Due to the high pressure sales tactics of timeshare pitches, many people will agree to purchase a timeshare when they do not genuinely think it’s the best decision for them. Luckily, most resorts offer a rescission period where you can void your timeshare contract.
While this rescission period can be a benefit to some, the period of time owners have to backtrack on their decision is typically pretty short.
If you recently purchased a timeshare and have changed your mind, you might have some recourse through rescission. However, you need to act fast.
Timeshare Rescission Period by State Law
The period of time you have to cancel your timeshare contract through the resort will depend on the state the timeshare is located in. Typically, timeshare owners have anywhere between three to 15 days to change their mind about their purchase.
For example, in states like Colorado and Nevada, the timeshare rescission period is five days.
Keep in mind, these laws are subject to change. That being said, a quick Google search can tell you how long you have after signing the contract to cancel your timeshare.
State law may also require this cancellation period to be included in the timeshare contract. If it is included in the contract, that means it is unwaivable. This means the timeshare resort has to allow you to cancel the agreement if you are within the rescission period.
If you do find that you are within the rescission period for your timeshare, and you’ve changed your mind about the timeshare, it’s now time to send a rescission letter. You will send a letter to the resort that includes the following information:
- The date you are writing the letter
- Your name, as it is written on the contract
- Your address, email address, and phone number – primarily to confirm identity
- The name of the issuing resort
- A description of the timeshare, which can be found in the original contract
- The date you purchased the timeshare
- A clear and precise message that you would like the timeshare to be cancelled
It will probably not be necessary to include why you’ve decided to cancel your timeshare in the letter. However, you should note that the purpose of the letter is to rescind your timeshare agreement. You need to state something along the lines of, “I am contacting you within the rescission period to cancel this timeshare.”
Before sending in the letter, you should research the state law regarding rescission. There may be extra information you need to include depending on where the timeshare is located.
Your timeshare contract may include information on how to deliver a rescission letter. If it does not, you can find that information by researching the state law.
Some timeshare companies will require hand-delivery of a rescission letter. Other timeshare companies prefer to only receive the letters through the mail. Be sure to follow these directions precisely, or else your cancellation may not be valid.
International Timeshare Rescission
If you have recently purchased an international timeshare, the rescission may be a little more tricky.
The country’s laws, or even the laws of the province or state, will determine whether or not clients have a right to cancel their timeshare. Additionally, they have their own laws on how to deliver a rescission notice. Typically, the cancellation period for international timeshares is only a few days.
However, some countries do not require a cancellation period to be offered at all.
Purchasing a timeshare in a foreign location is more complex in general. If you are thinking about purchasing an international timeshare, you should consider speaking to an attorney first. They can inform you about all of the timeshare related laws that particular country may have.
Timeshare Cancellation After the Rescission Period
Only a few states offer recourse for timeshare owners after the rescission period has expired.
If you are regretting your timeshare purchase but have already passed the rescission period, you may need to consider other methods of timeshare exit.
Timeshare resale, timeshare transfer, and timeshare exit companies are all plausible ways of getting rid of an unwanted timeshare. Which option of timeshare exit will be best for you will be dependent on your specific situation.
In your timeshare sales pitch, you may have been told that your timeshare was a financial asset. Unfortunately, this may not be the case. Timeshares typically have depreciating value, and the resale market is diminishing at a rapid pace.
If you go on a resale website, like Craigslist, you will find that there are thousands of timeshares listed for as low as $1.
The resale market for timeshares is virtually non-existent. The fact of the matter is, people don’t want to purchase timeshares as badly as they used to.
Additionally, over the past years, resorts have made it harder for timeshare owners to resell. Resorts quickly discovered that owners become competitors when they sell their timeshares secondhand for very low prices. To combat this, some resorts have taken away amenities for people who buy their timeshares from previous owners.
If you own a very marketable timeshare, such as one through Disney, you may be able to easily resell your timeshare. However, for the average timeshare owner, the resale market is not very beneficial.
Timeshare Transfer Companies
Timeshare transfer companies are only beneficial for timeshare owners who have paid off their mortgage in full. Unfortunately, if you have outstanding maintenance fees or an existing mortgage, a timeshare transfer company cannot assist in your case.
If you have paid off your mortgage and are up to date with your maintenance fees, working with a timeshare transfer company may be a great choice.
Timeshare Specialists is an example of a great timeshare transfer company. With over 15 years of experience in the timeshare industry, their team uses industry connections to transfer timeshares to willing recipients.
Timeshare transfer companies do charge a flat fee for advertising, which averages around $2,000. That being said, companies like Timeshare Specialists will only charge that fee after the timeshare has been legally transferred to a new owner.
The catch is, timeshare transfer companies do not accept everybody. As we mentioned, timeshare owners have to be up to date with all of their fees and have no remaining mortgage for a legal transfer to be completed. Additionally, if the transfer company determines that your timeshare is not going to sell easily, they will not be able to work with you.
Unfortunately, this eliminates timeshare transfer companies as a viable option for a lot of timeshare owners. However, if a timeshare transfer company is right for you, it can be an easy and cost-effective way to get rid of your timeshare.
Timeshare Exit Companies
If you’ve passed your rescission period, and timeshare resale or transfer are not the right choice for you, there is still hope. Working with a reputable timeshare exit company may be your best bet in getting rid of your unwanted timeshare.
There are dozens of timeshare exit companies in business as of 2021, with new ones popping up regularly. So, how do you find a great timeshare exit company that can get rid of your unwanted timeshare?
There are a few things to look for when seeking a timeshare exit company:
- Find a company that offers a no (or low) upfront escrow payment option.
Escrow gives clients and businesses peace of mind. You can learn more about the importance of escrow by clicking here.
- Search for an exit company that employs attorneys.
The most legal and effective way to get rid of your timeshare is through an attorney. Not only are attorneys skilled in negotiation, they can also thoroughly review a timeshare contract to find falsifications to help get you out of your contract.
- Find a company that has been in business for over five years and has positive reviews.
With review sites such as Trustpilot and Better Business Bureau (BBB), finding a timeshare exit company has never been easier. Seek out a timeshare exit company with an established rapport and a great track record.
Take advantage of the free consultations that most timeshare exit companies offer. You should meet with a handful of companies before settling on one, so that you can rest assured that you’re in good hands.
You can read our review of the top timeshare exit companies here.
Protecting Yourself in a Timeshare Deal
You need to have an understanding of all of your rights before purchasing a timeshare.
High pressure sales tactics can make this difficult. Timeshare contracts need to be thoroughly reviewed prior to signing to prevent getting stuck in an unwanted agreement.
If you are reading this article, it’s very likely that you’re already dealing with an unwanted timeshare. However, rescission periods can make timeshare exit easier than many people may think.
Unfortunately, timeshare resorts have a tendency to make their contracts very long, or otherwise confusing, to make exit seem more difficult. If you have recently made a regretted timeshare purchase, you may be able to rescind it.
When you are unable to rescind your timeshare, resale, transfer, or an exit company may be the right choice for you. If you have more questions about your timeshare cancellation, feel free to fill out our contact form by navigating the homepage.