Do I sound harsh with that title? Good, it’s time for a wakeup call people! Your time at university can be some of the greatest experiences of your life, but they can also involve a lot of challenges. In order to have a happy, healthy mind at uni, you need to make sure all areas of your student life are manageable. If you’re facing problems in one area it can affect you on a grander scale. This definitely applies to living scenarios. If you’re facing conflict within your flat or house it can feel as though you have nowhere to escape. Of course, a little disagreement within student living is completely inevitable, due to everyone feeling intense stress at various times plus spending so much time with the same people can get a little claustrophobic – oh and the fact we all have different living habits. However, some disagreements can be completely avoided so here are a few top tips to a happy house:
If you’re like me, a huge lover of sleep, then you’re quite willing to cause an apocalypse if you don’t get your full 8 hours. You may have noticed you can hear pretty much anything within the walls of your student squalor. Make sure you are cautious of this during unsociable hours. No late night singing in the shower! No late night pre-drinking in your house if there are others trying to sleep! And definitely do not fall through the front door at 4am when the rest of your house are quite sleepy, quite sober and quite lenient towards evicting you. Be aware of this especially during exam periods and deadlines.
Oh yeah, you read that right. Yes, you came to uni to be free from chores, yes, you came to uni to be free from the wrath of your parents and yes, I get it, and you came to uni to be independent from the likes of a cleaning rota. But really? Did you think mum and dad were going to drive up every weekend to do your washing up and clean the bathroom? I didn’t think so. So who’s going to clear up your dirty mess I hear you say? I don’t just mean the fry up and takeaway boxes but the dirty glasses, the empty shampoo bottles and the small civilisation growing in the corner of the bathtub. Make a cleaning rota to ensure everyone pulls their weight within the house. Nothing is worse than living with Mr I’m-just-going-to-be-conveniently-never-around-when-it’s-time-to-clean; we know your game!
Always know your boundaries when it comes to borrowing food, clothing and anything else that isn’t physically fixed to the confines of your student squalor. Pinching a blob of milk every now and then because you ran out or borrowing a slither of butter is okay. However, when it becomes a weekly occurrence of chocolate spread, crisps and other high value items, don’t be surprised when your housemate comes knocking with a receipt for you to pay. If you’re going to borrow, make sure you make said other aware of what you took and ensure you return the favour in the foreseeable future. No one likes a free rider.
Talking of free riders, I bet you could all name someone whose other half spends more time at yours then they do at their own. Having a boyfriend/girlfriend over to stay is perfectly fine however do remember you share a house with others and what you may find acceptable others may not. PDA’s (Public Displays of Affection for you oldies) within communal areas can make others feel awkward and uncomfortable so always bare that in mind. If your other half is spending more time at yours then they are at their own, don’t be surprised if your housemates ask for more rent!
Being considerate of others in the house can save you a lot of grief. University is about learning to live with others as well as doing a degree. If you really are facing bad conflict within the house and can’t resolve the issues through talking it out, don’t hesitate to get in contact with student support on campus who can provide you with steps to resolving your issues! And remember, the washing up fairies are a complete myth and yes, that big white box in the kitchen really does clean clothes.