Avoid Timeshare Resale Scams

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By one estimate, over 8 million Americans own a timeshare. When timeshare owners attempt to sell their timeshare, they often find it more difficult to sell than it was to purchase. Scammers—masquerading as legitimate companies—seek to take advantage of this.

Timeshare Resale Scams

Timeshare resale scam artists call sellers of timeshares, posing as a reseller or real estate agent. The scam artist claims to have a buyer for the timeshare or guarantees he can sell the timeshare for a good price.

Scam artists go to great lengths to appear credible. They use the names, addresses, and phone numbers of reputable businesses, create elaborate websites and official-looking documents, and employ fake escrow agents and title companies—who are just other scammers. Some scammers may have information about you and your timeshare before calling.

After persuading you that they can sell your timeshare, the scammer asks you to send money up front—usually by wire transfer—to pay closing costs, taxes, or other fees. If you pay, the scammer typically requests additional money for unforeseen expenses until you realize the scam. The bottom line: there was no sale and you have lost hundreds or thousands of dollars.

How to Avoid this Scam

You can report timeshare resale scams to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Federal Trade Commission as follows:

Federal Bureau of Investigation
Minneapolis Office
1501 Freeway Boulevard
Brooklyn Center, MN 55430
(763) 569-8000

Federal Trade Commission
Consumer Response Center
600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20580
(877) 382-4357
TTY: (866) 653-4261

For more information, or to file a complaint, contact the Office of Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison as follows:

Office of Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison
445 Minnesota Street, Suite 1400
St. Paul, MN 55101
(651) 296-3353 (Twin Cities Calling Area)
(800) 657-3787 (Outside the Twin Cities)
(800) 627-3529 (Minnesota Relay)

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