Renting a room in a shared house can be a truly great experience. There’s always someone to have a cuppa with and you could wind up making lifelong friends.
However, there are always downsides to living with others, especially if they’re complete strangers, and you can’t get away with the kind of things you would do in a university house share.
So what can you do to make sure that you’re the perfect housemate in your new house share?
Pull your weight
Probably the most important tip is to make sure that you do your bit around the house, especially when it comes to tidying up.
Nobody wants to go back to living like you did during your uni days so it’s important that everybody pulls their weight.
On the other hand, don’t be that one housemate who is always bugging the others other the smallest specks of dust.
It’s a good idea to set up some kind of rota so that everybody keeps on top of things and spreads the workload.
Organise the bills
Aside from the cleaning, your second biggest priority is making sure that everybody’s finances are in order.
Without being pushy, make sure that everyone is keeping up with rent payments, and try to figure out a fair way of splitting other costs.
For example, while some other things can be split evenly, what if you’ve got all the latest sports and movies channel installed but only one housemate watches them?
Of course, the most important thing is paying your own share on time so that your housemates don’t chase you down for the rent every month.
Get to know everyone
If you’re a complete stranger to the rest of the house it pays to make the effort and try to get to know everyone.
Don’t be too clingy but try to ask a couple of questions to get to know your new housemates and see if you have any common interests as it’ll make things a lot easier in the long run, even if you don’t turn out to be BFFs.
Don’t be THAT housemate
We all know the one. Everyone has lived with someone who sticks their name on every piece of food and drink in the fridge and flips out at the sight of a couple of crumbs on the sofa.
While we’re sure that their heart is in the right place, it just isn’t the way to go about things, and will make you public enemy number one in the house.
Respect everyone’s privacy
House sharing can be a claustrophobic experience and while it can be great living with other people, especially if you get on and become good friends, it’s important to give everyone their own space.
Just the simple things like knocking before you walk into their room will just make everyone feel that little bit more like they’ve got their own space.
And if you’re sat in a communal area and have to take a personal phone call, take it into your own room. Nobody wants to hear you and your significant other fawning over one another.
Keep everyone informed of your routine
While you don’t have to share every aspect of your life with your housemates, it’s a good idea to communicate some stuff with them.
For example, if you’re going away for the weekend and don’t say anything, they might start to get a bit worried that you’ve disappeared!
On the other hand, if you have to get up at stupid o’clock for work, try not to be too loud and wake everybody else up!
And learn everybody else’s
If you’re moving into a house that already have their own way of doing things, make sure to find out.
If they have their own cleaning rota, then stick to it, but also find out if they have set nights such as where one person cooks a big meal for the rest of the house and join in so that you don’t get left out and properly integrate yourself into the house.
Try not to fall out with anyone
It’s easier said than done, but try to avoid conflict in the house. Big arguments don’t just affect the two of you but create a negative atmosphere for the entire house.
Even if you have to suck up your pride, be the bigger person and apologise, it’s better than creating an awkward atmosphere.
To be honest it’s all a lot of common sense! Be respectful and friendly and your housemates are sure to return the favour.
If you are interested in finding a house share near you, we have thousands of rooms advertised here at RoomBuddies.