Frequently Asked Questions
We are on a mission to define, enable, and promote home sharing between like-minded people. Home sharing has many advantages when done right. Our process is designed to help you create your own happy home-sharing arrangement.
Section 1: About Happipad
Who is Happipad?
Happipad is a team of passionate community leaders who believe in the benefits of home sharing. We are pioneering ways to make home sharing safe, simple, and accessible for all people.
How does Happipad work?
Happipad is an online platform that allows people to connect, form, and maintain home sharing arrangements. Happipad performs background screening and personality/character assessments to simplify the matching process. The entire process can be done online through our platform, or can be done in-person with the assistance of a Happipad Community Ambassador.
Where does Happipad operate?
Happipad is headquartered in Kelowna, British Columbia. Our services are available to all Canadian residents.
Section 2: About home sharing
What is home sharing?
Home-sharing is a living arrangement where two or more unrelated people share a home. Each person retains their own private space while common areas of the home are shared, such as the kitchen. No two home sharing situations are alike; each is tailored to the needs of the people in the home.
Arrangements involve a Host who is the home owner or principle resident (if renting the home), and a Guest who is the person renting a room in the home and sharing the common areas.
People who home share do not need to be the same age, gender, or ethnic background. What is important is having similar personalities, values, and interests. Cleaning and chores around the house are often shared. Each person is responsible for cleaning their own bedroom and bathroom. Each person is responsible for their own food and meal preparation. It is, however, common for hosts and guests to share some meals.
What is it like to home share?
Many say home sharing is similar to family, except you get to choose the people. Your daily living will not be much different than usual as you still have your independence and private space. Most people enjoy the companionship, help around the home, and the safety of having another person around the house. You are not expected to make any changes to your routine or way of living, instead you can match with another person who shares the same values. Some people find they eat better and develop better habits and routines. Some find themselves to be more active and connected with their community.
Why should I home share?
Every person has their own reasons to home share. Most people find improved social connections, financial benefits, increased safety, ability to learn, mentor, and companionship. Home sharing is a great way to help others and to help newcomers transition into your city.
You will likely experience your own benefits that may not appear obvious. We have heard families becoming more organized and connected, seniors becoming more active and happier, and students having better grades.
Does the Guest pay rent to the Host?
The Guest pays a fair monthly rent to the Host (set by the Host), inclusive of utilities. In some arrangements the Guest will receive a reduction in monthly rent in exchange for extra help around the house. Rent with home sharing is generally much less than market rentals, such as private apartments.
Happipad offers an optional rental collection service to ensure Hosts get paid fairly and on-time.
Who is home sharing for?
Home sharing is a great housing option for people both young and old. Many seniors have adopted home sharing, as have families, empty-nesters, young adults, and students.
Ideal persons should be willing to share their home and cooperate with others, enjoy conversation, and sharing of meals. If you enjoy being around like-minded people you will likely enjoy home sharing.
Can international students or visitors participate?
Yes, Happipad allows you to connect with others who speak the same language and have similar values. Happipad does not allow any stays for less than 30 days.
What are the requirements to Host?
Hosts must have at least one spare bedroom in their home. The home must be furnished, bedrooms are normally furnished however unfurnished bedrooms are acceptable in some situations. Bathrooms may be shared if a private bathroom is not available.
Hosts must complete Happipad’s onboarding process including background screening. Hosts must be at least the age of majority, must be independent and able to look after oneself. There is no defined maximum age.
What are the expectations?
Hosts and Guests must respect the privacy of each-other and follow all house rules. Each person is expected to share house chores and cleaning up after one-self. There is no expectation to cook or clean-up after each other. Each person is responsible for their own cost of food, pantry items are often shared. Sharing of meals is encouraged but is not required. There is no obligation to drive each-other, however carpooling is encouraged for shopping or other errands.
Who sets the house rules?
Hosts set the rules of their house and terms of the home sharing arrangement. This includes quiet time, cleaning schedules, rules for visitors, personal spaces, and anything that is important to you. The house rules are set when you list your room.
How long is a typical home sharing term?
Most home sharing terms are usually between 4 and 12 months with an option to extend. Terms can be as short as 1 month in some circumstances. The Host has the option to decide when their room is available and to set a maximum time of stay.
Do I need to own my home?
Hosts can either rent or own their homes. If you are renting your home, you may require approval from your landlord prior to home sharing.
Is home sharing allowed in my city?
Home sharing is permitted in most municipalities if the stay is more than 30 days. Happipad’s home sharing service is designed to be compliant with all bylaws and legislation.
Will my home insurance allow home sharing?
Most insurance providers permit home sharing under your existing home insurance. You are required to inform your insurance provider that you are home sharing, there is normally no extra costs involved. Happipad has optional liability insurance for all placements.
How does Happipad screen people?
Happipad compares the information of Hosts and Guests with over 110,000 databases in 240 countries to validate your identity and to search for any at-risk behavior. The results are used for internal processing only and are not stored or shared with other users.
Section 3: How to get started
How do I prepare my home to become a Host?
There is often little preparation that needs to be done to prepare your home for home sharing. Your home should be clean and well organized with adequate space for another person to store their personal items.
Some things to consider:
- Clean and organize your spare bedroom, remove items being stored in closets
- Remove personal items from the bathroom your guest will use
- Furnish the bedroom with a quality bed, have linens and towels available.
- Remove unused items from common areas
- Allocate an area for your guest to use as a study or computer area
- Provide space in the fridge and pantry for your guest to store their food
- Provide space for your guest to park their car (if available)
- Avoid strong fragrances in the home, some people may be sensitive
- Have a spare key for your guest
- Inform your home insurance provider that you will have a home-share guest staying in your home
- We recommend having wifi internet available for your guests
How do I register?
You can self-register at www.happipad.com/register or you can have a Happipad Community Ambassador assist you with the registration process.
What is a Community Ambassador?
Community Ambassadors are individuals who have experience with home sharing. In select cities, Happipad can connect you with an ambassador to meet you at your home, provide a home sharing suitability assessment, and help you get started with home sharing. See our registration page for more details.
Why do I need to create a profile?
Happipad understands that every person is unique. Home sharing depends on matching you with a like-minded person, similar to other relationships. To ensure successful matches we must understand what your personality is and what is important to you. Happipad is designed to be a safe place where only authenticated people can connect. We do not allow anonymous people to engage in home sharing.
How do I form my living arrangement?
Hosts will receive applications from interested Guests where they can choose their preferred match. Happipad will then generate a living arrangement agreement for the Host and Guest to sign. The Host and Guest will then communicate with each other to finalize move-in details. Our goal is to make the process simple and worry-free for you.