Go to any timeshare sales event, and you’ll come away thinking timeshares are better than sliced bread or Jesus. On paper, they’re the ultimate vacation hack. In reality, 85% of folks regret purchasing them. That’s not the end of the bad news, though. Timeshares are contractual, locking you into a years-long payment plan. It’s only once you’ve sunk thousands of dollars that you realize you’re trapped. Is timeshare relief even possible? Good news first: it is. It may not be easy, but it’s certainly better than an onerous financial obligation.
Read on as we discuss how to get rid of a timeshare.
Get Immediate Timeshare Relief Within the Rescission Period
Fortunately, there is a grace period for you to cancel a timeshare. In the industry, they call this the “rescission” period. Think of this as your last-minute chance to reconsider your commitment.
This period ranges in length from place to place. The absolute minimum is three days, a guarantee from the FTC.
If you’re fortunate enough to have a timeshare in Alaska, Ohio, or Kansas, you’re in luck! Rescission there is a hefty 15 days, so you have over two weeks’ time to reconsider your decision.
Keep in mind that a timeshare’s recission period depends on where the timeshare is located. It does not depend on your state of residence. Laws may vary if you purchased it in another country, too.
When that period begins and ends is another thing to research. In some places, it starts as soon as you receive or purchase your timeshare disclosure. It could end prematurely if you already have your public offering statement.
How to Exit a Timeshare via Rescission
First, research the documents you have received. Make certain you file within this period, otherwise, you are wasting your time.
All it takes is a formal timeshare cancellation letter that you would send to the specified cancellation address. Note that you may have to pry it out of the resort’s shady, sneaky fingers to get it.
Use a reliable service, particularly certified mail, to navigate legalities. Certified mail gets legal confirmation since the recipient signs upon receipt.
After that, it should be smooth sailing. The timeshare organization should give you an official confirmation of the cancelation. Any cancelation fees they may attempt to charge you are likely illegal.
Ask the Resort to Cancel It
Although timeshare companies are notoriously underhanded and tricky, they may honor a post-rescission exit. This option will depend entirely on the fine print in your contract. Regardless, it’s worth a shot.
Sadly, you may lose some money in the process. What happens is that the company purchases the timeshare back from you for a lower price. To add insult to injury, they may throw in some cancellation fees.
They’ve made a profit off of you, after which they resell it to the next victim. It may not be the happy-ending option, but it’s better than nothing.
Get Out of a Timeshare by Contacting the Resort
Plain and simple, call up the resort you purchased it from. Ask them if they will honor a buyback, or “deed-back.”
You may need to be a bit pushy and direct. After all, it’s better for them if you keep the timeshare. They’ll try to convince you against it, or even upsell you.
Be firm and demand that they honor their post-rescission cancelation policy. Eventually, they should cave. Accept whatever terms they will give you–that is, assuming it lines up with your contract.
Sell a Timeshare to Someone Else
So, you’ve missed the recission period and the resort doesn’t do buybacks. What now?
85% of people regret timeshares, but that doesn’t mean they all do. Somewhere out there, a few unicorns exist. People for whom a timeshare is a bargain, not a scam.
These may be wealthy individuals or regular travelers. Same as you, though, they want a good deal. They’d much rather pay a discounted price than the full one straight from the resort.
As a result, there is a robust timeshare resale market. Owners that no longer want their timeshare legally transfer it to interested buyers. That unfortunate 85% still have a chance, regardless of their situation, to get rid of a timeshare.
Find a Place to Sell a Timeshare
First, make sure you can sell your timeshare. You can’t transfer an “encumbered” timeshare–one that still has a loan on it. In that case, pay off the loan first and you’ll be good to go.
How you go about this is your rodeo. There are quite literally hundreds of resell platforms across the Internet. Some are Facebook groups, while others are dedicated timeshare exit companies.
Do your research and find one you can trust. Try selling timeshares here for starters.
List your timeshare with all the pertinent details. In particular, do some market research so you can set a fair, competitive price.
Then, let the market do the work. It may take a few months, but eventually, someone will snap it up. Get a lawyer to help you sign it off, and then go enjoy financial freedom.
Get an Attorney
It’s pretty clear to anyone that timeshare companies are slimy, disreputable cretins. They have no compunction against hoodwinking you into an illegal agreement. This situation is not uncommon either, sad to say.
The law is always on your side no matter what. There are many things that a resort may have done that nullify the contract. Things like false promises, misrepresentation of the facts, and undue influence or pressure.
Attorneys can take the salesman or resort to court. With their help, they may be able to liberate you entirely from your timeshare. In fact, you may even get a settlement or damages for your trouble.
Get Rid of a Timeshare Today
Timeshares are the bane of the parsimonious vacationer. They may seem like a prison from whence there is no escape. Luckily, timeshare relief is more possible than ever via several legal methods.
Keep up with all the most important discussions on our blog.