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Fake Closing Cost Scam

Fake Closing Cost Scam

 

Fake Closing Cost Scam Now Targeting Timeshare Buyers as Well..
01/29/2012

I just saw an indication in the local crime report of the Washington Township Times where it appears that con artists are now using a version of the fake Mexican timeshare tax to target timeshare buyers as well as timeshare sellers.

"...A Saw Mill Road resident told police on Jan. 5 he was defrauded of $1,750 through a time share company. The man told police he tried to purchase the time share from Condo Vacations and made a wire transfer of the money to pay for the taxes. However, all contact with the company ceased at that time and he was not able to retrieve his money...."

Whether you are buying or selling a timeshare- there is no valid reason other than apathy for a consumer to not understand the importance of a proper and legal closing process.

Good enough is only good enough until a problem comes along!

There are numerous timeshare transactions that occur each day on classified sites such as eBay where the closing is being done by individuals who often are not legally able to prepare deeds or provide closing services. These invalid deeds can cause problems years down the road, possibly leaving the timeshare buyer or timeshare seller with no recourse other than spending thousands on legal proceedings to try and correct the problem.

(Information below provided by PCS Title, a company that specializes in timeshare closings).

Seventeen states and two US territories restrict preparation of deeds to licensed attorneys in that state, with a few exceptions noted below:

Alabama
Arkansas
Florida
Hawaii
Indiana
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maryland
Mississippi
New York
North Carolina
Ohioi
Puerto Rico
South Carolina
Tennessee
Texas
Virginia
Virgin Islands
Wisconsin

Most if not all allow a party to the deed, either buyer or seller, to prepare the deed unless in some cases they are a corporation. In Hawaii, however, if a party to the deed prepares it, to be legal the preparation has to actually be done in Hawaii, not somewhere else, and in Indiana only the seller, not the buyer, is allowed to prepare the deed.

Wisconsin also allows a real estate broker licensed in that state to prepare a deed, and Florida allows title companies to do so if incident to issuance of a policy of title insurance. Lousiana and Puerto Rico, whose legal systems are based on continental European law rather than English Common Law, and for whom the office of Notary Public is much more responsible and requires far more education than in the other 49 states, also allow Notaries Public to prepare deeds.

Before buying or selling any property, you must always perform your due diligence. Research and contact a respected closing agent who is properly licensed in the state where the property is located. Never allow the buyer or seller to either perform the closing themselves, or to choose an unknown or in-house closing agent. Always call the closing company to request proof of a true escrow account, and discover if they are affiliated with an attorney or a larger title provider. Call the timeshare management company or the HOA to determine if there are additional costs involved with the transfer such as a right of first refusal process, waiver fees, estoppels fees, or transfer fees.

 

 

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