What you need to know about living in a shared house

Chances are, if you’ve moved out of your parents’ house then at some point you’ll have shared a house. Whether that was whilst living at university or otherwise, many young adults choose to live in HMOs as an affordable way to gain independence. 

In fact, as well as being affordable, shared housing is also a great option for singles or those who may otherwise get lonely, as well as those looking to have a fun time. 

However, it’s not always plain sailing. In fact, many people that live in shared houses tend to run into organisational problems, unexpected disturbances or even a few quarrels over who left their dirty cutlery in the sink… again! 

If you’re wondering how to survive a house share, we’ve put together some top tips to help you avoid fallouts. 

  • Set up house rules 

A seemingly obvious place to start, it’s best to set ground rules before you move in to avoid fallouts later down the line. By all coming together to agree the rules from the off, you can all respectfully live together in harmony. 

Whether you want everyone to wash their dishes as soon as they eat, or simply keep noise down after 10pm – a set of rules is a good place to start. 

  • Set up a joint account 

One of the benefits of a house share is the fact that you can save some serious money by doing it. However, if your account is the only one linked up for bills, you may end up being short-changed. And with 11.5 million of us having less than £100 in savings, it’s a situation you’ll want to avoid. 

To ensure nobody is out of pocket, it’s best to set up a joint account to pay for shared costs; there are even some multi-currency accounts, in case you and your flat mates come from different countries. That way you can all pay money into the account each month to cover costs such as bills and other essentials. Think toilet rolls, washing up liquid and even cleaning supplies! 

  • Always ask about inviting people over

In a house share, it’s inevitable that you’ll have guests round at some point. But it’s best to check with your housemates before you do. If you’re planning a party or small gathering, you’ll want to make sure that none of your housemates are working on important deadlines or have other things going on that you may disrupt. 

If they do, consider choosing another date or reaching a compromise. 

  • Your things are your things…

Our final tip is that you should keep your things yours, and your flat mates theirs. That way you will avoid potential fallouts. For example, if you use only your own pans and cutlery, if for whatever reason they’re dirty – there’s only one person to blame! 

It also saves things getting lost or misplaced in larger shared houses. 

The bottom line 

The bottom line is that shared houses are a great way to save money and combat loneliness, but it helps to lay a few ground rules first. From setting up a shared bank account to using your own things and being considerate, you too can avoid any house fall outs. 

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