A number of states now have legislation in place for non-judicial foreclosure of timeshare realty. But HOAs hoping to regain inventory in cases where the owners are not paying their annual maintenance fees, still need a lawyer to handle these cases.
Stepping up to the plate is Kevin Mattoni, VP of Cunningham Property Management, whose team offers a solution. Along with partners Sharon Cunningham and Sharon’s son, Richard, the team created Cunningham Asset Recovery Solution (C.A.R.S.) by arranging to provide a volume of cases in exchange for a discounted price.
“As many timeshare resorts for which we provide foreclosure assistance are more than twenty years old, many of them are facing or may soon face a severe financial crisis,” says Mattoni, who provides the lead of the project. “In the case of many aging resorts, more and more older owners are no longer paying their annual maintenance fees. We’ve found this to be a situation that was only exacerbated by the recent recession. Associations need to get delinquent weeks back so they can resell them to fees-paying owners who will once again use and enjoy their vacation ownership property.”
This situation is what originally prompted the group to create Cunningham Asset Recovery Services LLC (C.A.R.S.) by retaining an attorney who would provide a lower price when processing a larger number of cases. “We realized that we could gain even greater efficiencies if we would provide foreclosure services to other management companies, HOAs and developers to bring a larger volume of cases to a lawyer at one time..”
The idea worked and is snowballing in volume. “Presently, C.A.R.S. is available to any condominium, owner association, developer or lender desiring non-judicial foreclosure services at extremely low costs,” says Mattoni.
We caught up with one of C.A.R.S.’s clients, Gloria Weir, and asked her to explain how the process has gone for her.
Weir began her career in the resort industry in 1983, working with a marketing company selling timeshare. Eventually the owner/developer decided to start a management company called Vacation Property Management with offices in Naples, Florida. Early on, she obtained her Community Association Management license a Florida Real Estate Associate license and subsequently her Florida Real Estate Broker’s License. The first resort she managed was Smuggler’s Cove Resort, located on a seven-mile stretch of Sandy Beach in Ft. Meyers, Florida. Her role expanded over the years and she now acts as Executive General Manager of six resorts spanning the Gulf Coast from Indian Rocks Beach to Naples. According to her partners at Vacation Property Management, “Gloria has been an integral part of the growth and financial soundness of the resorts for over 25 years and considers the owners and guests truly family.”
Beginning in the early ‘80s she and Mattoni came to know one another and at one time, he did some work for the company’s owner. “Everyone has become friends since then,” says Weir. “So when we heard Kevin had started a company with the new type of foreclosure, we decided to try it at our Naples location.”
What is their success rate? “100% of the first twenty five files we gave them,” reports a satisfied Weir.
They were able to resell 20 of the weeks within three months of the foreclosure being completed. These were sold to existing owners guaranteeing interested, fees-paying owners would now become part of the ‘family.’
Since they officially launched C.A.R.S. last year, Mattoni reports they have grown significantly. “We are now serving over 30 associations spread throughout Florida, and are in discussions with resorts in Nevada and South Carolina,” he says. “Plus, we are exploring expanding into Missouri, Colorado, Texas and New England. We handle all sizes of accounts from a few delinquent files to several hundred. We manage every step of the process from recording the lien and completing mandatory title searches to the final trustee sale and recording the trustee’s deed. Our services are available for every size resort, from small self-managed properties all the way to larger projects under developer-control. C.A.R.S.’ step-by-step process assures clients of clear title qualifying for title insurance, including clearing title clouds relating to bankruptcy, divorce, death or owners who cannot be located.”
Mattoni and the Cunninghams have been in the property management business for over 30 years. As a matter of fact, Sharon Cunningham was appointed to Florida’s Regulatory Council of Community Association Managers by Governor Rick Scott. This was approved by the Florida State Senate after a full vetting of Sharon and the company.
“We are excited by the opportunities we have for further growth,” remarks Kevin. “We continue working on our website, timesharenonjudicialforeclosure.com, are a RCI Affiliated Vendor Partner and meet with managers and HOAs whenever we can.”
“When resorts can resell a week, it helps everyone: The delinquent owner (if they are still alive) is off the hook. The resort gets an interested owner. The new owner adds to the value of their life by ensuring themselves and their family of a fabulous vacation each year. It’s certainly a win-win-win for everyone.”