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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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AldeMera
July 06, 2018

In reply to by zunbell

I was just recently contacted by Hudson Holding LLC out of Phoenix as well, all seems legitimate; but I have my doubts now I have read your comments; I just to need to know if I should proceed or keep answering their calls.
SueSue
July 07, 2018

In reply to by zunbell

I am being contacted by Hudson Holdings as well. I am curious to know what happened after you sent them money?
kljones
July 11, 2018

In reply to by SandyCanadian

I was contacted by Hudson Holdings its a scam. Never pay money upfront. I passed if its to good to be true, Its to good to be true
mike
July 23, 2018

In reply to by SandyCanadian

Don’t send them any more money. They scammed me out of thousands and are a FAKE company. HHG is not the same as HH
awn2007
June 27, 2018
What can we do?? We had our lawyer assure us that 379Realty group and Elite Title were real -- however, they are asking us to pay/wire another tax fee to have our funds we've paid so far - 10% fee and 25% tax - back. Please advise.
Cabo Timeshare
June 28, 2018
We just got a call from Advance Travel out of Phoenix Arizona offering us $50,000 more than we paid for one of our four weeks at a resort in Cabo. Sounds WAY TO GOOD to be true! Here is the email I got Thank you for taking my earlier call, to refresh your memory my name is Jerry Valdez. As I mentioned on our telephone call we have a client interested in buying your property Please keep in mind that my company shall receive NO payment until closing. We charge a 10% commission, 5% coming from you and 5% from the buyer, such commission will be deducted from your total proceeds at the time of closing. For us to send you our contract please verify that the information listed below is accurate. If any changes need to be made please reply to this email with the changes that need to be made or simply modify them and send it back. Resort name: Diamante Beach State Location: Los Cabos, Mexico Term of contract: Annual use Week 41 (Forty-One) Unit size: 5 (Five) Bedroom Maintenance fee: Up to date Season: Floating – Platinum – Winter Exchange company: Interval Selling description Resale Price: $158,785.00 USD (One hundred, Fifty-Eight thousand, Seven hundred Eighty-Five US dollars) Commission to be deducted at closing (5%): $7,939.25 (Seven thousand, Nine hundred Thirty-Nine US dollars and Twenty-Five Cents) Total to be received: $150.845.00 (One hundred, Fifty thousand, Eight hundred Forty-Five US dollars) Once you reply to this email with a positive response, we shall contact the holding company and the buyer, at this point a closing account with the total resale funds will be issued naming you as the beneficiaries. We will also be sending you a Guaranteed Resale Contract stating the total funds that have been deposited. Once you receive the contract we will explain the whole process, at which point you can decide whether you would like to move forward or wait for a better time. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at the number listed below and I will gladly assist you. Kind regards, Jerry Valdez Ext: 2007 Does this ring a bell to anyone as a scam that might be similar to what you are all describing? They have not asked for any money up front but I was reading on another blog that a week after closing and the money was exchanged the title company sent out a letter saying it was an invalid sale due to international issues with the funds. Thank you in advance for any feedback!
MN MPLS
July 01, 2018
Has anyone been contacted by Gilbert from Japan Travel?
Babsok
July 04, 2018
I have been contacted by Agoda travel and Richard Smith, attorneys. in NJ Has anybody dealt with them? If so, how was the experience? Are there any legitimate timeshare resale companies out there? If so does anybody have their name and contact information?
livinlife
October 16, 2018

In reply to by Babsok

Richard B. Smith has contacted me for over 6 weeks. Down to the final here and they want money. 1170.00 for transfer fee to be sent to UVC and an additional 2800.00 in sales tax for the purchase price. No sales tax when I bought this, so now wondering if UVC is in on this with them? Went along with this because all looked legit. Even took it to my lawyer who saw nothing wrong....until they wanted me to put up money. SCAM!!!!
janmel40
July 24, 2018
I was also contacted by Landa Page about 3 weeks ago, I have been going back and forth with her by email. She also said she was deaf, she offered me a price for my timeshare and I agreed to the price. She said she had mailed a check for deposit, escrow fees and title fees etc to First American title. The same title company who is foreclosing on my timeshare as I owe one year of maintenance fee's that are now at almost $1500 a year.. I do not have a mortgage on my timeshare and am completely confused as to how they can what they call "file a lien" which in their terms means foreclose and take my timeshare back for $1500. I have never felt more scammed by so many at the same time. Not done investigating this scam by any means...
Smahaffey
July 24, 2018
I’m reading all the comments of who not to use! But is there & if so who are a legitimate timeshare resale/exit company??
FTC Staff
July 24, 2018

In reply to by Smahaffey

You can check on a reseller. Read the FTC article about timeshares and tips about checking on resellers:

  • 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 complaints on file. You also can search online for complaints.
  • Ask the salesperson for all information in writing.
  • Ask if the reseller’s agents are licensed to sell real estate where your timeshare is located. If they say yes, double-check with that state's Real Estate Commission.
  • Do business only with licensed real estate brokers and agents.
Toddmcl123
July 24, 2018
Has anyone heard of Master International Company? They have made me an offer but can’t find much info for them. They want to by my vacation club
MadmanMark
July 24, 2018

In reply to by Toddmcl123

I received a call, also, from Master International and have forwarded some info so it can be presented this week. I'm concerned as I can't find any info on them. They're interested in our timeshare in Cabo. I'm still looking for any info on them.
David
August 17, 2018

In reply to by MadmanMark

Hey, joining the discussion b/c I too have been contacted by Master International (David Penning) and have received a nice offer via a letter of intent. Has anyone definitively nailed this company as running a scam? No one has asked me for $$ yet but I can see how it gets to that point. Any info appreciated. Thanks!
Kooper
August 27, 2018

In reply to by David

I have tried everything to find info. on Master International Company in New York. The address is 1090 3rd Ave. Suite 9B in Manhattan. I know that there is a building located there, but don't know if the suite number is legit. I have contacted the BBB, Board of Licensing, and googled everything I can; but no luck. The broker's name is Michael Goldman which has 3 different license numbers. The phone numbers that are given go straight to voicemail. I am being told that 5% will be taken out at closing and no $ is needed. I haven't given them an answer. Does anyone have any new information? How do these people operate? I am planning to open a bank account simply for this transaction. How could they get money? HELP!!!! Any info will be greatly appreciated.
Rusty
September 05, 2018

In reply to by Kooper

Hey Kooper: I have been dealing with Michael Goldman as well recently. Everything seemed legit...I asked him about upfront fees, and he said there wouldn't be any. However, after going through the process, he brings up a "Temporary Naturalization" and "Tax ID Number" fee (totaling $4,220.00). He said I needed to wire that amount and I would be reimbursed after closing. They even showed me the escrow account information, and it seemed ok. I consulted an attorney and he said they would probably wind up asking for more later on and NEVER close on the property. I emailed him saying I wasn't going to wire the money, and asked if the buyer would pay it. I haven't heard back yet. I'll post the outcome as soon as I can.
Don't use your…
July 24, 2018

In reply to by Toddmcl123

Toddmcl123 - have you moved forward with Master International? We received an offer for our timeshare today from them. I can't find ANY information on Master International. I received an offer asking for our signature on a letter of intent to sell for the offer they submitted. The letter states that by signing this does not legal bind us, but anyone can add anything to a letter. Might need to have a lawyer look at this.
FTC Staff
July 24, 2018

In reply to by Don't use your…

You can check on a reseller. Read the FTC article about timeshares and tips about checking on resellers:

  • 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 complaints on file. You also can search online for complaints.
  • Ask the salesperson for all information in writing.
  • Ask if the reseller’s agents are licensed to sell real estate where your timeshare is located. If they say yes, double-check with that state's Real Estate Commission.
  • Do business only with licensed real estate brokers and agents.
BobbyK
July 30, 2018

In reply to by Toddmcl123

We were also contacted by master International last week and were sceptical from the beginning. We continued with the process while doing our research. We can't find any legitimate information on this company. Did a reverse phone lookup and their phone number is owned by a private person, not a company. Did google street view, hard to tell if it's legitimate business. Have emailed the chamber of commerce to ask them if it's a legitimate business. Waiting to hear back. Such a scam! My husband called to pretend that he was on his way there and the "receptionist" gave him the address and pretended like it was legit. Keep us posted everyone.
Sick of Scammers
August 09, 2018

In reply to by BobbyK

I have been contacted by Masters International too. We went through the motions and all of a sudden we need temporary nationalization to Mexico to sell the "property". Why didn't they know about this up front? Also, it isn't a property. It is a time share based on points. (UVC) And, we bought it in Dominican Republic and didn't need nationalization to buy it. When you look up Master International, it is a legitimate realty, but there is no information on them. When you go to realtor.com and enter them, they come up as there is no bio for them. Also, when you google search an address of one of the properties they have listed for sale, it is on Realtor.com listed by another realty. They also have a name of a realtor that is licensed. You can look up the license at the state of New York license website. My guess is they stole the realtor's information. They are very sophisticated scammers. Thankfully, we did not send them any money.
Questioning
September 05, 2018

In reply to by Sick of Scammers

How do you know they are scammers? Were you able to verify? I have been offered the same deal as you have, but I have contacted the Mexican government to verify. I found that for the purpose of resale, they require you have a tax ID number. Seems legit but I have yet to pay for this.
There's more
July 11, 2018
First called repeatedly by Agoda and the price kept going up. Now a few weeks later, called by "Sea Trip". They keep calling my ex-partner who they think will pressure me to deal with them. Of course, offering 3 x what I paid for it. I did get a screaming deal on my original purchase but offering too much. Haven't asked for any money. I told them straight up, use my own escrow, they deposit cash first. Don't ask me for a dime. We will see if I hear from them again.
Danher
August 06, 2018

In reply to by There's more

I have also been approach byAgoda made me an offer five times what I paid for my timeshare. a very elaborate scheme First their address it’s phony there ZIP Code doesn’t exist . The attorney they’re using Richard B Smith state board license 007662004 in New Jersey so I called the State Bar and they told me it was a scab there is an actual Richard B Smith but he’s in Missouri and has nothing to do with them. In the end he can ask meFor money but I won’t give him anything they’re going to ask for transfer fees Mexican taxes and then eventually a fee for cancellation watch out!
FFsmity
July 18, 2018
Sunrise VP Solutions or Resale Sunrise VP Solutions in Nashville TN is a reported scam. If in doubt call your timeshare customer service, they have likely heard of the company.
Moon27
August 05, 2018

In reply to by FFsmity

Hi there. Can you give me more information? How do you know it’s a scam? This company has reached out to me and I am weary of working with them but they said no upfront fees and sounds legit.
DLscamtry
August 09, 2018

In reply to by FFsmity

Thanks for the info. They offered a too good to be true offer. After reading this we said thanks but no thanks. I wondered how they got my full name and primary email.
PLB luck
August 17, 2018

In reply to by FFsmity

I was first contacted by Jack Jones - a licensed broker? with Sunrise VP Solutions in Nashville TN with a nice offer for Resale of my Vacation Ownership Property in Mexico, NO Money was required up front in this offer containing 20 clauses (which looked all very legit) so we agreed to go forward with the sale, signed and returned the agreement on July 20th. I then received a written NOTIFICATION OF TRUST from D & W INTERNATIONAL CLOSINGS (form Jason Dougherty - the Closing agent?, Indianapolis IN, confirming that the agreed Sale Price + Closing Costs would be placed in trust and said funds wire-transferred to us after the closing date. They required us to pay the Closing Fee of $3,104 up front, so we did the Wire Transfer to a Mexican Bank on July 26. Closing Date was planned for Friday Aug.17 ...? On Tuesday, Aug.14 I received a call from Jason Dougherty (Closing agent from D & W International Closings) telling that the Mexico SAT had leaned the Trust Fund for Taxes (19% = $11.875) now due on the sale of this Mexican Luxury Vacation Property ...? Jason emailed the SAT paperwork that I had to fill out and return with my payment of $11.875 for the Mexican Authority to remove the Tax Lien ...? Then the closing would take place shortly after ...? I think I smell a rat? I am not paying another penny unless I get confirmation from the Federal Trade Commission that the Mexico SAT actually requires this 19% Luxury Tax.
Gio
August 28, 2018

In reply to by PLB luck

Can you keep me posted on what your results are, I been approached with the same information trying to sell my time share, first they hit me up for title of timeshare change and had to wire money to Scotiabank, now they are trying to hit me up to pay Mexican taxes before they schedule a closing date.
timesharetrickery
October 02, 2018

In reply to by PLB luck

PLB Luck: I have the EXACT same scenario, down to the same players by name. If you look up Jack Jone's real estate # (posted under his signature on your docs) in a national real estate license data base, such as Arello, you will discover a Jack A. Jones that works for a different real estate company in TN. I called his office and the receptionist stated the real Jack A. Jones (that is, the one affiliated with the the real estate license #) does not transact vacation/timeshare properties. In fact, she said she has been made aware of someone else using Jack's name and real estate number. I am convinced this is a scam. I contacted the Attorney General's Office in TN to alert them of the situation. Regrettably, that proved fruitless as the sent me to a TN.GOV\commerce website to submit a claim. I initiated the process and quickly realized it was a form used to file a claim against an actual real estate agent, not an impostor. I did not proceed. Suffice it to say, I have come to live with the realization that I'm out $3K but I have thicker skin as a result.
JM
July 19, 2018
hello, we have been contacted by International Leader Realty Corp, same scam scheme. The scammer name is Jason Saunders. They offered an incredible amount of money for our Unlimited Vacation membership, then ask us to set up an escrow account with a fake escrow company (Acquisition Strategies LLC, we were contacted by a scammer named Jerry Delgado). Websites look real, but they were set up just a few days before the calls using wordpress templates and they are not secure (no https). Emails came from Mexico, Google view of their address showed back of warehouses or shacks. These scammers used names of defunct corporations. This is the site of International Leader Realty Corp. internationalleaderrealty. com (setup on April 19th, 2018) and this is the site of the escrow company acquisitionstrategiesllc. com/ (setup on June 27th, 2018) No traces of these companies and people on the internet (checked Linkedin, BBB, NYS Department of State Division of Corporations Entity Information). Use whois. net/ to validate the domain, the registration date and to whom it belongs. We figured since the beginning that this was a scam, so we did not fall for it, please be careful and if you are contacted by these people run as fast as you can. I wish they could be stopped.
Nevets
August 02, 2018

In reply to by JM

I'm also in the process of dealing with "international Leader Reality". My initial internet search didn't find anything suspicious, but I dot the assistance of a real estate attorney as well. She found lots of "red flags" and the company refuses to send an official contract offer , instead is insisting we fill out the paperwork for an escrow account. "to protect us" . HA HA . Thou I was 75% suspicious at first ... I am not 100% convinced it is a scam. Thank you for sharing your info.
Theresa
August 06, 2018

In reply to by Nevets

Please let me know if you find anything out on this company, as we were contacted as well. So far they have not asked for any money up front and said their 5% commission is just taken from the sale price... I'm trying to figure out how they would scam us if we didn't give any money up front... Is this just an elaborate scheme to get information from the escrow applications?
mellen333
August 07, 2018

In reply to by JM

We have been talking to Internstional Leader Realty as well, my husband and I agreed to talk to them until they asked us for money. Up until today, it seemed fine, then today the "senior broker" Jacob Malik, called us to discuss the contract. In order to process the sale, their attorney in Mexico needs us to wire them almost $4000 to process a temporary naturalization and a Tax ID number. When I started asking questions he got very agitated and told me I'd never be able to sell my timeshare without this number and it has to be processed through one office in Mexico City in person by the lawyer. Please everyone, don't fall for this scam, I will be reporting them to the New York district attorney's office asap.
Tweetlisa31
August 24, 2018

In reply to by mellen333

Thanks for the information. Someone called yesterday and today I received an email. They are requesting a copy of the contract to prove it's my property. They even said I could white out any confidential information. I was skeptical because they randomly called me even though they knew which property I owned. I will not move any further as I too couldn't find any relevant information about the validity of International Leader Realty
Bill H
October 18, 2018

In reply to by mellen333

I've been dealing with international Realty for a couple of months now. Screwed up gave them some money. They keep asking for more. Told them I want my money back. They say I have to pay 5% commission for broker. Broker is Jacob Malik . Escrow is Jerry Delgado . They said if I want my Mexican tax back I need to fly to Mexico LOL. Scam. Time to report These scumbags.
DJD
September 06, 2018

In reply to by JM

Your post is very helpful. Thank you. We are still having phone conversations with International Leader Realty Corp, Acquisition Strategies, Jerry Delgado, etc. We want to sell our time share so badly, but we are not paying them any money upfront for "temporary naturalization" and a "Tax ID number". There is no such thing as temporary naturalization! We don't need a tax number bc we don't live or work in Mexico. They say we need it for our US IRS tax purposes, but that doesn't make sense to our CPA. They say the $3750 we owe for these fees must be in our names. They doesn't make sense. Who cares where money comes from. Money is money...why does it have to be "in our name"? Why can't the buyer just pay the fees now instead of it going into escrow. We're out. We're not paying them anything. Any other ideas of how to sell a time share?!
Lakelover
July 19, 2018
I was taken by a company called WORLDWIDE TRAVEL EVENTS FROM NAPERVILLE. IL . THE ESCRO COMPANY IS LIBERTY FEDERAL TITLE HOLDINGS IN CHICAGO ANOTHER SCAM COMPANY. I GOT TAKEN FOR $3700.00 TO START THEN THEY WANTED MORE TOLD THEM NO WAY. CANCELLED AGREMENT WITH LIBERTY FEDERAL THEY SAID I WOULD GET MY MONEY BACK BUT NOTHING SINCE MAY. I HAVE FILED WITH THE COMPAINT CENTER WITH INTERNET CRIME COMPLAINTS A DIVISION OF THE FBI. HOPE THIS WILL HELP
tequilasheila
July 19, 2018
Has anyone heard of Travel Associates, Inc-al, located in Montgomery, Alabama?
Mutt2018Don't …
July 23, 2018
Received an email from Your New Tennessee promising eager buyer for our Mexico timeshare. Hit all the buttons: high price, etc. Contract was with Title Two Investments as an Escrow Company. We dropped when they wanted an "international fee" of $4,360.00 up front that would be "reimbursed" by the buyer. When we questioned this, everything stopped. Beware; I don't want anyone to get caught.
Boogieboard
July 25, 2018

In reply to by Mutt2018Don't …

Thanks for posting! I have been talking to the "broker" and waiting on a call from the escrow company. Sad to learn it is a scam, but glad I didn't get taken. I wouldn't have been able to pay the fee up front anyway.
AlmostSkrew’d
August 22, 2018

In reply to by Mutt2018Don't …

Thanks Mutt. Your New Tennessee is doing that to me now... Go back to the original doc they sent that has a purple stamp by the signature. It says ‘aprovado’ when it should say ‘aprobado’. That was my first clue...Mexican bank using Portuguese instead of Spanish!
AlmostSkrew’d
August 22, 2018

In reply to by Mutt2018Don't …

Also, Your New Tennessee has no rating with the Better Business Bureau.
AlmostSkrew’d
August 22, 2018

In reply to by Mutt2018Don't …

Title Two Investments web site contains multiple spelling errors and poor grammar too.
Bill
July 23, 2018
Hudson holdings group is not the same as Hudson holdings. It’s a scam. They stole thousands from me
Pierre
July 27, 2018

In reply to by Bill

Did they ask you to sign an Appraisal Authorization Form to send you an offer? How did you end up paying them money? They just called me...
MDC
August 24, 2018

In reply to by Bill

How did they steal thousands? They want me to fill out an appraisal authorization form, and said no money will be asked from me. They said they are buying Iberostar vacation club members interests at a 25% premium...sounds like a scam, but I can’t see how the scam works if they aren’t asking for money.
Eva
July 25, 2018
Has anybody heard of a company ARCX Group International in St. Louis, MO? They want to buy my timeshare. Thanks
Butch
July 30, 2018

In reply to by Eva

Have also been contacted by ARCX.... has anyone else had dealings with this group?
lo-tek
July 31, 2018

In reply to by Eva

I was contacted by ARCX as well. I did some digging and can't anything on a company that has been in business for 25 years. Also I searched for incorporation status and found nothing. I smell scam.