Friday, July 25, 2008
Style File: House Swaping
It's a new trend emerging around the world, especially in destination spots like South Florida. People swapping their homes for vacations and now, with the tough housing market, permanently trading homes. In tonight's Style File Seven's Belkys Nerey shows us the swap and go lifestyle.
WSVN -- In the movie the Holiday, two women on opposite sides of the globe meet online and end up swapping homes for vacation.
It's not just a Hollywood plot. House swapping is a trend happening right here in sunny South Florida.
Valeria Casal: "I think it is a great idea because you can go anywhere and your place is empty anyway."
Valeria has listed her Venetian Way condo on a website called www.homeexchange.com. Instead of paying for a hotel on her next vacation, she's looking to trade her place for someone else's.
Valeria Casal: "My main idea is to go during vacation time, like maybe go to the South of France, have a little cottage."
And, when it comes to house swapping, it's all about the trade off.
Valeria Casal: "I think my house has to offer location. You're close to Lincoln Road, you can walk to restaurants, movies, bars."
But it's not just vacations in this tough real estate market, another swapping trend is emerging. This For Lauderdale couple wants to permanently exchange houses.
Andrew Tremblay: "Selling it outright just wasn't working, and we felt that because there were other people across the country who also couldn't sell their home, they could take advantage of this if they wanted to move here, and we wanted to move there."
Andrew and his family want to move back to Boston, so he's posted his house on Craig's List hoping to swap homes with someone in that area.
Andrew Tremblay: "They would still get a mortgage on my home, and I would do the same thing on the other side, the thing it eliminates is the realtor fee."
The tricky part is finding a house you like and of equal value to yours. Otherwise, someone has to make up the difference.
Andrew Tremblay: "A lot of people say, 'OK, I have a $300,000 house, and I want to trade for your house,' and they don't understand they have to come up in value."
So they're still waiting for that perfect match and the trade-off' of a permanent vacation in Boston.
Heidi Tremblay: "We have our priorities, we want to be close to our family, we will swap or rent or sell."
Most of the websites for house swapping do require a monthly fee, and if you're considering permanently swapping a home in another part of the country, experts recommend taking a trip to see the property."
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