One of the biggest criticisms of timeshare contracts is that they’re notoriously difficult to get out of.
However, while they are legally binding contracts, it’s a misconception that they cannot be cancelled.
‘Cooling Off’ period
First things first, it’s important to note that there is usually a ‘cooling off’ period where you can cancel the agreement and get any deposit back.
This cooling off period lasts 14 days, and is your best bet if you have been mis-sold a timeshare product.
The most obvious way to rid yourself of your timeshare is by selling it on. One way this can be done is through a timeshare reseller such as TESS (Timeshare Exit & Support Services).
However, if you do go down this route, make sure to be wary, as many of these companies could just be fronts for scams.
Some timeshare resale companies will often ask for a big deposit upfront to sell your timeshare.
However, often these companies will either fail to find a buyer, or will demand another large sum once they have found one. In some cases, they may even disappear off the face of the earth once they have your cash
For this reason, you should be wary of any organization that requires you to pay a large up-front fee, or if they contact you out of the blue through cold calls.
Another option is to donate your timeshare to charity. While you will not receive anything back on your timeshare, many choose to donate their property just to simply cut their losses and avoid having to pay the costly maintenance fees.
Charities often use timeshare weeks to generate revenue, either by renting them out to donors, or offering them as part of charity auctions.
While you may not directly receive any money for your timeshare through this method, it is possible that if you donate to certain charities you may be eligible for a tax deduction.
To avoid all of the fees and potential scams that come with resale organizations you could try and sell on your timeshare yourself.
You could do this by listing the property on sites such as eBay or Gumtree. This gives you much more control over your timeshare sale and lets you set a reserve price so that you don’t lose out.
You can also consider transferring your property to a third party. Timeshare transfers are also known as ‘exit strategies’.
On the downside here, the third party will only take over the maintenance payments and other fees and won’t actually pay you for the value of the property.
Just like donating, this is an option if you simply want to cut your losses on your timeshare property, and if you don’t want the hassle and fees of selling through a resale broker.
While getting out of a timeshare is by no means a simple and straightforward process, it is possible!
If you are seeking to exit a timeshare agreement, make sure to be very wary of potential scammers, and bear in mind that it may be just as easy to just cut your losses and donate or transfer the property.