Over the past five to eight years, the timeshare industry has suffered an influx of customer complaints that stem from timeshare owners being unable to get relief from their timeshare contracts. Certain business practices within the timeshare industry has led to this virtually non-existent resale market. Now, with a mature world-wide-web, potential timeshare buyers are getting scared out of the market, while timeshare owners are looking for ways out.
Until the past few years, timeshares were still considered lower-cost alternatives to owning luxury vacation homes that few middle class families could afford. However, in a bad economy where families are looking to cut out any non-essential bills, timeshares have been the first on their lists to cut. They soon discover that selling a timeshare is much more difficult than buying. In many cases, timeshare contracts obligate these owners in perpetuity.
One of the industry’s biggest fears is losing timeshare owners. In order to prevent losses, many preventative measures were drawn up to lock owners financially to their units with nowhere to run. For timeshare resorts, the name of the game is volume. Resorts and developers are motivated to sign and to keep as many owners as possible to a single unit to boost revenue and profit through the residual nature of annual maintenance fees.
Schedule rules, such as booking a year in advance, stymie an owner’s ability to stay at the resort. Yet, they make timeshare units available for presentation to potential new buyers. Contracts effectively in perpetuity require the payment of maintenance fees forever. These businesses practices demonstrate just a couple of ways timeshare operators tip the scales in their favor.
The more consumers could sign to a single unit, the more money the resort makes in annual fees. A lot of times, owners have to deal with the frustration of late or over bookings not because they didn’t follow the guidelines, but rather, because the resort oversold their unit space.