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Thread: Flexiclub Timeshare

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    Email problem ABCAB's Avatar
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    Flexiclub Timeshare

    My story/gripe is long and stretches over a period of nearly two years, but I am going to try and keep it very short.

    I have owned timeshare on the points system since 1991. The company has been taken over and changed names about 4 times and presently we fall under Flexiclub. So in Sept 2009 we go away on the timeshare and get approached to look at "upgrading" our investment to insure it stays up to date with the resorts and all types pf stories that turn out to be nothing more than a bunch of smoke that was blown up our A$$e$.

    The sales lady tells us about the economy and that they can do such great rentals for us if we dump some points into a banking system for rental to persons that can not get into certain resorts any other way than to rent from people like us.

    We go for the deal increase our investment to a R60K asset according to the representative. Three months later our business of nearly sixteen years goes belly up. Within the next six months we start falling behind on our payments on not only the purchase but also the annual fees that have split to equal payments through the year.

    Now when we originally purchased the timeshare points, the company that ran it at that stage made it clear and pursued the practice of repossessing your points to sell off and cover costs. I at this early stage of debt to this company attempted to sell or rent these points out to recover some costs, but this seemed impossible due to the fact that I was already in arrears. Even telling them that it is an internal transaction and that no moneys would come to me, but rather go directly to getting the account paid. They refused and have since then threatened to go legal.

    Instead of going through with this action at that stage, they have now drawn it out another year to the point where my indebtedness to them amounts to R23K. This afternoon I was on the phone to them again regarding the matter and they still refuse to take all or some points of my accumulated, now R69K, asset to offset my debt.

    I have even explained to them that this asset was the only thing in the house that the sheriff of the court was not able to repossess and that it is all that I have that they would be able to take if judgement is passed and I again get a visit from the sheriff.

    Now I don't know how I can be more accommodating to the situation. I am trying to get the matter resolved without the legal costs and of course I would like to keep another judgement off my name. Even trying to make the maths easy and telling them to just take the whole thing (69K) off my hands and clear the debt and never have to do business with me again, they still refuse.

    I would like to know if I can represent myself in court at the time when these guys get the judgement, who else can I speak to, I can't afford a lawyer to represent me or take my case.

    I am presently working for a friend of mine in his little roadside quick shop in a small Freestate town that earns me a bit of money after my food bill has been deducted from my pay. I net around R1500 a month if I am lucky which barely pays the arrangements I have with banks regarding three bank accounts that we are trying to keep in good minimum order after the business went under. My wife is on chronic medication that eats up half that money and the state can not help her as they do not prescribe her Epilepsy medication as it is too expensive. The only medication they can give her makes her condition worse, which puts my in the situation of being a nurse to look after her as she has one episode after the other.

    OK, let me wrap this up, I did say I was going to keep it short...... Any advise would be most welcome.

  2. #2
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Just clear up something for me please -

    Assuming you are all paid up and up to date; these accumulated points - can you cash them?
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Email problem ABCAB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave A View Post
    Just clear up something for me please -

    Assuming you are all paid up and up to date; these accumulated points - can you cash them?
    Well a person would assume so, but it seems these points are NOT the asset these guys make it out to be. There seem to be agents who will take your points and try and sell them, but I don't know how successful that actually is and what value you will get.

    I see some guys on a 4x4 forum I frequent have had similar issues. One guy even inherited his from his father, and although he does not want it, in the year it has taken to try and get rid of it through the lawyers who are handling the estate, he has become liable for the annual levies and already getting final demand letters.

    Seems these guys are tying you and your future families into a pay to perpetuity scheme. Once you have it in the family, your kids or heirs are stuck with the costs/levies.

    Does the CPA cover this type of thing and would it be applicable to contracts concluded prior to the commencement date of the CPA?

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    depreciation of assets

    my understanding of timeshare ownership or points is that it is not an investment.And to top it all you seldom get back what you invested.you only get back moneys by selling these "investments" privately through newspapers or "brokers".I could be wrong when i say that the best way out is to sell at 50-80% of the initial price paid & get out of the mess. hope this little helps

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    Email problem ABCAB's Avatar
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    You are right, but it all pivots around the fact that all moneys are paid up to date.

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    I've always been deeply suspicious of timeshare. I'm not sure there's much of a saving in there with most deals, it locks you in, and it's not easy to turn this "asset" into liquid cash - which says mountains about just how much of an asset it really is.

    Most of all, I know you can't pay the bills of running these places with points; they have to keep sucking in cash to keep them running. Throw in a little margin for operator profit and you may as well stay with pay-as-you-go where you don't have the problem of being held over a barrel.

    Quote Originally Posted by ABCAB View Post
    Does the CPA cover this type of thing
    I think the CPA may well have a profound effect on the hard sell techniques of the timeshare industry. At the very least people will have a cooling off period in wihch to pull out.

    Quote Originally Posted by ABCAB View Post
    and would it be applicable to contracts concluded prior to the commencement date of the CPA?
    I don't think so.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Cancelling Flexiclub Contract

    In accordance with the rules of the club, you can indeed cancel your membership and cede your points to the club. That isn't made clear to members, and it should be.

    However, you have to be fully up to date with all your payments.

    Flexiclub only works for you if you are able to pay your annual fees and you use your points to book holidays on a regular basis.

    In exactly the same way that you do if you own timeshare by dint of owning weeks in a shareblock scheme, you get to stay in quality accommodation at a large discount to what you would pay if you rented directly from the resort. That is certainly true for timeshare in the Southern Sun schemes.

    The one area in which I do have a problem with Flexiclub's marketing is that they claim that points are worth about R12 per point, whereas the actual market value is between R1 and R2 per point. If you buy directly from Flexiclub, they make you buy a minimum number of points at R12 something per point.

    Of the various points-based systems in South Africa, Flexiclub is the best option. There is a lot of stock available and you can generally get what you want if you are organised and phone early on the day that bookings open.

    The way that Flexiclub treats people who get into financial difficulty and their less than honest marketing are the reasons that their reputation stinks.

  8. Thank given for this post:

    ABCAB (08-Aug-11), Dave A (07-Aug-11)

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    Email problem ABCAB's Avatar
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    Thanks for your post here Kenny... I understand the procedure, but have a major problem with the way they allowed it to get this bad in my situation. I saw my plight a long time prior to being in arrears. I get made promises and get told things will work out (like they know whats happening in my life), and that they do not follow through on requests till it is too late. Then when I tell them "I told you so", they simply say that now it's your problem.

    I get the impression more and more that these companies love taking things as far as possible and making all there friends that are lawyers rich by involving them in the process and making an already bad situation that the client is in, even worse.

    If they go through my history, these points were offered back to them when I was only about 5K in arrears, I was told that I need to get it all up to date. Even though I could not afford it, I did this and even rented out a block to some friends at the time. The process to return the whole facility to then just ran into one dead end after the other. Like they had absolutely no interest in seeing the process through. Now two years later, I have to face the legal wrath and intimidation of this company with absolutely no way out than to pay the 23K outstanding.

    They are not even interested in suspending my account in some way to freeze everything. As long as I have it, they will continue piling the costs on as if I had full use of it.

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    Flexiclub follow up

    Quote Originally Posted by ABCAB View Post
    Thanks for your post here Kenny... I understand the procedure, but have a major problem with the way they allowed it to get this bad in my situation. I saw my plight a long time prior to being in arrears. I get made promises and get told things will work out (like they know whats happening in my life), and that they do not follow through on requests till it is too late. Then when I tell them "I told you so", they simply say that now it's your problem.

    I get the impression more and more that these companies love taking things as far as possible and making all there friends that are lawyers rich by involving them in the process and making an already bad situation that the client is in, even worse.

    If they go through my history, these points were offered back to them when I was only about 5K in arrears, I was told that I need to get it all up to date. Even though I could not afford it, I did this and even rented out a block to some friends at the time. The process to return the whole facility to then just ran into one dead end after the other. Like they had absolutely no interest in seeing the process through. Now two years later, I have to face the legal wrath and intimidation of this company with absolutely no way out than to pay the 23K outstanding.

    They are not even interested in suspending my account in some way to freeze everything. As long as I have it, they will continue piling the costs on as if I had full use of it.
    Hi ABCAB, what happened to this matter eventually?

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    I feel your frustration. Buying into Flexiclub was one of the worst decisions I ever made. As a single parent I have been lumped with astronomical annual fees which really hit you hard. I have aso been trying to get out of all this as it really is just a money making scam. I have never been able to go on any form of decent holiday but instead use every last point I have plus all my holiday savings for just a few days away at a pretty unimpressive resort or hotel. In addition they are mostly self catering so you still chip in more. One place we went to was an absolute joke. The airconditioning was on a prepaid meter. The gas braai was on the balcony but you had to pay to use the gas bottle. I am surprised the tv was not pay per view. I have often not been able to save enough points to go anywhere decent because the points expire every year. I have tried a few times to book into a resort, but there is never a room available or you can get a room but at some ridiculous time of the year and in the middle of a week. Ridiculous. When I calculate how much it costs, it would be cheaper to pay cash and besides you could then go on holiday when you please. It seems as if members are only given accomodation when the resort is desperate. Well I am now told I can cancel BUT I must have everything paid up. The capital is all paid but I am still paying the annual admin fees for the next 4 months. I understand that once cancelled you are free, but what the heck happens to all that money I paid for quite a few years for the initial points which were supposed to be an asset? It is like " pay us R40 000 for points, go and stay in whatever resort you can find in the middle of the week during off peak only, and just for one or maybe two days because that is all your points are worth. Then pay us another R5000 or so a year so we can keep the rooms clean that you are not able to book. Then when you have finally had enough you can cancel and go along your merry way. " Ridiculous. I really hope you come right because this is like daylight robbery and as you say, they simply do not care about your situation. I can only hope that more people get to know the truth about fkexi club before they are whisked away to " claim their so called prize" only to leave with a massive burden which they will carry for a very very long time.

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