Timeshare Scam Targets Owners
2017-10-17 09:45 PDT
File # 2017-27007
Want to sell your timeshare? Many timeshare owners decide they can no longer afford their vacation rentals, it is not being used enough, or they may have inherited a timeshare and don’t want to keep it. Police caution sellers wanting to offload their vacation timeshare properties that they may be targeted by scammers.
North Vancouver RCMP have received several complaints of such a scam, whereby the scammers approach the seller with promises that they have a buyer who is prepared to pay double the value of the timeshare.
In one case, a deal was made with the owner directed to wire transfer thousands of dollars to an escrow account in Mexico to pay for taxes, administration and brokerage fees. No monies were sent as the owner sensed a scam. If a seller does wire money there is little recourse available to help them in getting that money back.
Tips on how to spot a timeshare scam – wherever it may originate:
- Someone contacts you without an invitation, for example by cold calling.
- Someone contacts you and tells you they have a buyer/renter for your timeshare and they are willing to pay you more than you originally paid for it.
- Someone contacts you and puts a lot of pressure on you to make a decision quickly, including asking for your credit card details.
- Someone contacts you and asks for an up-front payment: for taxes or administration fees.
- The people running these scams are very sophisticated and the documents they may send you look genuine — but they are not.
The scam doesn’t always stop there. A second fraudulent business may then contact the victimized owner offering to help recover the money lost in the first scam. In these cases the victim is asked to pay yet another fee. As with the first scam no money is ever recovered and telephone calls and emails are unanswered.
If you have been victimized by such a scam the RCMP recommend that you contact your local police agency along with the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre. For more information go to BC.RCMP and the Better Business Bureau websites.
Cpl. Richard De JongMedia Relations
North Vancouver RCMP
147 East 14 St, North Vancouver, BC, V7L-2N4
- Date modified: