I got a phone call from out of the blue on April 26, 2013 from a man in St. Louis who said he was contacted by a Michael Bresnan and Keith Anders, supposedly from “Quality Timeshare Closings”, and they presented him with an offer for his timeshare at the mystic Dunes for $20,000.00 but the catch was they needed the closing costs paid up-front to seal the deal, $495.00 via Green Dot Money Pack. This gentleman had already paid way to much $ to advertise his unit for sale on a “Timeshare Solution” website, which is probably how they found him, and were able to contact directly (his phone # was on the ad of course). This gentleman was smart in that he CALLED OUR OFFICE before sending the funds. I explained a) we do not present offers from timeshare Buyers, b) We do not charge Sellers up-front for the closing costs, and c) no one is going to pay $20,000 for a timeshare that folks are advertising on the internet for close to nothing. We spoke later in the week and the crooks actually called him while I was on the line, on his other phone, so he put them on speaker and I could hear their voices, very creepy, once they knew he was not falling for it, they promptly hung up and blocked his number. They had phone numbers with the same area code as I do, 417-942-2147 and 417-942-1608. When these numbers are called, there is a lot of static, then a tone but no message, no answer. After they have the Green Dot code, they stop answering return phone calls from the victim.
Later that night, after my business hours, I got a voicemail from a lady who had already given them a green dot authorization number for $495.00, up-front closing costs to sell her Wyndham Waikiki Beachwalk for $20,000, and I had to call her back the next morning to tell her she was the victim of a scam. Same 2 guys, same phone #, they referred her to tour website, she said we looked great, so she believed it was the real deal. They pressured her to hurry with the funds “so the Buyer does not move on to another property. It’s an impulse buy” She had recently undergone back surgery, was not working, and desperately needed funds of course. Now she is simply out $500.00. I suggested that she complain to GreenDot, but their website makes it very clear that you should not give the authorization code to anyone you do not know personally. It also warns about scams. Now our website listing warn as well, front and center.
On 4/29/13 I had one more call from another gentleman they were attempting to scam, and he got the truth soon enough not to have parted with any funds. This was a Los Abrigados timeshare, and they offered him $17,900.00 saying “I have to take these Buyers out to lunch so hurry up and send the funds”. Same song and dance. The phone numbers they were using were local again, 417-942- . I had a few hundred of my Facebook friends call to say hello, but all you got was static and a weak message beep, probably out of the country.
Sellers, do not EVER pay ANYONE up-front money to sell your timeshare! It is completely unnecessary. A legitimate licensed real estate broker will advertise your unit for no up-front cost. Yes, you will be paying a sales commission AT CLOSING, deducted from your sales proceeds. And yes, the timeshare will sell for pennies on the dollar, but you will be getting out from under the annual maintenance fees. We charge BUYERS for closing costs, and require that they put a deposit into escrow to OPEN the transaction, NOT SELLERS. I hope more timeshare owners will get educated on these matters so they do not continue to be victimized.