BBB Investigates Suspicious Timeshare Resale Company

  
     
March 24, 2017

BBB Investigation Gravity Defying Business

Timeshare Resale Company claims to be on the 23rd floor of a 9 story building.

 In 2016 BBB began receiving inquiries on a timeshare resale company, claiming to be in Peoria Illinois. Callers reported having been contacted by a company claiming to be Carlton Management Company, Llc, offering to sell their timeshare for them. Recently BBB received a complaint from a California consumer who had decided to give Carlton Management Company some business.  The consumer was told that the company had been hired by a large Dutch brewing company to acquire many timeshares in Mexico.  The complaint states that the consumer was asked to wire $1558 in fees to a bank in Mexico and was told that money would be kept in an escrow account until the sale was final.  The consumer complied with this request, which was immediately followed by an additional request to wire $3500 more.  The consumer became suspicious and later confirmed with the bank in Mexico that the account the funds were received into was in fact a checking account, not an escrow account. Additionally, the bank confirmed the funds were no longer in the account.  This is when the consumer began requesting a refund. BBB contacted the company, however, to date the company has not responded, nor has the consumer received a refund.

According to the company’s website, www.carltonmcllc.com they are located at 205 NE Madison Peoria IL and use a photo of the building which is the former Four Points by Sheraton Hotel.  BBB sent mail to the company at this address which was returned by the United States Post Office as ‘no such number’. Additionally, according to the United States Postal Service, the former Four Points by Sheraton Hotel is located at 500 Hamilton in Peoria. 

BBB continued its investigation by contacting the company, posing as a consumer wanting to sell a timeshare.  Our investigator stated that she was standing outside of the building and needed to know which suite number they were located in so she could discuss selling her timeshare in Branson MO.  After being put on hold twice, she was transferred to a man named George Blackburn III, who had a very thick Hispanic accent, and was told Carlton Management Llc did not buy or sell timeshares within the states but could sell her one in Mexico.  There would by a 9% commission fee.  When BBB’s investigator continued to press for an in person meeting and needed to know which floor and suite number the company was on, Mr. Blackburn replied that they were on the 23rd floor, however they would only meet her by an appointment only.

BBB reached out a representative at the City of Peoria’s Planning and Development Department, who provided a floor plan of the currently vacant building.  The company claims to be on the 23rd floor of a 9 story vacant building.

The company claims to be a Limited Liability Corporation and have licensed brokers. BBB could not find any listing for this company in Peoria Illinois with the Illinois Secretary of State’s office nor any licensing with the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.

Will the real Carlton Management please stand up?

BBB did find a company named Carlton Management Company, LLC located at 4411 W Gatling in Country Club Hills IL that offers apartment property management services in Cook County. BBB spoke with the company’s President, Keith Larson who stated they have received numerous calls from consumers looking for a company brokering a timeshare, which is not what his company offers. This Carlton Management LLC in Cook County has been registered with the Illinois Secretary of State.

Further research on the company’s website and found another site, nearly identical using the name of Texas Loyal, LLC. Both companies offer timeshare resales, have identical testimonials and are both registered to the same address and phone number. 

BBB advises caution if you're contacted with an offer to sell or rent your timeshare. 

Companies may claim to have a buyer or renter or even imply they represent foreign investors; or that corporations are interested, when at most they are offering to advertise your timeshare for sale or rent.

Do not confuse the service of an advertising or marketing company with those of a real estate company. In most real estate transactions it is the buyer who puts up a deposit and the real estate company gets its commission from the seller only after the deal closes. Ask if the company's salespeople are licensed to sell real estate or whether they are selling an advertising program and verify the license. Find out where they currently advertise and visit other Internet listings the company may have. Most companies cannot tell you whether a timeshare has rented or sold because these are generally "For Sale (or Rent) By Owner advertisements. Fees for timeshare listing services can vary with little guarantee that your unit will be sold or rented. 

ABOUT BBB: For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau has been helping people find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. In 2015, people turned to BBB more than 172 million times for BBB Business Reviews on more than 5.3 million businesses and Charity Reports on 11,000 charities, all available for free at bbb.org. The Council of Better Business Bureaus is the umbrella organization for the local, independent BBBs in the United States, Canada and Mexico, as well as home to its national programs on dispute resolution, advertising review, and industry self-regulation.

BBB serving 36 Counties of Central Illinois is located at 8100 N University St. Peoria IL 61615

BBB can be reached M-F at 30-688-5124 or anytime at bbb.org

Media contact: Jessica Tharp, BBB Vice President

jtharp@hoibbb.org

309-208-8050 cell