Home Swaps Mantra

As a real estate broker, I have often quoted the mantra–and you all know it–location, location, location.  The value of the home you are looking at depends on its location.  In the world of home exchanges, the value of your experience depends on a different mantra–flexibility, flexibility, flexibility.

The best home exchange belongs to those who are flexible and creative.  So often, those who are flexible are rewarded with special serendipitous adventures and chance of a lifetime opportunities.

You will be amazed by the kind of wonderful growing experience that can come your way because you swapped homes with someone in a town you have never before heard of.  A small town may be totally unfamiliar to you, but just a short commute from Copenhagen–and your experience in that community may provide you the best of both worlds.

To make the flexibility mantra work, all you have to do is take a moment to look up unfamiliar city names for available home exchange listings on a map.  If everyone who traveled confined their travels only to Paris, what a sad commentary on the imaginative powers of world travelers!

Many of us are baby boomers and now is the time of life when we need to re-ignite the creative streak from our youthful past.  Let’s see and experience the world as travelers, not just as tourists.  We are not consigned to the role of travel consumer.  We have a choice.  We can be travel connoisseurs. We can discover and savor the many far-flung corners of spaceship earth.  By taking advantage of home exchanges, we can travel more often than we ever thought was possible.  The only out of the ordinary living expense for our travels may be the price of the airline ticket, train ticket, bus ticket, or fuel we need to get from here to there.

Flexibility is important when it comes to the dates–as well as for the destination–for your home exchange.  When you open up your flexibility about the date for your home swap, you can add tremendous value to your actual home swap adventure.  Make your box of available location and dates too small–and maybe it would be better for you to just stay in a hotel.  But, keep in this in mind: after your first home exchange, you’ll realize how narrow and limited was the experience of staying in a hotel.  To live as a local, not just as a tourist, holds the promise of so much more–more fun, more meaningfulness, more to remember and treasure in days and years to come.

Go ahead.  Stretch yourself.  Be open to where–and when–you are willing to travel.  Remember, the best home exchange belongs to those guided by the home exchange mantra–flexibility, flexibility, flexibililty!