Published on: 22 February 2023
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Flatshare: 10 Rules for Living Together Better
Roommates, it's the dream of many friends and also a way to save money. This adventure still requires the establishment of some simple rules that help the smooth running of the roommate and good management of potential conflicts. To ensure the conviviality of your roommates, Studapart has gathered the advantages and disadvantages of roommates as well as some basic rules to adopt!
Live in a flatshare: Advantages and Disadvantages
Living in a flatshare comes first of all with an administrative organization. It is advised to include all roommates in the lease contract so that everyone is protected during the whole duration of the cohabitation. Then, it is preferable to split up the rental payment, home insurance, internet services and energy bills. Roommates can balance expenses and define the monthly budget for renting expenses.
Flatshare with Friends
Living with your best friends like in the famous American TV show "Friends", sharing entire days together and having your friend constantly close by is very tempting. However, being friends for years and living together are two very different things. Sometimes, even the best of friends are not fit to live together!
It's important to set up schedules for division of household chores, organize a common budget and expenses for each roommate's groceries.
Flatshare with Strangers
If living with friends is not an option, it is easy to find people looking for new roommates and meet perfect strangers who are willing to live with you. Generally speaking, people meet several times before moving in together. This option is a double-edged sword but it also presents an opportunity to make new friends and meet people outside our everyday life. If you choose to live with strangers, it's advised to choose roommates who have a similar lifestyle as yours: a student-only flat or young professionals flat.
It may happen that during your search for a flat, some roommates are already there. In this case, getting to know each other on the spot will be an interesting and enriching experience.
Rules for Roommate Living: Our Tips
Establishing Rules Before Moving In
Certain rules should be established beforehand to allow for better cohesion and a smooth daily functioning from the start of the flatshare. The first is respect for each roommate's space: bedrooms are private spaces that one can enter only with the agreement of the roommate.
Here is a non-exhaustive list of basic rules that could be adopted:
- Decide who can smoke and open the window,
- don't play music too loud,
- accept pets,
- discuss home decorating,
Pay the rent on time.
All tenants should pay the rent at the same time. If one roommate takes charge of the total transfer, it would be preferable for the others to make sure to reimburse him immediately. Thus, payments are made on time and disagreeable discussions about money are minimized.
It is important to have a place where all documents related to the rental can be kept: lease agreement, contact of owner or real estate agent, rent receipt, home insurance, internet subscription and energy contract.
Fairly divide household chores
From the beginning of a flatshare, it is advantageous to agree on the division of household chores. Generally, each one takes care of their own room, but shared spaces require a schedule. Roommates can distribute rooms according to preferences or be assigned each week to a room. Everyone will then go through the bathroom, kitchen and living room in turn.
As for garbage cans, the most famous rule is: "whoever leaves first takes the garbage can out in front of the door!" But taking over from week to week is also possible, especially for recyclable waste which is sometimes less numerous than non-recyclable waste.
Always ask permission from flatmates
It's important not to forget that your house is also someone else's. Always ask permission to invite a third person or to organize a dinner or evening with friends is essential. The more permission is asked, the more flat mates will feel respected. Good understanding is guaranteed and conflicts avoided.
Communicating when a misunderstanding arises
It is normal that from time to time the roommate encounters some small problems. Before getting into a real dispute that can go wrong, just communicate and discuss what bothers the other person. That way, everyone can better react next time, understand each other's opinions and respect each other. In general, a dispute can be avoided with a good conversation!
Sharing moments together at least once a week
Even if roommates are not initially close, it is quite important to share moments together. Celebrate birthdays, go to the movies, meet common friends, prepare a dinner to share. All these moments allow to get closer and foster good understanding in the accommodation and conviviality.
Respect the belongings of others
Flatshare is the sharing of an accommodation but also of belongings: dishes, furniture, etc. Make sure to take care of other people's belongings as you would like them to take care of your own. If personal items are made available to all tenants (a television, a guitar), everyone should be able to take care of them.
Be Careful Not to Invade Common Areas
Common areas are meant to share moments together and enjoy one's accommodation. Therefore, be careful not to leave personal belongings there constantly that should have stayed in the room and make sure to put the common room back in order after use. For example, if the kitchen is used to prepare dinner, it is necessary to clean it up and put it away afterwards.
Listen and Help Each Other as Roommates
By helping each other out and talking with your roommates, that's how you can become friends and trust one another. Flatshare can only be smoother like this.
Be Tolerant and Ready to Compromise
The universal rule of flatshare is the ability to compromise. You must be tolerant and willing to make concessions to ensure harmony.