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Old April 30, 2012, 08:43 AM   #1
HenryT
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[2012] First Issue Renting my Timeshares

So I rented my 4th of July week at the sheraton Broadway Plantation resort over a month ago. I had the renter sign my rental agreement which included a statement that the rental fee was non-refundable as long as the rental unit was available to the renter. I also restated this in my email to the renter and stated that they may want to get rental insurance as added protection (I use a paragraph I copied from Denise here on Tug on the subject). The renter paid 50% of the rental fee via PayPal and was to pay the balance 45 days prior to the rental.

About 2 weeks ago the renter emailed me saying that her husband just got a job after being unemployed so they could no longer use the unit (I guess he did not want to take a vacation soon after being on the new job or had to work that week). I reminded the renter of the terms of our rental agreement but told her I would give it some thought and get back with her. I also told her that if I was able to rent the unit to someone else I would definitely return her deposit.

Well, the day after I responded to the renter I received an email from PayPal stating that the renter had notified her credit card company that I had not performed to the agreement and she wanted her money back! PayPal stated that they were putting a hold on the funds until it was resolved. They stated that the credit card company would be the one who made the decision. They asked me for my side of the story.

PayPal has a Dispute Resolution section where I was to provide my inputs. I attached a copy of my signed rental agreement with the renter as well as the emails we had sent each other. This information clearly showns (to me) that the renter has no legal standing to get her money back.

After 2 weeks the funds are still on hold and the dispute is still being looked at by the renter's credit card company and by PayPal. Seems to be a long time for what I consider an "open and shut" case.

Has anyone else had this happen to them?
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Old April 30, 2012, 08:46 AM   #2
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Unfortunately, this happens once in awhile. This is why I get all the $$$ upfront, and then remove the funds from my Paypal Acct. immediately.
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Old April 30, 2012, 09:19 AM   #3
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Unfortunately, this happens once in awhile. This is why I get all the $$$ upfront, and then remove the funds from my Paypal Acct. immediately.
If Paypal get's charged back from the CC company won't they still ding your account leaving you with a negative balance or an insta deposit to cover it?
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Old April 30, 2012, 09:22 AM   #4
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Unfortunately, this happens once in awhile. This is why I get all the $$$ upfront, and then remove the funds from my Paypal Acct. immediately.
I wish that removing the Paypal funds helped, but it doesn't. If you have removed the funds from your Paypal account, Paypal will just bill you for the amount they think you owe. I suppose you could refuse to pay, but then you couldn't use the Paypal account again, and probably not the associated eBay account, either. Plus maybe Paypal would send you to collections; I don't know.

As people here may recall, a couple years back I had a renter pay for a rental with a stolen credit card. By the time Paypal discovered that the payment was bogus, the renter had already checked in. I ended up having to pay Paypal the $1200 the renter paid me.
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Old April 30, 2012, 09:26 AM   #5
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PS -- Henry, I hope Paypal rules in your favor. If not, you still have plenty of time to rent your week.

And if Paypal does rule in your favor, I wouldn't give the original renter a refund, even if you do find another renter. You offer to return the deposit if you could re-rent the week was more than fair, and yet the renter tried to do a chargeback! What part of "nonrefundable deposit" don't they understand?
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Old April 30, 2012, 09:30 AM   #6
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If Paypal get's charged back from the CC company won't they still ding your account leaving you with a negative balance or an insta deposit to cover it?
Yes, that is their policy. I'm sure they would make life hard on you too.
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Old April 30, 2012, 09:31 AM   #7
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PS -- Henry, I hope Paypal rules in your favor. If not, you still have plenty of time to rent your week.

And if Paypal does rule in your favor, I wouldn't give the original renter a refund, even if you do find another renter. You offer to return the deposit if you could re-rent the week was more than fair, and yet the renter tried to do a chargeback! What part of "nonrefundable deposit" don't they understand?
Your renters were just plain rude Henry. I don't know if I'd be inclined to return that deposit either. They are tying up your time and adding stress to your life. Good luck getting this sorted out. Paypal should rule in your favor, looks like you have dotted your i's and crossed your t's!
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Old April 30, 2012, 09:59 AM   #8
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Now you should keep the deposit to compensate for the aggravation they just caused you.

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Well, the day after I responded to the renter I received an email from PayPal stating that the renter had notified her credit card company that I had not performed to the agreement and she wanted her money back!
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Old April 30, 2012, 10:07 AM   #9
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Paypal can suck, especially if you are the sellar. All deemed "Rights" are lean toward buyer protection. Being a guitar player, I have read about a lot of deals gone sour because the buyer has "Buyers Remorse" and changes their mind. Or they file unwarranted claims against the seller stating that the product wasn't as described, when the buyer is over exaggerating the claim.

That is why a part of me doesn't want to do business anymore selling anything on ebay. There are to many people that don't have enough personal convictions to do the right thing. It seems to be getting worse as well. I'm 36, and I am already asking, "what is wrong with kids these days", the sad thing it's just not kids anymore.

Glad you kept all your paperwork and signed documentation. Fortunately, paypal seems to do a good job in the resolution dept, I just hate how they have a tendency to "Freeze" everything up and immediately side with the buyer.

They almost need to to have a completely different set of rules when it comes to rental agreements for vacations, etc., and maybe they do.. and I just don't know.
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Old April 30, 2012, 10:17 AM   #10
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in our small biz, we run credit cards for online orders - every so often we get a chargeback where we are in the right but we need to prove we are in the right. stuff like invoices, contracts and proof of shipping usually win those for us.

in your case, you are relying on paypal to fight that fight for you, and they won't try as hard as you would. i would try to get paypal to get you the chargeback info so you can fax the proof of the transaction directly to the credit card merchant.

i have no experience if that would work or not, but it would be worth asking for that.

usually the chargeback notice from our merchant has specific info they want to see - if you didn't get that it's hard to know if you are sending the right info so i would just send everything you have. every email, notes from every phone call, print screens of ebay auctions or redweek or however you found the renter (CL, etc). proof of not only your contract but where you send it to them, they sent it back. even if it's just hand written notes about "contract received 4/10/12 via us mail" i would include it.
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Old April 30, 2012, 10:26 AM   #11
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please keep us up to date on whats happening with this

it seems clear to me to that this is an open and shut case....How can they say you didnt perform until after the check in date?


But its a mute issue if you can re rent it. Thats where I would concentate my time. Get it re rented and then return the money as promised

And this time, like Denise said..get all the money up front
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Old April 30, 2012, 10:33 AM   #12
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Quote:
Now you should keep the deposit to compensate for the aggravation they just caused you.
Note that Paypal has already frozen the money because it's in the OP's Paypal Acct. The OP has no control over whether they return the deposit or not - Paypal will make that decision.

Quote:
I wish that removing the Paypal funds helped, but it doesn't. If you have removed the funds from your Paypal account, Paypal will just bill you for the amount they think you owe. I suppose you could refuse to pay, but then you couldn't use the Paypal account again, and probably not the associated eBay account, either. Plus maybe Paypal would send you to collections; I don't know.
Yes, Paypal may turn me over to collections if I refuse to make a refund to a scammer, but one has rights with collections, as well.

I don't need an ebay Acct., and I have a back up payment method, so I don't need Paypal either.

If someone wants to scam me - I'm not going to make it easy. YMMV
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Old April 30, 2012, 03:04 PM   #13
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Yes, Paypal may turn me over to collections if I refuse to make a refund to a scammer, but one has rights with collections, as well.

I don't need an ebay Acct., and I have a back up payment method, so I don't need Paypal either.

If someone wants to scam me - I'm not going to make it easy. YMMV
It is dishonest. Why should paypal suffer when someone is disputing their credit card charge. Paypal is just a way to process the payment.

Withholding money from paypal is not making it hard for the scammer.
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Old April 30, 2012, 03:15 PM   #14
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It is dishonest. Why should paypal suffer when someone is disputing their credit card charge. Paypal is just a way to process the payment.

Withholding money from paypal is not making it hard for the scammer.
Thanks for your input, but I prefer the advice of my attorney and accountant.
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Old April 30, 2012, 03:32 PM   #15
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It is dishonest. Why should paypal suffer when someone is disputing their credit card charge. Paypal is just a way to process the payment.

Withholding money from paypal is not making it hard for the scammer.


that's part of the risk paypal is assuming by pretending to be a bank but not a bank. they make money on fees and determine the fees based on assumed risk. scammers doing a chargeback against someone with no funds in their paypal is a risk they should be basing fees and policies on.
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Old April 30, 2012, 03:58 PM   #16
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that's part of the risk paypal is assuming by pretending to be a bank but not a bank. they make money on fees and determine the fees based on assumed risk. scammers doing a chargeback against someone with no funds in their paypal is a risk they should be basing fees and policies on.
While Denise is paying her lawyer and accountant for bad advice the rest of us will be having to pay increased fees to paypal to offset their losses.
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Old April 30, 2012, 04:36 PM   #17
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Your argument is that I should pay a scammer, to keep the fees down. Let's do the math:

My average timeshare rental is $1,550.

Let's say a scammer rips me off, I give Paypay the money, and I lose $1,550 on the rental.

Or let's say I refuse, and Paypal raises their fee from 2.9% to 3%.

That means the fees on a $1,550 rental increase by $2.50

I would have to rent 620 weeks at $1,550 each, before the increased fee would equal my $1,550 loss.

Or let's say I get on the naughty-naughty list and they raise my fees a full percent to 3.9% That means I would have to rent 94 timeshares at $1,550, before the increased fee would equal my $1,550 loss.

So it makes no sense to me to worry about increases in the fees, if you are losing hundreds of dollars at a time, to keep the fees down!
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Old April 30, 2012, 04:38 PM   #18
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Your argument is that I should pay a scammer, to keep the fees down. Let's do the math:

My average timeshare rental is $1,550.

Let's say a scammer rips me off, I give Paypay the money, and I lose $1,550 on the rental.

Or let's say I refuse, and Paypal raises their fee from 2.9% to 3%.

That means the fees on a $1,550 rental increase by $2.50

I would have to rent 620 weeks at $1,550 each, before the increased fee would equal my $1,550 loss.

Or let's say I get on the naughty-naughty list and they raise my fees a full percent to 3.9% That means I would have to rent 94 timeshares at $1,550, before the increased fee would equal my $1,550 loss.

So it makes no sense to me to worry about increases in the fees, if you are losing hundreds of dollars at a time, to keep the fees down!
plus... paypal is not dumb, they are an ebay company. the 2.9% already factors in assumed risk of these transactions... so it won't even go up. most likely fees will only go up to keep wall street happy.
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Old April 30, 2012, 05:44 PM   #19
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Denise you are not paying the scammer. You are returning the money that paypal gave you in advance. They still have the right to get that money back if the payer starts a claim with paypal or the credit company.

Maybe you should not use paypal as I am sure this is all stated in the terms and conditions.
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Old April 30, 2012, 06:51 PM   #20
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Denise you are not paying the scammer. You are returning the money that paypal gave you in advance.
This statement doesn't make any sense. How does Paypal "give me money in advance"? They don't - they collect payment from the buyer before they pay me - there is no "advance."

Quote:
Maybe you should not use paypal as I am sure this is all stated in the terms and conditions.
Thanks again for your advice, but I have done nothing to violate the Paypal terms and conditions, and I am a member in good standing, so I have no reason to stop using Paypal at this time.
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Old April 30, 2012, 07:31 PM   #21
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Credit card processors normally hold back payments for a certain amount of time, or keep a reserve in cases of chargeback. In most cases Paypal does not. I can only think that they do not because a lot of people use it infrequently and it is more in the eye of the public.

You may be in good standing not buy you have stated as soon as you get a chargeback you will not be in good standing. Maybe that violates their terms and conditions as it is.
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Old April 30, 2012, 08:41 PM   #22
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With Denise on this one.

Sorry, but I see zero reason that she should be in violation of tos. If they were to require you to "leave a cushion" amount in case a scammer wants to cheat you......they would lose alot of business. They are a middle man. They do not give an advance unless it is on their credit card, and that is simply another cc. Their fees are high enough, they have their own cushion if they want to be "generous" on a buyers remorse transaction. Let them do it with their own money. Not mine.
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Old April 30, 2012, 08:47 PM   #23
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Sorry, but I see zero reason that she should be in violation of tos. If they were to require you to "leave a cushion" amount in case a scammer wants to cheat you......they would lose alot of business. They are a middle man. They do not give an advance unless it is on their credit card, and that is simply another cc. Their fees are high enough, they have their own cushion if they want to be "generous" on a buyers remorse transaction. Let them do it with their own money. Not mine.
It's because of the behavior that Denise exhibits that Paypal is in the process of phasing out timeshare rentals support. Several merchants have been notified.

Those who claim that Paypal knows what it is doing by allowing people to withdraw money out of their account without a reserve are exactly right. So, Paypal is taking action. When risk becomes greater than reward, service stops.

People who abuse the credit card system should try to get a merchant account. Very few will accept timeshare rentals. Those consumers who can accept credit cards through Paypal would have very few options if Paypal stopped supporting them.
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Old April 30, 2012, 08:48 PM   #24
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I hate ebay and paypal so i avoid it these days, but I think you can set in your preferences that you only accept payment via echeck (which takes 7 days or something to clear) or via paypal balance. that might be something to turn on for future use to avoid where they can so easily dispute a charge on their credit card.
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Old April 30, 2012, 08:51 PM   #25
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The agreement that was signed by both parties should be upheld. We have a property management company and judges almost always uphold written agreements. I don't know who makes these decisions for Paypal, but if it's an attorney of legal department they should uphold the intent of the agreement. That's the reason we use written agreements.
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