Welcome back to AIT, our apologies for the absence as this was out of our control, thanks to Irene Parker for ensuring the US articles were published and have been able to reach many of our US readers. Although we have not been able to publish any articles we have been keeping an eye on what has been happening, the first piece which has sparked interest is a subject we have published on many occasions, finance.
Last week our friends at the TCA published “Safety in numbers – Or is there?” It explains very well the problems consumers face, especially those for timeshare, thrown up by the companies who provided the loans.
The case involves our old friends Barclay Partner Finance and a loan provided for a Club La Costa Fractional Ownership, a dubious product to say the least, and a claim against BPF. The claim was submitted to BPF and as expected it was rejected, enter the Financial Ombudsman Service.
As we know the FOS is the place consumers are referred to when they disagree with any decision from the loan provider, and either find in favour of the consumer or the provider. Usually, that is the end of the matter, but not in this case, BPF filed for a Judicial Review.
This has now escalated into a joining of forces of the three main loan providers for timeshare, BPF, Hitachi (now Novuna Personal Finance) and Shawbrook Bank against the FOS. This is an ongoing story and we wait to see the final outcome, for the full story follow the link below.
No doubt the above will attract the attention of the scammers, so watch out for the cold calls, staying with these, during our absence we received many enquiries regarding the claims made by cold callers. These same questions are being asked on many forums and one, in particular, caught our attention.
Once again the call was from a “company” with a name which could not be verified, the calls have come from various numbers with the most prolific being a Cambridge number. The nature of the call is targeting those with loan agreements for their timeshare, particularly those who purchased from Azure.
The latest twist in the ongoing saga of trying to convince consumers to sign up is the use of Corinthian Hotels, one of the principal owners of the resort. According to the caller the claim will be made against them, how this is possible is not explained, but it is totally inaccurate.
Corinthian Hotels has nothing to do with Azure, the club consumers purchased, lease out the accommodation, this is nothing unusual in timeshare. Many hotels and resorts lease out batches or entire complexes to timeshare companies and tour operators, you can see this in most tourist destinations, an RIU owned hotel with TUI logos etc.
We should also point out that the new management company for the club has re-established the agreement with Corinthian so members do not lose out. Again this shows how the facts are being manipulated in order to convince you the consumer to part with your money.
It would appear that our US article last week has provoked some discussion on the various US forums, the overwhelming sentiment that has been expressed is total disgust. Yet this is only one in a long line of complaints of underhand tactics against consumers, consumers who are their members and their bread and butter.
There really is something wrong with the industry, we would imagine that “Don Corleone” from the Godfather would look at it admiringly and with jealousy, that they can make dubious billions and get away with it legally.
AIT has more in the pipeline from our US friends which will shed more light on some of the unsavoury practices of the industry, so watch this space.
We hope you all had a good weekend and especially our UK readers who celebrated the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, from all the news reports the weather held off and a great weekend was had by all. Baby Dog went to his own fiesta and this is him arriving, just can’t wait to get out of the car.