How do you can tell genuine timeshare companies apart from scammers and fraudsters? If you stay open and aware it can become very obvious when someone is trying to scam you. There are a number of warning signs that can help you to distinguish the genuine timeshare companies from those which are most likely a scam. Read on for my hints and tips about figuring out/spotting scammers, and protecting yourself from a timeshare scam.
Here are the various signs that a company is likely to be a timeshare scam:
Is no new good news?
Reputation is important whether it’s good or bad; most scammers and fraudulent timeshare companies do not even have a bad reputation… in fact, they tend to have no reputation at all. If you can’t find out very much (or anything at all) about a company on the internet or through other industry members then you’re probably heading for a timeshare scam.
Dishonesty and lies
Ask yourself how honest this company and these people have been with you in your dealings. Little lies, for example about the length of the timeshare sales presentation, might not seem like a huge deal, but these lies are part of a litmus test for the company’s integrity. If you are told it will be two hours when it is four, when you are promised a free gift and then asked to pay for it, or if you are shown a timeshare resort different than the one they are trying to sell you on… all of this is a sign that they have no qualms about lying to you to get your money in a timeshare scam.
Are they listed with exchange networks?
You can always tell a genuine timeshare company by their affiliations and partnerships; a timeshare company that has not affiliated itself with an International exchange network is a strange and highly uncommon thing. If in doubt check that RCI or Interval International (or a comparable network) recognizes this company, otherwise it could be a timeshare scam.
Permits and licenses
It’s not always possible to check that a timeshare company has all the correct licenses and registrations, but there is a litmus test of sorts. If you can find their representatives and salespeople inside airports and shopping malls they are more likely to be legitimate as these places insist on companies having all their licenses. If you are stopped outside these places or in the street we recommend that you always ask to see ID before agreeing to anything. If the timeshare agent cannot produce identification you are probably dealing with a timeshare scam.
Where do they take you?
This is very true when it comes down to timeshare scams; if they promise you units in one resort but take you to another, or show you the resort, but do not conduct the presentation there you should be very worried as to whether these are people who actually work for that resort (or if they’re trying to make money on the side). Either way you should be very, very wary of such behaviour.
What is your instinct?
So not everyone has great instincts, and not everyone is willing to listen to their gut… but often when something feels off it’s for a very good reason. Your gut may be the first thing to tell you that something is not right so listen to it! Timeshare scams are usually easy to smell from a mile off, especially if they seem too good to be true.