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Reef Village Unreturned deposit

Posted By: D&B

Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 08/23/14 02:01 PM

I am sure this topic has been addressed before but I can't seem to find it on the forum. What is the process in Belize for pursuing legal action against Reef Village for $1000+ dollars of unreturned rent deposit?
We were told when we left in May that in one month it would be credited to our account...they told us the exact amount, what utility costs would be taken out etc.
Here it is the end of August and not one cent back. We have called, emailed numerous times, nothing, even though we are assured they are working on the problem and do admit we do have a refund due.
I seem to remember other people posting with a similar problem.
I guess I am looking for other perspectives, ideas...something. We loved the six months we spent on the island, traveling the country and especially the friends we made there. We were to return to Belize in November, but are rethinking. I am just frustrated!
Posted By: Loansum-Al K

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 08/23/14 02:32 PM

Consider it a very expensive lesson learned........you will probably never get that money back, but please do come back but don't stay there!
Posted By: Amanda Syme

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 08/23/14 02:39 PM

I am fairly certain the managers that were there are long gone, never to return. So it is unlikely the funds will be returned. And sadly, if they are gone there isn't anyone to hold accountable for their actions.
Posted By: Cara

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 08/23/14 03:06 PM

You know I love Belize and San Pedro, but it's really obnoxious that people have to constantly chalk up to experience getting screwed there, and not even with the pleasure of a nice dinner out first. It really takes the edge off, when every experience becomes a potential lesson. I mean, the original poster is now talking about maybe not wanting to come back.
Posted By: ckocian

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 08/23/14 03:30 PM

The practice of requiring pre-payment at lodging accommodations is not uncommon in Belize. And added to that, an increasing penalty for cancelation as the reservation time grows closer. Being forewarned is standard and knowing who you are dealing with is essential for avoiding an infuriating disappointment. Travel insurance costs little and is a great comfort if plans change.
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 08/23/14 03:42 PM

I am so sorry to hear of a lost deposit - $1,000 is a lot of money.
I'd liken the experience to a really bad blind date. Hopefully it doesn't put you off from seeking a good relationship in the future?
Now that you have been here and know the players/places better, you won't need to choose blindly.
I hope that one bad landlord doesn't put you off an entire wonderful country and community!
Posted By: Katie Valk

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 08/23/14 05:08 PM

Legit hotels post their deposit and final payment requirements. I would have to say nearly all the hotels on the caye and in the country are honest and deliver. I would also imagine if you had googled this establishment before you sent the deposit, you would have found comments about them which would have been more than fair warning. I know this board has an old thread which addresses these same problems. I am sorry this happened to you, but this is not a reflection of most other businesses nor indicates a problem with advance payments.
Posted By: D&B

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 08/23/14 08:25 PM

Any and all comments are really appreciated, even the somewhat acerbic comments. I actually did research Reef before I took my cart over there, signed a three month lease and paid my deposit. The negative comments I had read on the web, prior to renting there, were related to the timeshare component of the business and not longer term rental. Lisa Cartwright, I believe was the managers name, was actually very efficient at resolving some small issues we had while we were there. I don't know if she is now part of the problem.
I guess we should consider ourselves lucky since out of all the places we have lived and traveled longterm worldwide, this is the only place this has occurred.
Again thank you for all the feedback.
Posted By: TexasDan

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 09/04/14 02:31 AM

To give you some kind of update about Reef. I purchased a condo their 6 months ago. I had dealings with the PM from a previous condo that I own. We decided to rent it out ourselves. The PM that was there quit about 4 months ago but the hoa denied it till about 3 weeks ago. Word is the PM run off with major $$$$$. She can't return due to legal action on her.

I would try contacting the HOA there. John Adams is the president. Push them hard to get ur money back.

On another note I have a condo elsewhere that is 2 bed 2 bath, 1300 sq ft, FULLY furnished, bottom floor over looking the pool and 100 yards to the beach. If ur interested let me know.
Posted By: Sunny Reef

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 09/06/14 11:57 AM

Originally Posted by Loansum-Al K
Consider it a very expensive lesson learned........you will probably never get that money back, but please do come back but don't stay there!


Well, to be honest: This is the ordinary reaction here in Belize and it's embarrassing: "You learned a lesson - you will never get your rights - but please come back" ......and then we cover everything with a curtain of silence.

Years ago I worked for Reef Village and they owe me 10 Thousands of US$ in salary and in the end I received many emails from owners telling me that I was the only honest person there but they could not help me as they wanted to "protect their investment". Hundreds of people from the outside had been ripped off by JP since then and he was still riding through the streets of San Pedro - with ministers of our government or other "celebrities" on the seat of his golf cart and he smiled and EVERYONE smiled back - it was so disgusting. For years he had been protected by our government even with huge evidence that he ripped so many off. It continued and still continues - years of rip offs and our BTB is incapable to stop this and shut the place down (at least till they pay their duties)! Yes, that would be the consequence to stop this bullshit. As long as we're willing to continue and always say: "Yes, sorry, but come back" we'll invite others to do the same and it will do more harm to our tourism than if once we would start to follow up on these scams and get them to the prosecutor. - Don't let me ask how many Thousand tourists we lost for closing our eyes and say: "well this is gone bad but come bacK!"

All this corruption, police brutality or ignorance of the law by authorities can only happen if we continue to allow this. It needs strength, some guts and an intention to stop this and make our country a reputable place! We could fight together but instead we always want to protect our shitty little investment and then hundreds of additional victims have to suffer now and in the future and we ALWAYS stay in bad reputation and all have to suffer - all of us and the poor people of Belize in the first place as they don't get jobs that are related to tourism!

My suggestion is: Never come back and tell to all of your friends to not travel to Belize and maybe one day, instead of trying to protect any investmant - selfish and egoistic - all people here will get together, stand up, say "NO" and stop this corruption and these cheaters and criminals and then it will be worth to come to this beautiful country and enjoy your vacation.
Posted By: Cara

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 09/06/14 12:53 PM

Excellent comment Sunny Reef.
Posted By: ScubaLdy

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 09/06/14 04:59 PM

Sunny - nice to see a post from you again. Where are you these days?

My heart aches for all of us who were/are victims of Jeff Pierce and his cohorts. From day one I was the one who protested this entire developments. He refers to me as THE BITCH.

Sadly when I was protesting what was being done to the lagoon, Dredging and ripping out mangroves, buyers thought I was criticizing them.

The false advertising put out by this development bordered on criminal.

It is so sad to see stary-eyed people come here and plunk their money down and get ripped off. No matter how much some of us try to tell them - slow down - be careful - pay attention - when one is convinced that they have discovered the opportunity of a lifetime - and they better act fast before it disappears - people are just human.

I learned my lessons and paid my dues and all I can do is share my experience.

I just loaned my book "Don't stop the Carnival" to a recent transplant.









Posted By: Sunny Reef

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 09/06/14 05:29 PM

Yes, Harriette, I know - you were the only one and they gave you a hard time for it. Sometimes you're very lonely while doing the right thing and have some courrage but in the end you will be honored by nature :-)

I'm working out of the country but am horribly home-sick and I'm very, very much missing Belize and these smiling faces.

Posted By: Capt. Hollywood

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 09/06/14 05:50 PM

[Linked Image]
Posted By: Nobody You Know

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 09/08/14 12:58 PM

Reef Village is the only place I have ever had items stolen from my cart by SECURITY personnel while visiting a resident...
Posted By: Steve BZ

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 01/07/15 04:58 PM

Next time use a credit card and then direct the company to stop payment on the debt. Please understand you are talking about a 3rd world country with a long history of piracy, boatwrecking, slavery, smuggling, screwing Gringos for sport, and acting as a surrogate for the CIA during the Iran-Contra Affair. DO NOT USE CASH unless you have the product or service in your hand at the time of purchase!
Posted By: reefenit

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 01/07/15 05:01 PM

You said a mouthful!
Posted By: BZ4me

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 01/21/15 09:04 PM

Originally Posted by Cara
Excellent comment Sunny Reef.


I completely agree with you.
Posted By: seashell

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 02/20/15 04:34 PM

It's not that "Don't Stop the Carnival" is no longer relative, it's that it's too tame to warn about today's reality.
Posted By: Inplub

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 02/22/15 03:48 AM

I have just come across this on another site.

Kimberley Case

19 February at 08:09

WARNING!

Think everyone should know.... We have a villa rented in Barrier Reef village north of the bridge in San Pedro on Ambergris Caye. We signed our lease for a year -- all was well.
Then we had water issues -- and no power -- our villa was not complete -- no curtains ( and we need as the entire house is sliding glass doors looking out into the lagoon with many neighbors !)
Touch Management( Lacey and Gonzales Seloinos ) told us the villa had just been painted and promised to complete all amenities in short time-- well a month later -- still nothing -- with many requests.
Then-- other villas around the lagoon -- identical to ours inform us we are being used ( usery) to the tune of an overcharge of $750 per month! And added we may be squatting without the owners knowledge and we should discuss with them!
Immediately we went to Touch Management and requested to speak to the owners. they adamantly with much ado refused.
We also loved the place and wanted to know the purchase price -- another reason we needed to speak to owner-- again refusal. told us to contact their lawyer for that information
So we informed them ( TM) we needed to speak to our attorney and have them converse. We still cannot get a contact for either the owner -- nor their lawyer.
They then waited for us to leave the villa ( we have to go back to Canada to do taxes) And have entered the villa claiming the place was 'trashed" and tried to charge us with 19,000 USD! ( however we have friends there that went in to fetch/borrow some things-- and they locked up and all was well)
Touch Management Lacey and Gonzales tried to run our credit card 11 times the next day!--- first to 14 000 -- then 9000 -- then 7000-- then 4000 etc--- 11 times!
Master Card stopped all translations and are charging them with fraudulent activity .
They claimed we abandon the villa -- when we were simply flying home to do taxes -- maybe a week gone!
So in closing-- Touch Management is operating with fraudulent intentions.
Please avoid and pass on to others .. this is a nightmare.
Posted By: ragman

Re: Reef Village Unreturned deposit - 02/22/15 04:55 PM

A friend of mine stayed there for while last year. He had a lease for 6 months I think and after a few weeks they shut off the water and electricity without notice. They did that to other units also I believe because I saw notices on the doors. He moved out immediately, of course, he had no choice. He cancelled all the payments that he could but I think he still got beat up for a few hundred. Management was no help at all. It was handled very poorly and he made it known on Trip Advisor.

Through this he was lucky, I took him in until he found another place. I don't think he would give a recommendation to anyone who would like to stay there.
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