I feel like a complete fool to have fallen for this scam. I've always been prudent about researching the internet whenever something looks to good to be true, and it has always paid off for me. However, my husband & I had been looking to sell our timeshare because we have two. So when I rec'd a call from Anthony McDermott of Copeland Marketing Corp. about listing our Havasu Dunes timeshare, I thought I'd listen to his shpeel. He asked me what I thought the value was & I told him I hoped for $12-$15K. He put me on hold and when he came back he said the "quick price" for our unit was $16900. I about flipped. Then he said that he needed a listing deposit of $899, which is fully refundable at the time of sale. He went on to asked if we had a week available this year for rent, I said yes. He said that he could rent the week out for $1400 ($200/day). Of course, I was taken in by this, because I thought, well that's one task I can check of my list of things to do. He also said that he need a rental fee of $200 to rent the resort for a week. He asked me for my credit information. I told him my card was max'd out, that my husband handles the finances. My gut told me to asked him if Copeland Marketing was a legitimate company because it sounded to good to be true. He guaranteed that they were a reputable company,that they do the 90-minute presentations and usually have great success in selling timeshares and that he would have ours sold in no time. He asked me for my credit card information again & said that he would try it for authorization, so I did (dumb) and put me on hold. He came back to the phone and said it went through. In the meantime, I had called my husband and told him what I did and he was reliefed to have that task off his shoulders and supported my actions. WE JUST DIDN'T KNOW!!
The next day I received an email from Adrienne from the sales dept. of Copeland with 4 Word docs attached, 1) Intro page to the company; 2) Invoice; 3) Listing Agrmt; & 4) Rental Agrmt. The email instructed me to review the documents, correct any typos, initial them & either fax it Copeland or email them as .pdf files at firstname.lastname@example.org. Her email also directed any questions or inquires about the docs to Lisa at email@example.com.
After reviewing the docs I notices many typos, and the information was not correct on our deeded timeshare. In the meantime, I did a search on EBay to see what the going price for timeshares were. At the search, I typed Havasu Dunes Resorts and 1 hit came up, it was the same exact unit as mine. It was listed on EBay just a few hours after my conversation with Anthony on 4-24-06. The starting bid was: $9; the Buy It Now price was: $19. This thru up a red flag, I got really nervous. I began searching the internet for timeshare sales and was surprised at the low prices being offered for them. I couldn't understand how I was quoted a askin price of $16900.
I emailed Lisa at the given email address and directed my questions and concerns about the docs typos & the internet search hits. I told her to call me ASAP. Immediately upon sending the email, it bounced back with an unknown address. So I emailed firstname.lastname@example.org with the same issues on 5-5-06 and have rec'd no response. I felt really depressed about this. I've contacted my credit card company and submitted a Dispute Charge. I'm now just waiting for the resolution of this untimely and embarassing mistake I made.
DO NOT use Copeland Marketing Corp. Also, I discovered on a forum someone who claimed to have worked for Copeland and was unaware of what was going on. He gave rather detailed instructions as to what to do to file grievances. Number 1, was to fill out a complaint on the Attorney General of Florida - Charlie Crist. I typed in the web addresses this x-employee offered, the website looks very nearly like the real thing, but its not. I'm bruised in my soul about the deception and deceit that runs rampant in our own country.
Chula Vista, California