Owning a timeshare can become a burden when you find yourself no longer using it. You may have enjoyed it for years as your family was growing up, but now that the kids are gone your vacation habits may have changed. And that’s perfectly ok. You shouldn’t be forced to keep paying for a timeshare you no longer want just because you feel obligated to keep paying it off. It’s 2018 and the timeshare cancellation options are quite plentiful.
As timeshare owners become more aware of the difficulty that comes with selling their timeshares, many have sought other options to relieve themselves of their timeshare ownership. Some lucky timeshare owners can work directly with their resort to cancel their timeshares, but most owners aren’t so lucky. Many timeshare resorts have no interest in letting their owners out of their contracts because they’d prefer to keep collecting maintenance fees from each owner year after year regardless of if those owners are even using their timeshares anymore.
So, what can you do?
To start, if you own a Wyndham, WorldMark, Westgate, Diamond or Manhattan Club timeshare, you should contact your resort first to see if timeshare cancellation is a possibility. Sometimes these timeshare developers will let owners out of their contracts in exchange for a few year’s maintenance fees paid up-front. There are rules and stipulations with each brand, but in general you’re going to have an easier time cancelling directly with the timeshare developer if the timeshare is paid in full with no mortgage. If you still have a mortgage, it is less likely that the timeshare developer will relieve you of your contract, but it doesn’t hurt to ask.
If you do not own a timeshare with one of these resort developers or you still have a mortgage, you’ll want to look in to a timeshare exit company next. A timeshare cancellation company can help you cancel the timeshare and recover any possible damages done to your credit report.
The most important thing you’ll want to look out for when choosing a company is whether the company charges an up-front fee. NEVER pay an up-front fee to cancel your timeshare. This is what the BBB, the FTC and literally every other consumer advocacy website recommend. Some timeshare exit companies will promise you they can cancel your timeshare, charge you up-front, and then disappear with your money. Don’t fall victim to these scams. NEVER pay an up-front fee.
To learn more about how to cancel your timeshare without paying an up-front fee, contact us through the contact form or live chat on the right side of this page.
Selling Timeshare on the Resale Market
Also, it’s important to keep in mind that in rare cases some timeshares may be able to be sold on the secondary resale market. If you own a Disney timeshare for example, you may want to try and advertise it for sale on a website like Craigslist or Ebay to see if you can get anything for it. If you find an interested buyer, you’ll just need to pay a timeshare broker to finalize the deal. Selling the timeshare will always be cheaper than hiring a timeshare exit firm, and you may even get some cash from the sale.
Keep in mind that it is extremely difficult to sell most timeshares. Disney is just about the only exception. Marriott Aruba Surf Club is another.
Timeshare Cancellation Rescission Period
It is important to note that most states allow timeshare owners to rescind their purchase within one or two weeks after purchase. This means you may return the timeshare for a full refund. Timeshare developers are required by law to explain how to rescind the purchase within the documents you received when your purchased the timeshare. The process isn’t complicated. Just follow the instructions provided in the documents you received and send the letter via certified or registered mail so the resort must sign to receive it.
A sample timeshare rescission letter could look as simple as this:
Dear [timeshare resort],
I wish to exercise my right to rescind and cancel my timeshare purchase made on [date]. My owner number is [x] and my name is [x].
And that’s it. There is usually no reason to hire a timeshare exit company to rescind a timeshare purchase made within the past week or two. If you send the letter to the correct address via certified or registered mail within the rescission timeframe of the state in which the timeshare was purchased, the timeshare resort has no choice but to refund you your money. It’s a state law.
If you’ve passed the rescission period and still need to cancel your timeshare, we recommend working with a timeshare exit company that offers an escrow payment option, so you are 100% protected from all possible scams. Learn more about escrow and why it’s important here.