2011 Harborside II Maintenance Fees - OVERBOARD

Forum: Harborside Resort at Atlantis

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By Henry S.

2011 Harborside II Maintenance Fees - OVERBOARD

If someone would put in the effort, I am confident there's an owners list since every "We'll buy your timeshare" company out there seems to reach each one of us.

Avatar for Henry S. Henry S.

1 year ago
Jan 09, 2019

By Kevin W.

It's not only the "we'll buy..." but also the "owner's update meeting" callers. I called our Orlando-based SPG/Vistana/etc. number and the only thing they could tell me is that when someone buys, the information is published and publicly available (I guess somewhere on the internet or in some legal documents somewhere) because it's a "Florida law"...what nonsense.

Avatar for Kevin W. Kevin W.

1 year ago
Jan 12, 2019

By Henry S.

Please chase this down..If we are able to get a full list of Phase II (and Phase I) and can recruit enough owners to participate the universe ( as it relates to our MF) will start to turn on its axis.

kevinw120 wrote:
It's not only the "we'll buy..." but also the "owner's update meeting" callers. I called our Orlando-based SPG/Vistana/etc. number and the only thing they could tell me is that when someone buys, the information is published and publicly available (I guess somewhere on the internet or in some legal documents somewhere) because it's a "Florida law"...what nonsense.

Avatar for Henry S. Henry S.

1 year ago
Jan 12, 2019

By Kevin W.

Vistana just informed me that all Harborside sales are recorded in the Bahamas. How we would ever get that list is beyond me. I'm sure these "We'll buy" and "Owner's Update" callers have staff and resources to dig up that information in the Bahamas.

Last edit by kevinw120 on Jan 15, 2019 03:59 PM.

Avatar for Kevin W. Kevin W.

1 year ago
Jan 15, 2019

By Ralph S.

2011 Harborside II Maintenance Fees - OVERBOARD

I have recently been reading and came across your article Can you give me an up date on the happenings at Harbor Side

Avatar for Ralph S. Ralph S.

1 year ago
Jan 29, 2019

By Nikki L.

I just saw this post. Nothing appears to have been posted recently. Could you give me an update please.

Avatar for Nikki L. Nikki L.

1 year ago
Mar 09, 2019

By Thomas R.

Forget it. We were all screwed when we bought at harborside and continue to get screwed every year. No win situation. Just pay your rising maintenance fees every year and enjoy your time there. Life goes on - might as well enjoy while you can. :)

Avatar for Thomas R. Thomas R.

1 year ago
Mar 09, 2019

By Chris B.

2011 Harborside II Maintenance Fees - OVERBOARD

HI

I am a Harborside II owner who has been trying to sell for years. I bought because it was advertised as an investment, with the value of the units values likely to increase, so that you'd get a good return on your money. What a fool I was, I have an every year week and an odd year week and as we are retiring can't think of a way out. I have noticed many units advertised for free, but if Harborside was managed correctly with reasonable fees and a proper resale section, control of the unit values could be maintained and the entire process would be fit for its purpose with families using the ownership for several years then selling onto families also wanting the same opportunities. Timeshares don't have to be a trap, they are only a trap because developers want to carrying on making money long after their input should have ceased.

look forward to any replies

Avatar for Chris B. Chris B.

1 year ago
May 22, 2019

By Chris B.

surely the Bahamas have some sort of registry of property owners? as the timeshares were sold as Deeded ownership with charges for registering at the bahamas land register. would this be accessible?

Avatar for Chris B. Chris B.

1 year ago
May 22, 2019

By Lisa W.

Hi Henry,

I just found this thread and am desperate to get rid of this timeshare. I am phase I, one bedroom premium villa / gold season. I am at wits end with these maintenance fees. If you are considering any legal action, please include me!

Thanks so much, Lisa

Avatar for Lisa W. Lisa W.

10 months ago
Jul 23, 2019

By Henry S.

Here's a solution to all of us that are being ripped off by Vistana/Atlantis/Harborside mafia.

1. You can legally sell your timeshare, but you will have to do it at a loss for what you originally paid... I paid $29K and just have to eat it. 2. One idea: create an LLC in Wyoming. It is super inexpensive. Sell it to the LLC. 3. LLC does not pay MF. 4. Mafia sues LLC - good luck collecting! 5. Other valid ideas: https://finance.zacks.com/legally-dispose-timeshare-3136.html

Avatar for Henry S. Henry S.

10 months ago
Jul 23, 2019

By Ann V.

Henry, the website you gave cannot be reached.

Avatar for Ann V. Ann V.

9 months ago
Aug 03, 2019

By Henry S.

I just copy pasted https://finance.zacks.com/legally-dispose-timeshare-3136.html It works just fine. henry

Avatar for Henry S. Henry S.

9 months ago
Aug 03, 2019

By Ann V.

Got it!!! Thank you!

Avatar for Ann V. Ann V.

9 months ago
Aug 04, 2019

By Chris P.

LisaW, What week do you own phase 1?

Last edit by cpierro on Aug 04, 2019 08:55 PM.

Avatar for Chris P. Chris P.

9 months ago
Aug 04, 2019

By Chris P.

The issue isn’t so much the maint fed rising. Well yes they have been rising ridiculously each year but what really screwed everyone was the VAT! It went from 7.5% to now 12 with no end in sight! This is the real issue.

Avatar for Chris P. Chris P.

9 months ago
Aug 04, 2019

By Henry S.

FINAL CHAPTER IS ARRIVING - Denial of Use Notice

UPDATE: I have just received a Denial of Use Notification from Vistana Management, Inc. This is a result of my refusal to further fund the erroneous charges tucked away in the yearly budgets, that no one has control of, except Vistana Management. Since 2009 I have written to Vistana requesting evidence and documentation, verifying the nature and necessity of budget estimates and actual expenditures. The most significant considerations are the piling on of a 10% management fee and VAT Tax for “expenses” that are no more than accounting entries, and not actual expenses and costs to operate the HOA.

To Wit:

1. Bad debts - Vistana, collects a 10% management fee for every Owner that fails to make its yearly HOA payment. Those missing fees are then passed on to each Owner that actually do pay their HOA fees, in the following year’s budget, which includes Vistana’s 10% cut for passing this on. When asked if their 10% fee is refunded (to the HOA), if the Owner eventually pays the HOA fees, Vistana refuses to respond.

2. When a unit goes into foreclosure and is eventually resold (as mine will, at full price by Harbourside sales people) how are any delinquent HOA fees or unpaid mortgages accounted for? If a portion of the proceeds, from a resale of the foreclosed unit, are used to liquidate the delinquent HOA, are portions of the proceed's credited back to the HOA for the prior delinquency? Are the 10% Management fees credited back to the HOA? No response from Vistana

3. Every year Reserves, in excess of $3.5 million, are charge to the HOA. Vistana charges their 10% Management fee. These funds are the meant to cover future refurbishment/replacement expenses after the expiration of an “Expected Life” of any particular asset (roof, elevations, building painting, furniture, etc). When these replacements costs are finally incurred, one can be certain that Vistana charges another 10% Management fee on top of the invoices that are remitted by future vendors making such repairs or replacements. This is called Double Dipping. Vistana refuses to comment on this matter.

4. VAT TAXES * As we all know the Bahamian Government have imposed a VAT tax for goods and services, which is reflected in the annual budgets used to calculate HOA fees. VAT taxes are imposed on some goods and services, but not all. In behalf of all HOA members, I had demanded that Vistana address the following, prior to the upcoming Board meeting, so that proper action may be taken to identify errors and correct them prior to the budgets being prepared for the next year. Corrections will greatly impact what each HOA member is required to pay.

* Since 2015 our Association has charged its Owners an additional 7.5% VAT tax on every line item listed in Annual Statements. In emails to Vistana, I had attached are three years worth of Budget - 2015 / 2016 / 2017. Notated on the 2017 budget, I highlighted items in Yellow along with comments in the right margin requesting a clarification from Vistana. Vistana refuses to comment on this matter.

* On behalf of all Harborside Phase I and Phase II Owners, we need a thorough explanation on the following VAT questions. Are the categories of expenses below exempt from VAT?

* Uncollected Fees from Owners (not an actual “expense” but a charge-back to Owners) Licenses and Permits (a VAT tax on top of a Bahamian Business Licenses and Permits?) Utility Bills - VAT is already included in the actual Utility bill

* Accounting and Financial Services which are for the benefit of Non-Resident Owners Real Estate Taxes (VAT on a R/E Tax?) Reserves - These are funds charged to Owners, but are not actual expenses/costs when the Reserve is collected, just an accounting entry.

* Eventually the collected Reserves are actually spent in later years when building roofs, furniture, common areas, etc need repair or replacement. At the time of expenditure a 12% VAT will be charged on the respective purchase(s), effectively charging VAT twice.

* Owners are being charged VAT (Output Tax) on statements we receive. However, we believe the Association's VAT (Input Tax) is already inclusive on the majority of actual invoices for goods and services to operate the Association…thus the VAT is already included in many of the expense line items. Yet, the HOA Management added another flat 7.5% VAT on top of the total expense, which (again) may be a double VAT taxation.

* VAT on Management Fees - Again, if VAT (Input Tax) is already inclusive on the actual invoices for goods and services to operate the Association and the HOA Management then charges 10% of these expenses (including Reserves, Uncollected Account and so on), the Owners are being charged VAT twice.

* Aside for the validity of what line items on these budgets are legally eligible to be VAT Taxed, or not, all homeowners have the right to know what VAT taxes they are being charged for and what line items are exempted by Bahamian Law.

* Currently VAT is 12% - The above issue is now exploding all HOA costs

* In behalf of all Homeowners, I had demanded that Management investigate and correct any and all reporting errors, reporting methodologies and Vat Tax collections though a proper and in-depth audit of the current and past three years worth of Harborside Phase II VAT Returns.

* No Response from Vistana on any of the above.

Where does leave me personally? I am letting go a $25,000 "bad investment” made in 2004. Having only vacationed at Harborside/ Atlantis twice, due to the poor condition of the property and exorbitant prices of surrounding goods and services. Over the years, we opted to use our Star Options in Maui where the property is well maintained and the local government lacks the level of corruption that fuels the excessive expenses of Harborside. We now understand that Harborside/Atlantis is the breeding ground for the Attorneys that cooked up this elaborate Ownership and the "you’ll never get out of HOA Jail Scheme” in order to maintain your faux ownership (basically a right of use scheme) that is fundamentally worthless.

Wait...WORTHLESS? I say this because ANYONE can simple rent an Owner’s unit for about the same cost (or less) as the yearly HOA fee, and basically come and go as they please from year to year.

Potential outcome? Am sure Vistana will turn over my indebtedness to a collection agency, with the typical threats to my 800 credit scores and legal recourse. If you, like myself, choose to bail out of this corrupted Timeshare scheme, feel free to copy and paste the above issues and communicate directly with Vistana Management, Inc at boardrelations@vistana.com. Dispute your fees!!!

You will then have substantiated your entitlement for protections against zealous debt collectors that Vistana will employ. Please review the FTC’s Fair Debt Collection Practices Act …scroll down to § 809. (5)b. Validation of debts, where you will find the following Language:

(b) Disputed debts: If the consumer notifies the debt collector in writing within the thirty-day period described in subsection (a) of this section that the debt, or any portion thereof, is disputed, or that the consumer requests the name and address of the original creditor, the debt collector shall cease collection of the debt, or any disputed portion thereof, until the debt collector obtains verification of the debt or a copy of a judgment, or the name and address of the original creditor, and a copy of such verification or judgment, or name and address of the original creditor, is mailed to the consumer by the debt collector. Collection activities and communications that do not otherwise violate this subchapter may continue during the 30-day period referred to in subsection (a) unless the consumer has notified the debt collector in writing that the debt, or any portion of the debt, is disputed or that the consumer requests the name and address of the original creditor. Any collection activities and communication during the 30-day period may not overshadow or be inconsistent with the disclosure of the consumer’s right to dispute the debt or request the name and address of the original creditor.

Should you device to hang on this “investment”, it is crucial you take action on what Dan Schaffer has shared: * You will NEVER get straight answers or control escalating fees at Harborside UNTIL you hire a management company that puts OWNERS FIRST and works in YOUR best interests. There are such management companies, including VRI, TPI, and Tricom. * NETWORK with other board members through the Timeshare Board Members Association (TBMA), and learn from timeshare boards, management companies, and industry professionals who have found answers to the challenges you are facing. Membership is FREE! * The next free conference of the Timeshare Board Members Association will be held May 17-19 in Orlando, Florida. * Registration is free to all timeshare board members and includes lunches and dinners. Here is a link to the TBMA website for more information on the upcoming conference. * https://tbmassoc.org/timeshare-board-members-association-announces-orlando-2020-conference-may-17-19-2020/

So...my philosophy is to move onward, look forward and shed yourself of toxic relationships, no matter how much it hurts to clear out the muck…

Harborside, in all is physical beauty is MUBAR - Mucked Up Beyond all Recognition. Consider the absurdity of $23 Million a Year to operate a 254 Unit apartment complex with pool, amenities and access to Atlantis...it is going to get worse.

Kindly, Henry Siegel

Avatar for Henry S. Henry S.

1 month ago
Apr 22, 2020

By Kevin W.

You've taken a brave move and I wish you luck. I took all of my paperwork to a leading Class Action lawyer and, unfortunately, he said the contracts were very well written (not surprisingly) and I (we) didn't stand a chance in a Class Action suit.

Probably the best approach for us victims is to either try to sell our place or rent each year to cover expenses. The latter is what I've been doing.

Avatar for Kevin W. Kevin W.

1 month ago
Apr 22, 2020

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