Archive for the ‘Guides and tools’ Category


If you are offering to exchange cars or yachts, check that your auto insurance covers your exchange visitor. As with home insurance, auto and yacht insurance is usually in force for thirty days, but this must be checked with your insurance agent. Also, check with your exchange partner whether his insurance will cover you fully for liability and property damage.

When booking your flight, check that your insurance will cover you for cancellation because of illness, etc.

You may also wish to arrange additional insurance cover against your exchange partners canceling for similar reasons.

Special insurance may need to be obtained from your agent for driving or sailing in other countries than your homecountry.

How do you arrange everything for the better

Bills – sort out and agree which bills you and your partner will pay. Many home exchangers find it generally works well to continue paying their own household bills apart from the telephone bill.

If you normally employ domestic help, then you should continue to pay for that service whilst your exchange partners are in residence. However, if the guest exchanger hires someone for the duration of his/her stay, payment is his/her responsibility.

Repair to household appliances – may agree to reimburse your exchange partners for small emergency repairs, but ask them to consult with you before arranging expensive repairs.

Plant care – if your guests agree to water your plants for you, stick to simple requests. Unless you are setting up a long term exchange, plants will survive without fertilizers, foods and supplements until you return.

Yard and garden care – few people want to spend hours of their vacation tending someone else’s yard. This is one instance where the homeowner should definitely arrange for outside yard and pool care so as not the burden the guests.

Insurance – check that your home insurance remains in effect while your guests are there. Normally home insurance is in effect for up to thirty days of guest occupancy. If the proposed exchange will be for longer than thirty days you may have to make some alternative arrangements. Check with your insurance agent.

Contingency Plans

Home Exchange

One of the most critical parts of home exchanging is understanding that once you make a firm commitment, people miles away are counting upon you to honor that arrangement. If they have committed themselves to actually purchasing tickets, then their financial outlay has been considerable and once that point has been reached, it would be reprehensible for you to cancel.

Home Exchange

Home Exchange

When embarking upon setting up a home exchange, it’s always wise to have a contingency plan, ready to be implemented should a genuine crisis occur. Ask neighbors, family members and colleagues if they would be interested in an exchange vacation; research property management companies in your area who might be able to offer a short-term rental.

But most important, before you begin making any contact which could lead to a home exchange vacation, please think very seriously about the commitment you are about to make and if there is even the slightest chance that you may change your mind at the last minute, stop right now. Obviously home exchange is not for you for the time being.

The vast majority of home exchanges usually take place without any problems whatsoever, probably because most people are responsible and realize that they are dealing with homeowners just like themselves and not a tour company.

Should a legitimate emergency arise such as a serious illness or a death in the family, if you have already made contingency plans, implement them immediately, otherwise make every effort to make suitable alternative arrangements for your exchange partners.