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Getting Personal: Timeshare terrors

On tap this week: How to unload a timeshare, options for saving for your child's education and whether credit monitoring services are worth the money.

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We own some Wyndham Resort timeshares. Has anyone, other than the Wyndham sales staff, ever successfully sold a Wyndham timeshare???

I owned a time snare and learned some interesting things:

1. The same timeshare salesnakes are the same ones selling the services that promise to get you out of your timeshare. Often times the prices is even more than you paid for the scam in the first place.

2. Stop paying your maintenance and other recurring fees. At the same time, tell the timeshare that you will give them title to your timeshare so they can resell it. Tell them that you were sold a bill of goods and that you will not spend another penny but instead will put that money towards a legal fund to fight them if necessary.

3. Do not fall for the same scam about getting out of your timeshare from the same people that put you in that trap in the first place, no matter how convincing they sound. Its just another scam.

Dear Tess,

I hope this phone number is correct: 1 (888) 888-7923

www.topdollarforyourtimeshare.com/

A woman called last week asking how she could unload her paid-for timeshare. You (all) didn’t have a good answer for her.

She said that every time they tried to use the timeshare they were told it was full. That’s a scam. Now that they are financially on the hook, management has no incentive to accommodate their usage; instead, they use the space for rentals.

Well, I have something for you to checkout:

I heard an ad on the radio this morning — WGKA 920 AM Atlanta — advertising for people with timeshares to sell. The ad even mentioned payment for (or taking over) management fees, etc. Of course, I’m suspicious of what they are up to, but I don’t know how to investigate the offer. I hoping that you and your clever staff can.

A woman called last week asking how she could unload her paid-for timeshare. You (all) didn’t have a good answer for her.

She said that every time they tried to use the timeshare they were told it was full. That’s a scam. Now that they are financially on the hook, management has no incentive to accommodate their usage; instead, they use the space for rentals.

Well, I have something for you to checkout:

I heard an ad on the radio this morning — WGKA 920 AM Atlanta — advertising for people with timeshares to sell. The ad even mentioned payment for (or taking over) management fees, etc. Of course, I’m suspicious of what they are up to, but I don’t know how to investigate the offer. I hoping that you and your clever staff can.

Everytime I hear about timeshares it reaffirms my firm feelings about them. I take the Nancy Reagan cue and "JUST SAY NO". It may work for a small percentage of people, but I am not so sure it saves any money. I did MAKE money on the sales pitch though. We were dining out in Myrtle Beach and I thought this guy outside the restaurant was taking names for a waiting list. Turns out he was signing up folks for a time share pitch the next day with a promise of 100$ for listening. My wife and I had no plans so we said yes and we agreed over dinner that the answer was NO. We got a lunch of hotdogs with all the fixings, as well as fruit! When I said no, I got the hard sell. For every advantage I cam back with NO and a disadvantage. After 5 minutes they gave up, showed me the door, I think I had to wait on a check no cash but it arrived as promised. I do enjoy your show. I listen several evenings a week and for Tess on Saturday on WUNC public radio.

Re your caller about credit monitoring services: an excellent newsletter - Consumer Reports Money Adviser, Feb.2012 issue I received just today - has a front-page article titled "Debunking ID-theft hype." If you don't subscribe, maybe your local library does. It's short and good.

By the way if you freeze your credit scores, and later get cellphone service, you may be required to make a deposit up to $500. You'll get it back, though.

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