Better Business Bureau Northwest + Pacific is alerting consumers to a Portland-based timeshare scam operating under the name M&T Property Management. Consumers have so far lost nearly $37,000 to this company.
BBB’s investigations team found that M&T is pretending to be a timeshare resale company and has gone through great lengths to make the company and associated website seem real. However, M&T has no escrow, real estate, property management or construction licenses within the state of Oregon.
The website, which was registered on August 21, 2018, appears legitimate, advertising an array of services such as brokerage and real estate investment management.
M&T Property Management has reinstated a former Oregon company that has since closed. BBB’s investigation team contacted the owners of this company who confirmed they never sold their business to M&T and that any associated legal documents are false.
BBB also has reason to believe this timeshare scam could be connected to a former Seattle-based scam operating under the name Beach Property Management. The company is using the same contracts, similar names and the same style of language on the website.
BBB brought this issue to the attention of the Oregon Real Estate Agency on April 23. Their investigations team tried to get in touch with M&T in April but was unable to reach anyone.
Several consumers have already lost thousands of dollars to M&T Property Management. Reports allege that M&T reached out to them with what appeared to be legitimate offers from buyers looking to purchase their timeshares well above marketplace value.
One couple was contacted about their property in the Dominican Republic and they accepted the offer.
“We expected a smooth and prompt closing process, but instead we were surprised and suspicious when we were advised by M&T that we must first pay a Mexican Federal SAT tax of $3,476,” this Florida-based consumer reported to BBB.
The couple paid. A few weeks later, M&T contacted them again, requesting thousands more in Mexican taxes and then even more, which M&T claimed were escrow fees. In total, the couple paid $10,200 via wire transfer using instructions provided by M&T.
“Finally, we exercised our right to cancel the entire transition, and we were advised this process would take 90 days, then later told 120 days from March 15, 2019. Communication from M&T has essentially ceased,” the consumer wrote in his report, filed on April 19.
Unfortunately, this case is just one of several that BBB is aware of, with victims spanning across the U.S. and in Canada.