When you purchase a timeshare, you do not really own anything physical like a holiday home, you just own the right to use it for one week or two a year, depending on your agreement you signed up to. So why do you have to take on the responsibility of maintaining something you do not actually own?
You are purchasing the privilege to use accommodation and facilities in a resort or hotel. You get the comfort and convenience of a holiday home with the luxury of a resort so there are some great advantages of timeshare that to potential owner’s sound very appealing. The problem is that these fees go up every year and it is pretty much up to the resort to determine by how much.
Maintenance fees are meant to cover upkeep of the property like administration costs, pool cleaning, facilities maintenance, landscaping, painting and other general maintenance work. The average annual maintenance fee in the UK is around £400-£1000 annually, however these increase every year and after a few years can soon skyrocket out of control and affordability. If you sign up to a timeshare or a holiday points program you are obliged to pay these fees every year, despite whether you use your timeshare or not. They are non-negotiable and you are contractually liable to pay them.
The reason maintenance fees are the number one gripe of owners is mainly because of the increases that without doubt happen annually. The reason a timeshare resort does not want to lose owners is because these fees make up a major part of their income and only part of it is used to maintain the property. Without these fees, the timeshare industry model would find it hard to survive and keeping people locked in means they have a guaranteed income. The problem for the owner is that these fees actually represent a debt and if you do not pay them the resort will come after you like a high street debt collector, people have even had negative credit reports because of these debts.
The only way to get rid of the financial strain that comes with rising maintenance fees, is to get rid of your timeshare. If you have approached the resort and they have said there is absolutely no way out of your contract, do not stop paying them straight away. Wait until you have found a company you can trust to help negotiate your timeshare termination. Read our previous articles about who to trust in timeshare and seek professional advice. Why keep paying for something you do not want and that is putting you under financial stress. Finally, if you are thinking of working with a third party, use one that is registered with the Financial Conduct Authority, there are many rogue companies that work in timeshare and it’s not always easy to spot who is working with your best interests. So, check with the FCA before you agree to engage any services.
People who enter into timeshare agreements often find it difficult to keep up with the mounting maintenance fees and simply cannot afford it any longer. They may also find that the timeshare no longer suits their needs and simply want to end the contract. There are too many individuals who are willing to take advantage of timeshare owners and offer fake products, along with timeshare exit schemes. Before agreeing to any timeshare termination or exit procedure with an individual or company, seek independent advice and fully research any company you are thinking of working with.
The mis-selling of holiday products is, unfortunately, common practice within the holiday industry and these types of crimes often go unreported by the most vulnerable in our society and criminal convictions are few and far between.
If you have purchased a Lifestyle / Concierge Service, a timeshare or a ‘holiday points’-based product from a resort or company and feel unhappy with the service or feel you have been mis-sold this product, please get in touch with us to discuss how we may be able to help you with a possible Money Back Claim.