Home-Swap Savings: Tip-of-the-Day #99


I was just on Craigslist looking around for Sea Ranch rentals over Memorial Day weekend. I was ultimately hoping for a better deal than I would get going through a property manager/real estate firm.

I found a number of listings that were in fact less than I would have to pay if I were going through Ramshead (for instance) because by going direct to the property owner you get around managment fees.

Then I found a couple of listings where the owner was willing to entertain equitable trades (i.e., their home in Sea Ranch for my swank condo in Sea Cliff). That's where the savings really become tangible.

If you can find a viable home swap situation where you feel comfortable with the arrangement and the person(s) you're swapping with, you stand to not only save money on what you would have had to pay to vacation somewhere else, but also consider that by having someone stay in your place you have a built in plant waterer, pet feeder and security system!

I've been known to pay hundreds of dollars to have people stay in my home while I'm on vacation for the very reasons stated above. Using Craigslist or another home exchange site to find a vacation swap comes with more perks than you might have even realized.

There are many sites (beyond Craigslist) dedicated to this proposition...but they are going to cost you. Depending on how often you plan to travel, it may be worth it.
HomeExchange.com = $99.95/yr
HomeForSwap.com = $59/yr
SwapNow.com = $110/yr

Note: Most of these sites cater to international travel too - there are a lot of people willing to take this leap to keep travel more affordable during these tight times.

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