latest sales tactic

Started by ipswichboy, September 02, 2010, 14:42:32

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ipswichboy

we are currently on holiday in fuengirola and were duped into attending a presentation at the matchroom resort. to cut a long story short we signed up for a 3 year introductory offer for a timeshare and paid a deposit of 750 by credit card. having since had an opportunity to read up on the internet we are now extremely concerned that the information given by sales staff is not wholly true. this includes statements that membership fees will be refunded in full upon termination of membership and additional holiday weeks can be purchased for between 85 and 350. has anyone been in the same situation and managed to get their deposit refunded? a free holiday was also offered as part of the promotion and we believe that this may also be fraudulent.


bagpusslilac

Hi

we were swindled into the same situation 6 weeks ago whilst on holiday. We paid a deposit of 2500 with a further 10,000 due on our return. like you we looked into heritage on return and tried to cancel arguing that we were misold and lied to, we have taken advice from solicitors, CAB, our credit card company etc, etc and to be honest there is nothing you can do. we held off paying the balance and have had threatening calls on a daily basis from Norman threatening us with court action and debt collectors. we wrote to heritage asking whether this was the situation thinking it may just be a bluff and part of their intensive and confusing sales process. heritage responded to us straight away saying that cancellation is not an option in any circumstances and that we are not covered by any timeshare legislation, we have signed into a binding agreement and debt collectors will be contacting us to collect the balance payment. They have however offered us a cheaper agreement which unfortunately we have agreed to and paid them a further 6000 only today. We just intend to try and sell it as soon as we can which wont be as easy as they made out!! once sold we intend to expose them to as many people as we can for the fraudsters they are. Hope this helps and e mail me if you want any further support.


best wishes and good luck

Willself

bagpusslilac.
Sorry to read about your misfortune, unfortunately it will be impossible to sell it, period. If yours is a 3 year deal, it seems very very expensive..Eight and a Half
Thousand=8,500.00..May i ask? what you are supposed to get for that??Thankyou.

deaver1

Hello

We were in exactly the same situation as you. We signed up for the 35 month trial timeshare which is designed to avoid timeshare legislation. As you have we became increasingly alarmed at what we read regarding their reputation.

The only way you can get your money back is by cancelling in writing within 10 days via recorded delivery and then contacting your credit card who under there voluntary code (visa or mastercard) can claw back the deposit for you. ALthough we did cancel within 10 days we did not ask our credit card to claw back the money as we felt that this may atangonise them into purusing the full balance and because we did not want it hanging over us treated as an expensive lesson.

Also We did this as if you look at the back of your contract one of clauses if you do not pay the full balance by the required date your forfeit your deposit. Initially we did have a number of phone calls which we ignored and we reccomend that you do the same. DO NOT PAY THE REMAINING BALANCE, we have not heard from them since a considerable amount of time has passed. Obviously it is quite painful to lose the deposit but it is not as bad as losing 1000s on what quite clearly is a duff product.

Hope this helps

ipswichboy

Thanks all, and particularly deaver.

I have spent a good part of my day on the internet and have managed to find similar advice. I will be drafting my letters this evening and will let you know how I get on.


quote:
Originally posted by deaver1

Hello

We were in exactly the same situation as you. We signed up for the 35 month trial timeshare which is designed to avoid timeshare legislation. As you have we became increasingly alarmed at what we read regarding their reputation.

The only way you can get your money back is by cancelling in writing within 10 days via recorded delivery and then contacting your credit card who under there voluntary code (visa or mastercard) can claw back the deposit for you. ALthough we did cancel within 10 days we did not ask our credit card to claw back the money as we felt that this may atangonise them into purusing the full balance and because we did not want it hanging over us treated as an expensive lesson.

Also We did this as if you look at the back of your contract one of clauses if you do not pay the full balance by the required date your forfeit your deposit. Initially we did have a number of phone calls which we ignored and we reccomend that you do the same. DO NOT PAY THE REMAINING BALANCE, we have not heard from them since a considerable amount of time has passed. Obviously it is quite painful to lose the deposit but it is not as bad as losing 1000s on what quite clearly is a duff product.

Hope this helps


ipswichboy

For anyone interested i found information at www.timeshareassociation.org, a very helpful website.

bagpusslilac

Hi deaver1

thanks for this info. we are perhaps in a more difficult position, we did not ask to cancel until day 14 and we did so via e mail and have a record of all communication. Our contract was not time fixed was for life and they promoted it as something we could pass to our children.
can i ask did they verbally threaten you with debt collectors? also we have it in a written e mail that they will chase us with debt collection, do you think they are just bluffing?
luckily i havent posted the deposit today, thought i would wait till i got some replies which is handy.

what do you advise i do next?

many thanks and i look forward to hearing from you.

bagpusslilac

Hi deaver

also forgot to ask, when was your experience? was it some time ago? also, how much did you pay for a trial period as we were never offered a trial period? if push comes shove we could possibly ask them to consider changing to a trial period??

Willself

bagpusslilac.
Yes if they would allow you to have a trial period, well  at least you would enjoy some holiday-time..Trust this proves the successful out-come!!Good Luck!!

arkwright

quote:
Originally posted by bagpusslilac

Hi deaver1

thanks for this info. we are perhaps in a more difficult position, we did not ask to cancel until day 14 and we did so via e mail and have a record of all communication. Our contract was not time fixed was for life and they promoted it as something we could pass to our children. can i ask did they verbally threaten you with debt collectors? also we have it in a written e mail that they will chase us with debt collection, do you think they are just bluffing?
luckily i havent posted the deposit today, thought i would wait till i got some replies which is handy.

what do you advise i do next?

many thanks and i look forward to hearing from you.




Hi bagpusslilac,

If your contract is for life, then it should be covered by timeshare legislation unless I'm missing something here. If so then the following extract from the UK Timeshare Act 1992 should apply:

Summary:

1.     Timeshare Act 1992 ("TA92")  only applies to a sale:

conducted in the British Isles
OR of timeshare accomodation in the British Isles
OR to a UK citizen where the accomodation is in an EEA country
2     TA92 applies to the purchase of intermittent rights of occupancy of holiday accommodation - "timeshare" - for a period of   three years or more. It does not apply when the period of use is under three years.
3     TA92 only applies to buildings and caravans but it  may  apply to  timeshare in boats  see here.

4    TA92  only applies  where the seller is in business and the buyer is a private individual.    It does not apply to sales between private individuals. TA92 does  apply to resellers acting "in the course of business".

5     TA92 requires the seller to:-

clearly   disclose (the exact form is prescrobed by TA92 - see here) to  the buyer  that they have  a minimum of 14 days "cooling-off" period during which the buyer can cancel the agreement without any loss or without giving any reason. Day one is the date on which the agreement is signed by both parties;   day 14 is the last date for posting a cancellation.
Failure to provide this notice allows the buyer to cancel at any time in the future.
provide similar cancellation  rights  in respect of a related credit agreement including  the automatic cancellation of a credit agreement if the purchase agrement is cancelled as above..
not to require any payment by the buyer during the cooling off period.   Any payment by the buyer during the cooling-off period is absolutely banned.
Breach of this requirement is a criminal offence which can be actioned by the relevant Trading Standards officer.
provide the buyer with:-
a notice stating the rights of cancellation including the address to which a cancellation notice should be sent [S2]
a blank cancellation notice [S4]
If either of these forms is not provided then the buyer may cancel the agreement at any time in the future
As from 31 October 2003 the right to cancel should be clearly stated  on the purchase agreement close to where the buyer signs. This should refer the buyer to the document where full details of the right to cancel are explained.
and, if a credit agreement is involved, similar notices for the credit agreement [S3 and S4]
specific detailed information about the timeshare purchase [S1A  and Schedule 1] typically:-
description of the accommodation
the principles on which maintenance etc. of the complex is arranged
the services available and the conditions of their use
if the offeror fails to provide any of the information listed above then the cooling-off period is extended to 3 months and 10 days


Read the full text here:

http://www.timeshare.org.uk/ta92.html

brain research tells us that only twenty percent of human beings have a sense of irony, which means that eighty percent of the world takes everything at face value.

deaver1

quote:
Originally posted by bagpusslilac

Hi deaver1

thanks for this info. we are perhaps in a more difficult position, we did not ask to cancel until day 14 and we did so via e mail and have a record of all communication. Our contract was not time fixed was for life and they promoted it as something we could pass to our children.
can i ask did they verbally threaten you with debt collectors? also we have it in a written e mail that they will chase us with debt collection, do you think they are just bluffing?
luckily i havent posted the deposit today, thought i would wait till i got some replies which is handy.

what do you advise i do next?

many thanks and i look forward to hearing from you.




Once they had received the cancellation letter they did not threaten us with dca's or court action. The last conversation we had we asked them not to contact us again and we are months later and we havent heard anything off them. I put this down to us not putting a claim in for our deposit and the fact that they are based in Spain, and contrary to their claims, they have no UK based admin (apparantly they have two hotels in the UK) . Also i have learned that the their 'juristiction for disputes' is the Bahamas so i presuming that any court action they take in th UK would be prove costly to them and not really worth the bother.

As regards the product you have bought, as Arkwright has posted you appear to be covered by the timeshare act of 1992. We found the website that Arkwright linked extremely useful. I believe the website also links solicitors who will be able to help you get your money back.

Definately dont change to a trial period as this does not offer the same protection and do not give them another penny as their reputation speaks for itself.



Hope this helps. good luck[:)]




bagpusslilac

Hi Ipswitchboy

just wondered how you are getting on? i assume you are back from spain now@ are you having hassle from heritage via phone?
We are still being persued by them for our balance payment but are refusing all calls, will let you know how it progresses as we are a couple of weeks ahead of you!
cheers

toml

We too were duped a couple of years ago, they chased us but we never paid any more. They usually call the deposit a non returnable administration fee!!!!!

bagpusslilac

Hi Tom1

thanks for this, interesting. Did they threaten you with debt collectors? We are at that stage now so have blocked all calls from them but they are e mailing us the same. Do you advise we just ignore them?
thanks

toml

Bagpusslilac
We also had a Norman calling and evevtually said we could not go through with the deal. If I remember correctly we cancelled withina day of arriving home and within the time limit but were advised we would not get our"deposit" back. I remember one timeshare resort telling us that it was very rare anyone was pursued by debt collectors- not good publicity

ipswichboy

quote:
Originally posted by bagpusslilac

Hi Ipswitchboy

just wondered how you are getting on? i assume you are back from spain now@ are you having hassle from heritage via phone?
We are still being persued by them for our balance payment but are refusing all calls, will let you know how it progresses as we are a couple of weeks ahead of you!
cheers



Hi bagpuss,

we've written to cancel the agreement. We have subsequently had a number of phone calls while out at work but no messages have been left and we haven't received any emails or correspondence. We have also written to the credit card company to try to get the deposit refunded. I'll let you know when i get any further news.

Cheers.

DupedAgain

If you have problems getting your money back and have paid a deposit using a Credit card use Section 74 of the consumer credit act to reclaim it from your credit card company (See Martin Lewis's web site for a template and details of how to do this). It is illegal to take a deposit for a timeshare before the cooling off period is up and as long as your letter cancelling it is franked with a date before the end of the cooling off period the contract is void (email is unlikely to stand up in Court). Dont send anymore money or deeds to transfer if you do the Court assumes you intended to go ahead with the deal even if you were not told of the cooling off period.

The credit card company will at some stage come back to you and say the vendor rejects your claim do you still want to proceed? Say Yes. This is just them trying to get out of paying you.

ipswichboy

quote:
Originally posted by DupedAgain

If you have problems getting your money back and have paid a deposit using a Credit card use Section 74 of the consumer credit act to reclaim it from your credit card company (See Martin Lewis's web site for a template and details of how to do this). It is illegal to take a deposit for a timeshare before the cooling off period is up and as long as your letter cancelling it is franked with a date before the end of the cooling off period the contract is void (email is unlikely to stand up in Court). Dont send anymore money or deeds to transfer if you do the Court assumes you intended to go ahead with the deal even if you were not told of the cooling off period.

The credit card company will at some stage come back to you and say the vendor rejects your claim do you still want to proceed? Say Yes. This is just them trying to get out of paying you.



Hi Dupe, can you post a link up? Does this apply to timeshare and holiday club agreements (i.e. does it include agreements less than 3 years in duration)?

chris34

There is no cooling off period on agreements less than 3 years. Therefore they can take a deposit or payment in full immediately.

ipswichboy

Does anyone know where I can get more details on the Visa/ Mastercard claw back? It's referred to quite a lot but I can't find any more information and would like to be able to quote the actual document/ clause.

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