The most common ways reps try to deceive customers during a timeshare presentation.
There are plenty of ways that sales reps attempt pull the wool over your eyes during a timeshare presentation, from concealing the truth about increases in annual timeshare maintenance costs, to misleading potential buyers as to the true value of their product. Here are a few things you definitely are not going to hear from that friendly timeshare salesperson.
1. Timeshare is a poor investment
While you will not find many sales reps touting timeshare as an excellent investment these days (since this is now illegal), they will still subtly imply during their timeshare presentation that purchasing a timeshare is an excellent financial move. Phrases like “investment in life-quality” are often used to imply that the product will provide ongoing value. In reality, timeshares are proven to depreciate rapidly in value and can represent a huge money-sink for unwary purchasers.
2. You can get the same timeshare for significantly less
Unwanted timeshares are exceptionally difficult to sell, as nobody wants to take on the commitment of the annual timeshare maintenance costs. A quick search on Ebay will reveal hundreds of owners desperately trying to offload theirs for as little as a Euro.
3. You lose at least half of what you paid when you sell
As above, successfully selling an unwanted timeshare is hard work. Similar to the way a new car loses half it’s value as soon as you drive off the forecourt, timeshare lose most of their value as soon as you sign a contract with a resort. Many customers find themselves stuck with a life-long financial burden that they can’t so much as give away.
4. You can usually rent a timeshare in the same resort for less
Unused weeks in timeshare resorts are often found listed as accommodation on sites such as booking.com, often for less than the annual fees charged to owners. These holidaymakers can enjoy all of the amenities of the resort, without the commitment of having to pay hundreds (or thousands) of Euros in timeshare maintenance fees every year. Not to mention the initial purchase cost of the timeshare!
5. The hidden risks of timeshare ownership
When you buy a traditional timeshare, you are purchasing a physical part of a resort. This means that if something like a fire or natural disaster occurs, you are responsible for your share of the rebuilding cost. Whilst resorts are supposed to ensure that they have adequate insurance, this may not always be the case. This would leave owners covering any shortfall.
6. Timeshares are not better value for money than traditional holidays
During the timeshare presentation your rep will be keen to dazzle you with the amount of money you can save on your annual holiday. However, this will be take into account this like airfares, or potential rises in timeshare maintenance costs. It is almost always possible to find a package detail in local accommodation of a comparable standard. Not only does this avoid the commitment of holidaying in the same place every year, whilst be tied into annual fees, but most reputable companies are ATOL protected, providing customers with rights and security, should something go awry.
7. Getting a decent exchange is not as easy as the timeshare presentation makes it seem
During the sales pitch, customers are often shown stunning images of high-end resorts around the world and told that they can use their week or points to travel the world. The reality is often very different and unfortunately, your week on the Costa del Sol in March isn’t going to be getting you to Disney World any time soon.
8. Timeshare loans have terrible interest rates
The cost of the timeshare is enough of a waste of money without factoring in the interest charged on that loan that the nice sales person is only too eager to arrange for you. It is not uncommon for such loans to have double-digit interest rates, adding thousands of extra Euros to the cost of your purchase. Most recently, Barclay’s Partner Finance came under fire in the media for proving timeshare loans to the now-defunct Azure resort in Malta, after it was clearly demonstrated that customers were pressured into signing deals.
9. Travel costs are selectively included in calculations shown during timeshare presentations
As mentioned above, a common trick among rep when trying to persuade customers that timeshare is a ‘great deal’ is to in include your travel costs when calculating the cost of your usual holiday, but conveniently forget to things like flight costs when demonstrating the cost of the timeshare. This is obviously designed to make it appear that you are saving money, where as in fact, you will usually end up spending more.
10. Yes, hotel prices are rising, but timeshare maintenance costs also increase
Another popular tactic sales reps use is to highlight how much hotel prices are increasing, where as your timeshare will remain at a fixed cost for the term of your contract. What they omit to mention is that your timeshare maintenance costs are not fixed at the present rate and will also certainly increase every year. As mentioned above, it is almost always cheaper to use an alternative means of vacation.
Are you stuck with an unwanted financial burden after falling for some of these timeshare presentation tricks?
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