Friday, September 5, 2008

When a House is Not a Home on Sanibel Island: Home Exchanging Made Easy

One of the pleasures of owning vacation rental properties on Sanibel Island is being able to set up "house" for revenue, and use it, when possible, for your own vacations.

We got into the business of vacation rentals because we were usually disappointed in places we had rented, whether they were hotel rooms, villas or condominiums.

So we greatly enjoyed setting up our Sanibel
condo and our vacation rental home, Toucan House, to be vacation rentals assuring that both properties met our standards in aesthetic appeal, comfort and convenience.

In the last several years, we have discovered another pleasure in owning vacation rental properties, and that is the joy of
home exchanging.

Having a second home to exchange is a much easier transaction than exchanging on a primary home. There is nothing one needs to do to put the house in order for an exchange. It is turn key, always clean and ready to go. In addition, a vacation home provides the most flexibility and latitude, allowing for non simultaneous exchanges and "banking" vacations into the future if the swapper on the other end is comfortable with that arrangement.

We have done some great exchanges with our Sanibel condo including Sardinia, Coastal South Carolina, the Dominican Republic and have banked exchanges to France and California.

But we have found even greater value in exchanging our Sanibel Island home, Toucan House, as the size of the home is very appealing to exchangers.

We have done exchanges to the beautiful Smokey Mountains of North Carolina on Toucan House as well as Spain and Croatia, and have banked exchanges to Arizona, Scotland, Jamaica and the pan handle in Florida.

Now we just need to find the time to carry through on all our banked exchanges!

In a time when money is tight and vacations must be weighed carefully against other expenditures, home exchanging is a fabulous way to get the most value and most fun out of a vacation rental investment. Even when money is not a major factor in where or when to holiday, the home exchange possbility is more often than not a much more comfortable means of vacationing. And because Sanibel Island is a greatly desired and world class destination, finding appealing swaps is as easy as pie.

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