For decades now, timeshare companies have been looking for ways to ensure fractional owners stay put. Routine payments allow them to profit tremendously. The problem is, they haven’t been addressing the inconveniences that plague buyers shortly after the purchase. Forcing travelers to adhere to contract perpetuity has boded well for them in the past, but owners are now starting to realize they have rights as consumers. As a result, many look to legally get out of vacation ownership before they throw away any more hard-earned cash.
What usually comes as a surprise to owners is the timeshare’s unwillingness to help them without additional costs. This naturally causes disgruntled owners to look elsewhere for relief. But in most instances, what ends up happening is their desperation gets taken advantage of by third party exit scams. Once they realize they’ve wasted even more capital, they’re not too happy with the resort – and rightfully so.
Timeshare companies have been known to balk at dissatisfaction while pointing to signed contracts as a rebuttal. To them, it’s just business. But to vacation owners, it can be maddening. It’s rather difficult for them to pay for something they don’t believe in anymore. Especially when tens of thousands of dollars are involved.
While we wish timeshares would take the magnitude of the purchase into consideration, it might just be wishful thinking. Unless buyers actually have damaging evidence, the resort and its sales teams know how to deflect complaints and distract their users in order to keep payments rolling in. At the end of the day, they can easily create a sense of hopelessness by reminding buyers of the ramifications that come from walking away.
Sadly, hundreds of thousands of fractional owners are currently drowning in their agreements because of this. Aside from an inability to plan the vacation they envisioned, their costs aren’t close to what they expected. The good news is, many of them are realizing that there are ways to legally get out of vacation ownership. The bad news is, timeshare companies are now trying to create fear around all exit solutions, even if they actually work.
Timeshares Are Using “the Psychology of the Masses.”
Over the past few years, a number major hospitality brands have intentionally been in the public’s view. CEO’s have gone on talk shows, made TV appearances and even started reality shows in an attempt to garner empathy, trust and establish credibility. For whatever reason, a majority of society believes if something is on TV or social media it must be true. Sales organizations know how to use this to their advantage. The fact of the matter is, there isn’t a lot of fact-checking going on these days.
Since timeshare companies have had success misleading the general public in the past, they’re now turning to news media outlets for even more attention. This time, they’re looking to slander all companies that claim to help people get out of vacation ownership.
While we do agree that something needs to be done about the number of scams in the relief industry, slandering the service as a whole is flat out irresponsible. Especially when they say they’re acting in the best interest of their users. Creating fear around services that help people escape an agreement they were duped into signing is borderline criminal.
How Timeshares Use News Releases to Create Doubt.
When it comes to making negative statements against an entire industry, it’s important to relay all of the facts. While certain elements of exit programs can be identifiable as fraudulent, some things need to be taken with a grain of salt. Just because a prominent timeshare company says you can only get out of vacation ownership through their internal solutions, doesn’t mean it’s true. If you actually do some research, you’ll find that these “solutions” are what eventually drive many people to cancel the contract.
The resort isn’t interested in publishing blogs or news releases that explain why they’re facing class action lawsuits or multitudes of user complaints. They don’t want to provide answers and pivot for the best. They’re simply focused on attracting more buyers while slandering everything in between. Even when whistleblowers emerge or the elderly are taken advantage of, they aim to keep the train rolling.
The last thing they want to acknowledge is their own misconduct and our integrity. Just like the timeshare presentation itself, they sure know how to promote the possibilities of their relief programs. Sales teams are good at selling ideas. The thing is, the outcome never changes. As timeshares continue to puff themselves up, here’s how they’re discrediting services like ours.
1. Scare Tactics Create Uncertainty About Cancellation.
In order to paint a picture of uncertainty surrounding timeshare cancellation services, resorts know they need to be proactive. They want to come off as a corporation that protects its users. This gives buyers no choice but to only reach out to the timeshare company out of fear. If they already believe exit companies have bad intentions, the purchase will have to really get out of hand before they think about contacting a third party.
In addition to public news releases on their website (and other random online publications), summaries with links to the articles are emailed to current owners. The more news that owners receive about timeshare cancellation scams, the more likely they’ll stay away from external relief. Even if they’re dissatisfied with the resort, routine news releases subconsciously reiterate how costly trying to get out of vacation ownership on their own can be.
Scaring people from canceling their timeshare is done in a number of ways. But rarely do resorts publish accurate information or reference credible sources like the FTC, BBB or the Attorney General. Most of their content is bias and purposed to persuade in their favor. It’s why a lot of their publications pertain to “what not to do.” It’s also why expert timeshare analysts don’t reference the content they promote.
If you read between the lines, timeshares are covertly telling consumers to avoid cancellation and to trust them. They don’t actually provide proof of why you should or even explain how their “solutions” benefit buyers. They warn readers about sharing timeshare information and claim nearly any type of payment is a red flag. When in reality, their relief requirements, fees and outcomes are far less advantageous. It’s deflection at its finest.
2. They Like to Leverage Lawsuits and Legal Accusations.
There are always a number of layers when it comes to the sales strategies of timeshare operations. They know that opinionated articles lacking credibility don’t carry a lot of weight. What does, however, are lawsuits. So whenever they have the chance to showcase the deceit behind an exit scam, they do. It’s an “I told you so” approach that reaffirms their warnings and furthers the credibility of their reasoning. But it’s not the only way they’re twisting facts.
A number of major timeshare chains are now filing their own lawsuits with baseless accusations. They feel as though cancellation companies are soliciting their customers. But they continue to ignore the simple fact that buyers are desperately looking for a way to get out of vacation ownership. While legal pursuits of fraudulent companies has proven fruitful, some of their accusations are for mere exposure.
While the initial details of pending cases or legal accusations are available to the public, it doesn’t always mean the plaintiff’s claims are accurate. What timeshare companies are doing is trying to damage the reputation of successful cancellation services by making public attacks on their credibility. They want nothing more than to paint a picture that all exit companies harass their users.
Most Claims Aren’t Even Valid.
Pursuing a lawsuit and writing about the supposed misconduct allows them to say, “I told you so” once again. The problem is, many of these claims end up costing them. If you actually follow the lawsuits (and not just read their publications), you’ll clearly see that it’s simply a strategic loophole for defamation without consequence. A majority of the claims filed are thrown out by the judge. Whether the lawsuit is settled prior to litigation, won or lost, timeshare companies know they can control a biased and baseless narrative when the truth is omitted.
We’re pretty sure most timeshare companies are waiting for us to give them an opportunity to deconstruct the reputation we’ve worked so hard to build. One of our contracted attorneys is already clearing his name after false claims were publicly made against him. Why, might you ask? Because he was successfully helping timeshare owners. They wanted to discredit him before people heard that he could legally help them get out of vacation ownership.
Understanding the Deception.
It doesn’t take a lot of thought to understand how they’re attempting to deceive. As you all know, nearly anyone can file a lawsuit with gut-punching claims. For example, saying your neighbor poisoned you because you asked them for milk when you’re lactose intolerant is a stretch. But if you go on the news and give the public a reason to believe your neighbor wanted to kill you, then you’ll probably gain favorable support. In reality, you’re refusing to take responsibility for the result by blaming someone that was simply trying to help.
Have you ever turned on the news and found yourself rooting for someone’s accusations, only to later find out they were lying? Some people never follow cases like this, but the defendant’s claim resonates with them. It could cause them to fight for something in their own life or hold a grudge against a certain group or organization. Even when the facts aren’t present, the outcome can be withstanding. No matter the legal outcome, timeshares want to control this narrative.
Since a plethora of fractional owners eventually look outside of the resort for help, timeshare organizations want the public to think that quality resolutions (something they don’t offer) are the reason why people end up opposing the purchase. But buyers are in opposition because trust has been lost and the resort doesn’t want to take responsibility for it. This is eerily similar to the lactose intolerant example because they’re blaming someone for the disdain they caused.
They believe the act of legally terminating timeshares works against their “solutions” – and they’re right. That’s because they’re only focused on keeping buyers under contract so they can throw more money at something they can’t use and no longer wish to own. Companies like ours are messing with their money and they want people to question and fear the intent behind our services.
3. Proposed Timeshare Bills Can Also Be Misleading.
If you haven’t picked up on it yet, news releases can be used in multiple ways to sway perception. But if you’re a timeshare owner or potential buyer, nothing is more frightening than timeshare organizations dabbling in politics. One of the ways developers are attempting to loosen the chain of industry regulations is by altering the law. Earlier this year, a bill was proposed to further limit buyer’s rights to cancel. Aside from shortening rescission periods, it also aimed to force owners to use the resort for relief options.
Although the attempt was to eliminate third party relief altogether, the most disturbing element was how they promoted the bill. They claimed the intent was to improve the timeshare experience and give buyers a chance to enjoy the purchase with their “solutions.” They really wanted consumers to think they were thinking of them. In truth, they just didn’t want them to get out of vacation ownership.
The same approach played out in Arizona when timeshare developers batted the state’s proposal to give buyers more time to change their mind. Tons of articles and spin offs were written in an attempt to persuade owners it wasn’t in their best interest. But how does an extended trial period hurt consumers? How will further limiting buyer’s ability to cancel something they regret change the perception of the industry as a whole?
Not All Timeshare News Releases Are True.
The timeshare industry has been cloudy at best and we can all agree skepticism is prevalent. Similar to politics, it can be pretty difficult to decipher the truth. It’s why consumers need to take the time to inspect claims and research the companies they do business with. No matter what’s being published, there’s always an intent behind it. If you stick to the facts, the truth will rise to the surface on its own.
Listen, we know that a majority of timeshare relief programs are fraudulent. But we also understand how many fractional owners feel. That’s why we do our best to publish factual information while eliminating bias. Although it may seem like timeshare companies have good intentions, it appears they’re only interested in instilling fear by controlling the narrative.
Just because a neighbor’s dog bites you doesn’t mean you’ll win a lawsuit against the pet’s owner. Especially when you tortured and provoked the dog for years. You can make the pup out to be the aggressor, but if you keep antagonizing animals you’ll probably get bitten again. This repetitive cycle will eventually catch up to timeshare companies as well. In the meantime, we’ll continue to follow the rules and remain willing to listen when unhappy buyers call.
If you’re wondering about the legitimacy of a news release and how it might affect you, make sure you allocate the source. It the message derives from the resort and no other consumer protection agencies comply, then it’s just an attempt to control the narrative. If you’re interested in learning how you can get out of vacation ownership, we’d be more than happy to help. We don’t believe in pressuring you to cancel and will always locate the best solution.