The Vacation Exchange Network

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

 
  1. Do I need to find someone to use my home in order for me to make a home exchange?
  2. Home swap, house exchange, housing swap, holiday home trade.... There are so many names. Do they all mean the same thing?
  3. What are the benefits of exchanging homes for a holiday over renting a vacation home or staying in a hotel?
  4. How easy is it to make an exchange?
  5. Does The Vacation Exchange Network staff arrange the exchanges?
  6. Why do you limit your Network to vacation homes and second homes?
  7. Why would vacation and second homeowners want to join The Home Exchange Network?
  8. How many homes are in the Network?
  9. How do I arrange a vacation house swap?
  10. Are home exchanges made directly between two members?
  11. What is the difference between Direct and Indirect Exchanges?
  12. What is an Exchange Credit, and how is it used?
  13. Do I have to exchange with another member when they contact me or when an Exchange Coordinator contacts me?
  14. Must exchanges take place during the same week(s)?
  15. My home is small. What if I can't find anyone who wants to swap homes with me?
  16. For how many weeks may I exchange?
  17. How much does it cost to join The Vacation Exchange Network?
  18. What is the fee when I make an exchange?
  19. How does The Vacation Exchange Network know when an exchange has been made?
  20. Once my home swap has been arranged, what steps do I need to take?
  21. What if I am unable to make an exchange?
  22. Is there a print product in addition to the website?
  23. Are time-share properties eligible for membership?
  24. I use a Property Manager to rent my property when I'm not there. Is this a problem?
  25. I own a condominium, a flat, or an apartment, not a single family house. Can I join the Network?
  26. I'm concerned about the privacy of the information I provide. How am I protected?
  27. How can I find out about new listings on the Network?
  28. How can I find out which homes in the Network are available for exchange?
  29. How can I find out which Vacation Exchange members are looking for a home swap?
  30. How can I keep up to date about the latest news with The Vacation Exchange Network?
  31. What are the Twitter and Facebook buttons now on your site?
  32. What is the Share This button now on your site?
  33. I think The Vacation Exchange Network provides a home swap service unlike any other on the web. How can I help spread the word?
 

 

 


  1. No. The uniqueness of our Network is that you do not have to find someone who wants to use your home in order for you to travel affordably with home exchange. We facilitate many Indirect Exchanges, where another member allows you to use their home, but they do not want to travel to your home. See Unique Features of Our Home Exchange Network to read more about how easy we make it for you to find a home swap. Back to Top


  2. Yes! No matter which of the myriad names you call it, they all have the same meaning -- I'll trade a stay in my home for a stay in your home. Back to Top


  3. House swapping is a unique and affordable way to travel. Home swappers find that this manner of traveling allows them a great deal of flexibility and saves them considerable money over traditional vacations. Imagine having a "staycation" in someone else's home.... Home exchange offers you the home base many people find lacking when they stay in a hotel. A home offers you space and amenities that no hotel can offer. Home swappers enjoy the convenience of having a kitchen, laundry machines, comfortable sleeping and living rooms, and ample space for their family and their belongings. Additionally, staying in someone's home instead of a hotel offers tremendous savings. Rather than paying $200 to $550 per night at a hotel, you pay only $250 or $500 per week with a home exchange. Home swaps also enable you to skip restaurants for some meals, and some home swaps come with beach passes, museum passes, discount attraction tickets, and the like. See Affordable Travel for more information about how exchanging your vacation home can make travel affordable. Back to Top


  4. You'll find that arranging a house exchange with The Vacation Exchange Network is very easy. In fact, a recent survey among members identified that it generally takes less than three contacts to arrange an exchange. Two of our unique features make finding and arranging home swaps much easier with us than with other home exchange programs. First, all of the properties in our Network are vacation homes or second homes, ensuring flexibility in travel dates and facilitating non-simultaneous exchanges. Second, since our members have the option of making Direct or Indirect Exchanges, you don't need to find someone who wants to stay in your home in order for you to take a vacation. And remember, you only pay when you make an exchange. See Unique Features of Our Home Exchange Network to read more about how easy we make it for you to find a home swap. Back to Top


  5. When you are ready to plan your vacation, just tell us where you want to go and when, and we will do all of the initial searching for you. We then put you in touch with other members interested in your exchange so that you can finalize the dates and details of your swap. We have found that this direct contact between members works best because members like talking to the people who will be using their home, getting to know them, and advising them of the Do's and Don'ts. See How To Arrange Your Home Exchange for more information about the steps you need to take to travel the vacation home exchange way. Back to Top


  6. We established The Vacation Exchange Network in 1997 as the only home exchange program consisting entirely of vacation and second homes, and we continue to hold this distinction. Limiting our listings to second homes and vacation homes is a core element of our commitment to arrange more swaps than any other company. Our focus on vacation and second homes facilitates flexibility in two ways. First, you can stay in someone else's home even if they don't want to stay in yours. Second, you and your home swap partner do not need to vacation during the same week(s). See Unique Features of Our Home Exchange Network to read more about how The Vacation Exchange Network's program is unparalleled in the house swapping industry. Back to Top


  7. Home exchange is a way for vacation and second homeowners to be able to travel affordably to locations other than where their home is located. Sure, most owners of vacation homes love to spend time at their vacation home. However, many would like the opportunity to travel elsewhere without feeling that the expense of having a second home compels them to limit their travel to that single destination. Swapping your vacation home enables you to leverage one of your biggest assets to travel around the world. See Unique Features of Our Home Exchange Network to read more about how vacation swaps can benefit you. Back to Top


  8. The number of homes in our Network is growing daily. We currently have over 1,500 properties, all of which are vacation/holiday homes or second homes, both in the United States and around the world. Browse our Homes Available for Holiday SwapsBack to Top


  9. The process is very simple. If you'd like, our Exchange Coordinators will do all the initial searching for you, at no additional fee. Or, if you'd prefer, browse through our Network of vacation properties to find one you're interested in visiting. Then, contact the other member and arrange the exchange. See How To Arrange Your Home Exchange for more information about the steps you can take to travel the vacation home swap way. Back to Top


  10. The Vacation Exchange Network is the ONLY home swap program that allows for two types of house exchanges, mutual and non-mutual. Specifically, you have the option of making a Direct Exchange, which is a mutual exchange between two homeowners, or an Indirect Exchange, which is when one member allows another member to use his home and receives an Exchange Credit for use at a later time. See How Home Swaps Work for more information. Back to Top


  11. A Direct Exchange is when you agree to swap a stay in your vacation or second home for a stay in another member's home. These vacations can be simultaneous or non-simultaneous. An Indirect Exchange, offered ONLY by The Vacation Exchange Network, is when another member allows you to stay in her home, but she does not want to travel to your home. The member allowing use of her property receives an Exchange Credit for use at a later time. See How Home Swaps Work for more information. Back to Top


  12. A member allowing another member to use his home for an Indirect Exchange receives a $250 Exchange Credit which can be used at a later time to pay in full for a Direct Exchange or to apply to the $500 Indirect Exchange fee. See Exchange Fees for more information. Back to Top


  13. No, the Network affords total flexibility. Each member decides if, and when, to accept a Direct Exchange or to allow an Indirect Exchange. Back to Top


  14. No. Since all of the homes in our Network are holiday homes or second homes, swaps do not need to be simultaneous. In fact, you may choose to take your vacation to Colorado in the winter and allow your home in Hilton Head to be used by your exchange partners in the summer. Back to Top


  15. You'll find that different home swappers are looking for different things in an exchange. A single person or a couple may be very content in your one- or two-bedroom home, and they may indeed be willing to trade a stay in their 5-bedroom home for a stay in your conveniently-located and well-appointed home. We have found that it never hurts to ask! And remember, our Indirect Exchanges allow you to stay in someone else's home even if they don't want to stay in yours. See How To Arrange Your Home Exchange for more information about the types of exchanges we offer. Back to Top


  16. The amount of time you stay in your swap home is up to only you and your exchange partner. Most housing swaps are for one week. However, some exchanges take place over a weekend, while some swappers stay for a few weeks. This is something about which you can speak to potential exchange partners to find what will work for both of you. Back to Top


  17. Membership is free for the first year. You pay only when you make an exchange. See Fees for more information. Back to Top


  18. The fee for a Direct Exchange is $250 for each member, paid when an exchange is made. The fee for an Indirect Exchange is $500 for the member using the other member's property. See Exchange Fees for more information. Back to Top


  19. Our Network is based on honesty. When a member initiates or accepts an exchange, the member is expected to notify The Vacation Exchange Network. Back to Top


  20. We provide a sample exchange agreement that you can use when planning the details of your home exchange and discussing them with your exchange partner. Back to Top


  21. Our Exchange Coordinators will work very hard to find you an exchange. But of course, you only pay when you make an exchange. Back to Top


  22. No. In order to keep the listings current, the information about Network homes is available only online. Back to Top


  23. No. The Vacation Exchange Network is only available to sole owners of vacation homes and second homes. Back to Top


  24. No. In fact, The Vacation Exchange Network has made arrangements with scores of Property Managers who now offer the service to their clients. Simply be sure to coordinate with your Property Manager to ensure availability of your home for the week you'd like to make your exchange. See Hints for Coordinating a Smooth Housing Exchange for more information.  Back to Top


  25. Yes. The Network includes single family detached houses, as well as apartments, flats, and condominiums. The homes in our Network meet our standards for location, amenities, and value. Many styles of homes can meet those standards. Browse through our Network of vacation properties to see the wide variety of homes. Back to Top


  26. We are committed to the fundamentals of protecting consumer privacy on the Internet. See our Security Features and our Privacy Policy for complete information. Back to Top


  27. To see our newest vacation home exchange listings, see our New Members page, located in the "What's New" tab on our Home Page. Additionally, our monthly Vacation Home Exchange Network e-newsletters highlight new additions to our Network. New members are typically excited to arrange their first Vacation Exchange Network home swap and will likely welcome your interest in swapping with them. Take a look at what's new now! Also, please take a moment to follow us on Twitter and Facebook. On these forums, we frequently highlight new homes listed on our Network. Back to Top


  28. As you browse through our vacation home listings, you will see that each listing includes information about when the home is typically available for exchange. We also gather information monthly from all of our members as to when their homes are available for exchange in the upcoming three months. This information is available on our Homes Available for Immediate Exchange page, located in the "What's New" tab on our Home Page. Additionally, our monthly Vacation Home Exchange Network e-newsletters highlight current availabilities in our Network. Please note that these lists are NOT exhaustive, as not all homeowners keep us up to date about their home's availability, and homes become available on an ongoing basis. Always check directly with other members as to their home's availability. Also, please take a moment to follow us on Twitter and Facebook. On these forums, we frequently highlight homes that are available for exchange in the coming months. Back to Top


  29. As you browse through our vacation home listings, you will see that each home listing includes information about the exchange preferences of that member. We also are continuously gathering information from all of our members as to vacation plans for which they are currently looking for a home swap. This information is available on our Members Looking for Exchanges page, located in the "What's New" tab on our Home Page. Please note that this list is NOT exhaustive, as not all homeowners keep us up to date about their desired exchanges, and members search for exchanges on an ongoing basis. Also, please take a moment to follow us on Twitter and Facebook. On these forums, we frequently highlight members who are currently looking for a home swap. Back to Top


  30. Keeping our members up to date about the latest happenings at The Vacation Exchange Network is one of our primary goals. There are several ways you can stay updated. In the "What's New" tab on our Home Page, you will find listings of New Members, Homes Available for Immediate Exchange, and Members Looking for Exchanges. Check those listings regularly to find your next vacation! Our monthly Vacation Home Exchange Network e-newsletters highlight many homes that are available for exchange in the coming months and introduce new members to the Network. We are also very excited about our new presence on Twitter and Facebook. By following our Twitter feed or becoming a fan of our Facebook page, you can be sure that you'll be among the first to learn about the fabulous yet affordable vacations you can take with The Vacation Exchange Network. Back to Top


  31. Keeping our members up to date about the latest happenings at The Vacation Exchange Network is one of our primary goals. In order to further this goal, you can now find us on Twitter and Facebook. Twitter is a free social networking service that provides its members with the ability to send and read short messages known as tweets (see Wikipedia's article on Twitter for more information). Facebook is another social networking site that enables people to connect with friends and businesses in order to stay notified (see Wikipedia's article on Facebook for more information). After joining Twitter and/or Facebook, you can follow our Twitter feed or become a fan of our Facebook page. You will be sure that you'll be among the first to learn about our newest members, vacation homes available for exchange in the coming weeks, and other members looking for exchanges. Back to Top


  32. The Share This button you will find at the top of most of the pages on our site enables you to bookmark and share the content on our website in which you are particularly interested. You can print or email the description of a vacation home you find interesting, mention our site in your tweets or Facebook status updates, and bookmark any page on our site for later reference -- all by clicking on the Share This button. Back to Top


  33. Thank you. We agree that our home exchange program is unparalleled! We appreciate your spreading the word so we can accelerate our growth. There are a few ways you can help spread the word. First, please use our Refer a Friend link to send your friends, family, and colleagues a message and link to our site. For each friend that joins our Network, you will receive a $50 Exchange Credit, which you can use next time you arrange a home exchange. Exchange Credits can add up quickly; just getting five friends to join our Network pays the full fee for a Direct Exchange. Additionally, the Share This button you will find at the top of most of the pages on our site enables you to bookmark and share the content on our website in which you are particularly interested. You can email to a friend the description of a vacation home you find interesting, mention our site in your tweets or Facebook status updates, and bookmark any page on our site on any number of social bookmarking sites, including Diigo, Digg, Delicious, Reddit, StumbleUpon, and Yahoo! Buzz -- all by clicking on the Share This button. Back to Top
 

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