What are Hosts expected to provide for Guests?
Hosts are expected to provide a bedroom and access to common areas of the home, including the kitchen and a private or shared bathroom. Hosts must provide a safe and friendly environment in a well-maintained home. Most hosts provide fully furnished homes and bedrooms including bedding, towels, and cleaning supplies.
Hosts are NOT responsible for providing food, driving, or cleaning for their Guest. However, we do encourage sharing meals and house chores.
Who are the typical Guests who use Happipad?
Happipad Guests are mature, responsible people looking for medium- to long-term accommodation. This can include post-secondary students, relocating workers, seasonal employees, and older adults. Guests may be relocating from other countries or provinces and are looking to build connections in their new community. Guests see value in living in a safe and supportive environment with other responsible adults.
How are room prices set?
Hosts have the freedom to set their own room prices. Prices vary depending on location, size of home, number of people shared with, and amenities provided. Our most successful hosts choose to set their rooms below market rent prices because they place more value on establishing a true connection with their Guest. These competitively priced rooms typically receive more applications from a diverse range of Guests allowing you to choose the Guest best suited to you.
What is Happipad?
Happipad is a web-based platform with features that help Hosts (a homeowner or a primary renter) rent a spare room out to a compatible Guest. Each shared rental arrangement is a fixed-term contract for a time period greater than one month. These living arrangements enable Hosts to earn extra income and Guests to find affordable accommodation. Both Hosts and Guests benefit from companionship and an increased sense of security.
How does Happipad work?
Happipad is a one-stop-shop solution that helps Hosts rent out portions of their home to a Guest. We have developed a proprietary technique that helps people find a compatible person to live with based on lifestyle, individual habits, and personality traits. Once a housemate has been selected, we support the living arrangement by providing a legal framework, conflict resolution process, security deposit management, and rent payment automation. Learn more about how the process works.
Why use Happipad?
Through consultations with municipalities and home sharing societies in addition to collaborating with leading universities we have gained valuable insight into services that make companion housing easier, more enjoyable, and more secure. For example, Happipad has pre-screening, compatibility-based matching, background checks, lease creation, legal services and also helps manage automatic rent payments. People experience comfort using Happipad rather than finding a Guest from unregulated and unverified alternative rental listings.
What tools does Happipad provide?
Happipad’s online platform includes a suite of useful tools, including a map-based listing service, online rental applications, Guest to Host messaging, optional background screening, contract creation, and automated rent transfer.
What security features does Happipad have?
All hosts have their identity verified through our screening process, which includes: checks against databases for anti-money laundering, negative news, and the Canadian credit bureau. Hosts have the option to receive applications from verified Guests. Verified Guests have their identity verified and undergo extensive background screening across databases that include court records, sex offender lists, eviction records, negative news reports, and fraud watch lists.
Is my personal information secure on Happipad?
Your safety and privacy is a priority and your personal information is protected on Happipad. All Hosts and Guests have secure account profiles that require password authentication, and all information is stored securely. We do not share your information with anyone without your permission, and we do not store any payment information on our servers. Payments are processed by our PCI-compliant provider: Paysafe.
Can my account be suspended?
Happipad may limit, suspend or temporarily deactivate your account if we suspect anything inappropriate, such as fraud or illegal activities. Please review our Terms of Service.
Where does Happipad operate?
Happipad is headquartered in Kelowna, British Columbia. Our services are available to residents of Canada.
About Companion Housing
What is companion housing?
Companion Housing describes a living arrangement where two or more compatible people share a home for each other’s mutual benefit. Arrangements involve a Host who is responsible for managing the home and one or more Guests who rent bedrooms in the home. Each person has their own private bedroom while the kitchen and common areas are shared.
What are the regulations around companion housing?
There are few regulations around companion housing. The residential tenancy laws in British Columbia do not apply to a living arrangement in which a Guest shares bathroom or kitchen facilities with the Host. Companion housing is also exempt from the Inn Keepers Act.
Is companion housing allowed in my city?
Companion housing is permitted in most municipalities if the stay is more than 30 days. However, some municipal bylaws may restrict the number of allowed Guests in a home. It is your responsibility to ensure that you do not violate any bylaws.
Are there age restrictions to be a Host or Guest?
All Hosts and Guests must be at least 19 years of age, there is no upper age limit.
Do I need my own home?
Yes, Hosts must be a registered owner of the residence.
Is this like room and board?
No, there is no expectation for the Host to provide anything to the Guest beyond a bedroom, access to bathroom and kitchen facilities, and basic utilities. In particular, Hosts are not required to provide meals or transportation to Guests. Guests are expected to live independently from Hosts.
What is it like to live in a companion housing arrangement?
Many say companion housing is similar to living with family, except that you get to choose the people you live with. Your daily living habits should not change significantly, as you still have your independence and private space. Sharing of common spaces means that you must be considerate of the other people in your home.
Why should I try companion housing?
Every person has their own reasons. Most people find improved social connections, financial benefits, increased safety, ability to learn, mentor, and companionship. 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.
Can international students or visitors participate?
Yes, as long as the duration of stay is greater than one month, students and visitors from outside of Canada can be a Guest with Happipad.
What are the requirements for Hosts?
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 do Hosts need to provide for Guests?
The Host must provide the Guest with a bedroom and access to shared common spaces which must include at least one bathroom, a kitchen, and laundry (if available). In addition, the Host must provide the Guest with access to basic utilities, including electricity, water, heating, natural gas (if applicable), and air conditioning (if applicable). Basic utilities are included in rent.
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. Hosts are responsible for ensuring their home is maintained to an acceptable standard, is safe, and compliant with all bylaws and codes.
What are basic utilities?
Basic utilities include water, electricity, heating, natural gas (if applicable), and air conditioning (if applicable).
What happens if a Guest needs additional utilities, like internet?
Guests are responsible for all expenses incurred for services beyond the Host’s existing internet and cable services.
How long is a typical companion housing term?
Most companion housing terms are usually between 4 and 12 months with an option to extend. In any instance a stay cannot be less than one month.
Conflicts and Coverage
Who sets the house rules?
Hosts set the rules of their house and terms of the companion housing 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.
What happens if we don’t get along?
Happipad has a Dispute Support Centre which assists Hosts and Guests if a disagreement occurs. In the event that a resolution cannot be found, the living agreement has a termination policy that allows both parties to end the living arrangement. In the event of a serious breach in the agreement, the living arrangement can be cancelled immediately. If you feel threatened or you believe your safety is in jeopardy at any time, contact local law enforcement.
Will my home insurance provider allow companion housing?
Most home insurance providers permit Hosts to have up to two Guests. It is the Host’s responsibility to insure that their companion housing activities do not violate the terms of their home insurance. Always contact your insurance provider prior to accepting any guests into your home.
Will Guests’ contents be covered by the Hosts insurance policy?
No, Guests are responsible for their own contents insurance and will not be covered by their Hosts policy. Coverage is optional for Guests but recommended.
How To Get Started
How do I form my living arrangement?
Hosts will receive applications from interested Guests where they can choose their preferred match. We recommend meeting face to face, or through a video call before signing an agreement. Happipad will then generate a contractual 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.
How do I prepare my home to become a Host?
In general, Host homes should be clean and well organized. Some things to consider:
- Clean and organize your spare bedroom, remove items being stored in closets
- Remove personal items from the Guest bathroom
- Furnish the bedroom with a quality bed and 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
- Have a spare key for your Guest
- Inform your home insurance provider that you will have a Guest staying in your home
What if a Guest has a pet?
All Guests who have a pet pay a half-month pet damage deposit prior to moving in, which is held in trust by Happipad until the end of the living arrangement. Hosts can claim the cost of repair for damage due to the pet from the pet damage deposit. The pet damage deposit, less any claims awarded to the Host, is returned to the Guest within 30 days after the end date of the living arrangement.
How do I make my home attractive to prospective housemates?
The easiest way to make your home attractive is to take nice photos of your home with bright natural lighting. Keeping your home clean and well organized will make it more attractive and enjoyable. Cost of rent and location are important factors for many Guests. Most importantly, creating and maintaining an enjoyable, inviting, and supportive dynamic within the home is desired by all Guests.
How do I register?
Register at https://happipad.com/#register. If you require assistance you can contact us by phone or email at [email protected]happipad.com.
I didn’t receive an email verification after sign-up?
Email verification ensures that you will be able to receive important updates about your Happipad account whether or not you have logged in lately. To verify your email simply click the link in the email.
Don’t see an email from Happipad? Follow these steps:
- Confirm your email address is correct in the Happipad box and select Resend
- Log into your email account through a web browser (i.e. Chrome, Firefox, or Safari).
- Check your trash, spam, or filtered email folders. If the email appears here then you will need to move it back to your inbox to click on the link. You should also consider adding Happipad to your safe list so that you can receive future notifications. To do this check out the following links:
- If the above steps did not work for you, contact us directly and we’ll help you get verified
Why do I need to create a profile?
Happipad understands that every person is unique. Successful companion housing depends on matching you with a compatible person. To ensure successful matches, we require you to complete your own profile and matching assessment.
Do I need a profile photo?
A profile picture is highly recommended. They increase your odds of being selected as an applicant and the likelihood of receiving applications.
To upload a picture simply:
- Click on, “update” located below the profile picture display.
- Choose any picture from your computer
- Click “open”.
Acceptable picture types are:
What information should I share?
To protect yourself from fraud, we recommend that you never share personal information with anyone outside of the Happipad system.
How do I list my room?
To list your room, all you have to do is sign up to create a profile and listing. The profile tells us about you and your housemate preferences, and the listing tells prospective Guests about your home. Your home then becomes part of our active listings for housemates to search.
What if I don’t get any matches?
We can’t guarantee that you will find a match, but we can help you increase your chances of success and deliver as many qualified leads as possible.
How do I change the start date of my living arrangement?
Host or Guest can request a later start date, provided that it is submitted to the Happipad platform 21 days before the current start date. The other party may, but is not required to, accept the new start date. If the new start date is not accepted, then both parties must honour the original start date in the living arrangement agreement.
How do I change the end date of my living arrangement?
Host or Guest can request an earlier end date, provided that it is submitted to the Happipad platform 21 days before the new end date. The other party may, but is not required to, accept the new end date. If the new end date is not accepted, then both parties must honour the original end date in the living arrangement agreement.
How do I extend my living arrangement?
Host or Guest can request to extend the living arrangement in one-month intervals. The extension request must be accepted by the other party.
What is Happipad’s cancellation policy?
Either the Host or Guest can cancel their living arrangement prior to the start date. If the Host cancels, the security deposit will be refunded to the Guest. If the Guest cancels more than one month before the start date, the security deposit, less a $50 administrative fee, is refunded to the Guest. If the Guest cancels less than one month before the start date, the security deposit, less a $50 administrative fee, is disbursed to the Host.
How do I form my living arrangement?
Hosts will receive applications from interested Guests where they can choose their preferred match. We recommend meeting face to face, or through a video call before signing an agreement. 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.
Rent Payment and Costs
Does the Guest pay rent to the Host?
The Guest pays a fair monthly rent to the Host (set by the Host), inclusive of basic utilities. Rent is automatically charged to the Guest through the Happipad platform and deposited into the Hosts bank account.
How do automatic rent payments work?
By establishing a Happipad account, scheduled rent payments will automatically transfer funds from the Guest’s bank account or credit card directly into the Host’s bank account. With automatic rent payment, there is no need for a Host to request rent from their Guest.
What methods of payment does Happipad accept?
We accept bank transfer from Canadian banks and major credit cards including Visa and Mastercard.
What if the rent payment doesn’t process?
If a rent payment fails, a $10 administrative fee will be applied to the Guest’s account. Rent payments typically fail to process for two reasons – either the payment information has been entered incorrectly or there are insufficient funds in the account.
What happens if my Guest is late paying rent?
If a Guest fails to complete rent payment by the rent due date, rent will be overdue and a $20 late fee will be applied to the Guest’s account. If the Guest is late paying rent on three or more occasions, the Host reserves the right to terminate the living arrangement immediately.
What happens if my Guest does not pay rent?
If the Guest fails to complete the rent payment within seven days from the rent due date, the Host reserves the right to terminate the living arrangement immediately.
How long does it take for a Host to get paid?
Credit card payment and bank transfer processing times depend on administrative factors and institutional backlogs beyond our control, and may take up to five Business Days (or longer in rare cases).
Are there security deposits involved?
Yes, all Guests pay a half-month security deposit upon signing their living arrangement agreement, which is held in trust by Happipad until the end of the living arrangement. Hosts can claim the cost of damage repair or lost rent from the security deposit. The security deposit, less any claims awarded to the Host, is returned to the Guest within 30 days after the end date of the living arrangement.
How does a Host make a damage claim against a security deposit?
Guests will be responsible for any damage caused by themselves, their visitors, or their pets. If the Host determines that there is damage caused by the Guest, the Host must submit a damage claim through the Happipad platform no later than 21 days after the end date of the living arrangement specifying the damage and cost of repairs.
What are Happipad’s fees?
For Hosts, it is free to sign up on Happipad to list your room(s). Happipad charges a $50 placement fee (taken out from first month’s rent) when a contract is signed. In addition, there is a 5% monthly service fee included in rent.
For Guests, it is free to use Happipad to browse rooms and secure a room rental with no hidden fees. There is an optional $19.95 fee for Guests to upgrade to a verified user. Deposits and rent paid by credit card are subject to an additional 2.9% processing fee above the cost of rent or deposit.
Check out our service fees page.