Groups » Specializing in Timeshare Cancellation Services

Timeshare Cancellation Services
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Have you noticed that the term "timeshare" has undergone a significant public relations change, in terms of consumer sentiment? Whether it is because consumers are resentful of long-term contracts, or escalating membership and maintenance fees, when you hear about timeshare legal disputes in the news, the story centers around high-pressure, predatory sales tactics and increasing expenses, that owners can not afford.

While the economic downturn should have reduced the demand for timeshare properties, inadvertently, cash strapped consumers have been sold the idea that it is a money-saving proposition. In some timeshare sales pitches, consumers are presented with the idea that a timeshare is a lucrative investment, that will only appreciate with time. Whether deeded, membership or point based ownership, many timeshare buyers find that it is little more than a long-term lease with escalating fees that become increasingly difficult to manage within an average household budget.

Law professionals are specializing more frequently within the field of timeshare contract representation, serving clients by assisting with rescinding of the membership fees and ownership (within the purchase refund date), or through a more arduous representation to cancel the timeshare contract, without filing for a foreclosure or deficiency judgement.

Advocating for consumers who feel they were pressured into purchasing timeshare is a noble cause, and one that has also become highly lucrative for legal teams specializing in this area. For every timeshare that is sold, there are many more consumers eager to legally cancel their timeshare obligation, without damaging their personal credit. For law professionals who are looking to explore the niche, we discuss some of the economic factors and opportunities.

What Lead to the Timeshare Bust?

The housing bubble and market collapse of 2006 changed the way consumers viewed the value of timeshare properties. Prior to the massive adjustment in value and economic repercussions, which saw the largest credit crisis since the Great Depression impact the United States, sale and resale values of timeshare properties were steady, and predictable. The Bottaro Law Firm from Rhode Island recalls that consumer confidence was high, and that was reflected in the purchase rate and contractual retention of timeshare agreements.

After 2008 when the Case-Shiller home price index reported the largest price valuation drop in real estate in history, the collapse impacted not only consumer confidence, but real estate values. In 2008, the United States Government was forced to allocate over $900 billion dollars to special loan arrangements, including Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, to attempt to stabilize the real estate market, and stem the flow of imminent foreclosures and ramifications. By 2009, the American Government announced unlimited financial support from 2009 to 2012, despite the fact that the Treasury Department announced a $400 billion-dollar loss, due to the support programs.

The ensuing economic impact of the collapse of the housing bubble cost Americans billions in property value losses. Suddenly, primary residential properties were worth far less than mortgage liens, and when faced with a potential foreclosure, Americans began to tighten their financial belts and eliminate unnecessary expenses where possible. The total value loss for privately held real estate topped $6 trillion dollars, and was followed by a tech-bubble and dot com crash, that saw investment portfolios lose substantially. In a three-year period, the economic outlook for the United States, and for the world, changed for consumers in ways that were previously unfathomable. Ask anyone who invested retirement money into Mutual Funds about their portfolio during that period.

The dream of "Freedom 55" was lost for the Baby Boomer segment (note that you don't hear that much about early retirement anymore). With both the property values of their principal residence reduced by 25% to 80% in some regions, and with the loss of value to stocks and investments, the dream of early retirement itself eclipsed. The question is no longer "when you will retire" but "if you can retire" at some point, and sustain your quality of living.

Why Consumers Want Out of Their Timeshare Contract

After about the eighth or ninth time you have visited the same timeshare, or after struggling to swap your weeks with another timeshare unsuccessfully, the glow of excitement is gone for timeshare property owners. The term "owner" is used loosely, as in fact, the timeshare contract rarely deeds the property to one or more family. It is a lease that with very few exceptions, provides little financial ROI, and a great deal of expense and frustration for consumers.

The frustration the consumer feels is compounded by the fact that they have very few options to relieve themselves of the monthly expense of owning a timeshare. Contracts can last as long as ninety-nine years, and refusal to pay timeshare fees can of course, result in foreclosure and legal action which can dramatically decline an otherwise good credit rating. Feeling trapped by predatory contracts, many consumers attempt to "give away" or sell their timeshare, only to find out that the resale market is a buyer's market, with thousands of affordable options, making less than 2% of timeshare sales successful.

With the current consumer credit crisis, many individuals are unwilling to jeopardize their credit rating for the sake of canceling an expensive timeshare contract, which leaves most consumers paying on a monthly basis under a financial strain, and entrenched in rising costs.

The Opportunity for Compassionate Legal Representation

For lawyers who have a strong compassion for consumer advocacy, the opportunity to specialize in the timeshare industry is a chance to have a profound emotional and economic impact on the lives of clients. By the time a client is ready to seek legal guidance, they have typically exhausted all other routes and have been unsuccessful at seeing an alternative to foreclosure, as a reasonable path to resolution of their timeshare contract.

While not all timeshare sales professionals are unscrupulous, employing high-pressure and ethically questionable practices, the industry receives thousands of complaints annually on consumer advocate websites, message boards and business associations. Standing in between the consumer and what may feel like an expensive, life sentence of increasing bills and expense, is a legal team who can advocate on behalf of the consumer to find a resolution, canceling the timeshare contract for good, while helping the client to retain the positive credit rating they have worked so hard to achieve. Not only is it lucrative for legal professionals, it's the kind of job you can feel morally good about.

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