4 tips for preparing for a home exchange

November 3, 2015

Exchanging homes has become a very popular method of vacation lodging. The following are imperative tips on preparing to have your house used for a home exchange.

4 tips for preparing for a home exchange

1. Leave instructions for everything

  • Just imagine how annoyed your guests will be if they can't figure out how to use the dishwasher or they happen to set off the security alarm and don't have the code to shut it off. Although these things might be second nature to you, your home exchange guests will basically be like fish out of water.
  • Make sure to leave appropriate instructions for the television, garage door opener, all appliances, the security alarm, and anything else you can possibly think of.

2. Cleaning out your closet

  • This is a perfect opportunity to finally clean out your closet. Go through each room in your home and get rid of garments that you don't plan on wearing anymore, planned on losing weight to wear, or those that a small repair two years ago that you still haven't gotten around to.
  • You can do yourself a favour by taking these to thrift shops, but if you really want to keep these clothes, just stash them somewhere for now. The important thing here is for your housing swap guests to have closet space. A full 12 inches is common courtesy, but a little more never hurts.

3. Create a guide for everything local

Most vacationers do their research and discover just about everything that they want to do before leaving for vacation. Of course, this isn't true of everyone, and the simple fact is that the Internet isn't always going to have the best information on every city. Because of this, it's incredibly thoughtful to leave a guide of the local area for your guests:

  • Go over things that aren't on the typical tourist website.
  • Leave easy directions into the city if you happen to live in a suburb.
  • You might even want to include your favourite grocery shops so your guests have some idea of what businesses are best in the area.
  • The addresses of local nightspots and restaurants can also make life much easier on those in a city that's not their own.

4. Clean up

  • This is absolutely vital. When your home exchange guests arrive, the place should be in pristine condition. Mow the lawn, clean the oven, mop the kitchen, vacuum the entire home. Do everything that you possibly can to make the home look like you're trying to impress someone, because you really ought to be.
  • Put your own personal items away to make room for guests and handle anything that might become an issue in your absence, such as an air conditioner filter replacement. Your home exchange partners likely made everything perfect for you, so it's important to return the favour.
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