Living with housemates comes with many fun and cost-efficient benefits, and it’s a great option for single people looking to rent. However, living with other people is never as simple as it sounds, and to avoid frustration or disagreement, prevention is the best cure.
Here are some helpful tips to keep your house share harmonious…
Rental costs and utility bills are shared when you’re living with others, and it’s a good idea to make sure these responsibilities are split fairly. For example, one appointed person can take on the responsibility of collecting everyone’s share of the council tax, someone else can collect the share of rent and another can take charge of the utility bills. This will alleviate putting pressure on one individual and allows each house member to be accountable in their own way.
There are also numerous ways to automate the payment and bill-splitting process if you wish to keep things simple. Shared accounts and apps for money transfers are particularly useful for students and those living with several roommates, as you can easily keep track of everyone’s input each month.
Rotation is key
Household tasks are up there with the most common disputes between housemates, and this can easily be avoided with good communication and strategy. Take a proactive approach and start making a list with your housemates of all the tasks that will need completing on a weekly basis. Ideally, you should agree to a natural rotation where everyone pulls their weight, and you can achieve this by creating a simple cleaning rota.
Keep each other in the loop
Miscommunication – or a lack of communication – is often the root of built-up resentment and frustration in all types of households, which is why you should make sure your housemates are always kept in the loop. As well as keeping up to date with bills and any maintenance issues, communicating will prevent anyone feeling like they’ve been left in the dark about something they would’ve liked to have known about.
For example, if you’ve accidentally damaged someone’s belonging, or used the last of their milk, letting them know as soon as possible is always better than letting them find out for themselves. If you live in a busy house where housemates come and go often, make use of social media and create a group chat to keep everyone involved.
Respect each other’s privacy and boundaries
You can’t go far wrong if you treat others and their property as you’d want to be treated yourself. Although you might be spending lots of time with your housemates, it’s important to respect that they will often need their own privacy and space. Everyone in the house will need to feel as though they have somewhere to retreat to without intrusion, and bedrooms should be off-limits to other housemates unless stated otherwise.
It's also important to bear in mind that your space is being shared, so hogging the kitchen utilities or the shower won’t go down too well when you’re living with other people on busy schedules.
Sharing is caring
If everyone in the house is on board with sharing certain foods, drinks and possessions, this is a great way of keeping costs (and clutter) to a minimum. The most effective way to share things is to have everyone chip in on a weekly or fortnightly shop for household essentials. This ensures that there won’t be one housemate regularly paying for communal things like toilet roll while others forget to keep on top of it.