Orlando, FL (May 10, 2013) — Orlando-based Timeshare Closing Services, Inc., along with Sell My Timeshare NOW, applaud Florida lawmakers on the passage of Florida House Bill 7025, which –– along with other provisions –– limits controversial timeshare resale strategies known as “Viking Ships.”
“Previously, timeshare owners who were unable to sell their vacation time would pay transfer companies to take over their ownership,” said Scott Roberts, CEO of Timeshare Closing Services, Inc. “But some transfer companies would knowingly take the timeshare with no intention of advertising it for resale, renting it, paying a single maintenance fee, or returning it to the association. They would simply transfer ownership to entities commonly referred to as “Viking ships.” Associations without a strong resale strategy, such as a partnership with SellMyTimeshareNOW.com were left with limited options on what to do with this non-performing timeshare interval. This legislation attempts to address these bad actors without limiting owners’ rights in their property or harming legitimate transfers, such as those done by Timeshare Closing Services,” said Roberts.
In addition to Florida State Senator Kelli Stargel (R-Lakeland), Representatives Debbie Mayfield (R-Vero Beach) and Dane Eagle (R-Cape Coral) the American Resort Development Association was instrumental in the passage of the new legislation, which attempts to represent and to protect both the timeshare resale industry and timeshare owners. The new legislation is scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2013.
Timeshare Closing Services was one of the main critics of the legislation before it was finalized. As initially proposed, the legislation would negatively impact the timeshare secondary market and increase the cost for timeshare owners to resell their units or points. This prompted meetings with executives from ARDA, Timeshare Closing Services and Sell My Timeshare NOW who met earlier this year to strategize and share their concern over the legislation in its early stages. (About one third of all U.S. timeshare resorts are located in Florida, which has frequently taken the lead in legislation protecting the timeshare industry.)
Adds Roberts, “The sponsors of the new legislation wisely balanced the needs of timeshare developers along with those of consumers. A timeshare resale market that respects owners’ property rights is critical to the health of the timeshare industry. At Timeshare Closing Services, we are committed to ensuring that lawmakers hear the voices of timeshare owners. In addition to our appreciation to the legislators who helped move the bill forward, we also extend our deep appreciation to ARDA for its willingness to work with us and bring about an acceptable compromise, resulting in the legislation that passed in Florida on May 3. Few pieces of legislation are perfect but this is a good start to helping balance the interests of association management and timeshare owners looking for a viable secondary market.”
About Timeshare Closing Services, Inc.
For over a decade, Timeshare Closing Services, Inc. has specialized in facilitating timeshare transfers of even the most challenging properties. Timeshare Closing Services, Inc., is a full-service title insurance company that is licensed, bonded, underwritten and insured.