When it comes to your finances, there may be no letter you’ll ever write that’s as important as a timeshare cancellation letter.
Whether you’ve suddenly gotten cold feet or you’ve realized timeshares aren’t good investments, the right letter can help you avoid paying tens of thousands of dollars on a property you don’t want. The wrong one can lead to frustrating back-and-forth with a resort, leaving you on the financial hook for longer. In some cases, mistakes can even lead to an outright denial of your cancellation efforts.
Every line you write is crucial, and every detail counts. If you’re worried about your cancellation letter, we’ve got you covered: check out our quick guide below to ensure that you can get out of your contract.
Start With Your Contract
Before we dive into the details, note that the best place to start when writing your letter is always with your contract.
Your timeshare contract should outline the requirements for a letter of rescission. It should include any relevant details you’ll need to write in the letter as well as the method of delivery. If you can’t find this information, reach out to the developer or contact a timeshare cancellation company.
In addition, note that almost all developers will require a request in writing. Often, this letter cannot be sent as an email, though some developers will allow you to fax it.
Regardless, we always recommend that you type, print, sign, and mail the letter to the developer. Don’t forget to make a copy and keep it for your records.
Know Your Rescission Deadline
The most important factor in this equation, by far, is the rescission deadline.
After you’ve signed your timeshare contract, there’s a short window of time in which you can change your mind about your purchase without financial repercussions. This is called the “rescission period” or “cooling-off period.” This is the only time in which your developer will accept a cancellation letter for a full refund.
On average, a rescission period will last only a few days, though the details vary from state to state. Do your research to understand how and when you should send your letter.
What to Put in a Timeshare Cancellation Letter
Again, it’s always a good idea to read your contract for details on the cancellation letter. However, here are a few things that most developers will require as well as some details we recommend:
- Your full name
- Your contact information
- The legal name of the resort or developer
- The number of your contract
- All names included on the contract
- The date of your initial purchase
- The current date of writing
- A statement of cancellation
- The total amount of money you paid
- A demand that this amount be returned to you
- A request that the company acknowledges the receipt of your letter within the rescission period
When it comes to the statement of cancellation, make sure you get straight to the point. There needs to be clear and firm wording around the fact that you no longer want your timeshare.
Try to put this information near the top of the letter. We recommend using it as an introductory sentence. You can use statements like “This letter is a formal request to terminate my timeshare contract” or “I am writing this letter to cancel my timeshare contract and all future payments.”
It also helps to state that you aren’t interested in alternatives to cancellation. Timeshare companies may try to persuade you to change your mind, offering deed-back programs or chances to sell a timeshare. Don’t give in to temptation!
If you’re uncertain about adding a detail or two, it’s always better to have a little too much information instead of including too little. Missing details can make it easy for a timeshare company to challenge the validity of the letter. In some cases, this gives them the chance to try bullying you into keeping the contract, and it can even let them keep you on the hook for future payments.
What to Leave Out of Your Letter
There are a few things you can leave out of your letter.
First and foremost, don’t bother to air your grievances or even offer a reason for the cancellation.
Your request to cancel is the most important topic. Offering additional information or complaints is superfluous at best. At worst, it gives the developer ammunition, allowing them to try to convince you that they can improve on any specific problems you’ve had.
In addition, make sure to keep passivity out of your letter. Use formal, confident language: getting rid of your timeshare is your prerogative, and there’s no need to sound hesitant.
Last, try not to get emotional. No matter how you feel about the timeshare or the resort’s sales tactics, keep your language respectful.
Again, the goal of this letter is to offer essential information while getting straight to the point, nothing more.
Always Choose Certified Mail
The last thing you want to do is give a timeshare company the chance to say they never got your letter.
That’s why it’s a good idea to choose certified mail for a cancellation letter. Make sure that you use a method requiring a signature or return receipt. You should use this method for any correspondence you have with the developer.
Don’t Expect a Sudden Miracle
Writing a timeshare cancellation letter is only the first step of the cancellation process. Though it’s tempting to believe a resort will accept your request and cancel your contract immediately, the truth is that most of them won’t go away so easily.
Expect to spend several months going back and forth with your timeshare company as you try to get out of your contract. They may try to dispute your letter or renegotiate your contract. Stand your ground!
Work With Timeshare Cancellation Specialists
If you’re still worried about the details of your timeshare cancellation letter, or if your developer is trying to reel you back in after a cancellation attempt, it’s time to reach out to our timeshare exit team.
As Lonestar Transfer, we have plenty of experience fighting resorts that try to refuse cancellation. No matter how long it takes to shut down a resort’s disputes, we’ll be with you every step of the way. Reach out for a free consultation to learn more.