokerage Corporation (NBC). Don't get involve with this company, because we are presently being fooled and scammed by NBC. We had paid so much money for Mexican taxes, bond for the Bank and other expenses. We don't even know if we can recover our money.
rgaray
May 03, 2018

In reply to by Francesca

Thanks for your comment. I had this amazing offer from them (Network Brokerage Corporation - Susan Leon, Michael Hernandez) and after my research I realized it is all a scam.
lynne
May 29, 2018

In reply to by Francesca

We just lost $25,000 dealing with Network! Run! They are really smooth!
Lunjac8989
February 08, 2018
I was. Contacted by worldwide travel events. The first offer was for $240,900. Plus I world have to pay 5% fee. I told them NO DEAL. And I would never pay a fee because they were looking for me, I wasn't looking for them. A week later they sent me another contract for $260,000. I haven't been asked to pay anything up front. Yet! What do I do???
Lito
April 16, 2018

In reply to by Lunjac8989

Don't!!! Worldwide Travel Events and NBC are sister companies, and I got suckered in. I am filing a complaint against NBC. I stand to lose 75K... my money is still in escrow and it's got to go to probate court in Mexico...
Francesca
April 16, 2018

In reply to by Lunjac8989

I believe the owner of Worldwide Travel is connected with Network Brokerage Corporation in New York. I highly suggest not to get involve with this company. Oh yeah, once you're in the contract, that's when they come up with new procedure/policy that just came about that you have to put up some money.
HANKJDon't use…
February 08, 2018
We were contacted by Jean Barber of Silver Cities in early January for our property in Cabo. We also were assigned Benjamin Carcoma of American Finance. All was going well until we had to send $3708.00 in a wire transfer to an attorney in Mexico. The explanation was something about NAFTA. We will not send our money and we are on hold for now. Waiting to find out if anyone has had their sale finalized to their satisfaction,
FTC Staff
February 08, 2018

In reply to by HANKJDon't use…

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:

Heddy
February 15, 2018

In reply to by HANKJDon't use…

Was your timeshare a Fiesta Americana? We've been approached by BlueLight Realty in New York regarding ours. We appear to be at the same stage as you are. "Sudden" costs are roughly $5000.00 CAN. We are "holding".
Hal2000
February 21, 2018

In reply to by Heddy

I was contacted by BLUELIGHT REALTY MANAGEMENT GROUP LLC to purchase our unit. I reached out to BBB and there is no info on this group. Did find a New York business license on file for BLUELIGHT REALTY MANAGEMENT GROUP LLC (a chinese name broker). I also sent an email to the New York State attorney generals office to see if they have any complaints on them. Deal seems to good to be true.
jppatches
February 08, 2018
Anyone heard of or dealt with NBC(network brokerage corporation) real estate. They say they have chinese investors wanting to buy timeshares in Mexico because they are ramping up gold mining in Mexico and want places for executives etc. to enjoy while in Mexico.? They are based in New York City.
Jmackay
February 13, 2018

In reply to by jppatches

I was contacted by NBC Real Estate, New York. They made an offer for all three of our Timeshares in Mexico. The Escrow Company there working with is CCW Holdings,NY.The Mex Bank involved is Citianmex. They said no upfront money. I signed letter of intent. Has anyone delt with them, and had success .
Greig
February 20, 2018

In reply to by Jmackay

We have also been contacted by Sarah steiner of NBC corporation about a studio resale in Cancun. No background information on the escrow company citibanamex. Nothing shows up on the net.
Francesca
April 16, 2018

In reply to by Greig

The escrow company that NBC uses is CCW Holdings in New York and the corresponding bank is Citibanamex in Mexico. Please don't get involved with NBC, they will really get as much money as they can. They did it to us, we're really such a fool to believe them. We are still working on how to get our money back from NBC corporation.
riggerman84
February 21, 2018

In reply to by Jmackay

I was also contacted by NBC Real Estate. They made an offer to rent my timeshare. $36.000 for 10 weeks. I haven't replied to them. I was also contacted by Silver City properties who also use American Finance SLP to set up an escrow account. Unfortunately I have wired money to a Mexican escrow account for taxes and a Physical tax ID number and Certificate of Naturalization. All documents looked authentic but now do more searching I am finding out this is probably a scam. Has anyone else heard or dealt with Silvercity properties. Your help would be appreciated
FTC Staff
February 21, 2018

In reply to by riggerman84

You can help law enforcement by reporting this to the FTC at FTC.gov/Complaint. The information you provide will 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 databases.

warytimeshareowner
February 22, 2018

In reply to by riggerman84

I'm going through the the same info as you right now with Silver City Properties and American Finance SLP. They said no money up front, now throwing in the $x,xxx amount for cert of naturalization... Would like feedback from others that have experience as well.
riggerman84
February 23, 2018

In reply to by warytimeshareowner

Yes, that is where it starts. Next they will want more money wired for a sales tax that now is being collected in Cancun, so they say.All the extras that they ask you to wire, they say will be paid back to you by the buyer. They send you a new sales agreement with the amounts added. It is being held in an escrow account at Ctibanamex. All there Mexican documents then send you look pretty authentic. They keep in contact with you very regularly. It wasn't till they asked now for another fee, registering the timeshare which they said it was a new thing, again showing official documents. That is when I started checking more things and found this site. I am from Canada so I will give all my information to a consumer affairs.
Skeptic
February 23, 2018

In reply to by riggerman84

I’m at the same stage with Silver City and American Finance. Paid first installment and now they want thousands more for Mexican State tax, claiming Ill be reimbursed at closing. I’m not paying any more, so they said they’ll be getting back to me.....
HogRider
February 26, 2018

In reply to by warytimeshareowner

I too have been contacted by Silver City Properties (Jean Barber) originally, I was very sceptical (why are you calling me, surely you can buy your own directly was my thought.) I was told no upfront fees, or cost to me. And then proceed and receive the escrow docs, the Citibanamex statement etc. Everything is looking good, and I am starting to feel comfortable. In my mind, I'm thinking the most important piece is the Escrow company. Realtors like car dealers lie. It's the nature of the beast. But Escrow companies are supposed to be the truth tellers. So, I focused my background check on them. American Financial SLP. I checked with the NY AG office and there were no bad reports, they were considered a company in good standing. I checked the BBB on both companies and found nothing bad. Then I spoke with the Senior Realtor (broker) Michael Furlano - and he tells me I need to by Temporary Naturalization $3150, and Tax ID Number $575. So here it begins, the scheme the scam, here is how I lose on this deal. I put the brakes on and widened my background check - I found this site, I found tripadvisors, and I found that the BBB site has updated their information to ALERT: Better Business Bureau conducted an investigation into this business with the following questions: licensing and bonding, where it does business, a list of all physical and remote locations, the company’s EIN and affiliations with other businesses. The company did not respond to BBB. Mail sent to 347 E Main St., Ste 301, Rochester, NY 14604 was returned to our office undeliverable as addressed. Emails to the business remain unanswered.
I caught you
February 23, 2018

In reply to by riggerman84

Hay ! The same thing happen to me ! Silver City Properties and American Fiance are SCAMMERS !I called them and asked them for identification, broker licence number ETC. They have not called me back ! I turned it over to the inspectors generals office !
Hutch
February 23, 2018

In reply to by riggerman84

Hello I have been contacted by Silver City properties Peter Lane who also use American Finance SLP to set up an escrow account. All documents looked authentic but on more searching I found American Finance SLP is not at the address 80 State St Albany, NY 12207 Phone number (518) 462-5626 this is the phone # at the address not American Finance SLP. They kep telling there is no money up front Mexico will transfer to American Finance SLP the escrow agent in Albany.
Eln
February 23, 2018

In reply to by Jmackay

Yes, they sent me application to open a trust account. Hope this is not fraud.
reindeer
April 14, 2018

In reply to by Jmackay

What happened when dealing with these companies. I am dealing with them now.
Francesca
April 16, 2018

In reply to by Jmackay

Yes we were contacted by NBC Real Estate in NY. We were offered for our two Timeshares in Mexico as well.They offered a price that you cannot turn down and said that no money coming out of our pockets. Please don't get engage with these two companies because we have shed out much money for taxes, CitiBanamex bond and other miscellaneous expenses and now the buyer backed out of the deal and we had to go to Mexico to go to court and find a bilingual Lawyer to represent us and pay for our airfare and accommodation within 45 days. As far as I am concerned, they should close these two companies because they are bunch of liars and I believe that they are very good scammers! They can make you believe that they have good intentions but please don't believe any of what they told you.