Charles Davis of Travel Buy Owner called me in Oct. 2010 and said he had a buyer for my 2 bedroom timeshare unit at Grand Pacific Palisades Resort. He assured me that the buyer had $3,800 deposited, and if they backed out of the sale, I would get their deposit. I had to pay $1,500 for document fees and a title search, that's it. He sent the contract and I wouldn't sign because it sounded like I was purchasing advertising. He had me write an addendum, which I did, and he said that would work. The addendum is as follows:
"I am agreeing to pay $1,500 for document fees, title search, and other documents required to sell my timeshare at Grand Pacific Palisades to the buyer who has already made a deposit on the unit. I am NOT paying for advertising or internet listing. I have been assured that a buyer is already available and ready to purchase my timeshare, and if the sale is not completed by them, their deposit of $3,800 will be forfeited to me. I am not paying the fees to rent or advertise my unit, just to sell it."
I signed that contract on 10/18/10, scanned and emailed to TBO, after which they promptly charged my VISA card $1,500. That would be the ONLY thing they did in a timely manner. A few weeks later, I received a letter from TBO (Bill Bradley, CEO specifically) stating that "TBO Properties takes great pride in providing impeccable customer service to our clients. We believe that our clients deserve the right to be informed of any changes made to their account. In an effort to do so, please be advised that your previous representative Charles Davis is no longer employed by TBO. We are currently taking the necessary precautions to ensure you that his termination will not affect any of our clients. Please be advised Mr. Davis' license with us has been revoked/cancelled. Unfortunately his actions outside of our company do not reflect our business practices and we are doing our part to protect all of our clients. To ensure that all transactions proceed forward we would ask that you contact TBO immediately should you receive any contact from Charles Davis, or any other individual calling in regards to your property."
After receiving this, I called TBO and asked if the sale was still valid for my unit. I was told Sally Soto was my new representative, and everything was going fine, it was still being sold and the paperwork was in process. From that point on, I kept calling for updates (initially I was told the entire process would take about 6 months)and got excuse after excuse. But always reassurance that it would still go through and that this was normal. Ultimately, they stuck with the story that the buyer had a tax lien to clear, and that they were paying it off, and as long as they were making tax payments TBO could not cancel the sale take their deposit.
I continued to call periodically for updates on my account, and when I could get someone on the line (it became increasingly more difficult) was always told that it was "progressing" and the buyer was still planning to purchase the unit. TBO told me that legally, it had to be 2 years from when I signed my contract before I could get the buyer's deposit. I told them I would settle for getting my money back from them, since they were the ones who sought me out. They said they could request a refund of my fees, but they couldn't be sure I would get it. I haven't heard anything for months, and cannot reach a human at their office number. No one returns calls. If the contract I signed with Charles Davis was not valid, they should have refunded my money back then. It was their employee, their mistake. It has been 2 years of waiting this October 2012.