Q: I joined Home Base Holidays a couple of weeks ago and it's been really nice to start thinking about going away somewhere. We're currently talking to a family in Scotland about a possible home exchange with them for early 2021. So far it's sounding really promising but this will be my first swap and I am just not 100% sure what is expected in terms of preparing my home. Of course I will make sure my home is clean, tidy, with fresh bedding, towels, etc, but I just wasn't sure if I should also be clearing out space for their stuff? Also, what about personal belongings, do I leave them in my home while they're staying? I know I'm getting ahead of myself but any feedback would be appreciated. Thanks!
A: It's great to hear you're planning your first home swap! In terms of clearing space, most members just clear a section of a wardrobe and a drawer or two so that their guests have space to unpack their clothes and toiletries (as most home exchange periods are fairly short, your guests are unlikely to need a lot of space for their belongings). As well as leaving some storage space in bedrooms, we'd also recommend tidying your fridge and a kitchen cupboard so that your guests have space to store food.
Leave basic provisions: you don't have to go grocery shopping, but it's nice to have staples like tea, coffee, sugar, milk, bread, butter, cereal, toilet rolls and washing up liquid on hand to help your guests settle in while they figure out the lay of the land.
Your home swap guests will be looking forward to staying in a real home rather than a hotel room and so, it's completely normal to leave your personal belongings in your home. However, for peace of mind, some members do choose to store or lock away certain items e.g. work laptop, etc
Do get in touch with us if you need any help arranging your swap. Also, make sure to ask the other Home Base Holidays member any questions that come to mind - they will understand that it is your first time home exchanging and will appreciate the fact that you are being thoughtful and thorough.
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