I’d like to dedicate this post to my gorgeous housemate Sam. For the past year, Sam has been a nearly-perfect housemate, and I can’t even express how much I’ve appreciated her. Thankyou Sam.
As it’s the beginning of a new year, chances are some of you will be experiencing a change in living arrangements. If you find yourself moving into a share house with several other people, or even into an apartment with a roommate, there are plenty of things that you can do to ensure that you’ll always be remembered as “the awesome housemate” (as opposed to “that psycho hose-beast I used to live with).
-Before you move in, have a serious chat about your new housemates about how much rent you have to pay, what percentage of the bills each person pays, who is responsible for paying the bills and who will be in charge of what household chores. Getting this stuff sorted out right away will save you a lot of headaches later on. If you can get it in writing, that’s even better.
– Make time to do things with your housemates. Have a movie night each week, or cook dinner for everybody. These bonding activities help foster your friendships.
– Don’t live in each other’s pockets. Give your housemates some space and spend time on your own. It can get really tedious if you live with somebody who is in your face every second that you’re home.
– If you have an issue to raise with your housemates, do it right away. This gives you the best chance of being able to discuss it rationally and nip the problem in the bud. If you wait, you run the risk of exploding at them and having the issue become a much bigger deal than it really is.
– Keep common areas tidy. Even if your room is a massive mess, make an effort to keep the kitchen, bathroom and other shared areas tidy.
– Don’t take your housemates’ stuff without asking, unless they’ve told you it’s OK to help yourself.
– Wherever possible, give your housemates a heads-up if you’re going to bring a guest home. You don’t need to ask their permission, but it’s nice to let them know if there’s going to be an extra person in the house.
– Every now and then, bring home a treat for everyone to share, like a pizza or a bag of lollies.
– Always say ‘please’ and ‘thankyou’.
– Don’t hog the shower in the morning. If, like me, you take a long while to get ready, take your makeup and hair supplies into your room and get ready in there.
– Be respectful of your housemate’s sleeping schedule. If you tend to get up earlier or stay up later than them, try to keep the noise down when you know they’re catching some Z’s.
– Don’t use your roommate’s towels to clean up when your cat vomits on the rug.
– Buy a big box and fill it with things that make you happy, like a bar of chocolate, a comedy DVD or some play-doh. Then, bust out your Bad Day Box next time one of you has a hellish day.
-If you break or ruin some of your housemate’s belongings, make a point of replacing them as soon as possible.
– Make your roommate a cup of tea and bring it to them while they’re working or studying.
– Keep a quote board. Pin a large sheet of paper to the wall and keep track of any funny things the members of your household say.
– Above all, be considerate and respectful to all the people in your house.
Do any of you have anything to add? What do you think makes a good housemate?