Image: Unsplash
Image: Unsplash

The good housemate guide

Being a university student is difficult and draining, especially right now. After a long day of lectures and contact hours, I’m sure most of us would quite like to lounge about for as long as humanely possible, before eventually cooking the basic student meal of cheesy pasta or whatever carbs we can find in the freezer.

However, this doesn’t mean we should leave our dirty dishes to be eaten away at by the sink, and definitely shouldn’t be left for over a week tops. If you happen to run out of plates and choose to use your housemates’ belongings, at least make sure to ask, before contributing again to the ongoing dish mountain.

To be a good housemate, we should dodge these situations as best as we can to avoid any inter-house squabbling. A personal bugbear of mine is someone using the last of the toilet paper and not replacing it – I used to do this at home, and my parents would nag at me profusely.

I cannot highlight enough the importance of communicating with your housemates

Despite all this, we must remember that we are living with various people, from different aspects of life. Warwick in particular is full of people from all around the world with different habits and lifestyle choices. I cannot highlight enough the importance of communicating with your housemates.

If you are living under a private landlord, the chances are that you will have numerous visits over the period of your tenancy. If this is the case, I promise you, you will be scrambling around the night before, removing your posters and hiding any scratches on the walls.

Along with this comes the actual cleaning process that no student particularly wants to do, especially during the busy term time. Now, it is totally fine to leave this to the night before, as long as each time this happens someone isn’t conveniently “busy”. Don’t be that person that skips out on household chores, overtime this will cause tension and can even affect friendships in the future.

I would encourage you to create a weekly cleaning rota

Following on from household chores, the worst, but most important task is cleaning the bathroom. If you had an en-suite in halls in your first year, then you were incredibly lucky. Although, the water was never hot enough and the drains would get blocked, which was always a delightful experience. However, this was never too much of an issue because your bathroom was your own.

In a student house, en-suites come very sparsely, and it is very likely you will have to share. I would encourage you to create a weekly cleaning rota, or if this is too much hassle, then each person should be delegated a certain task that they must maintain. Thick bleach and unlimited toilet paper will be your best friend.

This is all part of the university experience, enjoy it while you can

Generally, it’s important to remember that being a good neighbour to your housemates will most likely make them good neighbours in return. Try and be understanding of others. The walls in student houses are incredibly thin so if you hear a housemate talking on the phone next door, remember that they can probably hear you when you’re next blasting music in the middle of the night or complaining about a housemate to your parents.

At the end of the day, you are a student, living in student housing. Nothing will be perfect, and there will always be something that’s just a bit dirty. However, try to remember, that this is all part of the university experience, so enjoy it while you can. This is likely going to be the only time in your life that you’ll get to live with your close friends.

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