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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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2,345 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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ravenmsg
December 10, 2017
Anyone receive an offer from Silver City Properties? A broker named Richard Davis contacted (1-866-380-6297 Ext. 670) me back in November stating he had a buyer who was willing to pay me $18,400 for my timeshare at Villa del Palmar. He claimed my timeshare was appraised at $25,000, over three times the amount I paid for. He stated that there was no fees upfront and that the buyer would be paying for the title transfer and the escrow fees. All I would have to pay is 6% brokerage fee. I was then contacted by Benjamin Carmona who claimed he worked for American Finance SLP, LLC, a title/escrow company. He sent me a Citibanamex form to fill out. I finally did some research this weekend and discovered that Silver City Properties listed address on their website (347 E. Main St. Suite 301, Rochester NY 14604) does not exist. If you put the address in Google and go to street view it shows a building with a door. However, if you check Monroe County property records the address does not exist and the building Google street view is showing is an apartment complex. Also, during the week the number Richard Davis was contacting me on all of a sudden changed. When I asked he stated the business changed their number. I asked why would a business change their number all of a sudden in which he could not give me a straight answer. I know this is a scam and I am just glad that I did not wire any money or give them any bank accounts. In the future I would suggest to everyone to check the property records on the address that is listed on the company's website and broker's email. State property records do not lie. Also check when the domain address was created. I checked and the domain was created in 08/2017; however, the website claims that Silver City has been in business for over 20 years. As you can see timeshare scams are evolving and no longer ask for money up front like they did five years ago.
SUMMERFISH
December 13, 2017

In reply to by ravenmsg

I have also been contacted by silver city properties and have been for a couple weeks, so of course investigated as well. I had noticed that the number on the caller ID was different as well and when I questioned it, they stated they are a large company and have more than one phone number. I called both numbers and they are both operacional, so that doesn't raise any red flags for me.After reading your post, I took your advice and checked the location records and I am a bit confused. I do see that the building has apartments, but I also see that it being used for other purposes as well. Any thoughts. # - Use Code Size / # Units # - Use Code Size / # Units 1 - Non-contrib 29,904 Sqft / NA 4 - Walk-up off 13,379 Sqft / NA 2 - Small retail 1,200 Sqft / NA 5 - Restaurant 1,300 Sqft / NA 3 - Garden apt 74,562 Sqft / Units
FTC Staff
December 13, 2017

In reply to by SUMMERFISH

This FTC article about timeshares and vacation plans has tips about what to do if you're thinking of using a reseller.

To start, don’t agree to anything on the phone or online until you check on the reseller. Contact the state Attorney General and local consumer protection agencies in the state where the reseller is located. Ask if there are any complaints are on file. You also can search online for complaints.

ravenmsg
December 17, 2017

In reply to by SUMMERFISH

I contacted my timeshare company and was informed Silver City is a scam. You don't have to take my word for it, but I find it suspicious that a company's phone number would change without being forewarned ahead of time. I'm not going any further with the company and plan on voluntarily surrendering my timeshare to the timeshare company next year since paying the maintenance fees is not worth it anymore. In the end I figure I save $10G over the next 18 years by surrendering than paying the fees. I wish Silver City was legit due to the offer, but my research and my gut tells me it's a scam.
searching
December 20, 2017

In reply to by ravenmsg

how is it a scam if they are not asking for cash up front?
ravenmsg
December 21, 2017

In reply to by searching

They won't ask for cash up front, but when it comes time to transfer the title they will ask you to wire them cash for a title transfer fee. Or they will use the old you owe the Mexican Government back taxes or taxes for this sale. Hey it's on you if you want to trust the company, but the research I have conducted leads me to believe it is a scam. I rather be safe than sorry. Plus the price they are willing to pay for my timeshare is BS. Mexico is becoming more and more dangerous everyday and less and less Americans are vacationing in Mexico. Your going to tell me that a buyer is willing to pay $18k for a timeshare every other year? I don't buy it.
Smellarat
January 01, 2018

In reply to by searching

We were also contacted by Jeremy Kaufman of Silver City Propertiesny. As someone listed earlier their address is non existent and addresses on real estate licenses are residences. The escrow company states address of 8o State Street however a call to property management reported no such tenant in the building. Escrow application is in Spanish was a red flag. I started contacting every government agency including FTC and escrow company not licensed. Because silver city thinks they’re smarter than time share owners they have changed up the scam racket in not asking for money upfront. Therefore, they bait you with “good offer from intentional investors” and if you are unfortunately scammed your money will go into an escrow account that you will never see. I only wish we dragged them along longer to waste more of their time then see what they said when I told them what escrow company we we using in the transaction. We lost no money just time but was worth the hours spent reporting them to government agencies because these companies need to be shut down.
Disappointed
January 03, 2018

In reply to by Smellarat

I was also contacted by Jeremy Kaufman several times and he was very good at selling himself and Silver City Properties. Jeremy just sent me an acceptance letter of $48,400 which is a great offer, but like all of you I did research and found it all to false which leads me to believe this is one HUGE SCAM!! I will not be signing this document and when I speak with him tomorrow I will have a few questions for him then I will be contacting BBB and all other agencies that deal with these scammers. Something needs to be done and I will do my part and I hope all of you will do the same. Good luck and god bless you all.
FTC Staff
January 04, 2018

In reply to by Disappointed

If you spot a scam, you can help law enforcement by reporting it. Go to FTC.gov/complaint and provide as many details as you can. The information you give goes into a secure database that law enforcement agencies nationwide use for investigations. Thank you.

Holli Wood
March 07, 2018

In reply to by searching

they get you all set up with a sale and then they tell you you need to pay the Mexican Govt a fee. It has to be by a personal chech or Money order and can not be transferred from the escrowed money from the sale
Smellarat
January 01, 2018

In reply to by ravenmsg

We ran into the exact same situation including appraisal value of $18, 400. They sound like reading off written cue cards and think you’re convinced they are a legit company as no monies charged upfront. We did all the same research as you did and I just wish I did what I usually do whenever an unknown number comes up on phone and do a google search. We realized the scam when escrow application was in Spanish. Hopefully they will start making an honest living doing an honest job when no one falls for their scam.
JR
December 11, 2017
What do you know about Madison Point Partners from Kansas City, MO?
Tired of scams
January 08, 2018

In reply to by JR

My husband has been in touch with Madison Point Partner’s and I keep telling him that I think it is a scram. Did you find out anything?
cinders
December 11, 2017
I have just been contacted by Silver City also. Are you telling me they're a scam too? Chris Els? He said to send a copy of the proof of ownership and they would appraise the property and then let us know the what the investors would pay. I can't keep up with these calls, what are the right questions to ask? They seem to have an answer.
FTC Staff
December 12, 2017

In reply to by cinders

The FTC article about Timeshares has tips about what to do if you want to resell. The first tip:

  • Don’t agree to anything on the phone or online until you check on the reseller. Contact the state Attorney General and local consumer protection agencies in the state where the reseller is located. Ask if there are any complaints are on file. You also can search online for complaints. Type in the company name and the word "complaint" or "review."

Go to the Timeshare article for more tips.

Nicolesmith12345
January 21, 2018

In reply to by cinders

How did silver city work out for you? They have contacted me as well.
Bjsofp
January 23, 2018

In reply to by Nicolesmith12345

I have been contacted by Silver Crty properties as well. Can’t find out anything about them.
TStroubleIthink
January 30, 2018

In reply to by Nicolesmith12345

they contacted me as well and provided an offer. Haven't moved forward with all of this blog info although it appears no one has moved forward. tried calling and writing attorney general's office but get a run around no matter who I speak too.
ttort
January 21, 2018

In reply to by cinders

Did you do business with silver city properties in Rochester New York? They contacted me about my cabo fiesta Americana timeshare
Rickara
December 14, 2017
We were contacted by Regal-M, Inc. in Oklahoma City. They were using Berkshire Green in Wyomissing, PA to handle finances. They offered $28,969 for property in Cancun. We were to send $3,300 to bank in Mexico which we would get back when closing was final. Seems too good to be true. Anyone heard of these companies?
Rickara
December 14, 2017
We were contacted by Regal-M, Inc. in Oklahoma City. They were using Berkshire Green in Wyomissing, PA to handle finances. They offered $28,969 for property in Cancun. We were to send $3,300 to bank in Mexico which we would get back when closing was final. Seems too good to be true. Anyone heard of these companies?
PlanningDev
January 11, 2018

In reply to by Shamus

Same here, has anyone had any experience with these guys? They want fees wired to escrow for a bank account in Mexico with banamex bank.
25nesie
August 03, 2018

In reply to by PlanningDev

We have been contacted by 3 individual time share buyers. They are hungry dogs! We wired $2,100. after being told it was the fee to release us from our membership at PB Sunset Beach in Cabos. We still thought we were going through with the sale until they had someone from a bogus bank in NY call us to say it was in escrow, but the Mexican gov. required us to pay Capitol Gains of $4,250. to release the funds to our bank. THEN, we got a threatening email from "The Mexican government" saying we had 24 hours to wire the money or they would have an arrest warrant out for us for tax evasion. PLEASE don't fall for these scams. Dream Vacation, CTrip, International Leader Realty, Sanders Law Group......
PlanningDev
January 11, 2018

In reply to by Shamus

This is seeming more and more like a scam. The websites for Berkshire Green Inc and Regal-M were created on the same exact day and time even though they claim to be separate entities with different incorporation dates.
Raela
January 12, 2018

In reply to by PlanningDev

I paid only half paying the rest next week...are they really a scam? Omg someone help me
coff coff coffee
January 13, 2018

In reply to by PlanningDev

Been contacted three times kinda pushy but funny have told them I won't send money no how no way will see if they still wanna deal..... I'm betting not and its a BIG scam. Story is good tho they buy property for an investor company to use as perks etc
Don't use your…
December 14, 2017
I was also contacted by Rock River Partners Firm....has anyone done sold a timeshare successfully with them?? Please respond to this comment.
Bernie
February 10, 2018

In reply to by Don't use your…

They are fraudulent, Rock River Partners Firm and Vinter Trust & Assets -- same fake company. Their addresses are bogus, they are not registered companies. IP address has traces to England
Lulu
December 24, 2017
Have you ever heard of WwwPrime Properties from Fortlauderdale Florida?
Concerned Consumer
December 27, 2017
I received an offer from Rock River Firm out in Iowa who are in cahoots with Vinter Trust Assets. Don't fall for it all a big scam. Thanks to you guys, I decided to do my due diligence. I don't know how any of these scammers are able to get away with it now a days. We're such an informed society due to in part to the internet and social media. Always do your research before falling prey to this vultures.
PennyD
December 28, 2017
I have been contacted by Rock River Partners who is using Vinter Trust & Assets. It seemed fine at first, no money up front, except for the resort's transfer fee which was in my contract. Paid that, then was told that the Mexican "IRS" wanted 19% of money that I of course don't yet have, for taxes, including 3% as a foreign investor tax. If not paid, the servicing company, sister to Colorado's servicing company --Vinter-- could not release the money because presumably the Mexican government has a tax lien on the money that the purchaser paid into escrow guaranteeing sellers' their out-of-pocket expenses as well as purchase price. The money originally offered for my timeshare vacation is about what I paid ($18,000) + a little more. So, it didn't seem like it was "too good to be true." I don't know what to do at this point. Call the initial $4000 a loss, gamble and pay the additional $5000? Of course there is also the threat that they can sue for rescission if I don't continue with the supposedly purchase/sale.
FTC Staff
January 03, 2018

In reply to by PennyD

The FTC article about Timeshares has tips about what to do if you want to resell. The first tip:

  • Don’t agree to anything on the phone or online until you check on the reseller. Contact the state Attorney General and local consumer protection agencies in the state where the reseller is located. Ask if there are any complaints are on file. You also can search online for complaints. Type in the company name and the word "complaint" or "review."

Go to the Timeshare article for more tips.

Patrick K.
January 23, 2018

In reply to by PennyD

I to have been contacted by Rock River Partners Firm in Des Moines IA. Been talking to John Wicks, he wants me to send $4,599 for closing cost. Where are you with sell your timeshare? I am in Colorado. Patrick

socalsurf
January 17, 2018

In reply to by Patrick K.

Run away from Rock River Partners. SCAM all the way. Trust me , no one in Iowa wants to pay more money for your timeshare than you paid for it. Google their office building, its the Catholic Church building.
JUR
January 15, 2018

In reply to by PennyD

I was also contacted by Rock River Partners who offered me a lot of money for my resort. I googled their name and there was a notice from the BBB that said this company's address in Iowa does not exist. I did check out their address and it showed 654 Grand Ave.as a vacant lot. THIS COMPANY IS A CROOK AND A SHAM! Julie R.
Bernie
February 10, 2018

In reply to by PennyD

Rock River agent was David Stevens Lic# B59205000 . This is a valid number, I suspect the real David Stevens identify has been comprimised.
Bernie
February 11, 2018

In reply to by PennyD

Both companies are actually the same if you investigate the IP address etc. Ip address traces to England and other places. Sounds like a large scam operation so its time to get the word out on social media that these guys are scammers !!!
sally s
January 03, 2018
Anyone ever met a Steve Holtz? Is there a working phone number, company name, and address of business? Email address? Seems he can be reached only if he calls the seller. New York Realtor? Same old story..."I have a client....."
Fun-in-Sun-Travelers
January 03, 2018
Received telephone solicitations from a (supposed) NY broker in Nov, a follow-up in Dec and anther today. The representative, a Mr Reaves (gave NY DOS lic no 103512110280), claiming to be with Network Brokerage Corporation. NOTE: They only seem to have an 866 number - clue...this is unusual. No BBB rating, though BBB shows an address on Park Ave, NY, NY. 2nd NOTE: Network Brokerage Corporation seems to use another NY, NY company called CCW Holdings LLC for Escrow services...read further in this blog to learn more about them. With Network Brokerage Corporation it was the 'usual' form of contact... claimed: they can sell timeshare at multiple times value; no up-front fees; use an Escrow company to 'ensure it is legitimate'; will close in 30-45 days. We inquired about renting and the claim was they had numerous prospects very interested in a rental but we had to provide all the information about what we own so they can complete the rental. We pointed that WE would be conducting the actual renting, as our timeshare home office would require US to make the reservation, therefore we needed to provide NOTHING to Network Brokerage Corporation in advance, other than a bank account number for them to deposit our rental amount into. This position was of course not well received by Mr. Reaves. We alo requested sample contract forms...lots of discussion, as Mr Reaves to deflect providing same, but in the end promised to do so (of course no such sample contract forms were ever forwarded). I reviewed this Blog and found no less than 8 other companies listed which have contacted us in the past, all of which I suspected as SCAMS, and at least 2 of which were confirmed to be so by home office at our timeshare. THIS BLOG IS AWESOME! Please do more to get the word out about it's existence and people... read up / research before you send anybody ANY information at all other than generalities about what you own and use an anonymous public email for them to contact you.
kjp859
January 19, 2018

In reply to by Fun-in-Sun-Travelers

NBC HAS ALSO CONTACTED US TO SELL OUT TIMESHARE. THEY ARE READY TO CLOSE NOW BUT CLAIM WE NEED TO PAY 60% of the Mexican SAT Tax now to finalize. Then we will get out money from the sale. Sound fishy?
Coreybell14
January 31, 2018

In reply to by kjp859

I too was contacted by NBC. They seemed legit but they needed 3400.00 to transfer title in Mexico. I called the Helmsley Building to see if their office was located there. The lobby attended said that they were not listed in their directory. When I called back the agent they said that they were not listed due to security reasons. The broker I dealt with does have a brokage license, because I researched it. If I do decide to move foward with it, though highly doubtful, I will insist on using my AMEX card. I bet they will come up with a reason why I can't.
Bruce
January 09, 2018
I have getting calls from Regal M about timeshare resell. They made it sound like it was ligitiment, he sent contracts through e-mail,we signed them and sent back got email from resort where our timeshares are through saying a scam. I did an ip search and emails come from Mexico. I didn't lose any money but have to see if contracts are binding to see if we are out our timeshare.
Dianag
January 09, 2018
I have received paperwork from silvercity properties with a Rochester ny address to buy my fiesta america timeshare in Los cabo mexico and statement with letterhead from Citibanamex showing $31,896 in an account sent via email from American Financial they want $3,676 from me first which is to b use for my Mexican naturalization even though I have club points not land. Have anyone heard of these people? I haven't sent or sign anything . Want to know if they're legit first and of course they say fee is refundable
FTC Staff
January 10, 2018

In reply to by Dianag

Read this FTC article about Timeshares if you're thinkging about  reselling. It has important tips, starting with:

  • Don’t agree to anything on the phone or online until you check on the reseller. Contact the state Attorney General and local consumer protection agencies in the state where the reseller is located. Ask if there are any complaints are on file. You also can search online for complaints. Type in the company name and the word "complaint" or "review."
Leesondra
January 12, 2018

In reply to by Dianag

I too have received offers on my two properties. I haven’t signed accepted offers letter yet. I too need to know there legal??? Silver city properties. Please let me know if you get new information. Thank you