Choosing The Right Housemates

Choosing The Right Housemates

May 25, 2016

Choosing the Right Housemates

Although finding the right place to live is the biggest task facing first-time renters, finding the right people to live with is equally important! Since you’ll be living together for a long time, finding people who suit your personality and lifestyle is key to creating a happy house. Follow these 6 steps to help you find house mates that you’ll enjoy living with!

Meet Everyone First

First impressions count for a great deal. Sometimes you’ll meet someone and you’ll just click; other times, you’ll know straight away that you won’t get on together. Don’t let this happen after signing a year-long tenancy contract, though; you should make the time to meet up for a cup of coffee first!

If you’re moving from student halls into a shared house you may well be moving in with your group of friends, who you know well, and if you’re moving with people you’re used to sharing a university hall with then you’ll already be used to their quirks. Be sure, though, that you meet any “friends of friends” before you all move in together – just because your friend gets on with them doesn’t mean you will!

Check That You’re a Good Match

It’s not Blind Date, is it? Surely your hobbies and interests aren’t all that important, so long as you get on well together? Well, although it might be great living with a good friend, if they’re coming home at 3am every night or filling up your spare space with obscure sporting equipment then you might find that they’re not quite such an ideal housemate. Similarly, you won’t want to surprise your new early-rising 9-to-5 housemate with the revelation that you work nights and regularly return home at 4 in the morning, so have an open and honest discussion about your habits and lifestyle before moving in together.

How Clean is Clean?

One thing you learn after having shared a few houses is that everyone has their own definition of “clean”, and although each tenant is free to keep their own bedroom however they like everyone has to be happy with the condition of their shared spaces. It can be hard to work out precisely what someone’s expectations are, so you should be willing to compromise a little, but getting an idea of whether their standards are much higher or lower than yours can save a lot of frustration down the line!

What’s Their Idea of a Good Time?

Everyone has a different idea of what constitutes entertainment. Find out beforehand what your potential new housemates like to do with their evenings; if you’re a party animal you might hate the idea of a night in playing board games, or if you’re working hard on your grades you could find your new stoner housemates a complete mismatch for you!

What Are Their House Rules?

Without any parents around you’ll need to work out how your house is going to work, which means you’ll need to talk to your prospective housemates about house rules. You don’t need to go so far as to write them down, but having an agreement on where people can smoke, who’s responsible for the bins, how laundry and washing up will be done and who has to talk to the landlord are all things that you’ll have to deal with at some point, and if your new housemates’ idea of a fair deal doesn’t agree with you it’s best to know before you move in!

Find Someone Reliable

As outlined in our handy guide to “Understanding Your Tenancy Agreement”, each tenant is legally responsible for ensuring that the rent is paid in full and on time, not just their own portion of it. Because of this, if one of your housemates blows their student loan in a week and can’t make rent, you’ll have to make up the difference out of your own pocket! Make sure that you’re renting with someone who’s at least a little bit reliable and responsible, or you could find yourself paying to support their lifestyle further down the line!