Contrary to what many timeshare sales websites would like you to believe, you can sell a time share on your own, whether you own a timeshare week or points. Completing the timeshare sale process on your own will allow you to sell your timeshare for free, or almost free (depending on your level of knowledge). The key to successfully selling your timeshare property or time share points is marketing the time share resort property to the correct target market, and knowing what steps you need to take (and when you need to use a title company or escrow service) to make the timeshare deed transfer legal. There are three basic steps to consider when selling a timeshare property – marketing, negotiation, and transferring the deed. This article will outline steps to take to sell your timeshare without the assistance of a timeshare resale company.
1) Marketing – Advertise the timeshare for sale on sites like Bidshares, Ebay, Craigslist, and advertise in newspapers where potential buyers live. Free sites and exposure are best, and be weary of timeshare sites that offer to display your property for a fee. Do not overlook the power of word of mouth advertising through family, friends, and co-workers – this can often be a successful way to sell a timeshare property. Understand that it can take time for an interested party to find the timeshare you are offering for sale; you must be diligent with marketing and advertising the time share in order to generate leads. There are many more people out there trying to sell timeshare than there are people interesting in buying timeshare, and the present economic state does not make timeshare sales any easier. If after a few months you receive no leads, try reducing your price and adjusting other aspects of your marketing strategy. The most common mistake people make when trying to sell their own timeshare is pricing too high. Search for comparable timeshare properties to your own, and set the price at a competitive level, but do not be unrealistic. 99% of timeshares will be sold at a loss – if they were a good investment, we wouldn’t have so many people trying to get rid of them.
2) Negotiating – When you have found a buyer, you will need to negotiate the terms of sale including when the title will be transferred, the amount the timeshare is to be sold for, and to confirm exactly what the buyer will be getting after the time share sale is completed – if it is a deeded week what week(s) are included, and if it is a points timeshare, how many points are included. Do your research to ensure you are dealing with a legitimate person or business, and do not proceed with the sale if anything seems to be questionable. Auction sites like Ebay offer protection for sellers, but Craigslist does not. Be familiar with the sale process particular to the website the sale was facilitated through, and know your rights as a seller. If you are doing the negotiations on your own, you must be vigilant and informed to avoid a possible scam. As a general rule you should never accept payment in the form of funds being wired through Western Union, Moneygram, or another wire service. Also be aware that fake cashier checks and money orders are a common practice among scammers, and banks will hold you responsible for any fake checks/moneyorders cashed. It is unwise to release any financial information to an interested party without the involvement of a title company, escrow service, or lawyer. It is wise to proceed with the sale by using an escrow service, so that you know the transaction is guaranteed.
3) Transferring the Timeshare Deed or Timeshare Points - It is at this point you will need to enlist the services of a title company, preferably one that is licensed and bonded, to handle the closing for the timeshare. The title company will complete deed preparation, escrow of funds, the timeshare estoppel certificate (also known as report disclosure – outlines a timeshare’s status with your individual resort as pertains to back taxes, maintenance fees paid to date, and any outstanding charges or special assessments that may occur), closing statements and recording fees. If you have it in your budget, it is advisable to have a lawyer look over any changes that were made to the title and confirm their correctness; there are real estate lawyers specializing in timeshare that can be hired hourly for this purpose.