Not sure what you mean by work exchange... I would suggest a job on the mountain.. apply as a liftie? you'll get more time on your skis that way. You want to work for the mountain so you get a pass. Apply at as many places as possible, you may get job offers at more than one.. then you can pick where you want to go. I wouldnt suggest just picking one resort and hoping for a job. If you get called back or a job offer then you can start worrying about housing. Rent for employee housing can really go from one extreme to the other. Its all about what town your living in and how much money you've got. If your going to be a liftie dont plan on living in luxury.
Go for it though.. you wont regret it. This past season was my first as a liftie and I loved every minute of it... except for the hungover days. Those arent very fun. But, you will have a great time.. you spend every day on the mountain and on your skis. Its a great experience. DO IT!!!
I applied at probably 10 resorts, got 3 job offers. Then decide where you wanna go. I also went this solo.. dont be afraid to pack your shit and take off. You'll make so many friends in the first week on the mountain that it wont matter you moved by yourself.
good luck dude