Living in a shared house isn’t always like an episode of Friends. Sometimes, renting in a flatshare can mean the occasional butting of heads. Here is a simple guide on how to keep the peace when you live with flatmates in a share house.
Set boundaries early on
This is one of the most important things to do if you want to avoid conflict early on. Have a household meeting and lay down some ground rules. Things you might want to talk about are privacy, cleaning schedules, inviting friends over and what kind of household items are going to be shared. When each person knows what the boundaries are, there’s less of a chance that they will overstep them. Make sure you stick to these agreements too. If everyone agrees that dishes should be cleaned as soon as you’ve finished eating, you need to stick to that rule.
Most of the time, talking it out will help resolve conflict. So it’s very important that you’re living with people you feel comfortable communicating with. If any conflicts arise and you need to talk, this will make it much easier to get some face time, and avoid the likelihood of exchanges conducted via passive aggressive notes left on kitchen cupboards and fridges!
Respect each other’s personal space
While it’s nice to hang out with your flatmates occasionally, be sure to understand how much hanging out they’re really in for. If it looks like they’re busy – they may be studying on the dining room table, working away in their room, or just trying to enjoy some quiet time on the balcony with a book – know when to leave them alone. By all means, enjoy each other’s company, have dinner and movie nights, but also be mindful of their need for alone time.
Don’t ‘borrow’ groceries
Don’t be that person who uses a dash of milk for your scrambled eggs every time your housemate isn’t home. If they’re not shared household items, they’re not yours to use, and it’s important to maintain those boundaries. It’ll also avoid the awkward situation where one day your housemates walk in on you cracking open one of their eggs, or eating their cereal.
All in all, the key to sharehouse living is to be respectful. Just being mindful of your flat mates and their needs will make it a whole lot easier to get along in the long term.
Also, make sure you consider getting contents insurance to protect you and your housemates’ belongings. You may also want to consider insuring your rental bond with BondSure because accidents do happen.
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