Wondering how to get out of a timeshare legally?
Timeshares seem like a good idea when you are in the midst of one of those infamous, hours-long presentations. It’s easy to imagine the joys of vacationing every year in a fabulous resort for a low price. And the sales tactics of timeshare salespeople can do a whammy on your rational thought processes.
Before you know it, you are the proud new owner of a timeshare in Florida.
Getting out of your timeshare can be difficult. If you are outside of your cancellation period and the resort won’t buy it back, you’ll likely have to contact an attorney. The Newton Group can assist with this process.
Eventually, reality hits and you realize that the costs don’t outweigh the benefits. Perhaps you don’t have the time to enjoy your timeshare as frequently as you thought you would. Or maybe the maintenance fees have become a burden.
Unfortunately, timeshares are notoriously difficult to get out of, especially if the resort is uncooperative with unhappy timeshare-owners. That’s where Newton Group comes in. This well-trusted company can help dissatisfied timeshare-owners to exit from their contracts.
How Do I Get Out of a Timeshare Contract?
This largely depends on the stipulations of the contract.
If there is a cancellation period listed in the contract, then it is in your best interest to act within that period. If it doesn’t or you think that your contract may not be valid, you can always check the state’s law on timeshare contracts by visiting the state’s consumer protection office’s website.
In the event that you are within the window of the cancellation notice, you should cancel in writing according to the contract and the method you agreed upon.
That notice should include:
- Legal name
- Phone number
- Email address
- Name of the timeshare company or association
- Description of the timeshare
- Date you purchased the timeshare
- Statement on why you are rescinding the contract
Regarding delivery, you should always follow the method laid out in the contract and always within the cancellation period for the best results.
If the cancellation window has passed, then you will most likely need to hire an attorney experienced in real estate contracts, and specifically timeshares to assist you.
Can You Sell Your Timeshare Back to the Resort?
Most resorts will not allow you to sell your timeshare back to the resort. But, it is always best to consult the contract you signed to see if the resort provided that as an option. Moreover, you can always call the resort to see if they will buy it back. Try this even if nothing in the contract indicated that they would.
If selling back your timeshare is not an option, there are a couple of ways to proceed.
First, you can sell it on the open market as a property like any other and see if you get any buyers. Please note, though, that timeshares depreciate in value extraordinarily quickly. You will likely get much less on the sale than you purchased it for, but you will no longer have to pay the yearly fees.
Second, you can see if the resort has a deed back program. This is typically a clause in the contract that will allow you to relinquish the rights to the timeshare provided you meet the required conditions, which would be outlined in the contract. If you are behind on any fees or have a mortgage, it is unlikely that the resort will take the timeshare back, though.
The process of selling your timeshare or relinquishing its rights is not an overnight process. If you are not familiar with how to deal with resorts in this manner, consulting a legal professional is strongly encouraged.
Can I Legally Cancel My Timeshare?
As previously mentioned, there may be a cancellation window for which you can rescind your contract. Time is of the essence with these contract clauses, so act accordingly.
But, if you have owned the timeshare for a long time or you have inherited it, you will unlikely be able to cancel the timeshare. It is a property that you own and has to be treated as such. It is not an apartment where there is a year-long lease that you can either renew or discontinue if you’re no longer interested.
If you can find a reason within the contract that gives you cause for cancellation, that may be an out, but you will require an attorney to identify the loophole.
Can You Walk Away From a Timeshare?
You absolutely cannot simply walk away from a timeshare. You have entered into a contract with the resort or overseeing association and cannot neglect that responsibility.
That being said, you can always risk the consequences of walking away if you think that the resort will not legally pursue you for it. But, flirting with the law in that respect is never encouraged or recommended.
If you don’t think that you will go back to your timeshare, you may be able to rent it back to the resort, in which case the rent collected may be used to pay the yearly and maintenance fees (after the resort takes their share,) which lessens the burden of owning a timeshare.
What Happens If You Stop Paying on Your Timeshare?
There are repercussions for stopping payments, including, but not limited to being:
- Refused for future reservations
- Pursued for timeshare maintenance fees, which may come internally or through a collections agency
- Threatened with foreclosure, which can draw out for years, adding legal fees and negatively impacting your credit score
You might even notice yearly fees increasing because of the costs that the resort had to absorb chasing you for missing payments.
Can a Lawyer Get You Out of a Timeshare?
A well-reputed lawyer specializing in timeshare law may be able to assist in getting you out of a timeshare.
That being said, there is no guarantee when hiring a lawyer and any qualified attorney will outline the possible scenarios you would encounter throughout the entire process.
The likely ways to get out of a timeshare from a legal perspective are through a cancellation notice and a breach of contract.
Can You Donate Your Timeshare to Charity?
You may be able to donate your timeshare to a qualifying 501c(3) charity if you meet the specifications they outline.
The specifications may include, but are not limited to the:
- Resort name
- Timeshare deed or certificate
- Timeshare contract or agreement
- Mortgage receipt showing the mortgage has been fully paid
- Timeshare exchange company information (if necessary)
- Last timeshare maintenance fee bill
- Last timeshare tax payment
Regarding the tax implications of donating a timeshare to charity, the IRS states that the value of the write-off must be fair market value. Furthermore, if the market value exceeds $5,000, then a formal appraisal is needed.
All this being said, the IRS will not recognize tax write-offs for right-to-use timeshares, which allow the usage of a timeshare for a set period of time (typically a week.) They will, however, recognize tax write-offs for deeded timeshares, which claim that you are the owner of the property.
During the process of donating a timeshare to charity, you should consult with an attorney for the process to follow. If you want to write off the donation, contact a CPA.
Why are Timeshare Contracts so Difficult to Exit?
There is rarely a secondary market for timeshares. This means it’s very difficult to sell your timeshare once you have decided you no longer want it.
Additionally, most resorts do not have a take-back program for timeshares. In fact, many timeshare contracts specifically stipulate that the resort has no obligation to buy back unwanted timeshares.
Many timeshare contracts also stipulate that the condo will “confer upon the buyer’s beneficiaries,” which means that not even death can get you (and your loved ones) out of an unwanted timeshare contract.
What is Newton Group?
Newton Group offers a safe and viable exit from your timeshare contract. You will not be stuck dealing with the difficulties of relinquishing the contract while still being on the hook for the annual maintenance fees.
Unlike a resale or listing company that offers you a small chance at selling your timeshare in exchange for an upfront fee, Newton Group offers a service that guarantees to help you exit your timeshare.
Newton Group employs a unique dual service and affordable flat fee model, which is the gold standard of timeshare exit. They combine their 15+ years of timeshare exit expertise with the power and safety of individual legal representation, providing access to justice for their clients. As part of their dual service model, they retain a personal attorney to work directly with each of their clients to advise them regarding their legal rights in the timeshare exit process.
A Long and Proven Track Record
Newton Group has a 15-year history of helping customers to exit their timeshare contracts. That truly stands out in an industry that is rife with shady and downright fraudulent business practices. In the 15 years that this company has been in business, many other companies have come and gone–and sometimes the same company has reopened again and again under different names.
Even the above-board companies are often more willing to endure dissatisfied customers than offer a financial guarantee to their customers.
As part of their commitment to doing what’s right for their customers, Newton Group provides a comprehensive list on their site for avoiding timeshare exit scams. (Check that out here.) One of the scams they highlight is the fact that illegitimate companies will trick customers into believing they are working with Newton Group!
This long history of taking good care of their customers is a big part of the reason why Newton Group enjoys an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, as well as a 4.97 composite star ranking out of 5 from the BBB. With that high of a customer review rating, customers agree that Newton goes out of its way to provide excellent service for a difficult transaction.
How Much Does It Cost to Get Out of My Timeshare?
The cost to get out of a timeshare will likely cost more than the fair market value of the actual property itself. Plus, getting out of a timeshare requires lots of paperwork, money, and hassle.
Depending on the company you use to get out of your timeshare, the cost will likely be in the thousands, from around $4,000 to even $12,000. All this has to do with the caliber of the company you are using to get out of the timeshare and the complications the resort presents.
The process for getting out of a timeshare is typically not a one-size-fits-all approach, so the cost will reflect the foreseeable labor and fees involved to succeed.
The Bottom Line
Getting out of a timeshare contract can be a long, frustrating, expensive, and overwhelming experience. Newton Group can help you to get to the exit you want without tearing your hair out or throwing good money after bad.