The golden rule of home exchanging is to leave your home clean for your home exchange partner’s arrival and to leave their home clean when you depart. Prepare your home as you would for cherished guests and family members, and leave their home the same way. We are building community. Other options are available of course, so create a departure checklist for whatever mutual agreement you have worked out with your exchange partners.
Communication is key so that you and your exchange partners are comfortable and know what to expect. In over 25 exchanges, we each most often do the cleaning ourselves and leave the other person’s home clean. However, on a few occasions when we have an early flight we left payment for a cleaning service that was arranged by the home owner. All things are possible.
A departure checklist is handy for the guest and the host. We print the departure checklist and leave the pages in the front pocket of our home exchange book. We tuck in a handy pencil and pen.
My Departure Checklist
Thank you for being our guest and home exchange partner. We hope that you enjoyed your stay.
If you took photos of our home when you first arrived, you can look back at these photos to remember how things were arranged. If you’ve done significant moving around of furniture and personal items, you can do your best to put things as you found them.
Just tidy up and check around for your belongings. We’re famous for leaving little things behind.
Take off sheets and leave on top of bed. No need to wash them. We’ll make the beds when we return.
Hang used bath and kitchen towels on the outdoor hooks by the pool so we’ll know which towels are used. No pool? Have your guests put dirty towels on top of the washing machine or in the bottom of the shower or on the bathroom floor.
Throw out open perishable foods.
Put dirty dishes in the dishwasher, run it if needed. No need to empty.
Do a quick wipe down of the kitchen counters and patio table (we battle sugar ants).
The vacuum is in the guest room closet if needed.
Broom and dust pan are in the hall closet.
No need to mop, but if you must, there is a Swiffer in the hall closet. Mop and bucket are in the laundry room.
Empty all the trash cans. Put household garbage in the large white kitchen trash bags and seal tightly before you put in outside can.
If the AC is on, set AC to auto 78F/25C.
Make sure doors and windows are tightly closed and locked.
Make sure trash cans and recycle bins are inside the fence.
Leave us a note if anything needs our attention. We strive to provide an exceptional guest experience.
Depending on what our agreement was, replace any essential items that were used up.
Check the closets again for your belongings. Check the dishwasher for your own food storage containers and cups.
Check the outlets to be sure you have your charging cords.
Travel safely home.
Questions for the guest
My departure checklist also includes a space for guests to give us feedback so that we can improve where needed.
Did you look for things you didn’t find?
Did you wish that you knew answers to local questions?
Please note your questions and feedback here. We strive for exceptional home experiences and your feedback will help us to do better.