FAQ

What membership options do I have?

Web listing including up to 20 colour photos on the web (we upload the first 3 ). You may edit your own listing: R1,050.00

2- Year membership. This is an option for those who may be travelling abroad over the period when their renewal is due or those who wish to remain in membership for a longer period so as to have more exchange options: R1,500.00

Additional  listings (e.g. holiday home, B’nB, rental): R400,00

Renewal of annual membership: R850,00

How do I arrange an exchange?

When you become a member you receive full access to all member details in the HomeLink community, to which your own property details will be added. As a member, you simply send out offers to places of interest and it goes from there. HouseMake contact with as many potential exchange partners as you can, remembering that good communication and flexibility are keys to a satisfying exchange experience. Use the HomeLink Exchange Agreement form to clarify who pays what in terms of telephone, electricity and other utilities. Inform your insurance company about the arrangement case of accidents. If you are exchanging cars you need to complete the Car Exchange Agreement too. You will find an example Detail Agreement Form here – use this to ensure you have everything covered and add additional information as required..

What holiday options do I have?

  1. Home Exchange – You stay in their home while they stay in yours.Keys
  2. Non-Simultaneous Exchange – Exchanges need not be at the same time.
  3. Long Term Exchange – Exchange lasting 6 weeks or more.
  4. Weekend Exchange – A short break option.
  5. Hospitality Exchange – You stay with them, then later they stay with you (non-simultaneous).
  6. B’nB / Rental – These commercial options are only for members who have already listed their homes for one of the above options,e.g. exchange. These are considered to be second listings and are viewed in the commercial sector of the web and are found at the back of the Exchange Directory.
  7. Open to offers – This option will bring in interesting offers from a variety of sources and does not limit you to any one exchange option.

How do I prepare me home?

  1. Take a look around your home and your neighbourhood and describe your home and surroundings clearly and honestly in all correspondence. You want your exchange partners to be pleasantly surprised when they arrive rather than disappointed. Never hide the existence of pets.
  2. Leave your home clean. Standards of cleanliness vary, so make sure that floors are vacuumed and mopped, refrigerator emptied, Welcomestove and oven grease-free, bath and shower free of mould and grime, windows see-through, and surfaces dust-free. No need to repaint the house.
  3. Clear away enough of your personal belongings to leave space on shelves and in wardrobes and drawers so that your guests can empty their suitcases, arrange their things in bedrooms, bathrooms, and entry halls, and feel at home.
  4. Leave at least two sets of clean sheets per bed and two sets of towels per person.
  5. Compile a clear, useful ‘Guide to Your Home and Surroundings’ which includes local tourist information and household notices about the use of electrical appliances, pool maintenance, pet and plant care, garbage day pick-up, etc. Phone numbers of a recommended doctor, dentist, babysitter, good restaurants, and helpful friends are always welcome too.Suitcase
  6. Use our ‘Home and Car Exchange Agreement’ forms to avoid all misunderstandings and clarify who pays what in terms of telephone, electric bills, gas consumption, insurance deductibles in case of accidents, and staple foods such as flour, sugar, oil, etc.
  7. If arrangements are such that you cannot meet, arrange for a family member, neighbour or friend to come by and welcome your exchange partners when they arrive. They will certainly have questions, and such a welcome will be much appreciated.
  8. Leave the makings of a first meal. Nothing fancy, but your guests will be tired and hungry and grateful not to have to go out for dinner.
  9. It has become a HomeLink tradition to leave a small gift of welcome: a bottle of wine or champagne, a local speciality. Always a special surprise.Keys
  10. Lastly, close the door, turn the key, and go off on holiday knowing that your home is in the good hands of another HomeLink member like you.

What safety and insurance to I have?

Home exchange is built on trust, respect and generosity but for the the rare times that accidents or damage may occur it is always in your interest to check your home and car insurance policies and to check whether or not foreign drivers are excluded from your policy. Home exchangers are your guests after all and are no different from friends or relatives. It is important, however, to agree on aspects of mileage and repairs with your exchangers before the time. When you are exchanging with experienced exchangers they will be able to give you a guideline from their past experiences.
An occupied home is always less of a risk than one left unattended. Insurance companies and the police know this too.
While you may want to put specially valuable items away, you should feel free to address any matters of safety and security with your chosen exchange partners.

Need more support?

Call us on +27 21 762 2274

For more information on this topic please visit Homelink’s international website.