When investing in or purchasing any product or service, it is well worth remembering a salesman’s first responsibility, despite any spiel they may give, is to sell a product or service; of course, the most effective and efficient means of achieving this is to find a client or customer for whom that product or service is appropriate. That said, there is a reason terms such as ‘the hard sell’ exist and marketing has grown to become its own industry; the fact is, when products and services no longer suit a market or are discovered to not be the ‘perfect solution’ once thought, it is often more cost effective for companies and industries to rethink how they market that product or service than rethink the product or service itself. What does all this mean for a consumer? In a nut shell, it is often a consumer who is manipulated to fit a product or service as a pose to a product or service being re-modelled to suit the consumer.
Nowhere is this ‘model’ of selling, or rather mis-selling more exemplified than in the timeshare industry. Whilst many timeshare owners have and do enjoy owning and making use of their timeshare investments, many other timeshare owners find themselves being sold or mis-sold timeshares which can all too often then seem impossible to exit or re-sell. The potential difficulties of exiting a timeshare are often so innumerable and complex that independent organisations such as The Citizens’’ Advice Bureau have gone as far as to create whole sections on their website dedicated to ‘Problems with Timeshares’ to try and answer some of the myriad of questions, queries and complaints they receive constantly from timeshare owners. Equally, story after story of individuals and families experiencing ‘timeshare woes’, often when attempting to re-sell a timeshare or exit a timeshare agreement,have hit the headlines in recent years, such as the story, ‘Hope for Timeshare Victims’ published via The Telegraph Newspaper last year.
Perhaps most disturbingly, exiting or re-selling a timeshare is only one of a long list of problems potentially facing those who have invested their money into timeshares. This sort of mis-selling has lead to thousands of timeshare owners who cannot even make use of their timeshare properties. Hence, timesharing can be a minefield, and carving a safe path through it can seem impossible, bewildering and at the very least extremely frustrating. Fortunately, avoiding potential injury is simply a matter of doing one’s research and accumulating the knowledge needed in order to carve a safe path – whether trying to sell an existing timeshare or find a means of benefitting from investing in or even renting a timeshare property. With that in mind, below is an infographic which has been put together by The Timeshare Consumer Association which attempts to dispel, explain and educate as to ten of the timeshare truths no salesman is likely to tell you: