The Federal Trade Commission recently posted a guide about some of the major things to consider before you purchase a timeshare, and our attorneys are here to supplement some of the things they left open. First, understand what your timeshare rights are. Timeshares have various types of set ups. Most timeshare contracts are just a point system that allow you use your points for various bookings. While others are resort specific and may get you just a week per year at that resort. Regardless most timeshares require a purchase price (often financed at high interest) along with infinitely increasing yearly maintenance fees to maintain your power to book. Even if your mortgage is paid off, remember that your maintenance fees will continue forever.
Second, know what to expect before ever going to a sales pitch. No matter what they may promise you if you go into a timeshare sales pitch know that they often take hours and try to pressure you into an immediate sale before you get the chance to do research. Do your research beforehand! Because they will not give you a chance to do it during, or before your signing. There may be a lot of statements like “only if you sign today”, a “special offer to you exclusively” but its all just standard procedure to get you to not do your research. Often nothing they say in those sales pitches are included in the contract you end up signing.
Third, ask yourself some important questions before you sign into a timeshare. If the fees increase every year, are you still going to be able to afford it? Do you have the mental energy to go through a difficult booking process every year to use your timeshare? If you have already bought a timeshare and cannot afford it, what options do you have?
One option you may have is to cancel your contract. While timeshare contracts are notoriously hard to get out of, they are not unbreakable. We here at the Abrams Firm (TheTimeshareLawFirm.com) have been doing timeshare law for over 15 years. Our licensed attorneys specialize in timeshare contract cancellation. We offer pro-bono (free) services to analyze your case and see if you qualify for a timeshare cancellation. Call us at 360-918-8196 or get started here to set up an appointment with an attorney.
If you would like more information the FTC keeps regular updates about the timeshare industry and keeps consumers informed about the issues they may face with timeshares. Read more about it on the FTC’s website Ftc.gov/Timeshare