Timeshare Donation Truth

timeshare donation truthTimeshare donation is a hot topic in the world of timeshare ownership. With the promise to donate your timeshare to charity, you may be contacted by a “timeshare donation company” assuring you that timeshare donation is a win-win solution to the problem of how to get rid of a timeshare. The success rate of these timeshare donation attempts varies hugely from timeshare to timeshare and is established almost exclusively by the market worth of the property in question. Sadly, many timeshare owners are led to believe that their timeshares are worth far more than what they really are.

The timeshare resale market is nearly completely flat, as timeshare resorts and developers have inundated the market with fresh inventory that they need to move. If your timeshare resort company promises they will help you resell or rent out your timeshare, they are simply telling you what they think you want to hear. You may be told this at the time they are pitching you to buy a timeshare, or when you call the company looking for a way out of your timeshare obligations.

Even worse than a new car, a timeshare nearly completely loses its value as soon as you “drive it off the lot.” In what way can this influence the timeshare donation option to get out of a timeshare contract? A timeshare donation company will likely try to inspire your philanthropy by assuring you that you will be able to write off timeshare donation on taxes.  However, the IRS will only allow you to write of the FAIR MARKET VALUE of the timeshare on your taxes. While some timeshare donation companies will appoint their own assessor to give you a conveniently inflated assessment of the value of your timeshare, the reality is that the IRS knows how much (or how little) your timeshare is worth and they will call you on it.

In fact, there have been cases where people have tried to write off a timeshare donation as being valued upwards of $30,000, which triggered red flags at the Internal Revenue Service. These unfortunate folks were then subjected to grueling audits that resulted in fines of thousands of dollars. This is a tragic situation for those who are looking to get out of a timeshare contract for the very reason that they can’t afford the payments to begin with. They find themselves even further in debt with a mountain of stress to climb. If this sounds like something that you would like to avoid then it is best to stay away from timeshare donation companies.

There are 2 prominent kinds of timeshare donation scenarios, both unique from one another and made use of in wholly different conditions.  One timeshare donation situation is when a timeshare owner offers up a portion of their annual weeks to a non-profit organization for entertainment usage. In this case, the timeshare owner is not trying to get out of a timeshare contract but is simply offering it up for the use of the organization when he or she cannot use the weeks or points themselves and cannot rent it out. Timeshare owners may attempt to write off the fees for the time period that the timeshare was donated as a tax deduction, however this amount is usually negligible. The process does not result in relinquishing your timeshare or getting out of your timeshare contract. It is simply a generous way to offer a little vacation time to a charity.

The other kind of timeshare donation method is what timeshare donation companies market as a “socially conscious” way to shred your timeshare contract. Unfortunately, the truth is much murkier and treacherous than the way the deal will be presented to you.

As discussed above, timeshare owners are often misled into believing they can write off a timeshare donation for far more than what is legally allowable. Additionally, the timeshare donation companies often have you transfer the timeshare deed into the name of a shill company whose sole purpose is go bankrupt as a way of getting rid of timeshare contracts. In reality, timeshare contracts are much more of a liability than an asset and most properly run charities are aware that taking them on in donation will cost more than they are worth to own.

What is the Best Timeshare Donation Option?

The best way to get out of a timeshare is to simply pay a reputable timeshare redemption company to transfer the deed out of your name. Then, if you are still inclined to make a charitable donation, use some of the thousands of dollars you will save in the following years after you legally and responsibly get out of your timeshare contract for the purpose of donating to charity. With this information you are now well equipped to make an educated decisions about using timeshare donation companies.  Just remember that timeshare donation is a slippery slope full of shady practices that are best avoided altogether.