6 tips for living with housemates

Housemates chatting around table

It’d be fun, they said – a non-stop party, three full years of love, laughter and good times shared between friends.

Hmmm… only now you’re a few months down the road and little things are starting to bug you – one roomie is always late in paying their share of the rent, and another leaves a trail of destruction behind them. You could really do with some simple tips for saving on the house share stress. And handily enough, that’s right about where this blog post courtesy of Almero Student Mansions comes in…

1. Set some basic ground rules (right from the get-go)

A list of rules wasn’t necessarily what you imagined uni life to involve, but you’ll soon find it’s an essential (that’s if you wish to keep your sanity, stay friends and get a little coursework done when needed). So consider talking it out about the following:

  • Chores – who does what and when?
  • Party nights – when or if there are any nights or times of the academic year when 5+ guests are out of the question (such as exam week or in the final countdown to your dissertation deadline)
  • Guests at any other time – could a simple system of texting one another before inviting guests over work?
  • Food – will you be sharing any or splitting up your cupboards?
  • Partners – how often are other halves allowed to stay over?

2. Have an ‘absolutely do not, no way’ talk

Sometimes it’s the smallest of things that turn into the biggest of issues. For this reason, you should have an informal chat about the things that are absolutely no go’s, from the small to the large, that don’t necessarily fall under the ground rules.

3. Moving into your second year? It might not be the wisest move to move in with your BFF

Remember: great friends don’t automatically make great roomies; likewise, good roomies don’t have to make great friends. Yet unfortunately, all too often friends that have been made in year one think that it’ll be amazing to live under the same roof for year two onwards. Come the end of the second year following many rows about the last of the loo roll and impromptu all-night raves, and those two friends have come to hate one another.

4. Money, it makes the world go around

Bills – everyone has to pay them and you should set out just how much is payable, when and by whom right from the start. A calendar placed in a shared space can act as a friendly reminder each month and avoid arguments over late fees.

5. Talk, often (and don’t leave problems until you’ve had a couple on a Friday night)

When sharing a living space with others there are inevitably going to be issues that crop up – no matter how long your list of ground rules, regardless as to how many no-no’s you’ve talked through. The key to a harmonious home is being able to be open and honest – if there’s something that’s been bugging you, let your roomie know (politely) and discuss solutions together. On the flip side, you yourself should be open and willing to adapt your behaviour if needed.

6. Go for an all-out, once monthly clean

Students, you’ve got quite the reputation for living amongst filth. Little does the wider world know that vast swathes of students actually like to live in hygienic conditions. An easy way to make sure everyone’s standards match up to yours is with a once a month ‘parents are visiting’ type of clean.

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