House sharing is a minefield.
Whether you are slumming it in a renovated university hovel (garage bedroom anyone?), or paying extortionate rent for a shoebox-sized pad that you are cohabiting with beardy graphic designer types – living with strangers can potentially be a nightmare.
From fridge sharing (‘that milk was on my shelf, so technically it’s mine’), to finding questionable lumps of matter in the sink (It’s best not to ask) – here’s how to cope with living with potential loopers…
1. Don’t Buy Nice Cereal
Posh cereal like muesli or organic red berry maple granola is like goldust to potential thieving magpie housemates. It’s Monday morning and here you are trying to grab breakfast on the hop, and all that’s left on top of the fridge is a few ratty stacks of Weetabix. And most of the time the pilferers don’t even bother to wash up the evidence. Brazen as you like.
2. Never Leave Your Laundry In Communal Areas
So laundry day has finally arrived after you’ve spent the last couple days wearing bikini bottoms into work. You hang your Meadow Fresh scented smalls on the airer…and then your housemate decides to cook a massive curry. Tikka masala smelling knickers = zero sexy points.
3. Don’t Put The Heating On Without Consent
The heating debate really winds people up. You can’t be just popping on the immersion willy-nilly. Achieving written consent by way of either a WhatsApp, or a note scribbled on the back of your Boots Advantage Card mailer should suffice.
4. Don’t Get Too Friendly Too Quickly
Baking cupcakes or popping some beers in the fridge is a good start. Suggesting a spoon on the couch to ‘break the ice’ may be taking things a little too far.
5. Try Not To Leave Dishes In The Sink
Ok, a few odds and ends at the end of a meal is fine. But when you are starting to play pan Jenga, that’s when you know it’s time to get the Marigolds on.
6. Don’t Commandeer The Remote
Chances are there is already a house hierarchy. You have to earn the right to flick over to First Dates – you certainly shouldn’t be grabbing the remote within a few hours of moving in. You’ll be on the hate list faster than you can say Netflix.
7. Buy Your Own Scissors
It’s probably best not to ask yourself what the house scissors have been used for in the past…
8. Remember Your Space
Yeah, it was fine swanning around your mum’s gaff in your undies, but remember that new flatmates might not want to see your ‘christmas comfy pants’.
9. Don’t Buy Posh Loo Roll
10. Try Not To Get Too Precious About The Bathroom…
…especially if living with boys. Yes, we know that hair in the plughole is fifty shades of gross but sometimes, it’s better to just let things slide. Kicking off might wind up with something vindictive happening to your toothbrush without you knowing. And no one wants that.
11. Post-It Notes Are NOT A Form Of Communication
Obsessive use of yellow tacky notes are the most passive aggressive form of housemate communication. If it can’t be resolved via Facebook chat, then you may as well move out.
12. Accept That There Will ALWAYS Be Bits In The Butter
You live in a house of toast eaters. Deal with it.
13. Don’t Fall In Love With The Cute Guy Housemate
If it didn’t work for these guys, it certainly isn’t going to work for you. Sozzle.
14. No One Wants To Listen To Your Disney Spotify Playlist
Yes, we do understand the dire need to warble out a few Beauty and the Beast bangers after a night out on the razz. Your housemates probably won’t feel the same urgency though. Unfortunately.
15. And Finally, Don’t Do The ‘Shhhhhh…Quiet’ When Stumbling In With Your BFF At 2am
You are louder than a herd of elephants. Own it.