How to Get Out of a Timeshare

A timeshare is a wonderful idea on paper, but it comes with ever-increasing monthly maintenance fees, annual payments, and other costs that can leave you swimming in debt. Timeshare developers and resorts make money from your payments, and the contracts you sign to become a timeshare owner can be difficult to cancel.

Some unfavorable methods that people use to get out of timeshares are damaging to credit scores. It may not be the most effective way to free yourself of the ownership obligations. If you're wondering how to get rid of a timeshare, here are some of the most beneficial exit options and common mistakes to avoid.

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Call Timeshare Developer

When you change your mind about investing in a vacation timeshare after signing the contract, that original sales pitch seems less attractive. You might consider contacting the timeshare developers to cancel the contract or make arrangements that are more appealing. It might include taking the timeshare back or forfeiting the annual fees, but this doesn't always work.

Give Timeshare Away

If you desperately want to escape your obligations, you may consider giving your timeshare away to charity. The idea is that the donation will benefit a charitable organization that schedules annual retreats for their workers or clients. It is a noble gift, but it can still leave you with financial obligations.

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Use A Timeshare Exit Company

Another effective timeshare exit strategy is to seek third-party assistance, specifically a timeshare exit company. These timeshare exit companies use their industry experience to help you leave your unwanted timeshare contract, educating you on the best methods to use when dealing with challenging timeshares.

I WANT OUT

One of the worst ways to walk away from a timeshare is to stop paying maintenance fees and associated costs, including loans you had to purchase your share of the vacation home.

When you stop paying your bill, it is sent to a collection agency. The company will then make many attempts to collect the debt, and you will take a severe hit on your credit report. The fallout is severe, affecting everything from purchasing a new residential property to acquiring credit cards for years to come.

A damaged credit score isn't the only problem you could encounter when you cease payments—the timeshare company can also take legal action against you. It depends on the type of ownership you have and whether you paid for it with a mortgage, but there are still legal consequences for non-payment.

In addition to sending your debt to a collection agency, the timeshare company may attempt to force you into rectifying payments by suing you in civil court to get a judgment against you. When this happens, the ruling will allow them to garnish your wages or petition your bank to withdraw funds from your account to satisfy the outstanding payments.

It is not the immediate step the company will take after you cease making payments, though. As soon as right-to-use or deeded timeshare owners are late paying a fee, they can expect many phone calls from the resort demanding immediate payment.

If you are a timeshare owner with a deed of trust and don't pay your loan, your situation will be slightly different. Like owning a residential home with a mortgage, your vacation property will then go into foreclosure for non-payment.

During this process, the lender will go through the courts to take back possession of the timeshare and sell it to recoup the money you owe. Once they file the lawsuit against you, the court may issue a judgment to pay the remaining balance after the auction (if it doesn't cover the entire cost).

The timeshare company can also subject you to a non-judicial foreclosure, which involves paperwork instead of courts. Your timeshare contract may authorize the trustee to sell your share of the property at auction if you stop paying for it.

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Timeshare Compliance Review 2020

Timeshare Compliance Review 2020

Timeshare Compliance Review 2020

Timeshare Compliance Review 2020

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Some accomplish this feat by listening to a timeshare presentation by a highly skilled company salesperson on joining a timeshare users group.

The pitch may include anything from a voucher for a discounted weekend getaway to the romantic promise of a lovely residence near a resort you can use. You would share the bottom line with others, vacationing once a year for a monthly fee, instead of spending thousands on a vacation club or hotel.

People fall for this trap daily and spend years wishing they could find the best way to get rid of timeshare commitments.

The rescission period is a brief opportunity to cancel a timeshare. It usually begins immediately after signing the contract and could last up to 15 days, but the details depend on state laws. The Federal Trade Commission does allow a minimum of three days for timeshare owners to change their minds.

For example, Colorado residents have up to five consecutive days after purchasing timeshares to cancel their contracts. Alaska residents may be able to use up to 15 days.

The contract must include a “right to cancel” clause, so read the document thoroughly. You will need to act quickly if you have a change of heart about your investment.

In most situations, timeshare companies will demand that owners submit cancellation requests in writing. Crafting the letter is incredibly important to ensure you have no further financial obligations to the property.

Crafting Timeshare Cancellation Letters

  • The current date and purchase date
  • Your name as it's written in the original contract
  • Your contact information, such as address and phone number
  • The name of the timeshare company
  • The timeshare's description as per the contract
  • A declarative statement that you are canceling the contract

Some contracts allow for a verbal cancellation, but it is better to send a letter for documented proof of your request date. You don't have to explain explicitly why you rescind the contract, but you must clearly state that the letter is a cancellation notice.

Rescind the Contract

Sell Your Timeshare

Some people miss their rescission period because they needed time to weigh their options. Others chose to continue paying for the vacation property. Even still, there are ways to escape the timeshare nightmare if you purchased it years ago.

At the top of the list is selling the property, but not all timeshare owners have that option. If you are paying off a loan for the property, you must first complete all these repayments to move forward with a sale of your share in the residence.

To sell your timeshare, first find out how much your share is worth. Start by contacting a professional real estate agent who understands the area's market value. You can also research timeshare resale websites or listings on Craigslist and eBay to view final sale prices.

You can expect to take a hit on your timeshare's sale instead of making a profit, but this is inevitable. Unless the property is in a sought-after location, the price will be low. You will need to find consolation that you are not going through the process to make money but to gain freedom from your timeshare commitment.

Next, list your timeshare for sale on a website that doesn't require an upfront fee. Some online sites exploit vulnerable timeshare owners who made initial investments years ago. These sites don’t offer real solutions, so choose online sources that don't require immediate payment.

Hire a Lawyer

One of the reasons timeshares become a money pit is because many owners accept upgrades for their properties. Each time you take an offer, you accept a new contract, even if it's as simple as changing your preferred vacation week. Before you know it, you have multiple ironclad contracts that you can't shake.

 If in doubt, hire an attorney to help you navigate the legal landscape. Seek a law firm with experience in timeshare and exit contracts. These professionals are able to get you out of the contract under most circumstances and help you deal with debt collectors surrounding the timeshare's monthly and annual maintenance fees and other associated costs.

The unfortunate aspect of working with a timeshare exit team is that not all services represent legitimate assistance. Some prey on the vulnerable, sending mailers or cold-calling older vacationers who bought timeshares years ago and want to get rid of their timeshare for various reasons. It may be because they no longer use the home or afford to pay the maintenance fee.

These companies often use intense sales pitches to convince people to use their resources for escaping timeshare contracts. Ironically, the approach is similar to the one that timeshare companies use to sell the timeshare purchase in the first place.

There are legitimate timeshare exit companies that will take the time to help clients, but don't be fooled. Anyone who promises to get rid of your timeshare for high upfront costs, even with a money-back guarantee, is pushing boundaries. If a timeshare exit team is fraudulent, you end up losing thousands of dollars and still have an obligation to the timeshare as an owner.

Instead, look for companies that don't expect immediate payment before rendering services. Choose those who offer invaluable experience dealing with timeshares and know ways to get out of a timeshare contract legally.

Mistakes Timeshare Owners Make When Getting Rid of a Timeshare

When it comes to getting rid of your timeshare, you may receive bad advice about handling the situation, or act impulsively out of desperation. Perhaps, you can no longer vacation because of illness, or you struggle to keep up with the annual or monthly maintenance fee for the timeshare.

In either case, you want to make sure you take the appropriate steps to walk away from the timeshare company without severely damaging your bank account or credit score.

Here are some common mistakes timeshare owners make when trying to get rid of their vacation property:

Stop Payments on Timeshare

Selling your timeshare or donating it requires the property to be of some value. Charities that will consider a timeshare donation and take over the contract often request that owners pay off the property to take care of any outstanding fees. The organization may even ask you to continue paying the maintenance fee for a predetermined time, so you will still have a financial obligation to a timeshare you no longer use.

Timeshare donations also lead to scams. Some organizations will use a third party to handle timeshare donations and require the owners to pay for the processing. The window of opportunity leaves room for fraud or misappropriation, leaving you without money and still accountable to the timeshare resort.

You may want to give it away to a family member instead, but this doesn't always work out well. The transfer is still a legally binding deal that requires lots of paperwork and details to iron out before the exchange can occur. You will have to ensure your payments are up to date and hire a third party to facilitate the complicated transfer, but you must also clearly communicate the timeshare's financial obligations to your relative.

Not everyone is okay with taking on someone else's financial burdens, and once you tell them the truth about the property, they might not accept your offer.

Cancellation of timeshare is often tricky to achieve, and your personal finance woes mean nothing to faceless organizations that end their letters with, ‘All rights reserved.’ Don’t give up—there might be a way to exit your timeshare contract through a deed-back clause or program. 

Timeshare owners will have a shared deed to one property. Each person attached to the residence owns a percentage of that real estate based on how much time they buy. Ownership means holding a deed, or part of it, even if you haven’t glanced beyond the table of contents in years. 


With this type of clause, you may be able to give your timeshare back to the timeshare company or resort. The process is usually straightforward, but it is contingent on the clause that allows timeshare owners to relinquish deeds and responsibilities. If you give it back, you forfeit all equity in the property.

If you speak to the timeshare developers and realize there is no clause in your contract to release the property back into their control, you could look for a special program to return it instead. For this option, the resort may demand payment for all maintenance fees before accepting the deed. It may also reject the offer to take it back if there are too many pending timeshares on the property. 


It is wise to be cautious when using this approach. Timeshare companies employ expert salespeople and may view your call as a way to ‘upsell’ you, locking you into an additional contract. It still might not take back the original deed. Stand firm and be clear about your intentions before you make the call.

Rent Timeshare Out

Instead of donating your timeshare to charity or giving it to loved ones, you may want to rent it out. The option usually gives people the impression they can make money off their timeshare or break even with the fees they must pay, but this is rare. Renting isn't an effective way to deal with your timeshare for several reasons.

The first problem with renting out a timeshare is that most resorts don't allow this to happen. Most timeshare developers dissuade owners from renting their property by making it difficult for them to rent out their portion, whether it's ownership or right-to-use. Even if there is an agreement to allow for subletting in their contracts, resorts often require owners to go through their affiliates to rent out the property, complicating the process to discourage the practice.

Going through the resort to rent your vacation property is one way to be rid of your timeshare obligation, but another option is to list your timeshare online in classified ads. With this exit option, you will wait longer to obtain renters because the timeshare resale market is saturated. Plenty of owners want to get rid of their timeshares, and in the meantime, you still have to pay maintenance fees.

Even if you find a renter, they can back out at any time, leaving you stranded. Those who follow through with their bookings are still risky because you may be putting an unreliable party on the property who could leave the place in a mess or damage the home or furnishings. You will also have to pay the repair bills, which may cost more than the annual fee.

It is possible to find worthwhile timeshare renters, but the chances of covering your costs are slim. It isn’t an effective way to get rid of a timeshare, only a temporary solution.

Don’t Let Timeshare Ruin Your Vacation

On paper, timeshares seem like a worthwhile vacation investment because you will have a place away from home to relax and make memories. However, the aggressive sales pitches don't adequately prepare people for the ironclad contracts that obligate them to pay substantial fees and other related costs.

If you are ready to get out of your timeshare obligations, reach out to Timeshare Cancellation Experts. The knowledgeable group researches the most effective ways to get out of timeshare contracts legally, connecting you with the most reliable timeshare exit teams to get the job done.
 
Timeshare Cancellation Experts are the go-to source for timeshare exit solutions and advice, so take their free online assessment today and move toward becoming timeshare-free for the foreseeable future.

We help people who need advice for their timeshares! Keep it or cancel it, let's find out the best decision for your circumstances. 

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This is to state that this is not a financial product. This page doesn’t relate to anyone getting a loan. This is NOT a loan product, a requirement to get financing, or related to getting financing. This page is in no way endorsed by Facebook. There is no guarantee of a refund or financial compensation by acting on the information herein. 

Results are not guaranteed and will be looked at on a case by case basis. Not all clients will qualify for timeshare cancellation and compensation in the form of a refund from their timeshare resort. We work carefully to select timeshare relief firms. Once you are qualified and accept our terms, we will introduce you to them to look after the management and administration of your recommended plan. Our online service is 100% free to use, and you are under no obligation to accept any of the quotes or product offers. Timeshare relief options are subject to conditions and acceptance. Timeshare Niall does not administer timeshare

kate.robinson@timesharecancellationexpert.com

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