The Ripoff Alert is a new series appearing once each week on Fridays. It alerts you to the latest scams and ripoffs trying to get between you and your money, and gives you information you need to stay safe.
USA Today reports that law enforcement is beginning to crack down on timeshare fraud. According to the article, scam artists are demanding up to $2,000 for the promise to sell your unwanted timeshare. More people are trying to unload their timeshares because of high loan payments and maintenance fees.
What you need to know is that the timeshare market is nonexistent. Anyone who charges a fee and promises to sell your timeshare is just trying to rip you off.
There are sellers out there trying to unload their timeshares for $1, but no buyers are lining up. If you own a timeshare, the best thing you can do right now is use your week every year. Look at it as a forced vacation and a time to get away once a year.
I recently bought a window air conditioner on Craigslist. I emailed the seller, stopped by to look at it, paid cash, and drove off with my AC. We’ve had it installed a few days now and it keeps us quite cool. My overall experience was very positive.
This isn’t always the case though. Because it’s free to list items for sale on Craigslist, it’s also a hotbed for criminal activity. There are a few rules to follow if you’re considering buying or selling anything on Craigslist. You can find these on their main webpage under the “avoid scams & fraud” link. The biggest rule of all, which they highlight in yellow, in bold and all caps, is “DEAL LOCALLY WITH FOLKS YOU CAN MEET IN PERSON - follow this one rule and avoid 99% of scam attempts on craigslist.”
It really is true. Thinking back to every transaction I’ve made on Craigslist, the best experiences I’ve had are when I’ve dealt with people I could meet in person. Always follow this simple rule when buying or selling on Craigslist.