House Swapping

How to make their casa your casa--and vice versa--as a great vacation alternative

As vacationing New Yorkers Jerry Koenig and Mary Geissman jaunted in their posh gray sedan from the 400-year-old stone house overlooking the narrow paths of medieval Padua, Italy, to the modern ski condo in Asiago, Italy, they had time to reflect on how breathtaking the vineyard-dotted Po Valley is...and how the house, the condo and the car had cost them not a cent. All three came in exchange for use of their two-bedroom apartment in New York City.

What a deal! No wonder more and more folks--by some estimates 15% to 20% more each year--are getting into house trading as a...

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