In more than twelve years of serving Americans who need help with timeshare cancellation, we’ve heard just about every kind of negative experience, between consumers and timeshare organizations. When you buy a new car, the dealership will work hard to keep your business, and create a positive long-term relationship with the buyer. It makes good business sense; happy customers refer new clients, and that’s how organizations grow.
One of the greatest mysteries is why timeshares are not motivated to cultivate that positive business reputation and relationship with all their customers. While it’s true that no business can satisfy 100% of its customers all the time, the number of online complaints, and the nature of the severity of the complaints shared about timeshares, is a blemish on an industry that seems to care very little, about its customers.
When It Comes to Bad Timeshare Experiences, Nothing Surprises Us
Have you spent time researching timeshare complaints online? The exercise can be therapeutic and comforting in many ways, because it helps consumers realize that their own negative experience with a timeshare company is not isolated, or unique. It doesn’t change the situation, or the financial problems that the timeshare owner is experiencing because of their contract, but it does feel good to know that you are not alone.
A timeshare organization is pleasant to the consumer, if the fees are being paid, and complaints are kept to a minimum. The rapid change in the quality of the business arrangement is shocking to timeshare owners, who quickly see the ‘ugly side’ of the industry. It becomes clear once the consumer begins to dispute the terms of the contract, how little timeshares are interested in the ‘customer experience’ of timeshare ownership, as customer service complaints either go unanswered, ignored, or result in punitive late charges and other administrative fees (and threats) that compound over time.
It is an unfair scenario we are familiar with. Timeshare owners are frequently surprised by the rapidly escalating maintenance fees, that catch them off guard. Most timeshare owners look at the option of leasing vacation time, as an affordable path to ensuring they get 1-2 weeks per year of quality fun, at a luxury destination. The red tape, failure to provide what was promised at the time of purchase, and other factors quickly sour the timeshare owner, as their contract becomes more expensive every month.
Where consumers are held ‘hostage’ by a timeshare contract, is when the timeshare company has failed to deliver on the value that they sold to their customer. The only recourse in many cases for consumers is to threaten to “stop payment” of maintenance fees, at which time they are informed of the legal and financial consequences of negating their payment agreement. Personal credit in America is a hard thing to build, but easy to destroy, particularly for families who are fighting a disreputable or fraudulent timeshare contract.
You Signed: They Want You to ‘Do the Time’ On Your Contract
When you understand how legally binding a timeshare contract is (it has the same legal weight as a mortgage agreement), you can see why the industry can appear to have this laissez faire attitude toward its customers. Once you (the buyer) has signed the contract, the vacation club knows that short of damaging your own personal credit with a bankruptcy, getting out of that contract is extremely difficult.
Timeshares Know They’ll Make Money on Unhappy Members and Contract Holders
They assume they have a ‘captive’ customer base for ten, fifteen or twenty-five years (or longer), and the most fraudulent timeshare companies are okay with their customers being unhappy, or even selling back their timeshare at a loss (where possible) to the resort. After all, the resort will have the opportunity to sell it again to a new customer, and earn another up-front large down payment. It’s not disappointing to a resort to find a new buyer (particularly for a resort that has high-occupancy and one that is in demand).
At the very least, the resort will have the opportunity to make more money off unhappy timeshare owners, through penalties and late fees, rental administration fees (if owners try to rent their timeshare to recoup expenses) or even resale fees. Timeshares in other words, know that they hold virtually all the cards, and they are ‘okay’ with customers being unhappy, if they keep paying their fees, to protect their personal credit.
The first rule of protecting yourself against a negative timeshare experience is of course, to avoid buying one. Websites like Redweek.com offer an annual membership that allows consumers access to a network of affordable resort rentals; a far more affordable option. However, if you have purchased a timeshare and you are struggling to cancel your contract, don’t waste time and money fighting with resort. Start with a free consultation and learn how Aconsumercredit™ advocates on behalf of consumers, to help cancel their timeshare for good. Call us for your free consultation: 1-800-587-EXIT.