How to prepare for Home Exchange

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Today we would like to tell you, how to prepare for a home exchange to make it easy and comfortable for both sides. There are some tips to help you:


1. Clean your home

You should discuss and agree with your exchange partner the cleanliness of the house when you arrange the exchange. Some of our members prefer to exchange with similar people. For example, the home with antiques will be not a good idea for the family with small kids. Try to clarify your expectations and needs in advance.


2. Leave some extra space

Make sure that there is enough space for the staff of your Exchange partner at your house.

  • Leave some space in your closets and empty hangers
  • Empty enough space in the kitchen
  • Make sure there are clean towels and linens for your guests
  • Supply with such items like toilet paper, soap and other cleaning staff
  • It is better to store and lock away your valuables.
  • Discuss any other staff that may need your guests.

You can also let them know, which items they can move and which you would prefer they keep in place.


3. Prepare instructions for house appliance, alarm system…


When you are preparing your home for the arrival of your guests it is better to:

  • Leave written directions or manuals in a handy place for things like TV’s, kitchen appliances, alarm systems, heating units, air conditioners, and the vacuum cleaner.
  • Make a list of names and phone numbers of repair people.
  • Leave clearly written instructions for pet and plant care.
  • Ask your post office to hold your mail for you until you return.
  • Prepay your bills.
  • Mow the lawn, clean the pool, etc.
  • If a car is part of the exchange, leave copies of your car insurance and registration. Also, you might want to get your car tuned up.
  • Make a list of emergency numbers that include your doctor, a nearby hospital or emergency clinic, the fire department, and the police.


4. Prepare a Local’s Guide for your Area

One of the many benefits of home exchange travel is the ability to live like a local. So it’s a great idea to leave your guests a city guide with insider information on your area.

Here are some tips for helping your Exchange partners to get the most of their visit:

  • Stay away from the stuff in the tour books Tell what are YOUR favorite things to do in your town?
  • Include a range of restaurants, from cheap eats to special nights out
  • Leave the information, where do you do your grocery shopping? If the store a few miles away has a much better selection than the one across the street, your guests will appreciate the information and directions.
  • Find out ahead of time if there are certain types of activities your Exchange partners plan on doing. Leave tips on free museum days and upcoming exhibits.
  • If you live in a suburb, include the best ways to get into the city (highway always crowded around rush hour? What’s your secret shortcut?) Your guests will appreciate not having to sit in traffic, and they’ll have more time to enjoy the activities listed in their city guide!


5. A small welcoming gift

A lot of our members leave a small gift for their Exchange Partners. It can be a bottle of wine, some fruits, a simple meal or a local cake. This is not necessary, but it is a very nice welcoming gesture.

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