Flatshare or Houseshare – the fact of the matter is, living with someone else is difficult, whether your housemate is a stranger – or long-term partner. I’ve lived with all sorts of people over the years since moving out (of home) in 2006, and for anyone concerned – here are some tips…
1. Live With Strangers
This might seem like a weird thing to say, but opt to live with strangers over friends – any day. Whilst you may enjoy the familiarity of your friends, living with them is not the same as the occasional day or night out with them. You have to deal with their faults 24/7, whilst trying to maintain your friendship and, if you’re like me, you’ll boil on things that annoy you because you’re too polite to say anything.
2. Set Ground Rules Immediately
When you take on a flatshare, make sure you all agree ground rules immediately. If you don’t like people using your milk, or you prefer someone to put their shoes in a cupboard rather than by the front door – get these pet hates out of the way and start on an honest footing. If you don’t, prepare for fireworks in a few months when your patience runs dry!
3. Give Each Other Space
Just because you live together, it doesn’t mean you need to spend every moment with each other. Give each other space. If your flatmate is watching something on TV you aren’t really interested in, go and read a book in your bedroom. Likewise, if your flatmate’s bedroom door is closed – give them space (especially if they’re in a relationship!) There’s nothing worse than an unwanted guest sitting at the end of your bed.