Noosa Heads.
Noosa Heads. Warren Lynam

Elite property exchange concept

AUSTRALIAN'S who own luxury second or holiday homes are in for some good news.

Boutique Noosa-based agency, Lifestyle Realty has secured an exclusive arrangement with the world's most luxurious private exchange program, 3RD HOME, for Australia, New Zealand and Indonesia.

3RD HOME represents the elite end of the property exchange concept for travel, enabling luxury property owners to leverage the value of their own holiday home, by using unoccupied time to travel to different destinations, without the hassles or high cost of renting.

A members-only club, 3RD HOME is open exclusively to those who own a second home in desirable locations with quality furnishings, appointments and amenities.

By depositing available weeks in a holiday home into the club system, members earn 'keys' relative to the value of the property that can be immediately used to stay at a whole host of other premium properties in a huge variety of international holiday destinations. All of this in real time, online.

While the concept of property exchange isn't new in itself - first there was couch surfing, then house swapping - the introduction of 3RD HOME means that the concept is no longer primarily the remit of backpackers and grey nomads looking for extended stays in primary residences.

Lifestyle Realty managing director, Ric King, says 3RD HOME's expansion into the Australasian market is a real coup for second home owners, especially given the current market for luxury property in Australia.

"We all know the market for luxury properties in the current economic climate continues to struggle. As such, we are constantly on the lookout for worthwhile propositions for our clientele. The 3RD HOME program is ideal in that it provides a way to leverage the home's intrinsic value, by using downtime to travel the world in luxury at an affordable price.

"The 3RD HOME referral and rewards systems are well thought out, clear and fair, and the booking fee of just $495 dollars to stay in a luxury property for a week…well, no one is going to argue that represents absolutely terrific value for second home owners," Mr King said.

3RD HOME president, Giles Adams, is proud of the reciprocal program and the benefits it opens up for owners of luxury second homes around the world.

He is confident Australians will embrace the concept at least as much as existing members from Europe, the Caribbean and North America, and expects member growth to continue to grow rapidly in both hemispheres over the next 12 months.

"Australians love to travel the world...and the rest of the world loves to travel to Australia! I'm very excited that SSKB and Lifestyle Realty are delivering the 3RD HOME proposition to this market," Mr Adams said.

>> Read more travel stories.