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What’s the Most Common Timeshare Scam?

Try to type the word “timeshare” into a search engine like Google, and one of the auto-complete suggestions that you’ll likely see is “scam.”

It’s hard to deny that the timeshare product that has taken on a negative connotation in many circles. But how has its name been tainted by an association with “scam” or “fraud?”

Much of the reason comes down to a few common scams that target timeshare consumers eager to terminate, sell, or donate their interests, whether because they no longer fit into their lifestyle or because they feel burdened by hefty fees, which tend to rise, year over year.

This beggars the question: “What’s the most common timeshare scam?” What should timeshare consumers be on the lookout for?”


Our own Michael Finn offers his thoughts on these important consumer protection questions in a video, available below:

And here’s a full transcript of what he had to say:

“Our office is regularly contacted by people that have been contacted by third party brokers, who claim they have a buyer for their timeshare interest. They want to know whether or not they should go ahead and work with that broker.

Most of the time, it turns out to be a scam, because these timeshare interests have very little resale value. We can conclude without knowing a lot of the facts, that if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Obvious signs that it is a scam, is the sales price is very, very high. Maybe even higher than the original buyer paid for it. Another possibility is that the broker is not in the same state that the unit is in, because typically real estate brokers need to be licensed in the state that they’re brokering property in. Another thing that they do is they refuse to identify who the buyer is. If any of those things are being suggested in the transaction, or are evident in the transaction, I’d say it’s ‘caveat emptor’ folks, which means ‘let the buyer beware.’”

Eager to avoid this costly hassle? For more thoughts on how to spot and navigate this pernicious, and all-too-common, scam, we encourage you to read more at the links below:

We also regularly bring our readers’ attention to reports of timeshare scams in our News Room section, available here. 

Led by Attorney Michael D. Finn with 50 years of experience, the Finn Law Group is a consumer protection firm specializing in timeshare law. Our lawyers understand vacation ownership as well as the many pitfalls of the secondary market of timeshare resales. If you feel you have been victimized by a timeshare company, contact our offices for a free consultation. Know your rights as a consumer and don’t hesitate to drop us a line with any questions or concerns.

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