If the Covid-19 Pandemic can teach us anything it is that time and money are precious. Time with our families and friends has been hard during the pandemic and for many more people money has been tight because of job losses and furlough schemes. So, spending money on something that seems like a luxury is an expense few of us can afford.
In light of the Covid-19 pandemic a timeshare seems an unjustifiable expense and understandably many timeshare owners have sought a way out from their contracts. Unfortunately, timeshare resorts do not think a global pandemic is a valid reason to exit a timeshare, whether an owner has been affected or not. In fact, many of the well-known resorts have failed to help owners in anyway and continued to charge maintenance fees.
Timeshare used to be a desirable way to enjoy a holiday, you paid a lump sum upfront but were guaranteed luxury holidays. Millions of people signed up to timeshares all over the world, but as the travel and leisure industry has changed and adapted to holidaymakers needs, the timeshare industry is still relying on its tactic of hard selling and locking people into lengthy contracts.
For many owners, the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted some major issues with the timeshare industry. Owners are committed to paying fees annually whether they use it or not and being charged fees in 2020 when people were struggling financially, just seems heartless. When the rest of the travel and leisure industry ground to a halt, timeshare resorts have boomed, and some have even reported making profits. It was just last month Hilton Grand Vacations reported they intended to purchase Diamond resorts, how is this possible in a global pandemic?
For timeshare owners who were persuaded into taking out loans to purchase, they have also had to continue paying them back, normally at much higher interest rates than normal. If you have taken out a loan to fund your timeshare, chances are it is high interest, and you could end up paying nearly double the price over a ten-year period.
In this current climate people simply cannot afford to pay for something, they do not use and do not want. Despite this timeshare resorts will not make it easy for an owner to leave, pandemic or no pandemic. In fact, ill health and a job loss does not do the trick either. The resorts cannot afford to lose maintenance fees and the whole industry relies too heavily on them as its main source of revenue, despite what salespeople will tell you timeshares do not have a line of people queuing up to buy. It is why an exit is a hard task and should be handled by timeshare experts who have extensive knowledge of the industry.
People who enter into timeshare agreements often find it difficult to keep up with the mounting maintenance fees and simply cannot afford it any longer. They may also find that the timeshare no longer suits their needs and simply want to end the contract. There are too many individuals who are willing to take advantage of timeshare owners and offer fake products, along with timeshare exit schemes. Before agreeing to any timeshare termination or exit procedure with an individual or company, seek independent advice and fully research any company you are thinking of working with.
It is also important to remember that purchasing a timeshare should NEVER be viewed as a financial investment. Timeshare is an investment in lifestyle, in future holidays and family time together. There is almost no resale value to a Timeshare.
The mis-selling of holiday products is, unfortunately, common practice within the holiday industry and these types of crimes often goes unreported by the most vulnerable in our society and criminal convictions are few and far between.