Timeshares are notoriously difficult agreements to get out of, with many customers getting trapped in extremely long-term contracts.
As this article from This is Money points out, many are in situations where they struggle to sell their property for as little as 99p!
And while they can be difficult to exit, it’s certainly not impossible, so we’ve taken a look at three different options available to you when exiting a timeshare agreement.
While it is true that the timeshare resale market is extremely oversaturated, it’s still worth a try as your first option.
It’s estimated that there are as many as 400 timeshares being sold for every one which is bought, but this is probably the most straightforward way to exit a timeshare if you can find a buyer.
You can choose to either do this through a broker or privately. While a broker might seem like the easiest option, it’s always important to be wary, as many sellers have fallen foul of scams.
One of the most popular scams involves posing as a resale broker and asking for a large deposit up front before your timeshare can be sold, which the scammer will then disappear with.
Of course, the other option is to just try and sell the property yourself, with sites such as eBay and Gumtree proving popular options.
This is considered a safer option and gives you more control over the process.
Donating or Transferring
If you’re at the stage where you simply wish to cut your losses with the property and free yourself from the fees, but without receiving a fee, then it might be worth looking into donating or transferring the property.
Timeshare properties can be donated to charities, who often auction off weeks at the properties to raise money, and while they obviously won’t pay you anything for the property, you may be eligible for a tax deduction.
Of course, you can also just give your timeshare away for nothing (for example to a friend or family member), but they would still be liable for the maintenance fees and any other fees.
The Legal Route
If all other options have been exhausted and you still cannot find a way out of your timeshare contract, thankfully you have rights which should allow you to legally cancel your timeshare.
Essentially, if you can prove that you have been mis-sold the property, or can prove that the company that sold the timeshare have breached the terms of the contract that you’ve agreed.
So for example, if you purchased your timeshare on the basis that the property was on the beach, but arrived to find that it was in fact 20 minutes away, this would be classed as misrepresentation.
This is why it’s so important to properly read through any contract before signing up to anything, but there are specialist groups such as the Timeshare Consumer Association who are experts in timeshare law and are happy to advise you on how best to go about exiting your timeshare.