Vacation Home Exchange: How Does It Work?

Vacation Home Exchange: How Does It Work?

January 24, 2022 • By THIRDHOME

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Would you let a stranger into your home? For most people, the resounding answer would be a definite no. But did you know that there has been an increase of almost 300% in travellers placing their homes online to do just that?

Home exchanging is quickly gaining popularity as a way to find excellent properties without the high fees. Read on as we give our essential vacation home exchange guide.

Vacation Home Exchange

What is a Vacation Home Exchange?

Home exchange is when you swap your home with another person or family. People who do this can be found on numerous websites. Most websites follow the same method.

The journey starts by signing up. A membership fee is charged and after this, you have access to a number of homes on offer. You create a listing for the home you want to exchange, browse others that are available then contact the members to discuss a swap.

Exchanges can take part in a number of ways. A simultaneous exchange is where you both swap homes at the same time. The other party will stay in your home and you will stay in theirs.

Another way to do it is a non-simultaneous exchange. This is where you swap houses but at different times. You may use the other person’s home, then a few months later they could use yours.

The final one is a hospitality exchange. In a way, this is like a homestay as you occupy the property while the other person visits.

Vacation Home Exchange: How Does It Work?

What Makes Our Service Different?

Our service is different as we specialize in the exchange of luxe and high-end properties. These are situated in the best locations across the globe, allowing you to travel in style.

Vacation Home Exchange Explained

Exchanging your vacation home is a surprisingly easy process. All you need is a home to allow others to use. With just a quick registration, you can do it in three steps.

Apply for Membership

Not everyone can become a member of our vacation home exchange. This is to ensure that all homes are of the highest standard and visitors will take care of the property.

The home you submit to exchange must be in an appropriate location. Furnishings and finishes will get checked to see if it is a high-end home. A minimum property value of $500,000 applies to keep the standard high.

Joining the Club

Once accepted, an expert from our member experience team will contact you to discuss the details. This will include your travel preferences, lifestyle, schedule, and interests.

Our club works on a key system. The more time you allocate for people to use your home, the more keys you get. When you have keys, you can use them to gain time in other luxurious properties.

Reserving Trips

Once arranged, you can begin reserving your trips. We have a wide range of properties. From city breaks to oceanside villas, you are sure to find something you want.

You will never get charged an overnight fee to stay on the property. Instead, an exchange fee applies based on the keys that you have accumulated.

What Are the Costs?

How much does THIRDHOME cost?


The costs to take part in a vacation exchange are minimal. Your first-year initiation fee is free. After this, you will be charged a flat fee of $295 on the first January of each year.

The only other costs are the exchange fee. Your fee can range from around $495 to $1395 for a week stay, depending on how many keys you have accumulated.

Creating Your Listing

There are a few vacation home exchange tips that you should use when creating your listing. Your listing is important, as the more people you attract to the property the more keys you get. In turn, you will get more time at other properties.

Begin by staging the house. Call in a cleaner and get great lighting set up. After this, hire a professional photographer to get some shots of your beautiful home.

Don’t forget to show the surroundings either. If you have a stunning beachside location or mountain vista then make sure it is seen. A great way to do this and incorporate it with the home is to consider drone photography to capture shots from the air.

Bolivia Vacation Home Exchange

Vacation Home Exchange Tips

There are a number of tips you can use to ensure you enjoy our service. Below is our vacation home exchange advice to get the most from the system.

Start Searching Early

A last-minute break is obviously not conducive to a home exchange. Ideally, you want to plan a visit around three to six months in advance. You will get plenty of time to prepare and will be able to get a selection of properties that have not yet been reserved.

Have Clear Expectations

When swapping homes, you should be clear about your expectations and that of your hosts. There is no right or wrong way to swap a home, but many people will have different views on how it should be done. It is better to iron out these beforehand.

For example, will you be expecting cleaners to visit while you are at the property? How do you plan to exchange the keys? Is there a guide on how the system in the housework or will it be left to you to work it out?

All of these are questions you should check in advance. This will ensure there are no surprises or disappointment at any stage.

Starting Your Journey

Now you know about how to use a vacation home exchange, start your journey. Arrange your listing for the property you want to exchange and begin building your profile. Before long, you will be experiencing the vacation of a lifetime.

You won’t find more luxurious home exchanges than Third Home. We have over 13,500 properties in 99 countries. Contact us here to discuss your application and let us start your journey.

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