Even real estate experts are oftentimes confused by the timeshare industry.
In a recent interview with RealEstate360 radio, James Tarpey, a long-time real estate attorney and a veteran in the vacation ownership industr answers a central question surrounding timeshares: “What is this industry? Is it all a scam, or is it real?”
Tarpey responded, “Here’s the real deal: Timeshares are GREAT for the developers!”
“Larger players in industry Marriott and Wyndham posted record years. Timeshare sales are up, most likely because those who made it through recession are probably doing pretty well.
And timeshares can work great for owners, until it’s time to get out. Timeshares have all the obligations that come with real estate ownership. You’re the deeded owner, so you have all the financial obligations of upkeep on the property. This is why, as a timeshare owner you are also a member of an HOA and pay maintenance fees. And maintenance fees have been steadily on the rise.”
If you know you want to get out of your timeshare, there is no time like the present. The industry is fickle and a timeshare we accept into our program today may not be eligible a month from now.
Tarpey has been practicing real estate law for the past 15 years, focusing solely on vacation ownership for more than a decade. He founded Donate for a Cause as an alternative to the resale market after he saw firsthand the hardships that timeshare owners often have when trying to divest of their vacation properties.
Do you feel stuck in a timeshare you no longer want, or have use for? Timeshare divestment can seem like nothing but trouble when you hear about the timeshare industry in the news. In just the last month no less than 4 criminal outfits have been convicted of timeshare resale fraud, bilking consumers out of more than 20 million dollars!
DFC continues to be a bright spot in an otherwise shady world of timeshare divestment.
So you bought a timeshare on a whim and now, years later, you want to get rid of it? FOX 4 Problem Solver Linda Wagar explains how dumping a timeshare can lead you into a minefield of potential scams and checks out a new way of unloading that vacation property without getting taken to the cleaners – by donating your timeshare with our organization.
You can watch the video here:
If you haven’t already contacted one of our agents, call today, 1-877-822-2873. They can provide valuable information on the service we provide and recommend the best course of action for you if you are serious about getting rid of your timeshare.
We know your time is valuable, that’s why we created a brief webinar that explains timeshare donation and the benefits you’ll receive when you choose to divest of your timeshare with us: http://bit.ly/MI3i22
Or check out our FAQ page where we answer the most commonly asked questions about timeshare donation: http://bit.ly/Q5JNav
As giving season approaches, you may be wondering where to send your charitable dollars. Do you support your local soup kitchen or a colleague racing for the cure in Cleveland? Do you collect books to send overseas or make a donation in someone’s name as a gift? The options are endless and substantial, with many worthy of your hard-earned dime. If you’ve narrowed it down to preserving nature’s threatened wildlife, here are three causes to consider:
National Wildlife Federation
The National Wildlife Federation is designed to work with hunters, gardeners, scientists and families to preserve America’s wildlife for future generations. Devoted to improving federal and state policies with millions of acres of wildlife conservation in mind, NWF is partnered with nonprofit organizations in nearly every state. The federation focuses on protecting wildlife and helping habitats, but also strives to connect kids with nature. Its programs feature activities aimed to inspire kids to explore outdoors, help wildlife and actively contribute to nature awareness in their community.
One-third of U.S. species are at increased risk of extinction, and many already listed as threatened or endangered.
Defend and strengthen the Endangered Species Act, advocate for increased funding and hold federal agencies accountable.
How You Can Help:
Adopt an animal, remember NWF in your will, connect on social media.
African Wildlife Foundation
Started in the 60s as the African Wildlife Leadership Foundation, AWF has seen much growth and success in the last 50 years. Together with the people of Africa, the foundation’s mission is to “ensure the wildlife and wild lands of Africa will endure forever.” AWF has designated priority landscapes in areas across the continent, including in countries such as Namibia, Rwanda, Kenya, Mozambique, Uganda and Zimbabwe. More than just a group of environmentalists, the foundation marks its way with scientists, lawyers and policymakers who work with regional governments to tackle localized issues. In particular, AWF assists elephant populations, which are native to 37 African countries. With a current ‘vulnerable’ conservation status, the elephant population is at approximately 470,000.
Elephant ivory is coveted by humans, and reproduction rates can’t sustain the population at current poaching rates.
Give elephants more room to roam, while educating and training the community to care for elephants.
How You Can Help:
Donate, become a member, or simply spread the word
World Land Trust
With projects in Mexico, Chile, the United Kingdom, India and Vietnam, World Land Trust is committed to saving threatened habitats worldwide. The organization works with regional partners to empower local non-government organizations to operate and succeed on their own. This includes supporting local expertise development while encouraging sustainable development, no matter how small the scale. To be successful on all fronts, World Land Trust aims to help projects and the people who start them become financially independent.
The rare caucasian leopard, documented in Armenia in early 2013, is threatened by uncontrolled hunting and destruction of natural habitat.
Increase research and monitoring, enforce efforts to eliminate illegal hunting, and raise awareness.
How You Can Help:
Donate, buy an acre, plant a tree, fundraise in your school or community.
BOZEMAN, MT–(Marketwired – November 18, 2013) – The nation’s top timeshare donation charity just granted $75,000 for disaster relief in the Philippines.
Donate for a Cause gave $25,000 each to Feed the Children, UNICEF and Doctors without Borders for their humanitarian efforts in the Philippines after a Typhoon devastated the country, killing more than 2,360 people and injuring more than 3,850 as of last count. “In light of this recent tragedy, we wanted to extend financial assistance to charities helping out in that region,” said Virginia Babcock, president of Donate for a Cause.
“The current situation in the Philippines is devastating, and UNICEF is working around the clock to help children and families affected by Typhoon Haiyan,” said Leslie Goldman, Vice President of Program and Community Engagement for the U.S. Fund for UNICEF. “Donations from our partners are critical in supporting our efforts to provide relief in the Philippines, as well as to save children’s lives around the world.”
As featured on NBC’s Today show, Donate for a Cause takes unwanted timeshares on donation, converts them to cash and gives the proceeds to other non-profit organizations. These include some of the nation’s best-loved causes in the country, charities like American Cancer Society and National Foundation for Cancer Research. At the same time, Donate for a Cause gives timeshare owners a tax receipt, worth up to $6,000.
While UNICEF and Doctors without Borders are first-time recipients of grant money from Donate for a Cause, Feed the Children is an established partner and has received more than $70,000 from DFC in the past. Last year Donate for a Cause gave about $400,000 in grants to their partner charities and other non-profits. This year they are expecting to give more than $500,000 in grants by the end of 2013.
“We’ve seen significant growth in donations in the last three years allowing us to make a larger impact in national charities,” Babcock says. “It’s nice to be able to help out when disasters like this strike.”
The options can be overwhelming when you are looking for a charity to support. According the World Giving Index the USA is the most charitable nation on earth; in the USA there are over 1.5 million registered charities. With so many worthy causes looking for donors how do you decide which charities warrant your support?
The amount you give won’t matter unless you make sure your money gets to the right place. Besides avoiding the fake charities out there, there are many legitimate charities you may want to avoid because they are wasteful or ineffective with their funding. It’s worth doing a little research to make sure your hard-earned dollars are put to good use and you make a donation that truly benefits a cause you believe in.
How do I find the right charity for me?
Start by identifying some of the causes you’d like to support, say blindness, education, or wildlife preservation. You can use websites like GreatNonprofits.org, myPhilanthropedia (a division of GuideStar), GuideStar.org, GiveWell.org, and Charity Navigator. Take a look at a charity’s mission. Does it inspire you? Does it speak to your core values? Or perhaps a cause is close to your heart. Maybe your mother battled lung cancer or your nephew suffers from autism, then you are naturally more compelled to contribute to a cause you have personal experience with.
Once you’ve narrowed your selection review the charity’s financial reports to be sure they’re administering their donations effectively. Charities should be upfront about how donated money is spent and be able to provide you with an IRS form 990 that describes the charity’s finances. A legitimate charity will make these s financial reports available either via request or a listing on their website. Find out what it takes a charity to raise one dollar. If it’s over sixty-cents, you should dig a little deeper and find out why. If a charity is in a start-up phase they may be spending more outright on marketing costs to get their name out. An established charity should be able to demonstrate lower numbers and better financial efficiency.
The following sites can help you research potential charities:
GuideStar.com gathers and disseminates information about every single IRS-registered nonprofit organization. They provide a wealth of information from a non-profit’s mission, to their governance, and so much more. GuideStar awards seals of approval to those charities that meet their criteria for transparency and accountability.
Charity Navigator, is a free service that analyzes and evaluates over 5,000 charities in the United States. But you probably won’t find an analysis of smaller, local charities on this site. Charity Navigator only reviews those charities that have over 1 million in earnings.
Charity Navigator enables you to search charities by name or by cause, such as childhood hunger or cancer. By grading the charities they list you can easily see if an organization you are interested receives top-ratings for transparency and fiscal responsibility.
Your Cause, Your Choice. You get to decide how you give.
Giving really comes down to a matter of trust. You want to give your money to a charity you can trust. Giving can be an incredibly rewarding addition to your life and these 5 simple steps can help you make a choice you can trust and support an organization that helps make our communities better places to live.
If you are a timeshare owner caught between the decision to keep your timeshare or donate your property to charity here are few important points you’ll need to consider. The pros and cons of timeshare divestment really come down to this: who can you trust to successfully divest you of your timeshare liabilities for the best price?
Here’s what you’ll want to consider
Pros: By choosing Donate for a Cause to handle your timeshare donation you’ll enjoy our professional, fast, and streamlined transfer process. If your property is eligible for the program then you are guaranteed the successful transfer of the timeshare out of your name. Timeshare donation offers a generous tax-deduction and you will have the satisfaction of knowing you helped your favorite charity.
Cons: None that we know of! Our 10 years of experience and thousands of satisfied customers makes us confident that this is the best exit option for owners 99% of the time.
Or you can choose a rescue companies to divest of your timeshare. Rescue companies must be carefully vetted. When you do find a legitimate transfer company be prepared to pay a large fee, typically upwards of 4K . Don’t forget: you get zero tax benefit when you dump your timeshare.
Your final option is signing up with a timeshare listings service. These companies advertise your timeshare on their website for a fee for which they agree to promote your timeshare and generate leads. But watch out for high listing fees and little results. There are more sellers than buyers so getting an offer on your timeshare could prove nearly impossible.
The timeshare resale market can be a scary place for people looking to get rid of their unwanted properties. It’s so corrupt that the BBB ranked timeshare resale scams as one of the top ten scams in the country. That’s why all of us at Donate for a Cause always do everything we can to prove our honesty, integrity and reliability.
Our commitment to transparency has not gone unnoticed. GuideStar awarded us with their official seal of approval this week. If you’re not familiar with GuideStar they are the leading source of information on U.S. nonprofits. Think: the Better Business Bureau of the nonprofit world.
We earned their endorsement after we submitted our last three years of our 990 forms, the IRS financial statements that prove the charitable work we’ve been doing.
“Guide Star is the primary source that donors look to for guidance when making a charitable gift,” says Fred Peck,” an independent consultant who helps nonprofit organizations become more effective; as well as the Chief Financial Officer of Spokane Housing Ventures. “It gives potential donors a whole new level of confidence in Donate for a Cause.”
We’re also very proud and excited that one of our donors left a positive comment on the GuideStar site and gave us a five star rating! If you’ve donated a timeshare yourself through us, we would love it if you too would support us by leaving a five star rating and comment on the GuideStar site as well.
Donating a timeshare to charity has been a top choice for many timeshare owners in 2012; who not only got rid of their timeshare, but made a valuable contribution to the charity of their choice as well. As the end of the year approaches we would like to take a moment to reflect on the impact that Donate for a Cause has had this year.
This year alone we have helped 2841 unsatisfied timeshare owners out of their timeshares! That’s 2841 people that are no longer beholden to increasing maintenance fees, special assessments and possible scams associated with their timeshares.
But the impact only begins there. Thanks to the generosity of donors, we have helped raise almost $300,000 for charities just this year! Think of all the people and animals all over the world that are benefiting from that money!
We at Donate for a Cause would like to thank each and every timeshare owner who has chosen to donate their timeshares to a good cause. Without their generosity we would not be able to support wonderful charities such as the American Cancer Society, Feed the Children, Alzheimer’s Association, National Wildlife Federation, and many more.
Please click here to view a thank you letter from St. Jude’s Children Hospital.
We are so proud to be a part of something so BIG! Please consider donating your timeshare as a way to give to those in need this holiday season. You will be rid of your timeshare once and for all, get a generous tax-deduction and help support your favorite charity- all at the same time! It’s a win-win-win!
Click here to see a list of some of the wonderful charities we support
Donating your timeshare to charity has never been easier. Contact us today if you are interested in divesting of your timeshare in 2013.
CBS 5 AZ Consumer reporter Dave Cherry gets asked all the time, “How do I get out of my
unwanted timeshare?” Cherry investigates to find the best option for getting rid of your
In the news piece, Cherry interviews Clark Rowley from the ARDA, who warns of unethical
listing companies who charge upfront fees to sell your timeshare. Rowley warns to never use
a company that charges fees upfront because they will have no incentive to sell your timeshare.
They will take your money and you will be left with your timeshare.
One such victim was longtime timeshare owner Kay McDermott. Like many timeshare owners,
McDermott had been paying for years on a timeshare that she never used and didn’t want. After
28 years of throwing her money away, Kay was more than ready to get rid of her timeshare. She
tried two times unsuccessfully to get rid of her timeshare using scam listing companies. She
finally found Donate for a Cause and is now very happy and relieved to be free of her timeshare
Donate for a Cause has done more than 40,000 closings in the last 10 years and more than 100 in
Arizona just this year. If you donate your unwanted timeshare, you get the full Fair Market Value
as a deduction on your taxes. In some cases, you won’t pay anything. Call today to see if your
timeshare qualifies 1-877-822-2873.
Deborah McNaughton, a Brea credit expert, financial coach and author of “The Essential Credit Repair Handbook,” responds to a woman who is looking for help with a timeshare she can no longer afford.
The woman bought a timeshare in 2009 and was later laid off from her job. For the past 2 years she has struggled to pay bills and has gotten behind on her timeshare payments. She is afraid to just stop paying altogether because she knows that it will negatively affect her credit.
Deborah writes back with several options and things to consider:
First, try to sell the timeshare using a timeshare broker. However it may take a long time or may not ever sell, plus you have to pay broker fees.
You could also try offering it to a friend or relative, but this too has pitfalls. Not only would you have to find someone to take on this liability but you would have to make sure the creditor and resort both agree to change ownership.
Another option, if you want to keep the timeshare but can’t afford the payments, is to consider consolidating the timeshare and your home mortgage together through a refinance. However, this is not recommended if you are only 2-3 years from paying off the timeshare all together because then you are just extending the mortgage.
Deborah then suggests using Donate for a Cause. She points out that not only does donation offer generous tax savings, it also helps consumers avoid the pitfalls of selling their timeshare: telemarketing fraud, identity theft, wire fraud, with new scams to defraud seller’s of their money popping up everyday.