ASIC prying timeshares
AUSTRALIA’S corporate regulator is preparing to tighten consumer protections around the timeshare industry after a string of complaints about the sector’s value and sales practices.
The ABC’s 7.30 Report last night aired consumer accusations of misleading conduct and poor investment returns, and said the Australian Securities and Investment Commission was planning to increase regulation of timeshare schemes.
The program focussed on the sales practices of Classic Holidays and the experience of a Sydney couple who were charged a $21,000 membership fee.
They had been approached at a shopping centre and invited to a sales seminar in 2014, yet had not taken a holiday since.
“What people find when they arrive at these seminars is that they are subject to very high pressure sales tactics and they feel a lot of pressure to sign up to what is essentially a very poor value product,” Katherine Temple of the Consumer Action Law Centre told the 7.30 Report.
The program also spoke to investors in the Ramada Phillip Island Resort who said they had not received any income in the five years since the property was taken over by Wyndham.
Classic Holidays and Wyndham were approached for comment on the program, though had not responded at time of publication.