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Raintree Vacation Club / fraud

1 P.O. Box 33370Irvine, CA, United States Review updated:
Contact information:
Phone: 1-800-424-6532

My wife and I purchased a vacation club membership with RCI/Raintree and have never been able to use it. We've called about 10 times to plan a vacation and every single time, I get the same response "We're sold out and have no space available". These were all different dates and locations. We got scammed out of a large sum of money. I am looking to file a class action lawsuit as many others have had the same experience. I just need to get a large enough group to fight these thieves!

Whatever you do, DO NOT BUY anything from RCI or Raintree or their affiliates.

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Comments

Ma
  29th of Nov, 2008
Agree Disagree +3 Votes

Sounds like silverleaf BIGTIME. REport to the FTC

Ci
  27th of Feb, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

I am so dissapointed in my Raintree memership. It is a joke. Good luck on booking anything. I would sell it in a minute if any one is interested. I have had it for 4 years and I keep trying to make it work but unless you go to mexico the other resotrts are unavailabe. The RCI portion is a bigger joke. Boy did i get scammed.

Mr
  6th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

Got a letter in the mail today from Raintree Vacation Club of which we have been members for 6 years. They are whining about not being able to meet all the "upgrades" their members want, so they now have to charge an $820 "Special Assessment". This company is a joke. Every time we have tried to book a timeshare vacation with them we have either been unable to or have had to jump through major hurdles to do so. Now because they are affliated with RCI, everytime I try to book, they want to push me off onto RCI's resorts, not Raintree's.
I urge all Raintree members to join together and file a class action lawsuit against this scam company.

Tr
  6th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

We are also upset about the Special Assessment, which arrived in the mail today. Ours is $767 for a small unit, alternate years. We have also been members for 6 years. Unlike previous posters, we have had 2 successful RCI trades, one in Hawaii and one in Italy, and have an upcoming stay at their new affiliate at Lake Tahoe. But I don't feel any obligation to pay them to provide what we already paid for.
Do we have any alternatives? What happens if we refuse to pay? Is the membership sellable(especially now)?

Cl
  7th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

We also got a letter yesterday with the Special Assessment amount of $918 which is extremely annoying. When we purchased a Club Regina timeshare in 2000 - the original maintenance fee was $465 and the contract is until 2046. Every year we have seen increases in our maintenance fees - 2009 fees were $918 and now this special assessment to "upgrade" the resorts. How can Raintree justify a 97.5% increase in maintenance fees over 9 years and still need this special assessment to make upgrades. Obvious mis-
management in my opinion.
We have reviewed the contract - it indicates that if the maintenance fee is upaid for two years, membership will be forfeited. Nothing is mentioned anywhere in the contract about Special Assessments. As for whether membership is sellable - highly unlikely. We originally paid $23, 950 for a 2 bedroom suite, one week unrestricted time, and we have had our timeshare listed for 18 months asking $6000 but have not been able to sell it. As long as Raintree is dropping prices in order to sell the new timeshare memberships they have available, ours is defintely not sellable.
We agree that a class action lawsuit against Raintree may be work pursuing.

Ms
  7th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +3 Votes

I too have received the "special assessment" fee letter. This is OUTRAGEOUS! We already pay close to $900 a year on maintenance even though when we bought the timeshare the salesman guaranteed it would not go up more than 2% a year. It started at $535 6 years ago. What a scam this is! Now this special assessment fee when the rest of the economy is crumbling. They are so out of touch with customers on this. I read through what they are upgrading and find it not needed but frivolous. I would tell anyone thinking of purchasing from these people to keep your money.

I have called them calmly trying to get an explanation and get testy and rude. They have some serious customer relations problems. Also, from the last time we stayed with them last summer at the Miners Club in Park City it was horrible service. They have cut back on services they offer like a shuttle around town, keeping the pool and jacuzzi clean and functioning, and the spa is no longer there. It is basically a room with a pool. Nothing else. Add in there the horrible service and they are just a bad place to stay. They have deceived me and shouldn't be allowed to deceive anyone else. I just want to know how to get out of this horrible racket I got myself into. They are thieves!

Ma
  8th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

I have been a member of Club Regina (now Raintree Vacation Club) for 13 years. I just got my "special assessment " letter today. I have always enjoyed my trips to Puerto Vallarta and Cancun and have also done several exchanges through RCI for Florida, Aruba and the eastern US. Yes, the fees have gone up year after year. My original fee was $350 back in 1996 and now am paying $820/yr for a 1-brdm unit. This is the second special assessment charge I have experienced. The first was after a hurricane destroyed the beach at Puerta Vallarta, but it was only $150. I am extrememly uspet about this assessment as it requires that we pay double fees this year. It also means that management is possibly using their good members to replenish the coffers for those who are not paying their regular annual fees in these tough times.
You can be sure if you refuse to pay that a lien will be filed against your regular property and your credit will be adversely affected. What are our options to sue? I don't know. I've never been this angry with RVC before!

Mr
  8th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree 0 Votes

We too have checked our Raintree contract and no where is there any mention of the resorts ability to charge (extort!) a Special Assessment fee. In researching other similar cases of timeshares trying to charge Special Assessment fee's many of the companies try to claim their ability to charge it is from some form of internal company policy, or internal resort charter, or some such b.s. These are simply not legal nor enforceable. Of course that won't stop these unethical rip-off timeshare companies from follow their usual course of action if you don't pay: stop your membership, attack your credit, harass you through collections, etc. Unfortunately the only long-term solution is a class action lawsuit in which many members unite, pool resources, and sue the company.

St
  8th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +2 Votes

It's all been said. I plan to sit down with my contract and read it, contact a lawyer refferal service here in Santa Cruz county and find out where we stand. I don't have any information yet on the number of members we have but class action suits may be throwing good money after bad. If I find that I can walk away from the ### that run this company I will.
Like I said I don't have enough concrete information yet. But one thing I'd like to do after this is behind us is to get some type of media exposure to inform the general public about this rip-off company.It sounds like there is probably quite a bit of animosity out there for a variety of reasons.

Mr
  8th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +2 Votes

Received my $820.00 "Special Assessment Fee" today. Can't understand why they feel they have the right to do this. I read my contract and it says we only need to pay our membership fee and maintenance fees. No where could I find a clause that said they can charge a "special assessment fee" anytime they want to.

Has anyone asked where it is written in our contract that they can charge us additional sums whenever they want to? If it weren't for the fact that they will probably attack our credit if we don't pay, I would just wait the 2 years and let my contract lapse.

I've been with Raintree for 7 years now on an every other year basis.. We haven't had any problems with them until now. We have always gotten into the units when we wanted.

Cb
  8th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

I just received my $820.00 special assessment and agree with many of the perspectives expressed above. While the Raintree facilities have been pleasant to stay at in the past, the economics of the RVC/Club Regina relationship are making it less and less attractive.
In my mind, there are three options on the table that can be taken to respond to the special assessment:
1. Check your contract to see about RVC's right to assess...and in any case complain
2. Consider your investment in the Club Regina/RVC a sunk cost and walk away. They can take your "asset" back and cancel your membership. It is hard to imagine they would have any recourse to one's credit rating given that the time share has been fully paid for. If they do pursue you...ignore the collection phone calls and rest assured that the potential remark in your credit file will be discounted due to its nature.
3. We should encourage every Club Regina/RVC member to register their thoughts and feelings about the special assessment on thiswebsite and http://tugbbs.com/forums, and invite RVC/Regina "leadership" to review the comments and reconsider their decision and seek other sources of funding.
4. Pursue the class action lawsuit avenue...long and arduous, but perhaps the best way to recoup some of our investment.
One gets the sense that this organization is going down...and in my mind it would be foolish to, in all probability, throw good money after bad

Ri
  9th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

Concerning the special assessment, there is nothing in my contract which allows this. Something is seriously wrong here. I've spent a little time doing the math. Take what you paid for a week of timeshare and multiply it by 52. In our case, it amounts to over a million for a two-bedroom unit. So, I think we can agree, we paid plenty for the property. Now multiply your maintenance fees by 52. In our case, it amounts to almost $50, 000. If you have visited these properties, is there any possibility they have spent this amount of money each year on each of these units. It doesn't cost $50, 000 a year to clean and change a few light bulbs in two or three rooms.

Read the list of things they say they need to replace. These are not major renovations. These are things which obviously don't last forever and could have been easily paid for out of the fees we've already paid. We're talking about bedding, lounge chairs and cushions. I've seen how they renovated the kitchens in Cancun. They told us the renovation would be completed in 2008. I was there in January 2009. If this is a complete renovation, we're talking very little expense to do it.

The contract states what the maintenance fees are to be used for. My guess is that the money is being siphoned off to make someone very rich. The contract also says it takes a vote of a majority of the members to approve a maintenance fee increase greater than 10% from the previous year. This represents more than a 100% increase from 2008. A contract is binding on both parties, it seems to me they are in breach of contract if they have spent the fees improperly and if they cancel our privileges for nonpayment of these special assessments.

As for me and my house, we do not plan to pay this special assessment unless they can provide a legal document with my signature proving we owe it. If they cancel our privileges and pursue us through collections, we will deal with it when it happens.

Be
  9th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

I also just opened our "Special Assessment Fee" $820 letter signed by Douglas Bech. The premise of the letter is that the recent on-line member survey showed that we all want upgrades. Baloney. I feel the premise is a smoke-screen for the reality of the Mexican economy: diminished tourist dollars due to the swine flu scare, the high cost of flying and our own US economic downturn. And the addition of another big resort south of Cancun - they probably can't sell the timeshares due to the overall economy. So they have to make it up somewhere else...The supposed upgrades should be covered by our regular maintenance fees. I accept that. But not this.
There was no mention of ANY efforts on the part of Raintree to reduce expenses. My God, all of us have had to reduce our expenses. If the letter had told the truth about the "need" for the Special Assessment fee, I could almost accept it. But the letter is masking the truth and I agree with those of us who wish to protest this extortion.
What to do?!
Beth B.

He
  9th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

If you refuse to pay a maintenance fee or this "special assessment" crap - I thought all they can do is terminate your membership. WHAT IS THIS ABOUT CREDIT REPORTING, COLLECTIONS AND THEM PUTTING A LIEN ON YOUR PROPERTY?

Mr
  9th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

My wife and I now have a lawyer looking at our contract. Will post his response as soon as we get it.

Mr
  9th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

I should have said, a lawyer is looking at our contract AND the Special Assessment letter that came to us.

Mr
  9th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

FYI- There is another thread running on this board for this same topic:
https://www.complaintsboard.com/complaints/raintree-c210535.html

An
  9th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

Mr. D,

Please let these people know how to file a complaint against Raintree Resorts International with the Houston BBB. Do you think it would help too if we all filed a complaint against Raintree Vacation Club of Las Vegas?

Thanks,
Anne

Mr
  9th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree +1 Votes

Anne,
Below is the information for filing a complaint with the Houston BBB

BBB of Metropolitan Houston
(Houston, TX)
1333 W. Loop South, Ste. 1200
Houston, TX 77027
Phone: (713)868-9500
Fax: (713)867-4947
Email: bbbinfo@bbbhou.org
Web: http://www.bbbhou.org

Not sure about LV. Definitely couldn't hurt. The more noise we make the better.

Ti
  9th of Jun, 2009
Agree Disagree 0 Votes

Raintree has mismanaged their funds and is now attempting to "extort" money from their members under the mask of a "special assessment" They are going to have a fight on their hands and will not get any "extra" money from me!

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