Homestay Student Resources

Welcome the Student Resource section of the Homestay website. Here you will find access to updated versions of the Homestay Letter of Agreement, Moving Notification Forms, Request For Extension Forms, Move Out Checklists and more!

Agreements

Student Letter of Agreement (LOA)

The VIU Homestay Student Letter of Agreement (LOA) outlines a student's responsibilities while participating in the program and living with a host family. The VIU Homestay Office recommends that students print a copy of their letter of agreement for reference.

Please view the most updated version of the student letter of agreement (English Version)

  Homestay Student Letter of Agreement 2019-2020.pdf

It is important that students read and understand their rights and responsibilities, as it is the student's agreement with the VIU Homestay Office. If you have any questions regarding information in the letter of agreement, please contact us for more information.

High School Students have some differences in their Letter of Agreement, based on custodianship requirements.

ths_homestay_student_letter_of_agreement_2019-2020.pdf

It is important that students read and understand their rights and responsibilities, as it is the student's agreement with the VIU Homestay Office. If you have any questions regarding information in the letter of agreement, please contact us for more information.

Short-term Students:

Students staying a maximum of 6 weeks commit to the Homestay Short-term Student Guidelines 2019-2020.pdf

 It is important that students read and understand their rights and responsibilities, as it is the student's agreement with the VIU Homestay Office. If you have any questions regarding information in the letter of agreement, please contact us for more information.

Translated versions of the Homestay Letter of Agreement are below. Please note the English version is the most accurate and up to date:

中文:

homestay_student_letter_of_agreement_chinese.pdf

日本語:

homestay_student_letter_of_agreement_japanese.pdf

한국어: 

homestay_student_letter_of_agreement_korean.pdf

Tiếng Việt: 

homestay_student_letter_of_agreement_vietnamese.pdf

 

Living in Homestay

Homestay Student Handbook

Download/View the Homestay Student Handbook.pdf

Each student is provided with a link to the VIU Homestay Program Handbook for International Students. This handbook answers common questions that International Students have about the VIU Homestay Program, including emergency procedures, communication, tips and tricks, moving out, and dealing with challenges. This handbook was updated August 2018. Hard copies can be requested through the homestay office. At Homestay Orientation students will receive a copy of the Homestay QuickFacts, which can be downloaded below.

 

 

Homestay Student QuickFacts (mini book)

  Download/View Homestay Student QuickFacts.pdf

 

The VIU Homestay Program expects that students and host families will complete a short homework Q&A together at the start of a new homestay placement. This should be completed as part of a new student's orientation to the host family's home as a brief introduction to their household rules. 

The VIU Homestay Program recommends revisiting the homework at the start of each new academic year for continuing students, or if students and hosts are experiencing miscommunication at home.

Start your Homestay Homework Q&A!

What do my fees provide?

Fees for the Homestay program provides a student with access to a private bedroom in a host family's home. The host family will also provide the student with use of bedding, a pillow, and towels. Fees include utilities, internet, and laundry facilities.

Fees for Homestay with Meals are $850/month and $29/night for partial months. The family will provide food for 3 meals per day, though students may need to buy additional snacks.

Homestay without Meals fees are $500/month and $17/night. Students are responsible for doing all of their own grocery shopping, meal prep and cooking, and clean up. This option is only available for mature students who are able to cook.

Homestay fees are payable to the host family on the first day of each month. Please refer to your individual fee schedule regarding your fee payments to your host family.

For students who will pay monthly fees directly to their host family, once the student has arrived in Canada, the host will take the student to open a Canadian bank account. The student will use online banking to pay monthly Homestay fees. The student will speak to the host family about which method of paying Homestay fees they prefer. Here are a couple of suggested methods how students can pay fees to their host family.

Interac E- Transfer

Here's how Interac e-Transfer works:

1. Hosts must be registered for on-line banking at their financial institution to receive money by Interac e-Transfer.  If the host banks on-line, students can pay the host using Interac e-Transfer.
2. In order to receive an Interac e-Transfer, the host will give the student his or her e-mail address, and together the host and student can create a password.
3. The student will login to his or her online banking, and will follow directions to send an Interac e-Transfer.
4. The student will send the host an Interac e-Transfer every month to pay Homestay fees.

Please note, most financial institutions charge students at least $1.50 for each Interac e-Transfer.

Personal Payee Bill Payment

To use this method of paying Homestay fees, it is not necessary for the host to use on-line banking.

If you and your host have bank accounts at the same financial institution, you will be able to electronically transfer funds to his or her account from your account.  In order to do this, students will need:

1. the host's full name on the bank account
2. the Branch number (four digits)
3. the host's account number

Each financial institution has its own fee structure for clients who make payments by this method. Some banks charge a $1.50, others have no charge for this service. 

PayPal

Some students may run into situations where they have difficulties transferring funds from their bank in their home country to the Canadian bank account. In situations like this, some students have found success using PayPal as an intermediary option to transfer money between their two personal bank accounts. Once they have successfully transferred the money into their Canadian account, they have used one of the above methods to pay their host family their monthly homestay fees.

Moving and Request for Extension

If you are leaving the Homestay Program, you must give your host family 30 days' notice.  Complete the  Moving Notification Form  with your host and return it to the Homestay office. Your deposit will not be refunded until the Moving Notification Form is submitted.

If you are leaving the Homestay Program, you must give your host family 30 days' notice. Complete a Moving Notification Form with your host and return it to the Homestay office. Your deposit will not be refunded until the Moving Notification Form is submitted.

Cleaning

You must thoroughly clean your bedroom and bathroom before your departure. You should leave your room the way you found it when you arrived. You must also remove all your belongings from the host's home. Do not forget to return your house key(s) to your host. Please be aware that you are financially responsible for cleaning costs, damages or outstanding bills.

Deposit Refund

Refunds are issued approximately 6-8 weeks AFTER the student has moved out of the home and left the Homestay Program. If you are still living in Nanaimo after you leave the Homestay Program, you can receive your refund by cheque in the student's name to be picked up at the main reception desk of building 255.  If you have returned home, your refund will be wired to you (bank charges may apply).

For a refund by wire transfer (EFT), please complete the Banking Information Form electronically and email it to homestay@viu.ca in Excel format.

The refundable deposit may not be returned in full if (but not limited to): you have not given 30 days’ notice in writing (Moving Notification Form), or there are cleaning costs or damages in the home as a result of student conduct. Other outstanding bills, VIU tuition or VIU fees owing may also be deducted from the homestay deposit and may delay the homestay deposit refund.

Please print out this helpful Move-out Checklist to fill out with your host as you prepare to move out of homestay.

Your Homestay Term is the period you are permitted to occupy your homestay family home starting on the designated Move-in Day and ending on the designated Move-out Day letter as indicated in the student and host match letter.  If you are looking to stay in the Homestay program longer then your original designated Move-Out Date  a student must fill out the Extension Request Form.  Extensions are granted at the approval of VIU and available Host Family. Additional Fees may apply.

The VIU Homestay Program appreciates your honest feedback about your experience living with your host family. Your evaluation of your homestay helps us improve our program.

Student Evaluation of Host Family