Timeshare companies are notorious for using high-pressure tactics to attract new buyers and get current owners to buy into a timeshare upgrade. Getting an upgrade is like agreeing to unnecessary services at an auto shop, pushed by a salesperson’s insistence. If you’re tired of being pressured to upgrade, this is the place to be. We’ll expose the tactics that timeshare companies use to get you to upgrade and why you shouldn’t fall for them. By understanding these tricks, you can recognize if you’ve been caught in a timeshare upgrade scam and plan your way out of it.
Is a Timeshare Upgrade Really Necessary?
Recall the time when you decided to purchase a timeshare. Most likely, you were swayed by the attractive images of happy people vacationing in places like Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, or Miami, Florida. Additionally, the sales presentation probably made timeshare ownership appear convenient and luxurious.
So why is your initial purchase no longer sufficient? Why is your timeshare company pressuring you to upgrade?
While it is true that over time, your once-new timeshare may lose value and require updates, maintenance fees and special assessments are designed to address these issues. You do not actually need to upgrade your timeshare. Your company should not be pushing you into a new membership that you do not want.
Unfortunately, many timeshare owners are coerced into upgrading. They are told that the new membership will provide a superior experience and replace their old membership. Alternatively, they may be convinced that upgrading will decrease their maintenance fees when the opposite is true.
Here are some of the upgrade tactics that you should be wary of.
The Membership Upgrade That Becomes Two Timeshares
The merging of timeshare companies, such as Hilton Grand Vacations and Diamond Resorts, has been a driving force behind the push for timeshare upgrades. For instance, the merging of these two companies resulted in the creation of HGV Max, which promised to offer an enhanced vacation experience for owners of both companies. However, while timeshare mergers may lead to additional vacation options, they often come with extra fees that owners may not anticipate.
Developers may view timeshare upgrades as an opportunity to persuade owners to purchase an additional timeshare, leaving them responsible for paying two sets of maintenance fees. Some timeshare sales representatives mislead owners into thinking that upgrading their membership will replace their existing property, only for owners to realize later that they now have two timeshares to maintain. Therefore, it is crucial for owners to fully understand the costs and implications of upgrading before agreeing to any changes.
Equity Discounts and Lower Maintenance Fees
That’s right. It’s important to remember that timeshare companies are ultimately businesses that are trying to make a profit. They may use enticing offers, such as the promise of equity discounts or lower maintenance fees, to persuade you to upgrade your membership, but it’s crucial to do your own research and calculations to determine if the upgrade is actually worth the cost. Don’t be afraid to ask for written details of any promises made and to take time to carefully review the contract before signing anything. It’s also recommended to seek legal advice before making any major decisions regarding your timeshare ownership.
Confusing Contract Jargon
Using confusing language in timeshare contracts is a common tactic used by developers to deceive people into timeshare ownership. Such contracts are often filled with tricky clauses, making it nearly impossible to pursue timeshare cancellation once the rescission period expires. If you have already fallen prey to this tactic, be wary of upgrading your timeshare membership.
It is crucial to carefully examine any new contracts that accompany upgraded memberships, as they may contain warning signs. The contract should clearly state that the original form of membership or deeded week you were assigned is being relinquished by the developer. If the contract does not state this, you are likely to be enrolled in an additional timeshare property or membership, which can result in double the membership and maintenance fees. Rather than being an upgrade, this could turn out to be an added financial burden imposed by your developer.