Sharing a house with friends as a student can be brilliant fun. Sharing with other young professionals in the first few years after graduation can also be great fun, but as life starts to get more serious, so can your house-share.
Fortunately, there are ways to make sure your home works as well as it can. Cleaning resentment, un-emptied bins and unpaid bills can quickly sour good friendships. With more and more under forties sharing, especially in major cities, making a house-share work needs to be a top priority. We’ve put together three easy wins for a harmonious house-share.
- Go slow
Choosing a housemate for your flat or house-share is a slow game. You, and everyone you live with have to know you are making the best decision that you can. Make sure you meet prospective housemates at a time when everyone can be there so that everyone gets a say in their new roomie. It might sound obvious but arrangements like this can be difficult when you lead a busy life with a solid social life. Go with your gut and trust your instincts. If something feels off, it probably is.
- Get Organised
Cleaning rotas, direct debits and standing orders for utility bills, clear rules or arrangements for kitchen use, and a multi-user home TV entertainment package are all fantastic ways to make sure peace reigns in your home. It might seem over the top to have a rota, but resentment from the housemate who feels they are doing everything can quickly escalate. Making sure communal areas are clean, tidy and usable means that everyone gets the most from their monthly rent. Some house-shares schedule in a monthly housemate meal, which can be a great way to make sure everybody feels at home - especially the newer members of your team.
- Look after the house and each other
Sharing a home is different when it is your primary residence. Looking after the property can make a real difference when it comes to your well-being. Making sure your home is well ventilated, well heated, and that dripping taps and leaks are dealt with will prevent damage and lost deposits but will also mean your environment is as healthy as possible. Picking up some handy skills like changing light bulbs and how to deal with the fuse box can be invaluable – and make you housemate of the year in an emergency.
So, there you have it, three great tips to start you and your house mates on the path of a happy and successful house-share!