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Coral Resorts / RCI / Dishonest, Lies, Misrepresenting and did I say Dishonest!

1 Hilton Head Island, SC, United States Review updated:

In July my wife, Shelly and I, took a tour of Island Links in Hilton Head, SC. The resort is beautiful and we were interested in discussing terms of a time share purchase. We returned to the office of Coral Resorts with the sales rep that gave us the tour and began the sales negotiation process. We were there for hours. As a matter of fact, the sales rep missed his afternoon appointment because of our discussions. We asked a lot of questions and the salesman repeated himself over and over again to assure our understanding and when we finally agreed on a purchase price, I completely understood what he had told us. The problem is, what he told us was completely false and what looked like a great opportunity to own a time share at a quality resort at terms we could afford became a horrible deal with ridiculously different terms and dollar amounts that will prevent us from utilizing our home resort. In fact, we could be forced to allow Coral Resorts to foreclose, ruining our otherwise perfect credit.
We were given a starting price of just under 12000 dollars plus a maintenance fee of 900 dollars every three years, for a week (7 days) in a three bedroom suite at Island Links. Included, was a round of golf for four people each day, cart not included. With this week we get 21333 points with RCI that will give us the ability to trade our week to RCI for a weeks’ vacation anywhere in the world, as long as it is an RCI resort. Since Island Links is a gold resort and has the golf included, even RCI’s best resorts would only require a transfer fee of up to $175.00, but there would be no upgrade fees due to the value of our home resort. I asked if that included all inclusive and the salesman replied that it does. (Don’t know if that is true, I read that there are meal plans that have to be purchased). Also included in the price is an additional, untradeable week at our home resort called a “Developers Week”, along with several other perks such as, a Travel Club giving discounted travel to its members. The travel club is for one year and we would have to pay to renew it each year. I will get into more detail as I review the misrepresentations/lies of the salesman, all listed below.
The first issue began during the negotiations. When we bulked at purchasing at the opening offer, the salesman went to his manager “to see what he could do” with the asking price. When he came back to the table, he gave us a new offer. The manager would lower the price by buying back our Developer week. As an owner of a coral Resorts (for us Island Links) time share, we are entitled to an extra week per year at Island Links Resort. As stated above, this week is known as a “Developer Week”. The salesman explained that each year in January, we can decide if we will use the Developer Week that year for an additional maintenance fee or let it go back to Coral Resorts. I asked if the maintenance fee is the same amount each year, which is $300 and his response was “yes, it is 300 dollars”. He also explained that if we made a decision in the first couple of weeks in January, we would be able to sell the developer week back to Coral Resorts, but we would need to act fast because they only buy what they know they need and the rest that get returned, they don’t pay for. Next, we were asked if we planned on another vacation to Hilton Head in the 2010 calendar year. Our answer was” no, we won’t be back in 2010. So, the great news is that we can return our 2010 developer week right then and there, and the money for that week would reduce the selling price of the time share.
Now, here is the misrepresentation. While speaking with a Coral Resorts “owner services” representative named David, I am told that the developer week starts at $800 to $1100 and up depending on the week and room. So who knows what it actually is? This is huge. The developer week was one of the main reasons we purchased. It seemed reasonable that we would pay 1 year’s maintenance fee ($300) for the use of the week. It does not seem reasonable to pay $800 or more for that week. This lie was a big influence to our buying decision. To make it worse, when I asked David about selling the developer week back to Coral Resorts, I was informed that Coral Resorts does not buy developer weeks. He then gave me a phone number for a clearing house type service that I can offer the week to. After a little research, I discover what he didn’t tell me. I would have to pay the maintenance fee first, than offer the week to the clearing house. The clearing house would than charge me to offer my week to others and there is no guarantee that it sells. Again, a lie that influenced our purchase decission.
The second issue has to do with the maintenance fee. We were told upfront that the maintenance fee will be $900 every 3 years. During our negotiations, I told the salesman that we do not want to pay a large, $900 fee. It always seems to come due at a time when you just don’t have it. Instead, we would prefer to pay the $300 fee yearly. We didn’t think this should be a problem because the salesman broke the three year amount (900) into a one year amount (300) often during his presentation. There was no hesitation on the salesman’s part. No thinking about it, nothing. He just agreed, as if it is done all the time. Later, during negotiations, the salesman was trying to get a commitment from us. I told him that I don’t want to pay all this money to purchase a time share and then turn around and have to pay the maintenance fee right away. His response, No problem, you will not have a maintenance fee for your first year of ownership. This sounds as though the problems are solved!
The first week of December, just 4months after paying for the time share and 1 month after getting our RCI membership and points, we receive a bill for more than $900. I make several calls to owner services, getting a different persons voice mail each time, but no one to talk to. I then find a number for the business office and call that number. I leave a message again. Finally, a woman from the business office returns my call. She informs me that the salesman has no right or ability to change the term of the maintenance fee. I told her about the one year wait before the fee was to be charged and she quickly replied that this bill is for Jan. 2011, I purchased in 2010, so it is a different year. I informed her that I was not told “no fee for the calendar year in which I purchased”, I was told “no fee for the first year” and as everyone knows, a year is 12 months, not 2. Her reply, I understand how you feel, but it can’t be changed. The next day I received a call from David, in the owner services office and he also admitted that we cannot have what was promised. Again, the salesman had overcome our objection with lies!
Another misrepresentation has to do with RCI. We were told that we get RCI points each year with the payment of the maintenance fee. The sales rep completely tied the 2 together. It was sold as one package deal. We now find out that RCI also has a renewal fee that must be paid on top of the Coral Resorts maintenance fee. Never mentioned, not once! And this keeps going higher and higher in price.
I can honestly say that there is no way we would have purchased at Coral Resorts if given a truthful, honest presentation of the facts as they actually are.

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Comments

  • Sa
      29th of Dec, 2010
    +2 Votes

    This is EXACTLY what happened to us. When we asked questions, we were told one lie after another by the sales rep. We have been unable to use our timeshare since we purchased it in 2008. BEWARE of Coral Resorts.

  • Ju
      30th of Dec, 2010
    +2 Votes

    your story is similar to ours and i keep finding more of the same story.

    Have you had any luck on what will happen if you do not make payments? Just wondering what you concluded is our fate!!

  • Je
      10th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @julie.a.n. File complaint with South Carolina States Attorney General!

  • Ke
      31st of Dec, 2010
    +2 Votes

    We are just beginning the process and the holidays are not helping. It seems as though the Hilton Head area has taken off for the holiday's. We sent an e-mail to Hilton Head Chamber of Commerce. We have sent a letter to Coral Resorts and RCI and we are meeting an attorney after the first of the year. Hopefully we can get this resolved before out maintenance fee is past due. I don't want these jerks ruining my credit. Once its on the credit, you play hell to get it removed!

  • Co
      28th of Jun, 2011
    +2 Votes

    I'm having some problems with Coral Resorts too. For now it's not necessary to get into the details. However, I would encourage everyone to NOT default on their payments.

    It must be part of Coral's business model to expect (or cause) owners to walk away from their commitment. That's a win-win-win proposition for them. They keep all monies paid; take legal action to recover the remainder; and the property ownership reverts to them.

    This is how they're able to keep a brisk business selling (& re-selling) timeshares.

    Well... all this needs to come to an end.

    As owners we can collectively force Coral Resorts to change or we can put them out of business.

    We have an obligation to ourselves; one another; and any future "suckers" who allow Coral Resorts to continue their poor business practices (including lies and outright fraud).

    Keep posting to this and other sites until Coral Resorts is forced into bankruptcy.

    If they emerge as the same business with another name and the same business practices... then we'll put them out of business too.

  • An
      6th of Apr, 2012
    +1 Votes

    We had the EXACT SAME EXPERIENCE IN 2010 and have been griping, complaining, moaning. groaning, and threatening ever since. I'm so glad to see that we're not alone. This gives us reason and further proof to press on forward with our case to get these guys. We went back to them today to discuss the "lies" and they came back to us with "an incredible offer to help us" that made my stomach churn. I literally wanted to slap this young fellow in the chops...and I'm sweet little old guidance counselor. He couldn't believe that my husband and I would just get up and "walk away from such a great deal." He had "never had anyone just get up and walk away before." He was lucky I just walked away with my dignity and not with his hair in my hand. These people are liars, thieves, and condescending to people they believe to be ignorant because we are older and apparently senile because we have been out of college for longer than 10 years. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

  • Ti
      8th of Jun, 2012
    +1 Votes

    We have just experienced the same thing however, we were told that if we opted to not use the owners week and we told them in the allotted time period that we would get a check in the mail for $1, 000 every year we did not use it. We were told this many times during the day and 1/2 we spent in "sales pitching". We did not understand how or why they would do this so we kept asking them to clarify and we kept getting the same explanation...no questions asked we would be getting $1, 000 every year and "that will help you defray the "maintenance" fees, that they also 20-30 times denied that they had. We weren't informed of that until the contract came out. We did not find out the "true" owners week policy until today. It took 3 weeks for us to get through to someone. Many calls and emails that no one returned. This $1.000 story was not only a lie told by the sale rep but also the closing rep. Now we are in a quandary as to whether or not we want to continue and if not can we get out of this contract without effecting our credit rating.

  • Te
      25th of Jun, 2012
    +1 Votes

    We just returned home from the Coral RCI experience. Our sales rep, Marie, (riding on her scooter) was the most arrogant, rude and snotty sales person we have ever run into. We have our own business and if any one of our associates acted like her she would not have a job. She began with an interrogation of how we found out about RCI .She questioned our answers if we answered differently from each other. "He said this you said that and your son said something else, so which is it, do you spend money on a vacation or not?" We asked her to tell us why she needed to interrogate us so much and just tell us about the place. Again, she was condescending and got snippy with us. She told us all about the point system and how they add up every year. She told us the same stuff as the above comments. It was such a scam!!! When we did not want to do the deal, she sent us to the other wheeler dealer who told us that the buying thing was not good we needed to invest in vacation package. When he found out that we were not interested he showed us the door.

  • Bu
      13th of Jul, 2012
    +1 Votes

    I was told all those same lies .they must train them all the same way what I want to know if I stop paying will it hurt my credit. Will on that not called my salesman and he tells me long as I payed in 6 months they got there money and want come after me don't know who to believe they lie so much.

  • Ar
      8th of Jan, 2013
    +1 Votes

    We recently were scammed by Coral resorts as well. It makes me sick to think of the money we have given them and the lies they told. We were gullible as well and believed what they said about the developer weeks. What fools we were. We try to call but get the answering machines and no replies. I guess we have to suck it up as a learning curve. Buyer beware.

  • Ch
      2nd of Mar, 2013
    +1 Votes

    My husband and I are in the same boat. Purchased in 2010, Island Links Tri-X. The salesperson treated us like dirt and we should have walked...Calls to RCI are useless. Calls to REBA Mgmt are useless. I asked how to go about renting out the one week every three years. Both RCI and REBA said they didn't know. We were also told that if we did not use our timeshare week we would earn points "back" for the non-usage. What a bunch of bull. Just today I found a number online for the Island Links Resort itself. I assume the "front desk" - I explained that I owned a timeshare and asked how to go about renting it out...HE GAVE ME THE NUMBER of the the company who runs the renting program!!! Here it is, Sunrise Vacations 800-444-7368. I called and left a message. Today is Saturday so figure maybe Monday they will return my call. A huge IF they return it. At least I found out about them. Our year to use the 3 bdrm 3 ba was LAST year. Because we did not reserve it, thinking we'd get extra points, we've lost out on rent also. We have the darned thing paid for. We have good credit and are scared to just walk away from the fees, as we want to do. We are retired and on a fixed income. This is just not right - I am with Grrrrrrrrrrr, just so upset... Why don't we gather and get the law involved? Or has that already happened? The scam has to be stopped. We signed contracts because we were lied to. Can't we do something? It IS a buyer beware thing, maybe we should all fly in, stand outside their offices and protest with signs, saying exactly that.
    Some of my family members have legitimate timeshares on the West Coast - they never have any problems and are traveling all of the time. RCI needs to be stopped.

  • Ls
      18th of Apr, 2013
    +1 Votes

    Please file a complaint with the South Carolina Real Estate Commission department of investigation. You can you the following web address to get the forms needed. I am hoping if enough people file complaints they will do a formal investigation into this company. https://verify.llronline.com/OnlineComplaint/ Also Please go online to the Better Business Bureau and file a complaint using their online system.

  • Be
      4th of May, 2013
    -1 Votes

    I saw all your complaints on the complaints board about coral resorts. I am so nervous my parents are going to be in the same boat. They went last weekend and got sucked into buying a timeshare. Along with this timeshare they got points. The points are enough to go on 3 vacations this year. One of which she gave to my husband, and I. We are supposedly going to Disney in california in July. The sales person, Patrick, was supposed to book the vacation and while its only been a week and we haven't heard anything, I am getting nervous because I am finding a lot of complaints and specially since we have invited my inlaws to go with us and we all have bought our airline tickets. One of the lies I know of from the salesman is, my mom asked if they were apart of the BBB and Patrick said yes and they had a A rating. Come to find out after they already paid and stuff they aren't with the BBB and have an F rating. We have tried calling and checking on the process but all we get in voicemails and no one calls back. Have any of you ever used your timeshare since buying did that as least go well. Please let me know.

  • Be
      6th of May, 2013
    -1 Votes

    I have to admit that after reading all this stuff I was very worried. But we have received everything and the contracts are what was agreed on as well as the sales man Patrick was very nice about out concerns and such. I miss spoke when I said he had lied about the bbb rating when he said they had an A rating with the bbb he was talking about RCI who is the broker. I feel better after seeing the paperwork and booking our first trip. I am sorry you all had difficulties, but so far everything is right on the money.

  • Je
      10th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @Becca76 [censored]

  • Bb
      27th of Mar, 2014
    +1 Votes

    We just signed out contract Wednesday and have been researching RCI since. We have seen nothing good on the internet about this company. We are going tomorrow to cancel our contract. I came across this link with a lawyer that is looking for more RCI members that are unhappy with the contract that they were duped into signing. You may want to check it out and contact him if you are still unsatisfied. http://www.islandpacket.com/2013/04/06/2452516/3-lawsuits-claim-unfair-sales.html

  • Ri
      30th of Jul, 2014
    +1 Votes

    All the people in the sales office will lie to you-especially Terrence Singleton and Sheldon Stanhope if that really is their names.

  • Dg
      29th of Nov, 2015
    +1 Votes

    I do not have experience with Coral Resorts, but I do have experience with RCI. We own timeshares - 3 weeks - at the Island Club - Seawatch resort on Hilton Head Island. We have owned these weeks for over 25 years. Seawatch is a resort where you buy the right to use specific weeks each year. They are always the same weeks. Nobody else can jump ahead of you and book your weeks. You can trade your weeks to go to other RCI resorts, which we have done.

    The thing we don't like about timeshares is that the share owners have absolutely no control over the maintanance fees, and they also slap us with special assessments every few years, which can be several thousand dollars per week. They usually do this when they "redecorate, " and if they charge an assessment of $1, 000 per week, you expect that they use that money to do major remodeling to the unit! After all, $1, 000 per week is $50, 000 per unit! However the next time we arrive it looks like maybe they replaced some carpet or some furniture or tchatkes, but nothing that should have cost $50K per unit! The timeshare owners do not have a property owners association that they could join to vote on this stuff. The management company decides to do whatever they want, and you pay for it.

    I have also discovered that there are some buildings at Island Club that are private ownership units, and the per-week rental fees are not much more than we pay in annual maintenance. We have some friends who come the same weeks we do. They rent the same unit every year, and it costs them LESS than it costs us. As much as we have enjoyed our time share over the years, I would not do it again.

  • Tr
      11th of Dec, 2015
    0 Votes

    We had similar experience in Oct. What the sales person 'promised" was not what the contract said, so they say, "if it's not in the contract, we don't have to do it." We have been calling daily, no one answers, no one returns messages. We have not paid completely yet, but don't know how to get out of it, since they will not communicate with us. Very frustrating, and they don't care!

  • Be
      28th of Dec, 2015
    +1 Votes

    Scammed in 2013. Just received new maintaincd fees. Same story as everyone else. They do not even tell you who owners are or who is in the owners assoc. also when we used our week we were told our unit was in older section called Springwood. This section was never mentioned when we bought. It is not a 5 star. People rating resort is not the owners it is people who exchange from other resorts. Timeshare owners never get to vote. Never received any yearly updates only bill for maintance fees which has no information as far as people to call. It gives a few numbers but no one answers. We are a elderly couple who thought we could enjoy with our children. Not happening as they can't go at the. Time they gave us. We're told we could use in summer. We are going to look into getting legal help and also going to contact attorney general o sc., BBB and FBI. Is their a class action suit? Ben in Pgh. pa.

  • Na
      10th of Feb, 2016
    +1 Votes

    I want to thank everyone for posting your stories. I did some research prior to attending the timeshare meeting this morning. I was genuinely interested in how the RCI point system worked. Unfortunately, after "Jen" did her explanation and I decided I wanted to do more research before committing (especially after reading your complaints) she became quite nasty and accusatory. I am glad I stepped away and will never deal with this company.

  • Je
      10th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @Nancy911 FIle a complaint with the South Carolina States Attorney General

  • De
      17th of Feb, 2016
    +1 Votes

    Yes I agree and when you actually try to pay the maintenance fees you have to deal with attitudes given from Leah! This girl almost made me went into preterm labor last year with her Nasty attitude! She should have been gone a long time ago!

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