September 26, 2014 — The Dave I’m referring to is a financial author and radio talk show host who has been sharing his perspectives on his radio program and via other media outlets for around 20 years. It seems his main ‘thing’ is chatting about financial matters but for whatever reason(s) he also rants strongly, often in error, about our industry including the professionals who do the heavy lifting and bear the responsibility for bringing it all together and making the sales.
So Here’s The Scoop: Dave, like anyone, is entitled to his tirades but I’m fed up with his spewing out utter BS and outright lies as published on his website, like this: “Timeshares are one of the biggest scams on the market today”.
Do say, Dave. Timeshare is a fully regulated industry governed by extensive statutes in nearly every U.S. State, the Provinces of Canada, and the laws in Mexico, Europe and Australia, etc.; so what Dave is also suggesting, IMO, is that all those government bodies have conspired and passed legislation to enable “the biggest scams on the market”.
Ramsey is also telling his audience that highly regarded publicly held corporations listed on stock exchanges and governed, in part, by the SEC (Security Exchange Commission) – including some of the big, widely respected, household-name hotel ‘Brands’ – are involved in perpetrating “the biggest scams on the market”.
Which I suppose includes the dastardly Mouse, one of the icons associated with Disney Vacation Club (DVC) which, I believe, is a vacation timeshare division owned and operated by Disney Vacation Development, Inc., a subsidiary of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts and a unit of The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS).
Dave also warns his audience: “The first word that should come to your head when you hear the word timeshares should be RUN! Run far, far away! If you run fast enough, you can eventually escape that annoying, high-pressure salesperson!”
Ramsey asserts our industry has “high-pressure” sales reps. Gee, I noticed on his website that he seems to be making lots of money from his advertising clients such as mortgage companies, insurance firms, head-hunters, home improvement products/services corporations, real estate and legal services, etc.
I’m sure there are no “high-pressure” sales tactics used within those sales-driven entities (roll eyes), but the reality behind “high-pressure” in our business and with few exceptions comes not from the sales reps but mostly from the sales guests (prospects) who see, feel, touch and learn about something they ultimately want, often need and would surely use, but can’t afford.
And that is where the so called “pressure” originates: Lack of affordability.
They (aka: consumers) desire the vacation lifestyle, security and comfort, etc. our industry provides millions of vacationers – and who wouldn’t? But in the majority of cases once they see the price the “pressure” begins then and there and in their own little minds when they start lying to their sales representatives.
And they often do so because instead of being honest and explaining their financial concerns, conditions, needs or situations etc. with the developers representative(s) they instead start with a plethora of
excuses reasons why they can’t be an owner/member.
Those include but are not limited to
- they have or may have a grave illness
- they are losing their job next week/month
- they need to pray on it
- they need to think about it
- they must speak with their relatives and friends and get their opinions
- they never make a quick decision
—and all the other standard dodges sales professionals (in all industries) are only too familiar with when dealing with consumers.
Dave also advises: “Timeshares are awful! No! They have a 97% dissatisfaction rate among consumers. That means 97 people out of 100 who buy timeshares hate them. Besides that, why would you want to go on vacation in the exact same place every single time? Boring! No.”
OMG! Ramsey doesn’t know anything about our industry let alone the fact that there are millions of families who outright own a vacation (2nd) home for the very purpose “to go on vacation in the exact same place every year”; and do so for generations in places like (e.g.) Vail, Co, Lake Tahoe, Ca, Las Vegas, NV or San Diego, Ca, etc.
And that is true of some timeshare owners/members who don’t want to invest a lot of money for a vacation (2nd) home including the annual maintenance costs. Instead, they own a timeshare in (e.g.) Puerto Vallarta and usually vacation there every year.
But for millions of other timeshare owners/members they instead travel the world – from (e.g.) Key West, Fl to the Hawaiian Islands and just about everywhere else on planet Earth in over 100 countries where they can vacation in wonderful accommodations almost anytime – anywhere – they so desire.
As for Dave stating “97 people out of 100 who buy timeshare hate them”, that’s another ‘stretch’, to put it kindly, because going back DECADES scores of thousands and thousands of timeshare owners/members have been polled and on average a resounding 80-90% of them – in every poll – all report being satisfied or very satisfied with their vacation ownership programs – aka: Timeshares.
All of this leaves me to wonder that since Dave can be that wrong dispensing his timeshare advice, insights and wisdom, then how wrong is he about his other opinions regarding financial matters etc.?
I don’t know the answer to that question, but I’m suspecting he once owned a timeshare many moons ago, maybe before he started making the big bucks and could afford to rent expensive, superior, upscale and first-class vacation accommodations comparable to what our industry conceived, created and began developing 50 years ago.
An industry designed to turn a profit to be sure, but also to bring a needed vacation product and service to the traveling masses so that they could enjoy wonderful vacations and lifestyle with their loved ones and do so without the income requirements of someone like Dave — who most likely doesn’t vacation in a Motel 6 type of accommodation.
An industry I might also add that ultimately forced a significant number of the major hospitality companies (hotels/motels etc.) to follow suit, or at least change and/or upgrade their dumpy, cramped, unattractive, boring, no-frills dreary little motel and hotel rooms.
An industry, according to a recent study by Ernst & Young for the American Resort Development Association (ARDA), that contributed an estimated “$68.7 billion in consumer and business spending to the national economy in 2013.”
An industry, the report continues that: “Combined direct, indirect and fiscal impacts in 2013 by the U.S. timeshare industry included $68.7 billion in consumer and business spending, 473,000 full- and part-time jobs, $23.6 billion in salaries and wages.”
An industry that produced: “Spending by timeshare owners and guests during timeshare stays was estimated at $10 billion in 2013. About $2.1 billion was spent on-site at resorts, while $7.9 billion was spent off-site in the communities where the timeshare resorts are located.”
An industry that: “In addition to private sector benefits, the timeshare industry contributes significantly more federal, state, and local tax revenue per employee than the average industry, totaling $8.5 billion in 2013.”
And that is just in the USA, but our industry is global with millions of owners/members and thousands of resorts around the world making our total global benefit and financial contributions enormous!
And lastly we are also an industry that supports many charities in the USA and abroad as well as the communities where we, like other hard working taxpaying folks, some of whom are also Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces, live, work, attend church and send our children to school while raising our families.
Good Luck Out There!
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Contributing sometimes extravagant, bombastic, emotional, pompous or even pretentious writings about the timeshare industry, Scoop covers an array of industry related subjects each week including inside information, tips, scandals, interviews, forecasts as well as new (good or bad) products and services — and, of course, all the ‘Good’, the ‘Bad’ and the ‘Ugly’.
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