If you’re moving into student accommodation, it’s a good idea to plan ahead and ensure you’re ready to live with new people who perhaps come from different walks of life. In this post, we’ve considered some house-sharing tips to make your new uni home experience as fun and pleasant as possible.
Try to keep your belongings within your space
It’s a good idea to keep your personal belongings stored in your room. Try to avoid spreading items through the property or you may find your new housemates use them when they shouldn’t. Keeping your possessions confined to your space ensures you know where they are when you need them and you don’t have to deal with any unnecessary confrontation.
If your room is limited on space and you have some bulkier items you want to store away – and your parents aren’t offering up any space in their home – consider a storage unit. You’ll find storage unit providers offering space dedicated to students. If you’re heading to Southampton uni, for example, Cubic Storage offers units with 24 hours security. Plus, they can even help if you need to get a taxi or hire a van to get your belongings there, by comparing prices for you in the area.
Make a point of introducing yourself
When moving into your new uni home, ensure you go round and introduce yourself to your new housemates. Tell them a little about yourself, what you like to do and find out if you have anything in common, this is great for breaking the ice and perhaps bridging the gap between you seeing each other as simply housemates or friends.
Tidy up after yourself
If you know you’re prone to leaving a mess in your wake, then try to make an effort to tidy up after yourself when you’re finished in the communal areas – your room can be as messy as you like! This ensures there are no arguments between you and your housemates and you all get to enjoy a space that’s pleasant to live in.
Tidiness also reduces the risk of pests in the property and the general cleanliness of the home, so try to wash up those dishes straight away and empty the bins when necessary.
Make them aware if you’re inviting people over
It’s a good idea to let your housemates know if your new boyfriend or girlfriend is likely to visit every day or when your parents want to pop in for dinner – especially if you’ll be using the communal spaces to host them.
The same rule applies if you want to have a party although in this case, it’s a good idea to perhaps ask if they’re happy to host one in the house. We’re all different, so some people won’t like the idea of strangers entering their home to enjoy a wild night and this means it’s polite to double-check before you send out the invites.
Think about your noise levels
Some of us are just loud people but when sharing a property with others, it’s a good idea to reflect and try to tone it down a little. This means keeping quiet when you know your housemates have gone to bed, not having your music blasting at all hours and ensuring any visitors keep it down too. Of course, your housemates should also be adhering to this rule so try to encourage everyone to be courteous when it comes to noise.
Pay bills on time
If you’re not the one handling the bills, ensure you pass your money to that person on time and in full. You should also be aware of how much energy and water you’re using, no one wants to cover your share of energy use. That means keeping showers to an economic minimum and not cranking the heating up so you can enjoy wearing shorts and a t-shirt while lounging in your room.
Avoid relationships straight away
We sometimes find love in places we don’t expect but it’s a good idea to avoid getting into a relationship or spending alone time with other flatmates straight away. It could make things awkward later down the line if you decide you don’t like each other but you have to see each other every day.
Try cooking and eating together
Not only is this a great way of learning new skills in the kitchen but it can also improve relationships too – just ensure no one person gets lumbered with the washing up every time. Encourage your housemates to join you in the kitchen at least once a week for dinner, split the cost of the shop and then sit down to eat together. If none of you are particularly confident with a spatula and an oven, then take a look at this guide from Save the Student with tips when it comes to cooking.
Suggest a rota or a day where you all clean the house
You’ll need to keep the property clean to ensure you don’t lose any money on that deposit when you move out. Rotas rarely work but it could be a good first step to encourage everyone to pitch into cleaning your home. A dedicated day – such as Friday afternoon – is a good idea to encourage everyone to get involved and clean the house. Two of you could tackle the kitchen, another can do the dusting throughout and someone else can handle the bathroom – you can then rotate as necessary.
While you may be used to simply walking into your sibling’s room at home in your pants and borrowing their hairbrush, your flatmates may not appreciate. Try to respect privacy, knock before you enter rooms and allow people space when they need it.
Follow these tips and you’ll have a great experience sharing a house with your new friends while at uni.