Why home exchanging is getting more and more popular
Most people are intrigued by the idea of home exchanging. Here’s why…
- You’ll be able to arrange wonderful FREE holiday accommodation
- You can agree free use of a vehicle
- You will have much less packing to do and no worries about what you will find when you get there
- You’ll be given inside knowledge of the local area to help you get the most out of your stay
- You will have a kitchen when you want one, nights out when you don’t
- You can benefit from the use of household or recreational items like towels, beach toys, cots, camping gear, picnic baskets, books, DVDs, kayaks, bikes….whatever you both agree to loan
- You’ll probably find welcoming neighbours or friends if you are looking for company
- You get to choose the perfect holiday home from all the properties available at your ideal location
- You will have the security of knowing you will be spending your vacation is a safe and comfortable home
- Did we mention its FREE?!! You vacation in their home, they are guests in yours- and neither of you pay a penny for your wonderful holiday accommodation!
Our first (Canada) and second (Australia) Home Exchange
We’re guessing you are interested home swaps opportunities, but maybe you have some reservations about it. Don’t worry, we did too! Here’s how we started home exchanging….
How we started home exchanging – Our Story
We weren’t sure about home exchanging to begin with because we didn’t really understand how it would work. My sister had fantastic holiday snaps of stays all over Europe when her children were little and she was adamant that Chris and I should give it a try.
After our fabulous first exchange in a beautiful family home near the forest in Canada we realised that home exchanging is no more difficult to organise than any other sort of holiday- in fact the personal contact makes it a lot easier!
We’ve been house swapping for 4 years now and have had some amazing adventures.
A lot of the appeal is around how much money you can save for your well-deserved family vacation. Imagine how much it would cost for a luxury 2 bed condo with beach club, gym, 2 pools and private beach in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico for 2 weeks; or a 4 bedroom house with barbeque and pool, 5 minutes from a great surfing beach and with bikes, kayaks and 2 cars to borrow all over the peak Christmas season. Neither of the stays we had in these homes cost us a penny- and the people who came to stay in our home had a lovely visit to the UK too!
The Round the World in Home Exchange Challenge!
Between 2012/13 we completed an exciting Round the World in Home Exchange Challenge where we left our UK home for 8 months and enjoyed 20 exchanges which took us to New Zealand, Mexico, Canada, the USA, Tahiti, and Australia. It was a fabulous trip (although we have to point out, most people plan their exchanges for a week or two at a time, it’s not compulsory to go for months!!)
Our 2 best Home Exchanges (French Polynesia & Oregon, USA)
You can have a very different kind of holiday
The home and location you choose lets you have a really special holiday, one that you might not be able to afford if you were paying for an expensive hotel. Through home exchange we have:
- stayed in city/ countryside/ snow resort and beachside accommodation
- borrowed kayaks, bikes, barbeques and camping gear
- been able to hike, wake-board, horse-ride, paddle board, picnic, and canoe
- looked after swimming pools, vegetable plots, lizards and even a sheep!
Home exchanging offers a world of experience. It’s just up to you what you are looking for!
The questions most people ask…
Wherever we go we find everyone is fascinated by the concept of home exchanging- but share many of the same questions and concerns…
- How can you trust strangers in your home?
- What do you do with your valuables?
- How does the exchange work?
- What money exchanges hands?
- How do we exchange keys?
- How do you make the arrangements?
- What if you break something?
- Do you have to swap at the same time?
- How will they leave my home?
- Will I have to pay their bills?
- How do I know they are legitimate?
- Who will look after our house?
- Will I meet our exchange family?
We decided to cover all of these questions and plenty more with a resource we hope will make your life an awful lot easier when it comes to home exchanging- the ‘Definitive Guide to Home Exchanging- Everything you need for safe, smooth and happy house swapping!’
This is the place we share everything we’ve learnt from our 20+ home exchanges, plus from all the lovely home exchangers (seasoned and novice) we have met. We let you in on all the shortcuts, resources and suggestions which we’ve learnt so it’s super easy for you to just get started and enjoy a fabulous home exchange this year!
This resource is also packed with useful resources such as:
- How to navigate around the home exchange sites- and which ones to join
- Tips on how to get the most out of your profile (and get a guaranteed steady stream of quality offers)
- A questionnaire to help you decide what you are looking for in an exchange (it can be hard to know where to start with so much choice!)
- A step by step guide to creating a welcome pack for your visitors
- A template for what to include in your ‘how to use my house’ info
- Sample exchange emails- details of how to make your approach and negotiate an exchange agreement
- Personal stories and anecdotes from home exchangers around the world
- Mistakes and how to avoid them
- Exchange etiquette and most important do’s and don’ts
- And much more!
Who is home exchanging for?
Home exchange is incredibly versatile. It works for families looking to save some money but still enjoy an amazing family vacation; for retirees who have a bit more freedom to take several trips a year and meet other like minded explorers; younger people who are drawn to home exchanging for weekends away or to enjoy extra holidays than they could afford if they had to pay for hotels. Through our travels we have met hundreds of home exchangers and can definitely say there is a ‘profile’ of the sort of people it works for. We’ve also got a pretty good idea of who it isn’t so well suited to (we cover this is the guide!)
Some of the great Home Exchangers we have met along the way
What do you need to know?
We wanted to share all the information, insights and useful anecdotes we can so that you can start to enjoy home exchanging as much as we do. The only thing that usually stands in anyone’s way is the uncertainty about taking those first steps. That’s where we can help.
The step by step guide
We’ve created a blueprint for anyone who wants to incorporate home exchange into their travels but isn’t sure how to get started. We’ll hold your hand through every step of the process, making sure you are 100% confident and happy about your first exchange. We have plenty of experience of really making the most out of this fantastic system and we are really pleased to be able to share all our knowledge with you, so you can also relax and enjoy fabulous, low cost holidays without any worries at all.
Money back guarantee
We are pretty sure this guide includes everything you know you need and plenty that you aren’t expecting! However, if, after purchase, you decide it isn’t what you were looking for after all, it’s not a problem. Simply send us an message here with one suggestion of how we can improve the Guide and we will give you a full refund. Easy!