How to Recognize a Timeshare Scam
The Division of Real Estate has received multiple calls regarding what appears to be timeshare scams targeting Colorado consumers, real estate brokers, and out-of-state consumers. In the current version of the scam, timeshare owners are cold-called, mailed or emailed solicitations from an unlicensed business entity purporting to be a full service property management company, real estate brokerage, or title and escrow company that lists and sells timeshares.
Representatives of the company falsely identify themselves to consumers using the names and license numbers of actual Colorado real estate brokers unbeknownst to those brokers. The company claims to be a Colorado company but cites a false or virtual office address in the Denver area. When consumers respond to the solicitation, they are directed to forward various up-front transaction fees (sometimes in excess of $5000.00) to an out-of-state or out-of-country escrow company.
What to do if you have been Scammed?
If you feel that you are the victim of a timeshare scam, you should seek out the assistance of legal counsel and your banking institution. Additionally, the following organizations maybe be able to assist you.
How are you Protected in Colorado from Timeshare Scams
In 2013, the Colorado Legislature passed a Deceptive Trade Practices Act related to Timeshare Sales (SB13-182). This act provides that a timeshare re-seller must provide certain disclosures, not falsely advertise its services, and not collect any fees or costs from the seller until the timeshare has been transferred.
Consumers who are contacted by a timeshare resale company should always first verify the authenticity of the company, its business license and address, and the license of any individual that is claiming to be a real estate broker assisting in the sale.
If you have any questions on the legitimacy of any timeshare resale company, you should contact your attorney, the timeshare home resort, or your local state government enforcement agencies.