How Does House Swapping Work?

April 4, 2023 • By Amy Jo Robertson


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According to a recent survey from Forbes Advisor, 2023 looks to be another strong year for travel despite inflation. Out of the 1,000 Americans surveyed, 87% plan to travel as much as they did in 2022, and 49% of respondents plan to travel more compared to the previous year.

Are you interested in taking a vacation this year? If so, you might be curious about the growing trend of house swapping. This innovative approach to travel is making it easier than ever for people to explore the world in creative and exciting ways. 

By exchanging homes with other travelers, you can experience new cultures and destinations while enjoying the comfort and convenience of a home away from home. Keep reading to discover what house swapping is and how it can benefit you.

What is House Swapping?

Many people are still unfamiliar with the concept of a house exchange, as it is a relatively new and alternative way to travel. Essentially, a home swap involves two parties temporarily exchanging homes for a set period of time, and it can occur in different ways.

One option is to stay in someone else’s home while they stay in yours simultaneously, which requires coordinating schedules. Alternatively, you can participate in a house swap and stay at another person’s home, even if they don’t stay in yours.

Furthermore, a home swap can involve either a primary or secondary home, depending on what is available and what you are comfortable sharing.

What Are the Benefits of a House Swap?

Now that you know what a home exchange is, what are its benefits? If you are going to do a house swap, you will want to understand why this is a good option.

For most people, this can be a great option if you want to enjoy your vacation. It may be more economical and realistic, depending on your circumstances.

Here are some benefits you get when doing a home exchange.


One of the major advantages of house swapping is the unparalleled level of comfort it offers. When you stay in someone else’s home, you can relish the cozy and familiar feeling that’s often absent when you travel.

Although hotels are undoubtedly comfortable and offer a great experience, they may not always be the most ideal option. Sometimes, you and your family may crave something more personal and homey.

Through house swapping, you get to immerse yourself in a new area while staying in a comfortable home that suits your family’s needs. This can significantly enhance your overall vacation experience and alleviate some of the stress that comes with travel.

Personal Experiences

If you’re seeking a more authentic experience when traveling, traditional hotels may leave you feeling like a mere tourist, lacking the personal touch of a truly local experience. This is where house swapping comes in handy.

By exchanging homes, you gain the opportunity to experience what it’s really like to live in your destination, providing a better understanding of everyday life there. Opting for a home tucked away from the typical tourist attractions and crowded sights can grant you an inside look into an authentic neighborhood of your holiday spot.

Furthermore, you may even have the chance to receive insider knowledge and tips from the family you’re swapping homes with, allowing you to explore and discover the hidden gems that locals genuinely enjoy.

Cost Effective

Apart from the convenience and unique experience, house swapping also offers a more cost-effective alternative for those looking to travel without breaking the bank.

Let’s face it, vacationing and traveling can easily become costly, which may not be feasible for everyone. By choosing to swap houses, you can stay in desirable locations at a fraction of the cost, making it possible to explore and experience new places without major financial constraints. 

Plus, saving money on accommodations allows you to allocate your funds elsewhere, like excursions and activities.

Your Home is Upkept

When you opt for a house swap, you also benefit from the peace of mind that comes with knowing your home isn’t empty while you’re away.

Many people feel anxious about leaving their homes unoccupied for an extended period for a variety of reasons. In the winter, for example, you may be concerned about your pipes freezing or the house getting too cold.

Having another family living in your home can help keep things operating as usual, allowing you to enjoy your vacation with peace of mind.

You May Meet New Friends

During the process of a home swap, you will get to know the other family very well. After all, the two of you will be communicating often throughout the process.

Over time, you may build relationships with the other family staying in your home. This could lead to new friendships when you were strangers not too long ago.

Ultimately, you can discover the joys of meeting new people, sharing cultures, and building lasting friendships with like-minded travelers.

Things to Remember About House Swapping

It’s important to keep in mind that house swapping, like any travel option, may have its downsides. However, with proper preparation and realistic expectations, it can still be a highly rewarding experience.

To ensure a successful house swap, there are certain steps that need to be taken, such as communicating effectively with the other family, setting clear rules and expectations, and preparing your home for the exchange.

You’re Opening Your Door to Others

During a home exchange, you’ll be opening your doors to a new family or individuals you may not know personally. While this thought may initially seem off-putting, it’s important to remember that house swapping can also be a highly rewarding and enriching experience.

While there may be some uncertainty, remember that house swapping involves mutual trust and respect between families, and most participants are respectful and responsible guests. By taking proper precautions, such as setting clear guidelines and communicating effectively with your exchange partners, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all involved.

Above all else, it’s imperative to exchange homes through a reputable site. A site like THIRDHOME offers trustworthy home swapping that ensures safety and security because all members and their properties must undergo a series of verification steps.

Consider the State of Your Home

A successful house exchange also depends on proper preparation to ensure that your home is safe and comfortable for the visiting family.

Make sure that all appliances and amenities are working correctly and are in good condition. Ideally, you should make any necessary repairs and modifications before the other family arrives. In some situations, this can be a great way to push yourself to make those updates you have been meaning to do.

Additionally, it’s also important to take the time to give your home a thorough cleaning and remove any clutter or unnecessary items. This could include putting away valuables and hiding anything of great value. This can give you peace of mind and make the other family feel more at ease in your home.

A Guide to House Swapping

Ultimately, the key to a successful house swap is to approach it with an open mind and a willingness to embrace new experiences. With the right attitude, sharing your home can lead to some of the most memorable and rewarding travel experiences.

Are you interested in putting your house up for a house exchange? Contact us today at THIRDHOME to look into house swapping options.

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