Air BnB Competitor
If you enjoy homestays but for some reason don't like www.airbnb.com, the elephant in the private accommodation room, consider www.homestay.com. This is a newer competitor that guarantees your host will be there to greet you when you arrive at the homestay, and will be there during your stay.
Some people apparently own several places and rent them out through airbnb, turning the homestay into a more impersonal experience. On the other hand, booking a place through airbnb seems to be quite easy based on the Website. You just enter your destination and dates, and can browse through listings available for those dates with prices in U.S. dollars.
On homestay.com, it wasn't clear at least to me exactly how you would book as a guest. Perhaps my computer is too old to work well with their Website. And for the listings I could find, prices were listed in local currencies usually, which adds an extra step for the user. And not all prices were low--a homestay in Playa del Carmen, Mexico costs $100 per night for one person.
Homestay.com is a start-up, so it is unlikely to have as many members as its big competitor. But if you want to be assured of a personal experience and are willing to jump through some hoops, it could be a good choice.