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[2008] Request for Review before I file lawsuit

wyndhamrental

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As many of you know I am preparing a personal lawsuit again Wyndham Vacation Ownership. I had hoped to file it on 10/09/08 because I liked the idea of a ‘count down’ date. But, silly me, the count down, as it turns out – was against us, as Wyndham VO owners!!! A date I am sure we can all remember.

Instead of filing what I had ready and prepared, I decided to take an extra few days and ‘expand’ the scope of my Complaint. As of 10/09/08 it was a very personal lawsuit but since then I have decided to add a section about Wyndham policy in general as it relates to the Deteriorating Benefits of all Wyndham owners – and us ‘mega owners/renters’ in particular.

By my incorporating these issues into my lawsuit, there should be a very good likelihood that Wyndham will have to address them in my legal right to request depositions, interrogatives and my demand for them to produce documentation. They can avoid our requests and postings that we discuss among ourselves but they CANNOT ignore a court order indefinitely. And YES - I am prepared for a VERY LONG HAUL/WAR - they Will Not Out Wait Me and they can't cost me more than I've already paid (i.e. everything I owned). I have nothing more I can lose (my Faith is not at stake), all the time in the world to fight them and free legal advice!!!! I guess they could hope that I die and go home to Dad. To date my Complaint is over 30 pages long and has +150 'points/paragraphs/whatever those numbered things are called'.

To this end – would you please review my list below and edit as needed. I specifically want to know if what I have detailed below is accurate and WHEN these events occurred (and/or were rescinded). For reasons I can't understand (she says with tongue in cheek) - Wyndham stopped answering my emails weeks/months ago when I asked for clarification on these and other issues.

Overall it seems that these DETERORATING BENEFITS began shortly after Deanne Gabel became Senior Vice President of Owner Services in early/mid 2006 (and who has recently added “FairShare Plus Plan Manager” to her title). Because I still like Deanne personally (and Shearon Roach-Hurst, Jodie Davidson, Elaine Havock and Teresa Havock - and maybe Matthew Elquist to whom I've spoken twice - and maybe Scott Richards but I've never met nor had any 'dealings' with him yet - I just know that he replaced Jodie Davidson when she got promoted) and respect them as loyal Wyndham employees, I choose to believe that they are being coerced by Wynfield into being their 'Hatch People' against their personal (not professional) choice. I could (and very well might) be wrong - but that it what I choose to believe. With that said - there are true 'slim balls' out there that I won't discuss!!!


Phase One – AFTER the May 11, 2006 VOA meeting in Las Vegas, NV - no more VIP benefits for guests (no more point discounts, no more free upgrades and no more free guest certificates for guests of VIP owners).

Phase Two – AFTER the May 31, 2007 VOA meeting in Orlando, FL - there are no longer unlimited free guest certifications (the price is now $49) and reservations have to be cancelled 15 days before check-in or all points will be lost.

Phase Three – at our preVOA (May 28) and the VOA (May 29, 2008) meeting in Orlando, FL – no more unlimited guest confirmations but ‘prorated’ as to level of membership (1 for FSP member, 5 for VIP, 10 for Gold VIP and 15 per million for Platinum) based on retail, resale and PIC points with additional guest certificates to cost $49 as of Oct. 15, 2008.

Phase Four – 10/09/08 email entitled “Important Changes to Your FairShare Plus Transaction Fees”. During the May 28, 2009 pre VOA meeting Deanne Gabel was specifically asked “Can we expect more fee announcements this year?” and “Can you justify the increase in the guest confirmation fees when they can be requested via the Web without any customer support participation?” Her reply – “There are no increases in fees anticipated.” In the announcement it was stated that Guest Confirmations would increase from $25 to $129/$99 (contact center/website), that resale points will not be used to calculate ‘eligible points’ into the guest certificate equation, and that there will be increases in five of the other seven ‘fee based’ categories.

Comments/corrections are being solicited but I would appreciate receiving them ASAP so that I can finish ‘what needs be done’. Kendra

DETERORATING BENEFITS – Aimed Particularly at “Renters”
No longer able to rent unlimited points from Wyndham – July, 2006
No longer receive VIP status with resale – July, 2006
No longer able to transfer of PIC points to other owners – Jan., 2007
No longer receive unlimited guest certificates as VIP Platinum – Oct 15, 2008
Resale points not ‘eligible’ in count of how many limited guest certificates
Increase in fee for guest certificates - $25 to $49 to $129/$99 (contact center/website)
Increase in fee for Express Window (within 60 days of check-in) of Points Rental - $5 per 1K to $10/$8 per 1 K (contact center/website)
Can’t use photos from website – Jan, 2008
No ½ point discounts for guests within 60 days without owners present (VIP Platinum) –
CHANGED BACK - when?
No upgrades for guests within 60 days without owners present (VIP Platinum) –
CHANGED BACK - when?
No guests without owner present –
CHANGED BACK - when?
Cancel 15 days prior to check-in or lose all points -
Increase in fees – Oct. 15, 2008

DETERORATING BENEFITS – VIP
No longer have our personal ‘Vacation Counselor’
No longer have our own ‘Exclusive Toll-free Reservations Hotline’
No longer request specific rooms
Increase in PIC (Personal Interval Choice) fees from $25 to $49 to $89
No ½ point discounts for guests within 60 days without owners present (VIP Platinum) -
CHANGED BACK -
No upgrades for guests within 60 days without owners present (VIP Platinum) –
CHANGED BACK -

DETERORATING BENEFITS – General
No longer receive VIP status with resale – July, 2006
Regular use points are used before cancelled points (which can NOT be transferred to other owners, used to make an ARP [Advance Reservation Priority at ones home resort at 13 months], RARP [Reciprocal Advance Reservation Priority at 11 months at other resorts] or put in the credit pool).
Increased fees in six of Wyndham’s eight “Fee Based Categories: :
Subject: Important Changes to Your FairShare Plus Transaction Fees
Date: Thu, 9 Oct 2008 15:08:17 -0700
From: FairSharePlus@FVOA.com


Program Feature Current Fee New Fee
Contact Center New Fee
Web Site

As of October 15, 2008
Reservation Transactions $30 $59 $30
Points Credit Pool $30 $39 Not Currently Available
Points Rental Standard Window
$10 per 1,000 Standard Window
$10 per 1,000 Not Currently Available
Express Window
$5 per 1,000 Express Window
$10 per 1,000 Express Window
$8 per 1,000
PIC
(Personal Interval Choice) $50 $89 Not Currently Available
Guest Confirmations
(Fee only applies to confirmations made in excess of annual complimentary allocation based on eligible points) $25 $129 $99
Housekeeping Credits $2.25 per credit No Change No Change
Billing Fee
(If you receive a paper version of your monthly or annual statement) $6 $8 No Fee with PAC



RCI
No longer make ARP exchanges into RCI
No longer ‘see’ generic deposits on RCI website –

EXTRA HOLIDAYS
Wyndham Vacation Ownership’s ‘rental ‘arm’ – does not have to abide by same rules as owners (pay for guest certificate, cancel before 15 days of check-in, guests accept responsibility for any damage). Extra Holidays can take a full week of an owner's 'reservation' and just pay (weeks later) for one or two days and the owner has lost the rest. Wyndham is allowed to take 90% of the inventory that is still available 60 days before check-in and put it into Extra Holidays.

Kendra
 

lprstn

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Looks like a pretty inclusive list...I agree you are definately right on the points...
 

flyguybob

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My fiancee' got suckered into the $2000 18 month deal. Is there any automatic conversion into the $40,000 deal that she has to worry about? Is there a time period in which she needs to cancel so that they don't start charging for the $40k.
...unfortunately she and her sister were suckered, though the 300,000 points for $2000 seemed somewhat reasonable, it is definitely not worth $40k especially considering what Wyndham is doing to their VOs.

Thanks,

Bob
 

Jya-Ning

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My fiancee' got suckered into the $2000 18 month deal. Is there any automatic conversion into the $40,000 deal that she has to worry about? Is there a time period in which she needs to cancel so that they don't start charging for the $40k.
...unfortunately she and her sister were suckered, though the 300,000 points for $2000 seemed somewhat reasonable, it is definitely not worth $40k especially considering what Wyndham is doing to their VOs.

Thanks,

Bob
If this is Wyndham, my understanding is that will be a seperate contract. So it can not be converted automatically. You can go over the contract to see what they actually signed. It is O.K. if use it as try on.

Jya-Ning
 

felipe

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Felipe

I am a 78 year old retired clergyman. My wife and I are certain we were defrauded by Wyndham salesmen in March of 2008 at their Grand Desert Resort.

We made an appointment with Member Services and met with a young man, who claimed he was not a salesman, received no commissions and was on a salary just to help owners. When he looked up our records, he discovered we had no Travel Consultant assigned to us for over 10 years and volunteered to help us n that capacity if we chose him. We agreed.

I was worried about what would happen to our 308,000 VIP points when we died. He said that all we had to do was call him for anything, reservations, rentals or any guidance and he would be our representative and my wife (if alone) could depend on him. Before we knew it we were new Gold VIP members with 531, 000 points and sure we did the right thing.

We wanted to trade in one of their resorts in South Caroliina but they took our UDI resort in Colorado in trade, without telling us in advance. We have paid off the full points BUT our dependable representative will not answer calls, emails or do anything for us.

We may not have legal recourse, but we have been swindled, in our opinion.

Nothing that Grand Desert Member Services has promised has taken place.

I really do no know what to do, except feel victimized and taken for a ride.

Our church has over 10,000 congregations with newsletters going out to all parishes and if I cannot gain redress from Wyndham, at least I can tell our story, without making libelous comments, to caution or warn off other unsuspecting elders to beware.

Felipe
 

AwayWeGo

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Pax Vobiscum.

Hi Rev. --

Greetings & blessings.

You can tell the folks in the pews to Buy Timeshares Resale & Save Thousands.

You can also tell'm that if the timeshare sellers' lips are moving, chances are they're fibbing -- or at least stretching the truth to a considerable degree.

Further, you can point out to all the churchgoers that no matter how much they pay, all timeshares are used-used-used by the time anybody gets there & checks in. So therefore, why pay new prices for something that's no such thing ?

There is no such thing as a new timeshare.

Peace be with you.

Amen.

-- Alan Cole, McLean (Fairfax County), Virginia, USA.​
 

Sandy VDH

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We wanted to trade in one of their resorts in South Caroliina but they took our UDI resort in Colorado in trade, without telling us in advance.

We have paid off the full points BUT our dependable representative will not answer calls, emails or do anything for us.

Felipe
I am not sure I understand what you are saying in this statement. What were you trying to book? South Carolina in the summer is THE hardest trade in all of Wyndham. If you don't own there, you have to compete with everyone else at the 10 month mark. So if you are not on the phone getting the request in as soon as they open that day you might not get what you want.

Why would "they take our UDI resort in Colorado in trade". I really don't understand what you are saying in this statement. Trade for what? Are you talking equity trade when you made your Grand desert purchase. However UDI does refer to regular points at Wyndham so I don't really understand what you are saying.

As far a "Personal Representative" I wouldn't rely on someone else doing a more thorough job than yourself. I have heard this is a sales pitch, but there are no personal representative assigned to members.

If you have none of this in writing then you likely have no grounds for fraud.

Perhaps your best course of revenge is to learn the Wyndam system and take control of your ownership.

Sorry for your frustration.

I like Wyndham the product, I do NOT like Wyndham sales and administration.
 

wyndhamrental

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Soooo - a new 'non benefit' to add to my original list:

No longer able to rent/transfer points from other members/owners (effective March 1, 2009) - first noted on Dec. 15, 2008 and found in "Year End Statement"

DETERORATING BENEFITS – Aimed Particularly at “Renters”
No longer able to rent unlimited points from Wyndham – July, 2006
No longer receive VIP status with resale – July, 2006
No longer able to transfer of PIC points to other owners – Jan., 2007
No longer receive unlimited guest certificates as VIP Platinum – Oct 15, 2008
Resale points not ‘eligible’ in count of how many limited guest certificates
Increase in fee for guest certificates - $25 to $49 to $129/$99 (contact center/website)
Increase in fee for Express Window (within 60 days of check-in) of Points Rental - $5 per 1K to $10/$8 per 1 K (contact center/website)
Can’t use photos from website – Jan, 2008
No ½ point discounts for guests within 60 days without owners present (VIP Platinum) –
CHANGED BACK - when?
No upgrades for guests within 60 days without owners present (VIP Platinum) –
CHANGED BACK - when?
No guests without owner present –
CHANGED BACK - when?
Cancel 15 days prior to check-in or lose all points -
Increase in fees – Oct. 15, 2008
 
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rickandcindy23

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Kendra, the new loss of being able to transfer points from another account is going to hurt us. Well, sounds like they really are out to get all of us who have been renting points. :(
 

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I would try to contact Patty Cohen, the Grand Desert VP that oversees the "in-house" dept.

This is a "crafty" group and, according to the current Director of Sales for this dept., they "dance with the devil to get business. When you signed the contract, you also met with a VLO - verification loan officer. Try to get their name as well. Remember that many of these sales folks make over $20k per month and will deny anything that will cost them their dear commissions.
 

london

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Lawsuit

Have you anticipated the cost of legal representation for this action?

In what court will you file? Your course of action could take a year or more.

Most large corporations have excellent legal teams.

Good luck.
 

wyndhamrental

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Current status of my lawsuit

Thanks for your concern. As I am representing myself pro so, there is no attorney (and no attorney fees) involved. My actual out of pocket expenses will be court costs and I'm prepared for those. As to the timing - I've lost my home and my belongings because of Wyndham's actions against me and so I have nothing more to lose and nothing but time left. I am prepared for the long haul and if it takes years, it takes years.

I originally filed in El Paso County District Court (Colorado Springs) but lawyers Wyndham hired in Denver had it quickly moved up there to Federal court. I have met with their hired attorneys twice - originally on Dec. 12 to discuss the "Scheduling Order" and again last Friday, Dec. 19 for our Rule 26(f) meeting in which we discussed what we are agree upon - that I purchased three developer UDI contracts with associated PIC contracts.

I have answered their Counterclaim, Amended Counterclaim and Corrected Amended Counterclaim and have Amended my Complaint. It is moving along.

If anyone would like a copy of any or all of the above, please email me at wyndhamrental@yahoo.com and I will forward it/them to you. Kendra
 

gmarine

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You whole lawsuit is basically that Wyndam changed its program. I'm gonna venture to guess that just about everything your complaining about is covered somewhere in the contract you signed when you purchased that states the program can change etc.

And the part about losing your home because of Wyndam is a bit misleading. I remember your original post. You lost your home because you paid Wyndam instead of paying your mortgage.
 

wyndhamrental

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You whole lawsuit is basically that Wyndam changed its program. I'm gonna venture to guess that just about everything your complaining about is covered somewhere in the contract you signed when you purchased that states the program can change etc.

And the part about losing your home because of Wyndam is a bit misleading. I remember your original post. You lost your home because you paid Wyndam instead of paying your mortgage.
Interesting observation but you are wrong on both counts.

The WHAT of my lawsuit is how Wyndham has handled my accounts. Of almost 200 points in my lawsuit there is only one referrence to changes and that is used in my defense as to WHY Wyndham did to me what Wyndham did. A big difference.

Further - I lost my home to a short sale (and all my belongings) because I was unable to earn an income because Wyndham 'flagged'/closed my accounts.

It is all outlined and explained in my lawsuit and I will be happy to email a copy to anyone who asks. Kendra wyndhamrental@yahoo.com
 
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gmarine

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Interesting observation but you are wrong on both counts.

The WHAT of my lawsuit is how Wyndham has handled my accounts. Of almost 200 points in my lawsuit there is only one referrence to changes and that is used in my defense as to WHY Wyndham did to me what Wyndham did. A big difference.

Further - I lost my home to a short sale (and all my belongings) because I was unable to earn an income because Wyndham 'flagged'/closed my accounts.

It is all outlined and explained in my lawsuit and I will be happy to email a copy to anyone who asks. Kendra wyndhamrental@yahoo.com
All your references to deteriorating benefits are changes to the program. Its a shame you lost your home but at some point you should accept that it isnt Wyndams fault. You chose to pay your maintenance fees instead of your mortgage. You chose to depend on a timeshare program for income when you should have known that timeshare programs can and will change.

I feel bad you lost your home but honestly this is a nuisance lawsuit that isnt going to go anywhere.
 

Dave M

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All your references to deteriorating benefits are changes to the program.
That's correct. However, if you go back to the OP's first post here, you'll see that the OP was about ready to file the suit but decided to include a section about Wyndham policies, etc. The OP was seeking advice as to whether there was anything that should be modified in that proposed addition (i.e., the items listed in the first post) to the planned lawsuit. Thus, we don't have the details for the numerous alleged Wyndham actions that adversely affected the OP's life and which the lawsuit covers.
 
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I speak only as a layman. Unfortunately, I do not have the legal knowledge I would like to have. But from a layman's perspective and opinion, it seems that Kendra has been a victim of a violation of antitrust laws. It is my understanding that antitrust laws protect against abusive behavior by a firm dominating a market, or anti-competitive practices that tend to lead to such a dominant position.

Kendra, at one time, had a very viable and profitable business built from the rental of her timeshare interests. I know that doesn't set well with some of you because Wyndham has convinced a large number of you that renters are the enemy and timeshares were never intended for the rental business. However, whether someone chooses to use their ownership for family vacations or they choose to use it as a source of income should be entirely up to them. An owner of property should be able to decide how to use their property. Wyndham has used the fact that some of her accounts were in default as a basis for flagging the accounts. But it is my understanding that the primary reason she defaulted on her accounts were because of changes that were implemented by Wyndham making it difficult for her to continue business as usual and generating the income needed to pay them.

Kendra's rental business was in direct competition with Wyndham's Extra Holidays. Every single change that has been made to our ownership in recent years has been one that targets a business model such as Kendra's. It's for that reason that I feel she has been a victim of antitrust violations.

Think about this. If a company is trying to position itself as dominant in the market place and at the same time is in the position to make the rules about how their competitors are allowed to operate their businesses do they not have a HUGE, UNFAIR advantage over their competitors? That is EXACTLY the situation with Wyndham! The three Board members on our Trust, making the rules governing our ownership, are ALL Wyndham corporate executives. And every rule change made by our Board has enhanced Wyndham's positioning while at the same time crippling their competitors, such as Kendra.

This should have owners OUTRAGED! How can it NOT make you angry when you observe this giant bullying the little guy? If you witness that big bully on the street tripping up little Johnny, knocking his books out of his hands, jeering at him, causing others to call little Johny names, are you not enraged. Does it not anger you that this big kid gets away with that?

Personally, I'm fed up with observing this scene play out over the past few years. If there were equal representation on the Board we would not at this time even be visiting this issue. But until owners wise up to what is going on and take control of our Association we will continue to see the little guy beat up by this big corporate bully.

Just my thoughts, not intended to represent fact,
Allen
 

timeos2

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Not to say Wyndham is right - but they may no be wrong either

Kendra, at one time, had a very viable and profitable business built from the rental of her timeshare interests. I know that doesn't set well with some of you because Wyndham has convinced a large number of you that renters are the enemy and timeshares were never intended for the rental business. However, whether someone chooses to use their ownership for family vacations or they choose to use it as a source of income should be entirely up to them. An owner of property should be able to decide how to use their property. Wyndham has used the fact that some of her accounts were in default as a basis for flagging the accounts. But it is my understanding that the primary reason she defaulted on her accounts were because of changes that were implemented by Wyndham making it difficult for her to continue business as usual and generating the income needed to pay them.

Kendra's rental business was in direct competition with Wyndham's Extra Holidays. Every single change that has been made to our ownership in recent years has been one that targets a business model such as Kendra's. It's for that reason that I feel she has been a victim of antitrust violations.
The problem isn't her renting (if an owner has a plan to make that work I'm OK with it BUT to expect hundreds of transactions and/or guest certificates to be free forever is a bit much). Where the problem arises in that specific case is the delinquent fees. It is standard practice that if there is one owner and multiple accounts then a past due balance on one applies to them all. Nothing anti-trust or otherwise illegal about it - it is for the protection of the plan/system/resort. An owner who lets an account go delinquent, for whatever reason, has to know they no longer have the ability to reserve on any of their weeks/points/accounts. That isn't unique to Wyndham and is accepted collection procedure.

After the fact, if she could establish that somehow actions of Wyndham caused her financial harm unfairly then she could get a refund or a damage settlement. But taking unilateral, self-help actions almost never works and she was taking a big risk in attempting that course.
 
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Where the problem arises in that specific case is the delinquent fees. It is standard practice that if there is one owner and multiple accounts then a past due balance on one applies to them all. Nothing anti-trust or otherwise illegal about it - it is for the protection of the plan/system/resort. An owner who lets an account go delinquent, for whatever reason, has to know they no longer have the ability to reserve on any of their weeks/points/accounts. That isn't unique to Wyndham and is accepted collection procedure.
I certainly agree that the reason Wyndham froze her accounts was a legitimate one, delinquency on the account. THAT is not my issue. What I DO take issue with is that Wyndham has used their position of influence to financially ruin those, like Kendra, who choose to use their ownership as a source of income. That's when I think it becomes an antitrust issue. When a business uses it's position of influence to unfairly eliminate competition, in my opinion, you have an antitrust violation. They see Kendra and others as a competitive threat to their Extra Holidays rental company and have systematically changed rules so as to eliminate that competition.

Just my thoughts, not intended to represent fact,
Allen
 

AwayWeGo

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Opinions -- We've All Got'm.

Just my thoughts, not intended to represent fact,
Shux, just because they're your thoughts, that doesn't automatically make'm wrong.

You may well be right on the money.

Wouldn't that be something ?

-- Alan Cole, McLean (Fairfax County), Virginia, USA.​

 
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BUT to expect hundreds of transactions and/or guest certificates to be free forever is a bit much
You may think that to be "bit much". However, that is EXACTLY the benefit that was sold to anyone who would upgrade their level of ownership to VIP Platinum, UNLIMITED, FREE transactions and guest certificates! It is, in fact, FOR THIS REASON, that many owners were able to see the potential for a business model similar to Kendra's as workable.

And if you think THAT is a bit much then you must be ABSOLUTELY APPALLED that Wyndham's Extra Holidays gets that perk, not by the "hundreds", but by the THOUSANDS.

Just my thoughts, not intended to represent fact,
Allen
 

timeos2

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VIP has no guarantees.

You may think that to be "bit much". However, that is EXACTLY the benefit that was sold to anyone who would upgrade their level of ownership to VIP Platinum, UNLIMITED, FREE transactions and guest certificates! It is, in fact, FOR THIS REASON, that many owners were able to see the potential for a business model similar to Kendra's as workable.

And if you think THAT is a bit much then you must be ABSOLUTELY APPALLED that Wyndham's Extra Holidays gets that perk, not by the "hundreds", but by the THOUSANDS.

Just my thoughts, not intended to represent fact,
Allen
One problem is depending on VIP for anything as it is, was and will always be an optional package that offers nothing guaranteed in writing. It clearly states the benefits are subject to change, unlike those with the actual deeded or UDI purchase, and if they do change too bad (obviously not the actual wording but the end result). If sales continue to be hurt as badly as it appears then look for even more drastic cuts in what that division can fund including any VIP stuff. Once it goes away it's unlikely to ever come back. They might keep the "free" newspaper but not much more. Bad times to be depending on anything not under written contract or regular sources of funding. Even the things they wrote in - right to rent, transfer, etc - are under attack. The bonuses have virtually no chance of survival.
 

bnoble

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I haven't paid extremely close attention to Kendra's situation. But, the sense I get is that she is where she is in part because she was too heavily leveraged, and thus exposed to significant risk. True, Wyndham is playing hardball, but to my layman's eyes, they don't have much in the way of legal exposure.

From what she has posted so far, it's clear that Wyndham is happy to let her beat her head against the wall for as long as it takes for her to go away. If it comes to that, I'm guessing that Wyndham's legal staff will be happy to let her get to a court appearance, provided she is still without counsel.

It is, in fact, FOR THIS REASON, that many owners were able to see the potential for a business model similar to Kendra's as workable.
Yes, and there are many more folks who considered the business proposition, but decided against it, precisely for the reason John brings up---the entire VIP program is built on a foundation of sand. We've had this discussion recently, but unless your payoff horizon is very short and your ROI is significant, there's just too much risk there to make it pay off.
 

T_R_Oglodyte

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One of the basic principles of operating any business is locking in your supplies and sources. If you manufacture widgets, you enter into contracts with your suppliers of gozintas so that you know they will be there for you. If you have only onesupplier of gozintas, you take special precautions to lock them down. You get into such matters as breach, materiality, remedy, etc.

If you don't have your sources guaranteed, and you proceed in your business as if they were, you are assuming a huge risk. Sometimes that risk blows up in your face. At the least, you need to price your product so that the assumed risk is reflected in your rate of return.
 
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