Guest Agreement


Note: This policy is subject to change at any time. Please check all AHN Policies on a regular basis for updates.

Welcome, we are American Homestay Network (AHN). We operate the American Homestay Network; connect Hosts with Guests; and provide Guests, Hosts, and other parties to international student Homestay arrangements with world-class administrative and support Services.

You (a Guest) have made a great choice to apply for a short-term Homestay arrangement with an AHN registered Host (Homestay), an experience uniquely rewarding and enriching for every Guest and Homestay family.

This Guest Agreement governs your relationship with AHN in relation to any Homestay and any supply of Services by AHN. By applying to be a Guest, you agree to be bound by the terms and conditions of this Guest Agreement. If you are an agent acting on behalf of the Guest, you must pass this information on to the Guest.

In this Guest Agreement, when we say:

Eligibility criteria: we mean the Guest eligibility criteria described in clause 1.1;

Fees: we mean the fees payable to AHN for the Services as described in clause 4, or as notified by AHN in writing from time to time, and any other costs or charges as agreed or required by law;

Guest: we mean any international student placed with a Host in a Homestay by AHN;

Home: we mean the residence of a registered Host in which a Homestay is or may be conducted;

Host: we mean any person(s) notified by AHN as a Host of the Homestay;

Policies: we mean the Website Terms and Conditions, the Homestay Policy, the Refund Policy, and any other policy notified to you by AHN from time to time, all of which form part of this Guest Agreement (but the terms herein will take precedence to the extent of any inconsistency); and

Services: we mean the Services identified in clause 2 and provided to Guests by AHN in accordance with this Guest Agreement.

1. Eligibility

1.1 A Guest must:

  1. be a legally competent person enrolled at an AHN affiliated educational institution;
  2. have a valid visa for entry into America and comply with any conditions of that visa;
  3. have no criminal record and otherwise be a fit and proper person of good reputation;
  4. not be bankrupt and maintain financial obligations responsibly; and
  5. be able, on request, to provide evidence of the matters described above and the personal insurance coverage in accordance with clause 7.

1.2 You must notify AHN immediately if you cease to satisfy the eligibility criteria. If at any time you fail or cease to satisfy the eligibility criteria, AHN reserves the right to reject your application and/or immediately suspend or terminate this Guest Agreement and any Homestay.

1.3 Applicants will be accepted as Guests by AHN subject to fulfilment of the eligibility criteria and otherwise at AHN’s sole discretion. AHN may revoke acceptance of a Guest application if the person is in breach of this Guest Agreement, or at the request of that person or their legal guardian.

1.4 Once your application to be a Guest is accepted by AHN, AHN will deliver the Services.

1.5 All Guests under the age of 18 must complete AHN’s online guest orientation prior to arriving at their Homestay. By participating in AHN homestay, Guests confirm they have viewed and understand the orientation materials provided.

1.6 Guests under the age of 18 must seek approval from their legal guardian/parent prior to signing the Guest Agreement. The legal guardian/parent must be listed on the Guest’s application and may be contacted for confirmation.


2.1 In exchange for and subject to payment of the Fees, AHN provides Guests with the following Services:

  1. a) Host background checks, resourcing and matching;
    b) Airport pick-up booking service (on request);
    c) Payment processing and administration;
    d) Support, advice, and complaints Services, including the 24-Hour emergency assistance phone line (866 999 9076); and
    e) The Homestay Management System offered via the website at

2.2 All Homestays are arranged on a case-by-case basis and all Guests are matched with a suitable Host, based on their profile and preferences, located within 60 minutes’ travel by public transport from their Education Provider. If a Guest requests to be matched with a different Host after a placement has been confirmed, further Fees may apply.

2.3 In finding a suitable Homestay for each Guest, AHN will consider the following factors:

  1. a) The Guest’s cultural background, age, gender and personal circumstances as applicable;
    b) The suitability of the Host’s home, including in regards to proximity and transport to the education institution in which the Guest is enrolled; and
    c) Any other factor considered relevant by AHN.

3. Warranties

3.1 AHN warrants to Guests that it will provide the Services with all due care and skill, in compliance with applicable laws.

3.2 Every Guest continuously warrants to AHN that they:

  1. a) satisfy the eligibility criteria;
    b) will use the Services and conduct themselves during a Homestay in a reasonable, respectful, and responsible manner;
    c) will comply with the policies and applicable law at all times; and
    d) will not, in connection with a Homestay or the Services, do or omit to do anything in a manner that is fraudulent, misleading and/or deceptive, negligent, illegal, immoral, offensive, or reasonably likely to harm or infringe the rights of any person.

4. Fees & Payment

4.1 Guests must pay both a “matching fee” and a “weekly fee” (together, the Guest Fees), in the amounts notified by AHN to the Guest in writing from time to time. The weekly Fees are collected by AHN on behalf of the Host and will be remitted to the Host in accordance with the AHN Host Agreement, less Fees payable to AHN.

4.2 The Guest Fees must be paid by credit card, PayPal or electronic funds transfer directly to AHN, or by any other means directed by AHN, by the due date(s) notified by AHN to the Guest in writing. Guests must not pay any part of the Fees directly to Hosts or any other party in respect of the Homestay.

4.3 The non-refundable matching fee must be paid to AHN before AHN can begin the Guest/Homestay matching process. Guests are also required to make an initial payment usually in the amount of four times the notified weekly fee (initial payment) before a placement can be confirmed. The initial payment is non-refundable once a Homestay has commenced, but will be credited against the weekly fee payable for the first four weeks. If a Guest cancels the Homestay before commencement, the initial payment will be fully or partially refunded in accordance with the AHN Refund Policy, which can be viewed at The weekly fee is to be paid in advance on a fortnightly or monthly basis after the first four weeks of the Homestay (if the Homestay is longer than four weeks).

4.4 Subject to clause 4.3 and to the minimum notice periods under clause 9, on termination of a Homestay, weekly fees that have been paid in advance will be refunded in accordance with the AHN Refund Policy. After the first two weeks in Homestay, if the Guest terminates without sufficient notice (see clause 9), the Guest will be liable to AHN for up to two times the weekly fee and for any other costs or expenses reasonably incurred by AHN in connection with the termination.

4.5 If the Guest requests a hold on their room while they go on holiday they will be required to pay a fee which will be charged at 50% of their normal Homestay Fee. Specific terms regarding this process can be found in the AHN Room Holding Policy.

4.6 AHN will not be liable to the Host or any other person for the amount of any unpaid Guest Fees owing to them.

4.7 From time to time AHN may review and update Homestay Fees in line with market conditions. Students in an ongoing placement will be provided with at least 3 months’ notice of any changes to their Homestay Fees.

5. Confidentiality & Privacy

5.1 Guests and AHN agree to keep confidential the terms of this Guest Agreement and any information or material received in connection with this Guest Agreement or a Homestay and marked, or reasonably presumed to be, confidential (confidential information).

5.2 Guests and AHN agree that they will not disclose any confidential information to any third party unless or until it:

  1. a) is or becomes publicly known through no wrongful act of the receiving party;
    b) is received from a third party (other than from or on behalf of a Guest, Host or AHN) without restriction and without breach of any confidentiality obligation to the other party;
    c) is independently developed by the receiving party; or
    d) is required by law to be disclosed (provided that the other party is given advance notice of, and an opportunity to, contest any such requirement).

5.3 AHN will always handle your personal information and the personal information of Hosts in accordance with its Privacy Policy, accessible at

5.4 Any personal information of a Host received by you in connection with a Homestay is confidential information for the purposes of clause 5.2. Without limiting clause 5.2, you warrant and agree that you will:

  1. a) Keep Hosts’ personal information private and confidential;
    b) Only use Hosts’ personal information for the purpose for which it was provided to you or otherwise with the consent of the Host; and
    c) Will not disclose Hosts’ personal information to any person except with the Hosts’ consent.

6. Guest Conduct

6.1 Guests must read and abide by the Homestay Policy which can be accessed at . Any Guest who fails to comply with the Homestay Policy may have their Homestay terminated in accordance with clause 9.

7. Insurance

7.1 The Guest acknowledges that it is the sole responsibility of the Guest to obtain his or her own personal insurance to cover loss, damage, or injury incurred inside the Home, including compliance with minimum insurance requirements at law or as a condition of the Guest’s visa, and that neither AHN nor the Host’s household insurance covers the Guest’s belongings or liability

8. Liability

8.1 To the maximum extent permitted by law, AHN excludes all warranties not expressly provided in this Guest Agreement and all liability for any loss (including consequential or indirect loss), cost, damage, or claim, however and whenever arising (including due to the act or omission of a Guest or Host), suffered by any person in connection with the Services, a Homestay, or this Guest Agreement.

8.2 Nothing in this Guest Agreement is intended to exclude any consumer guarantee applicable under the relevant Consumer Law, or term otherwise implied by law, which cannot be excluded. Guests agree that, to the maximum extent permitted by law, any liability of AHN in connection with such a guarantee or implied term and in respect of any particular supply of Services is limited (at AHN’s election) to either resupplying those Services or paying the cost of having those Services resupplied.

8.3 Unless the student is registered for the Under 18 Complete – Basic Guardianship or Under 18 Complete – Premium Guardianship programs, AHN does not assume the role of guardian for any Guest under the age of 18 and does not take responsibility for the actions nor the care of any such student under this Guest Agreement.

8.4 Subject to clauses 8.1 and 8.3, to the extent that AHN otherwise has any liability for any loss, cost, damage, or claim arising in connection with the Services, a Homestay, or this Guest Agreement (including for negligence), AHN’s liability is limited in aggregate to Fees paid or payable in the 12 months immediately preceding the date on which the cause of action accrued.

8.5 Guests continually indemnify AHN from and against any loss, cost, damage, or claim (including third party claims) suffered or incurred by AHN in connection with a Guest’s breach of this Guest Agreement, except to the extent that any such loss, cost, damage, or claim is caused by a negligent act or omission of AHN.

9. Termination

9.1 Guests (or the agent or guardian of a Guest) may terminate a Homestay immediately on notice to AHN at any time if the Host has committed a theft, damaged property, caused an injury or engaged in violent or threatening behavior (or any other behaviour which reasonably makes the Guest feel unsafe) in connection with the Homestay. In such circumstances, AHN will take all reasonable steps to relocate the Guest to another Homestay, if required.

9.2 Guests (or the agent or guardian of a Guest) may (after the first two weeks of the Homestay) request to terminate the Homestay without having to give a reason by providing two weeks’ written notice to AHN and their Host. Guests who are under 18 require approval from their guardian before giving notice of termination. On receipt of such a termination request, AHN will update its systems to record that the Homestay will be terminated effective from the expiration of the notice period (being no earlier than four weeks from the commencement of the Homestay). Weekly fees are payable up to the date of termination.

9.3 A Guest may otherwise notify AHN of any complaint regarding a Host or Homestay at any time, and AHN will use commercially reasonable endeavors to resolve, or assist the Guest to resolve, the complaint.

9.4 AHN may terminate a Homestay (before or after commencement) immediately on notice to a Guest if:

  1. a Guest fails or ceases to satisfy the eligibility criteria;
  2. the Home ceases to meet the requirements identified by AHN under clause 2.3;
  3. the Guest has not returned to the homestay by their scheduled return date and cannot be contacted in accordance with the AHN Room Holding Policy; or
  4. AHN otherwise determines in its sole discretion that it is appropriate to terminate the Homestay immediately in response to a request from a Host or related party.

9.5 Guests acknowledge that a Host may otherwise terminate a Homestay immediately on similar grounds to those outlined at clause 9.1 and otherwise at any time after the first four weeks of the Homestay on two weeks’ written notice to AHN.

10. General

10.1 No employment: Nothing in this Guest Agreement creates a relationship of joint venture, agency, partnership or employment between any of the parties.

10.2 Assignment: Guests cannot assign, transfer, or dispose of their rights or obligations under this Guest Agreement without the prior written consent of AHN.

10.3 Variation: AHN may vary or update this Guest Agreement at any time, but we will take reasonable steps to notify you of any changes.

10.4 Notices: Any notice or demand to be given or made under this Guest Agreement must be in writing and delivered to that party’s nominated address by mail, fax, or email (as applicable). Notice is effective on receipt by the addressee.

10.5 Governing law: This Guest Agreement is governed by the laws in the State of Washington and the parties irrevocably submit to the jurisdiction of the courts there.

10.6 Entire Agreement: This Guest Agreement contains the entire agreement between the parties, and supersedes and replaces any prior representations, negotiations, or agreements in respect of its subject matter.

10.7 Waiver: Any waiver of a right or remedy under this Guest Agreement will only be valid if the waiver is given in writing and signed by the party giving the waiver.

10.8 Severance: If any provision of this Guest Agreement is unenforceable, then that provision (or relevant part) may be severed without affecting the enforceability of any other provision.

Updated October 2019