Hey Howard! Beware offers to sell your timeshare
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - Millions of people own timeshares and many are looking to sell them.
But people should beware before they pay someone who promises they can sell it for you. Many people who own timeshares eventually want to get rid of them to avoid the yearly maintenance fees. But, many soon learn there are a lot of scams out there.
One timeshare owner says he thought he found an easy, efficient way to sell his property.
Joseph Hammet Jr. shared, "We got some stuff in the mail telling you that they are willing to buy or sell timeshares and I told the wife, I said, 'Well, let's get rid of one.'"
Joseph called Timeshare Title Services and was told to mail a check for the fees involved to start the process. First, he sent a $1,000 check. When he was asked for more money he realized he could actually drive the check to the location.
"We went to the address that we were given and here it is, it was a bunch of warehouse buildings and the address that we were presented with there was a big lease sign on it; it was vacant," said Joseph.
When he called Timeshare Title Services he knew something was wrong, "I told my wife that I knew we had been scammed."
Joseph wasn't alone. There were 100 victims who lost over half a million dollars. Postal inspectors say a red flag in time share scams is often the high-pressured sales tactics of telemarketers.
Scott Horne, a US postal inspector, said, "Don't be pressured into the high sales sales pitch. Whenever they try to hook you into making a decision on the spot and immediately, you need to take a step back."
Joseph says every part of the transaction was by telephone and mail. He learned his lesson.
In this case, two people were arrested on federal fraud charges and have been sentenced to nine years in prison.