Q: My husband co-signed on a timeshare with his ex-girlfriend several years ago (before I knew him). When they parted ways, he sold out his ‘interest’ in the timeshare through a real-estate lawyer and she signed a ‘hold-harmless’ agreement, which basically says that he is not responsible for the balance owed on the timeshare. She has not defaulted on the payments so far, but there is a significant balance, more than $10,000 owed.
The timeshare debt still shows on my husband’s credit report – even though it is current, we would like to have it removed or to somehow indicate that he is not responsible for the debt on this property. In talking with the current holder of the note, the only way to completely remove his name is for her to refinance the loan, which at almost 14% interest, you would think she would want to do that.
Any suggestions on how we can get this off of my husband’s credit report?
A: The only way to get it off your husband’s credit report is for his ex-girlfriend to refinance the loan. Perhaps your husband can call her and ask if she’d be willing to refinance. Otherwise, you have to simply pray that she doesn’t do anything foolish.
Q: We own a timeshare in Florida through Fairfield properties. We paid $500 down and have paid $100 for two years and have not used it. Now my husband has medical problems and we cannot afford the $100 a month. I really just want someone to take over the payments and I will lose out, but oh well. Fairfield will not help me so I am considering foreclosing which I don’t want to do. Can you help me and make some suggestions. Clark says go to Florida and try and sell it but we can’t even afford to go to Florida or take off work.
A: You’re in a tough spot, which most timeshare owners find themselves in eventually. You should take out an ad in the local paper advertising a free timeshare. Hopefully, someone will take you up on your offer.
Another option is to give away the timeshare to a non-profit charity — if you can find one.
Other than that, I’m fresh out of ideas other than foreclosure, which will wreck your credit.
Q: Thanks for taking the time or having your people to take the time and write me regarding my timeshare. I don’t understand when you say I can give it to an organization. Can I do that if I still owe money on it. We owe about $5500 on the balance of the loan. Can they put a lean on my house if I let the timeshare go in foreclosure or do they just ruin my credit. I won’t bother you after this one.
A: I didn’t realize you still had a loan on the place. You can only give it to an organization if it’s completely paid off. If you let the timeshare go into foreclosure, it will ruin your credit.
I don’t have an easy answer for you on this one. You can try to get the developer to take it back, or you can simply pay off the loan and give it away, or you can try to sell it on your own.
Timeshares are really lousy investments, and they often aren’t even good vacations because you’re so frustrated with the cost that you can’t enjoy it.
Plan on this being a total loss and perhaps you will be pleasantly surprised if you can unload it.