Ask RedWeek / September, 2016

What is the best way to get rid of my timeshare?

I have owned a timeshare for years but now need to move on. I have talked to my timeshare company, but they want to charge $2,000 for a contract buyout. We think that's a rip-off. So my question is, what else can I do? I know I could hire a lawyer, work with an exit company, or donate to a charity, but I don't know if those are good ideas. I have already complained to state regulators, too, but they are not doing anything to help me get out of my timeshare obligation.

RedWeek contacted numerous industry officials to get good answers to these questions, which were posed to us by timeshare owner David Barron. Here are some options we encountered after researching Barron's questions. The overall consensus — from developers, attorneys, resale realtors and owner advocates — was, take your time, do your research and, most of all, don't fall for a sales pitch from a company that "guarantees" to get you out of your contract.

Contact Your Timeshare Company

While there is no automatic formula for owners to get out of their timeshare contracts, there is one unanimous recommended starting point: contact your home resort owner services. Find out if the developer or HOA has a resale program or a "deed-back/surrender" option for owners who need to get out of their timeshares and have no outstanding mortgages. Most major brands have below-radar (unpublicized) programs to help owners with hardships, and some have outright surrender programs where owners are allowed to walk away from their timeshares after paying some upfront fee (usually equivalent to two-years' maintenance fees).

Only one major timeshare company, Wyndham, has created a public comprehensive exit program, called Ovation, that enables owners to terminate their timeshares. Companies that don't have in-house programs to recycle timeshares will typically refer owners to a licensed resale broker who specializes in timeshare resales.

Do Your Homework to Find out Your Timeshare's Realistic Value on the Resale Market

Many timeshare owners assume their timeshares have an inherent value, like real estate, that can be sold on the resale market (like a used car). Unfortunately, that is not always true, especially for older legacy timeshares or others where the supply exceeds demand. RedWeek's own panel of experts recommends that owners do as much research as possible to determine the realistic resale value of their intervals. There are several ways to do that, beyond just searching blindly on the internet (where you will run into companies that guarantee high prices for timeshares that may never sell). One generally reliable method is to contact a member of the Licensed Timeshare Resale Brokers Association (LTRBA), a group of about 64 brokers who specialize in selling and renting timeshares — they will typically give you a free estimate. RedWeek offers a free tool called What's My Timeshare Worth, which will give you active and historic resale (and rental) prices for any resort, so you can do your own poking around and estimating. RedWeek also offers a full-service resale program, which includes a professional valuation and pricing guidance.

Regardless of which service you use, owners who want to cancel their contract, for whatever reason, will benefit by seeking out professional advice about the value of their timeshare. That information will influence your decision to sell, rent, or (maybe) abandon your interval. Also, be prepared to swallow the pain that your timeshare is not worth what you paid for it.

List Your Timeshare for Sale or Rent

After doing your homework on your timeshare's resale value, consider posting your timeshare for sale or rent it out to recover some of your expenses. RedWeek provides these services to its 2.3 million subscribers — with both DIY and full-service options available. Many licensed timeshare brokers will provide this service as well.

LTRBA brokers tend to handle only high-value, brand-name timeshares that can be resold on the resale market (such as Disney, Marriott, Vistana, Hyatt, Wyndham and Hilton), usually for a fraction of their original price. These brokers typically charge $1,000 or more to handle a transaction, but they also take care of all the paperwork. RedWeek's full-service resale program, in comparison, is available to all owners, regardless of where they own, uses LTRBA licensed brokers, and provides the same professional services as a brokerage (it currently costs $125 for a 12-month posting, plus $399 or 3% commission when it sells). RedWeek also offers a DIY resale option for owners who want to save some money, and are comfortable coordinating their own closing.

Most timeshares don't sell quickly, so be prepared to wait many months for a sale. At the same time, high-value, high-season timeshares do tend to rent fairly quickly. So, bottom line, renting your timeshare is a good way to buy yourself time while figuring out your exit plan.

Consult an Attorney who Specializes in Timeshare Contracts

There is a considerable cottage industry of lawyers who assist owners trying to get out of their contracts. They have experience dealing with timeshare developers and HOAs, and have a broad perspective on what's possible because they interact with many owners. Legitimate timeshare attorneys will advise you whether you may have legitimate legal claims to cancel a contract (or even attempt to get your money back). They know how to contact your resort with demand letters and handle the negotiations on your behalf. One additional advantage of hiring an attorney is that, once your lawyer has contacted your resort, the HOA can no longer communicate directly with an owner. From there on out, all resort-to-owner and creditor communications go to your lawyer. Timeshare attorneys we've contacted tend to charge an upfront fee ($3,000 or more) to handle an owner's contract cancellation. In 95 percent or more of all cases, the lawyers try to arrange a simple settlement with the timeshare company to terminate your contract. However, when the facts support it, the lawyers actually file lawsuits to litigate contract issues. The threat of litigation triggers settlement talks.

Two caveats about timeshare lawyers: First, they cannot offer guarantees, so it is possible an owner could pay an upfront fee and still not get out of his or her contract. Second, it is not easy for the average timeshare owner to determine legitimate lawyers from those who just take advantage of unsophisticated owners. Major timeshare companies, moreover, are highly suspicious if not outright hostile to timeshare exit attorneys. So before you hire an attorney, do your research and demand references. Consult more than one firm. Walk away from outfits that guarantee outcomes. A good way to review an attorney's credibility is to check out actual lawsuits that they have handled. Legitimate law firms will post their cases on their own websites.

Hang Up on Unsolicited Callers Offering a Guaranteed Exit

There is also a group of unscrupulous and unreliable so-called "exit" or "transfer" companies that call timeshare owners out of the blue, offering to get them out of their timeshares. Most of these companies are scammers who promise to advertise and sell your timeshare — usually guaranteeing a sale at a good price, saying they already have a buyer waiting. These companies nearly always aim to secure an upfront nonrefundable fee of several thousand dollars. Down the road, nothing happens, and the timeshare owner is right back where they started, but poorer. So when you are contacted by a company you've never heard of or didn't solicit, hang up. (And even if it's a company you HAVE heard of, hang up, research and contact them directly — scammers will even pose as reputable companies like RedWeek to get your money.)

Don't Bother Giving Your Timeshare to a Charity

Some of the clever, but criminal, companies that prey on timeshare owners with transfer schemes also offer "donate to charity" scams. Donating a timeshare may sound like a reasonable solution for a longtime owner, but it generally does not work, because legitimate charities don't want to accept the obligation of having to pay your maintenance fee year after year. In effect, they won't accept a contract that puts a financial burden, instead of a benefit, on the charity. So the warning is: don't deal with a third party that says it will negotiate your charitable donation (again, for a multi-thousand-dollar upfront fee). If you are in direct contact with a charitable organization, they may agree to take your timeshare, but you may still have to pay them for the privilege of taking it off your hands.

File Complaints with Regulators and Law Enforcement

Many state and federal agencies investigate consumer scams and frauds affecting timeshare owners and they encourage consumers to file complaints. Usually, these agencies focus on criminal schemes, such as the timeshare transfer companies or charity scammers that defraud timeshare owners who want to get out of their contracts (by demanding upfront fees for services never rendered). None of these law enforcement agencies, however, actually help owners terminate their contracts. They do not negotiate on owners' behalf with timeshare companies or HOAs. Rarely, a major regulatory agency will launch a civil or criminal case against a timeshare company on behalf of thousands of owners who may have been bilked. The most recent example involves the Manhattan Club, which is under investigation by the New York Attorney General's Office. Now in its third year, the case is nowhere near concluding — and worse, for owners, there is no certainty that a resolution of the case will result in restitution or cancelled contracts. In the meantime, their maintenance fees continue to climb.

Stop Making Payments and Just Walk Away

RedWeek does not recommend this course of action, but for owners who just want out, and cannot find any other solution, your last resort to getting out of a timeshare contract is the obvious one: just stop making payments on your timeshare. Let it go into default and foreclosure, if necessary. Lawyers rightly advise that this is a risky strategy, since you cannot control how the company will respond to your default. Some go after owners aggressively with collection efforts. Others, particularly legacy resorts with tight budgets, will just take back the defaulted unit and try to resell it to a new owner who will pay the maintenance fees.

Many timeshare owners don't like the walk-away option because they fear it will wreck their credit. This is a realistic issue for younger owners who still expect to buy new mortgages or cars in the near future. But it is not a realistic threat for older timeshare owners, in their 80s, whose only major expenses may be birthday presents for grandchildren. The default option also is not pretty. Depending on the policies of the developer or HOA, owners who abandon their contracts may be subjected to creditor harassment, threatening letters, and foreclosure proceedings (which could cost money). But at the end of this draconian, but perhaps practical option, the owner is done. The developer or HOA will take back the timeshare and attempt to recycle and resell it, at high retail prices, to a brand new buyer.

Have you used one of these, or other methods to get rid of your timeshare? Let us know by commenting below.

RedWeek would like to thank all of the people who contributed research to this story, but several chose to remain anonymous. Those we can thank by name include Dave Cortese, owner of Magical Realty in Florida and vice president of the Licensed Timeshare Resale Brokers Assn.; Adam Schwartz, vice president of Wyndham Resorts; Peter Roth, vice president of the American Resort Development Association (ARDA); Jake Bercu, treasurer of the Tahoe Beach and Ski Club HOA; Greg Crist, CEO of the National Timeshare Owners Association (NTOA); and timeshare owner David Barron.

Additional Resources

About the author

This answer was provided by RedWeek contributor, Jeff Weir. Jeff is a California-based journalist who has covered California, Congress, and the White House. He also has roots in Silicon Valley, where he directed public relations and marketing programs for high-tech companies. He is also a timeshare owner and member of

Comments (56)

    Avatar for Ed C.
    Ed C.
    Sep 13, 2016

    Maintenance fees on my Bermuda timeshare had escalated to obscene levels. I contacted an "exit" team and was told they'd guarantee my getting out for a fee exactly the same as my 2-week maintenance. I then contacted a lawyer who read their contract and pointed out that after I'd paid the exit team's fee the timeshare could add additional exit charges which would make the cost even higher. He suggested, instead, I write the timeshare owner and ask to be let out. To my surprise, they agreed. Their charge, a year's maintenance plus a few additions, was high but worth it, I felt. I am now timeshare-free and much happier.

    Avatar for Dinah A.
    Dinah A.
    Sep 13, 2016

    I own 3 Deeds with Bluegreen. I am a bronze member. I want to get out but the 2 lawyers I have contacted are expensive. I know everyone complains that their timeshare company has lied to them or misled them. They are common complaints. I do love Timeshare but since I have become an owner I have learned how to purchase resort stays economically. To get to the point. I went to an owner update. We refused to buy so the manager offered us 20,000 points at 99 cents a point, normally $3.15 a point. We were encouraged to buy more points to put us in a higher bracket so that we could rent out points and have more privileges. We were urged to do so while we could buy points at 99 cents. However, after we got home we found out the manager charged us 99 cents for 10,000 points and full price for the other 10,000 points. Bluegreen refused to make it right. On another occasion, we went to Ormond Beach/Daytona. We are premier owners and received a deplorable room. The furniture was all beaten up. All of the handles fell off of the stove. The beds were terribly stained and very uncomfortable. There was pizza all over the floor. There were mounds of grime under the cabinets on the granddaughter stepped on an earring and punctured her foot. The countertops and cabinets were made of cheap Formica and we're all beaten up and cracked. There was poop on the bathroom counter doors. The lights constantly flashed on and off. I told management the light sockets were hanging off the wall and I had 2 children with me. They never fixed them. The air conditioning did not cool the room. The room was so unsanitary and inappropriate for a Timeshare Premier owner. We have photos and a video. Sure we were given our points back but why would you be placed in a room like that and not moved to another room. So I appreciated your commentary and if you have any input I would appreciate it. We have had some good experiences with Bluegreen and they are making improvements but we sure are paying a bundle along with all types of fees and rising maintenance fees. If I could learn to make the system work for me by renting, I would keep it but I do not have enough points. I am stuck. I can't let it go because we have plans to remodel our home. So we can't have our credit messed up.

    Avatar for Sandra P.
    Sandra P.
    Sep 13, 2016

    I need help. I have a small timeshare at CHRISTIE LODGE (CO) which I have not used for years, as I have a terminal illness and in a rest home. I pay my annual fees religiously. I have been scammed once already. I have no one to leave it to. I have offered it on Craig's List with no one contacting me. I list it for free and I'll pay the first year maintenance fees of $500. Foreclosure will provably hurt my income to pay the nursing home. I have tried to work with the resort's HOA, however they want thousands of dollars to let me out of the contract. I listed it with Redweek, paid my upfront fee, yet nothing. I'm helpless and can not find help. Any suggestions?

    Avatar for Brian H.
    Brian H.
    Sep 13, 2016

    Orange lake resort in Florida allowed us to give it was totally paid off cost us nothing....

    Avatar for Vincent S.
    Vincent S.
    Sep 14, 2016

    If your timeshare has a deed whereby you pay taxes to a township(eg.Riverside California) by not paying the tax the timeshare is repossessed by the township and put up for resale at auction. Marriott is such a timeshare . I contemplate this option but found out they were rebuking them back.

    Avatar for Jeanne E.
    Jeanne E.
    Sep 14, 2016

    I wrote to the company with no success to the Manager of the Timeshare in St. Maarten. I phoned and I finally received a reply. I had surgery that resulted in blood clots and long recovery, and final disability and retirement from work. I told this to the Timeshare Managing Unit. I said simply we had paid the maintenance fees for 3 years without using the timeshare. We had hoped our health would recover, but my husband's health worsened and mine will never improve so AS MUCH AS WE LOVED OUR TIME for 18 YEARS WITH ROYAL ISLANDER, WE JUST MUST TURN IT BACK OVER TO THE COMPANY SO THEY MAY SELL IT TO A COUPLE THAT LOVE IT AS MUCH AS WE DID. I waited and the gentleman was very accommodating. I am sure the Unit was resold quickly. We did not pay another penny, nor any legal fees. Just Signed the letter relinquishing all our rights, and interest in the Timeshare Unit 5204 on Week 23. By the way, We paid $5995 for the Unit initially and for 18 years Loved every week every minute of our vacations. So we got 18 years worth of happiness for $5995 plus the airfare.

    Avatar for Jo L.
    Jo L.
    Sep 14, 2016

    I used Wyndham's Ovation program, and it was fairly simple and straight forward. It only took a few weeks to process. My objective was not a resale, but to get out of high maintenance fees. It cost me absolutely nothing to transfer title to Wyndham. Thanks, Jo Ann

    Avatar for Tony S.
    Tony S.
    Sep 14, 2016

    I have abandoned 2 timeshare. I just quit paying my dues. Initially they harass you but eventually they give up. It has been a long time now and have not heard from them.

    Avatar for Carol B.
    Carol B.
    Sep 14, 2016

    what do you do if we own a timeshare , which is basically a club we brought into 2006 in Mexico , we have paid maintenance for each year except this year. Have called and told the Las VEGAS PEOPLE WHICH COLLECT MONEIES that we DO NOT WANT TO GO TO MEXICO any more ! We do not have a Deed for property , we have been called by Mexican government from time to time to ask if we were satisfied with the company , we could exchange thru HSI but have not got any good deals , no vacancies where we want to go . So it gets frustrating we are retired and need to forget about the money they keep wanting .

    Avatar for Richard K.
    Richard K.
    Sep 14, 2016

    Thank you to RedWeek's Chief Correspondent, Jeff Weir, who did a fantastic job reviewing the subject of timeshare sales & transfers that covered a lot of my questions with reasonable intelligent answers.

    Avatar for Rebecca G.
    Rebecca G.
    Sep 14, 2016

    We have finally resorted to the "stop making payments and Just Walk Away" option. We paid twice to have our condo listed for sale, spending over $1000, but never even got a bite. We investigated the value of our week and found that it was worthless, being at an undesirable time of year at that resort. We were told that the value was so low, that no one would want it, even we gave it away! We sent the resort a letter, surrendering our rights and the deed, which they ignored and continued to charge us. We never stayed, even once at the resort. Thus, we never cost them one copper penny in cleaning or anything else. We paid our dues for several years, and got absolutely nothing in return. So we STOPPED. Since then, every once and while they turn us over to a collections agency that calls non-stop, day and night for several weeks or months. We have stopped answering any unknown numbers. The collection agency has offered us a deal a couple of times, wanting several thousand dollars, that we did not have, and that again we felt we would be giving in exchange for exactly NOTHING! So here we are, several years into this standoff, and I'm sure the calls will start again soon. So far, nothing has showed up on our credit. Thanks for the chance to vent!

    Avatar for Candi S.
    Candi S.
    Sep 20, 2016

    brianh362 Were you current on everything when Orange Lake let you out of the contract or behind ie: maintenance fees, mortgage? Also did they give you anything in writing about how they report to credit bureaus?

    Avatar for Cherelle B.
    Cherelle B.
    Dec 09, 2016

    I would like to be done with timeshare. It has been falsely advertised since I purchased it. What can I do?

    Avatar for John T.
    John T.
    Dec 10, 2016

    I have not tried any of the examples listed. I have 14000 points with Shell Vacatons Club, which is now owned by Whydamn. I prefer to sell, but maybe renting is a better way to go. My home club is the Beachboy in Kauai. My annual maintenance fees are $3200.

    Avatar for Debra M.
    Debra M.
    Jan 17, 2017

    Has anyone just walked away from paying maintenance dues at the Sunset Royal in Cancun, Mexico? I am unable to keep up the dues and use the timeshare since my husband has passed away. Just wondering what that company does if I were to do that!

    Avatar for Angela G.
    Angela G.
    Mar 02, 2017 (edited)

    I have a company call R&T Marketing Solutions LLC that has contacted me about renting or selling my timeshare. They have a website but have nothing else about them. Have you ever heard of this company? . They were charging us $500 for their services. Our timeshare is with Westgate.

    Avatar for Bechir K.
    Bechir K.
    Sep 21, 2017 (edited)

    We own a timeshare at the Westgate Town center in Florida. We are citizen of Tunisia and as every owner, we were not told the truth when we bought this timeshare. Now the Tunisian money has lost more than 40 percent of its value. Plane tickets (3 tickets ) cost more than 3 thousand US dollars. We tried to sell it through a company in Florida and we paid five hundred dollars, nothing. We complained to the westgate, nothing. Now we are asked to pay the maintenance fee (2,300.00) for two years. We just cannot afford it anymore. We want to get rid of it at no cost. What will happen if we go away and stop paying the maintenance? We do not live in the USA.

    Avatar for Willi K.
    Willi K.
    Nov 05, 2017

    I am 77 and to old to worry.

    Avatar for Delores M.
    Delores M.
    Jan 13, 2018

    I have contacted my timeshare VSA and they sent a form charging 5 years worth of maintenance fees to get out of the contract. Is that normail?

    Avatar for William M.
    William M.
    Mar 25, 2018

    I had a timeshare at Tahoe Seasons. Didn't owe any money just wanted to move on. I contacted the resort and they took back the deed for $500.

    Avatar for Penny C.
    Penny C.
    Apr 10, 2018

    I am a timeshare owner with a deeded week. This timeshare was given to me by a parent free and clear. I have used this timeshare 1 time out of the 12 years I have owned it. I have asked the company, Americano Beach Resort, if I can relinquish the timeshare and give it back to them and they said they don’t take them back. They were hit by an hurricane last year and have yet to reopen. I received a bill for a “special assessment” because insurance is not paying enough toward repairs. Two years ago they rewrote their bylaws and change their rules, which no owners have control over. This is forever a money pit which seems no easy affordable way out without ruining my credit which I have worked so hard for. It is such a shame that a company has such a forever financial hold on you. I can’t afford to hire an attorney and if I did know there are no guarantees. I do not want to leave this financial burden for my children as their rules/bylaws say whoever inherits your estate I here it’s the timeshare and debt. The company sent a survey to owners asking who would be willing to pay for the assessment fees and who would rather do away with the timeshare and 65% said they wanted to do away with the timeshare. I’m not sure what kind of recourse the owners have against this company and would appreciate any help or advice. Please respond.

    Avatar for Mary B.
    Mary B.
    Jul 16, 2018 (edited)

    If I want to get rid of my timeshares from Wyndham thru their ovation program do they charge any fees at all like the transfer. I am afraid of asking them because not sure if I want to get rid of them Also I had a fixed week andbought another wyndham and they rolled the fixed week into points with the new purchase so do I have one contract or two contracts. I am just wondering what would it cost if wyndham would take my timeshares back

    Avatar for Maureen D.
    Maureen D.
    Aug 20, 2018

    Do you have a template for a letter to send to our timeshare companies to ask them if they have a sales or buy back option? I understand that Redweek recommends that as step one in getting out of a time share. I'd like to make sure that I make all the relevant arguments during the communication.


    Avatar for Seth B.
    Seth B.
    Sep 20, 2018 (edited)

    horrible experience working with timeshare exit team.....I had paid 4k twice just to get nothing done for almost 2 years..communication was a zero...

    Avatar for Seth B.
    Seth B.
    Oct 18, 2018 (edited)

    in my case , i used the guys at They were quick and responsive

    Avatar for Linda S.
    Linda S.
    Nov 16, 2018 (edited)

    My Sunbay (Hot Sorings,AR) timeshare has been very poorly maintained over the ten or so years we have owned it. Meanwhile the maintenance fees have continued to rise including a special assessment this year. When we go there, the place is nearly empty even though part of it is a retained by the owner for nightly rentals. It is located on the shoreline of a beautiful lake and all units have lake views. But the maintenance issues have lately had us sharing our unit with a maintenance man who “sticks a thumb in the dike” but never gets the problem, the condition, or the comfort of the place up to par with what we bought. Thinking now our best bet is to try to give it back to the owner for free. Recommendations?

    Avatar for Elizabeth W.
    Elizabeth W.
    Jan 18, 2019

    I previously owned time share in cabo and used it on exchange at one of our trip to Hilton head and got scamed into buying another time share with a promise to buy off the other time share in cabo with outrageous maintenance fee but ended up having 2 timeshares and maintenance fees.I finally contacted and wrote letters to recede my ownership on my Cabo time share but now I need to get out of my Hilton head time share which we haven't used since my husband got diagnosed with cancer 5yrs ago.I'm still paying maintenance fee of 1k every 3yrs.but really need to get out before paying's all paid off except for regular maintenance fee.

    Avatar for Donald C.
    Donald C.
    Feb 14, 2019

    I am 83 years old, I walked away from my time share some years back . I have a bad heart and retired , on fixed income can pay hospital bills. Thankfully I get meds free. They keep sended bills , I can't pay its now over 7000.00. I ask a few years ago what I could do, got no answer. What can I do

    Avatar for Ebbe S.
    Ebbe S.
    Mar 05, 2019 (edited)

    I’ve had a 1 week / 2 bedroom time share with westgate vacation villas since 1992. Paid cash. It’s totally wrong that most of these timeshare companies don’t give there customers a “way out”, especially if the customer has been dedicated in mntc and tax payments. As customers get older, they don’t use it as much. What decent company does this? I’m from Michigan. Our real estate companies NEVER get fees up front for listing your property. Anyone asking for money up front to sell or look into other ways to “cancel” your timeshare are sheep in wolves clothing. I’m disgusted and ashamed that these large timeshare corporations are patting themselves on the back for making billions of dollars at the expense of their customers. Instead of building huge high rises with top of the line interiors, why can’t they also have a way to help their customers when in need. Maybe a subsidiary to help sell, take back, units that are no longer needed? Win, win I’m sure. Glass of wine anyone?

    Avatar for Elaine B.
    Elaine B.
    Apr 24, 2019

    Do you have a template for a letter to send to our timeshare companies to ask them if they have a sales or buy back option? I understand that Redweek recommends that as step one in getting out of a time share. I'd like to make sure that I make all the relevant arguments during the communication. I appreciate your help!

    Avatar for RedWeek Support
    RedWeek Support
    Apr 24, 2019

    Elaine B.: We do not have any type of template for asking your timeshare company if they will take back your timeshare. Each individual owner's situation is different, so you should simply state the reasons why you need to get out of your timeshare: for example, you are no longer able to pay the maintenance fee because of these reasons... or you can no longer travel, or your spouse has passed away, or whatever your current situation is. If you are no longer able to pay the maintenance fee, then it may be to your resort's benefit to take your timeshare back rather than having to go through the foreclosure process. Be persistent with your request, but remain pleasant. Good luck!

    Avatar for Chris C.
    Chris C.
    May 11, 2019

    I want to cop out of my timeshare, Daytona Florida. I do not want bad credit, does this hurt credit score or can I dispute it.

    Avatar for Carl N.
    Carl N.
    Jun 21, 2019

    I couldn’t handle the high pressure sales tactics used on me each and every vacation. We owned ours for 6 years and was able to only get in 3 times, and each of those 3 times I was tricked into coming into the sales center for an “update” I said it was enough. And I had paid Alleviate Consulting thousands to cancel it which I think is crap. They did no wrong doing but still it’s crazy to think that something that was supposed to have so much value did nothing more than cost me an entire years worth of wages. I can’t get that year added back to my life. Such a shame. I do not recommend anyone buy a timeshare before investigating it fully.

    Avatar for Scott P.
    Scott P.
    Aug 28, 2019

    I got out of mine (it was paid off) by not paying the maintenance fee (by accident). My bank changed hands and the fee was coming out of my old debit card and not thinking about changing it because it was a completely useless burden on me. After they finally got a hold of me (I had been working overseas) and some choice expletives they offered me a quit claim. I don't think it would work if it's not paid off they are like a dog on the bone and will not foreclose because they know they are worthless.

    Avatar for Will T.
    Will T.
    Oct 23, 2019

    I have a timeshare unit, paid for. The company refuse to take it back because I owe a maintenance fee. I don’t want anything but out. Yet they could sell for 5x the maintenance fee and make a hell of a profit. So what’s the reason they refuse to take it back?

    Avatar for Jack H.
    Jack H.
    Oct 26, 2019

    RAYBURN COUNTRY TIMESHARE, Inc.....Sam Rayburn, Texas 409-698-9248 Poor management/embezzlement/fraud has caused them to be removed from the RCI points system. So after November 2019 I will not be able to use any points accumulated but may still have to pay the annual maintenance fee. Also, In order to survive I can foresee another Special Assessment on the horizon. Under these circumstances I would think that I could legally just walk away from my timeshare??????

    Avatar for Marlene M.
    Marlene M.
    Oct 30, 2019

    We are Canadians who purchased a Florida timeshare in 1997, for $9,000.00 U.S. Over the years we have paid $1500 surcharge twice and our maintenance fee is now just over $1,000.00 for one week. We are now in our 70's, have spoken to the owner rep at our resort about selling our resort. The resort is a sold out timeshare, which does not buy back units. We have offered our timeshare to a few young families we know but everyone feels the maintenance fee is high, and of course, for Canadians, 35% higher than an American. I have spoken to Timeshare Resale people, who ask for $2,000.00 or more upfront and I won't do this. I feel we have expired all our ideas, except to walk away, but really don't want to do this. Any suggestions?

    Avatar for Kelly352
    Nov 25, 2019

    Brianh362, I am trying to get out of mine at Orange Lake. Who do you recommend contacting to start the process?

    Avatar for Jacinto G.
    Jacinto G.
    Jan 19, 2020

    Only and the must important: Help me please to get rid of my timeshare. PLEASE.

    Avatar for Jane Chiong
    Jane Chiong
    Jan 25, 2020

    Why can't we all ban together and hire a law firm to file a class action suit against the resorts...we were ALL deceived

    Avatar for Wendi T.
    Wendi T.
    Jan 27, 2020

    If you want out of your timeshare and: 1) It's paid for 2) You are up to date on maintenance fees

    Call your timeshare and do as the article says: find out if they offer a "deed-back/surrender" option.

    Most of them do. However you MUST use those words. If you call and say I want to give it back they will tell you that you cant do it. You have to say "deed-back".

    They will most likely say, they need to check inventory and let you know. Then they will call you back and tell you there is a fee for them to do the legal paperwork blah blah etc. Pay the fee, complete the paperwork, get it notarized, send it back by traceable means and in about 2 weeks to a month you are done with that millstone of a timeshare that was around your neck.

    YOU DO NOT NEED a timeshare exit company or any attorneys to charge you $$$ to do what you can do for yourself. Because, guess what? This is EXACTLY what they will do on your behalf and charge you thousands on top of it to make you think you needed them.

    Signed, A person who got out of my timeshare on my own by calling and asking for their deed-back option.

    Avatar for Reality W.
    Reality W.
    Feb 08, 2020

    Anyone who buys timeshares this day & age are idiots.

    Avatar for Reality W.
    Reality W.
    Feb 08, 2020

    anyone who buys a timeshare this day & age with all the information out there is an idiot.

    Avatar for Sondra W.
    Sondra W.
    Apr 20, 2020

    I CAN NOT afford this. It was not my idea. I called Orange Lake and got the rudest person I'v ever spoken to to in my life. I want to work something out with them, but I don't need attitude. Please tell what I need to do to get out of this trap!

    Avatar for Don P.
    Don P.
    Apr 20, 2020

    You could just walk away and let them foreclose .

    Avatar for John I.
    John I.
    Apr 21, 2020 (edited)

    Sondra, Go the the industry website: The second line down shows Holiday Inn Vacation Club, which is the owner of Orange Lake. Go to their link, read it, and fill out the form. They have a complete department that specializes in this subject. They should call you back or direct you to a number for their services. Clerks at the resort know nothing. Plus, if you anything on your timeshare, you will probably be out of luck.

    Avatar for Lance C.
    Lance C.
    Apr 23, 2020

    realityw wrote:
    anyone who buys a timeshare this day & age with all the information out there is an idiot.

    I wouldn't call such people idiots. Some might make an unwise purchase, but they're not idiots. Besides, there are some people who like owning timeshares and owning timeshares works for them. Are they idiots if they enjoy and make good use of the timeshare(s) they purchase?

    Avatar for Denice S.
    Denice S.
    Jul 29, 2020

    Anyone have anything with Silverlake resort in Florida? We have a contract but want out!

    Avatar for Lance C.
    Lance C.
    Jul 29, 2020

    Anyone have anything with Silverlake resort in Florida? We have a contract but want out!

    What do you mean by you want out of the contract? If you own a deeded week, you own property, not a contract. Nonetheless, if you no longer wish to be an owner with all its responsibilities, then you have to find another owner for your deeded week. Here are some options although they might not be to your liking.

    Try asking the resort's Homeowners' Association if it will take your unit back. It might ask you to pay closing costs and maybe even the next maintenance fee but that will be a small price to pay compared to other options. Perhaps say firmly that you are not going to pay another penny in maintenance fees so it would be in everyone's best interests for the HOA to take back the unit amicably.

    Try advertising it for sale/giveaway here on RedWeek. You can also try E-Bay, My Resort Network, Craigslist, or Timeshare Users Group (aka "TUG"; TUG has a Bargain Deals section that allows you to advertise for free that you want to give your unit away.

    The other option is to just stop paying maintenance fees and the resort will eventually foreclose on you. The downside is that you will face a barrage of collection calls and letters and probably a hit/ding on your credit rating or credit score.

    But most importantly, do not use the services of many of these companies or law firms that have words in their names such as exit, cancel, relief, freedom, etc. These are usually scams.

    Avatar for Michael S.
    Michael S.
    Oct 18, 2020

    This last comment was very helpful as we are also at Silver Lake in Florida and want out. We have a Red (open) week - it's actually points , and have no financial commitment to the Deed other than the annual Maintenance Fee. We're done and no longer want it. We are letting the RCI expire as well. Very leery of any third party time share exit groups or lawyers. It appears the best way of going about this is to approach the Resort and try and resolve amicably?

    Avatar for Sarah M.
    Sarah M.
    Oct 21, 2020

    This is horrible information. There is no resale value on Timeshares. Go on Ebay and see for yourself. THEY DONT SELL. Hire a lawyer to do a legal dissolution. That is the only way.

    Avatar for F I.
    F I.
    Feb 23, 2021 (edited)

    I’m a Canadian senior who is doing the “walk away” option after I told the resort that I want to pay them to get out many years ago, to which they said that there is no way. Last week, I received a letter from a collection agency from California and I started to worry. I’m not concerned about credit score but not sure if they can take money from my bank account. Also starting to look at exit company but afraid that I will get myself into another money pit. Not sure what to do yet.

    Avatar for John I.
    John I.
    Feb 23, 2021

    What state did you buy the timeshare in? Some states require a non-recourse foreclosure where the timeshare company can only take back the timeshare and cannot go any further. Florida is such a state. DON"T hire an exit company. They can't do anything constructive. Just ignore the threatening letters. You can go to and explain your situation. A number of helpful owners can direct you. Canadian owners rarely get prosecuted in America - too expensive.

    Avatar for Mike D.
    Mike D.
    Aug 16, 2022

    Just say no and walk away.

    Avatar for Wendi T.
    Wendi T.
    Sep 25, 2022

    f you want out of your timeshare and: 1) It's paid for 2) You are up to date on maintenance fees

    Call your timeshare and do as the article says: find out if they offer a "deed-back/surrender" option.

    Most of them do. However you MUST use those words. If you call and say I want to give it back they will tell you that you cant do it. You have to say "deed-back".

    They will most likely say, they need to check inventory and let you know. Then they will call you back and tell you there is a fee for them to do the legal paperwork blah blah etc. Pay the fee, complete the paperwork, get it notarized, send it back by traceable means and in about 2 weeks to a month you are done with that millstone of a timeshare that was around your neck.

    YOU DO NOT NEED a timeshare exit company or any attorneys to charge you $$$ to do what you can do for yourself. Because, guess what? This is EXACTLY what they will do on your behalf and charge you thousands on top of it to make you think you needed them.

    Signed, A person who got out of my timeshare on my own by calling and asking for their deed-back option.

    Avatar for A B.
    A B.
    Dec 08, 2022 (edited)

    I have a timeshare that I believed was given back to Marriott in February of 2022. Our dues were paid in December of 2021 for 2022 by my husband. But now Marriott wants $1,800 to deed this back. My husband passed away in December of 2021. I am 80 years old and don't need to pay anymore money to Marriott Desert Springs II. I do not drive and will not need to have good credit. I have not used this timeshare in 2022 nor will I use it 2023. I believe that Marriotts deed back program is very costly and unfair because I was told in February that I could just deed it back with no costs. Now 2023 fees will be due. They have sent me a 21 page document with many instructions that I don't understand. I believe this is elder abuse. I will consider other organizations that will help me with this issue. I am unable to pay maintenance fees for something I did not use and will not use for 2023. Deed back program is costly. Do not deal with Marriott.