Things to keep in mind when living with friends

Living with your friends sounds like the ultimate dream right?! Well, it really can be, but you need to remember that you and your friends are completely different people. You don’t truly know a person until you live with them and you may have a bit of a shock when you move in. Luckily I’ve complied a list of things to keep in mind when living with friends that should make your time as housemates as fun as you always imagined.

Different backgrounds
You and you friends will have undoubtedly come from different backgrounds. Whether that’s places, races, religions or even just a different family dynamic. This will always affect the way they live their day to day lives. You need to be respectful of your friend’s traditions, the way they keep their room and their schedules – whatever is important to them. In order to live harmoniously, you’ll have to learn to strike up compromises when your ideas clash with those of your friends. It’s not as hard as it sounds; for example, if you come from the kind of family where there is lots of noise and your friend comes from a small family and prefers silence in the house, you’ll have to talk it out and work out what level of noise is appropriate for the both of you to live comfortably.

Different ideas of clean
One of the biggest differences I had to deal with when living in a student house was mine and my friends’ differing ideas of how clean the house should be. I’m a self-proclaimed ‘neat freak’, I hate the idea of anything being less than spotless – which makes me a real pain to live with sometimes, but I’ve had to learn to accept that things never stay that way – which is totally normal. One way to combat this is to draw up a cleaning rota and stick to it. Each person has their own responsibilities to complete in their own time and then the cleaning isn’t just left to one person. It’s also good to dedicate one day a week to cleaning – a day that everyone is free – and then you have a bit of a routine going.

Boundaries
When you sign up to live with other people to sign up to seeing them at the worst as well as their best. There will be times when your friends feel low or act a bit moody. You need to establish from the beginning what their boundaries are and what’s best to do in those situations. Some people like to have people around them when they’re feeling sad and others want to be alone. Establishing and respecting these boundaries will make those times so much easier for everyone.

Chill time
One of the most important things to remember is to take time out. Enjoy living with your friends, don’t get so wrapped up in work that you end up ignoring them all year. Enjoy the time you have to do movie nights or video game sessions or whatever you enjoy doing. It’s incredibly important to bond!
Until next time! 🙂

Housing Woes

So I’m back from France and it was so lovely to get away for a bit but at the same time it’s nice to return to normality. It’s not long now until I go back to Ormskirk and I’m so excited! That said, there is a lot that I need to sort out before I go back.

This year I’m moving in to a new house and, unlike last year, my rent for this house does not include bills. This means that my housemates and I have to find providers for all the utilities for the house (water, gas, internet, etc). This has been a bit of a headache to sort out, but we were recently told about a company called Glide that does everything for you and provides each tenant with one bill each month, which sounds like it will be a lot easier.

Meanwhile, we’re still waiting to receive our deposits back from our house last year. There’s been a few disputes about it (as there often are with this kind of thing) and there’s been some last minute paperwork and such that we’ve had to sort out . It’s been a bit stressful as it always seems like there’s always something extra to do! However, we’re getting through it all and hopefully we’ll be able to draw a line under everything before long.

The house I lived in last year!
The house I lived in last year!

On a more positive note, I’ve still got some shopping to do to buy some extra things for the new house which I will definitely enjoy doing! I also found out this week that I will be working as a Student Helper on Welcome Sunday again this year. Last year I had the most amazing time helping new students settle in and I can’t wait to do it again, so for those of you moving in to halls on September 21st; I will see you there!

And finally, I know that it’s results day tomorrow and I remember how absolutely terrified I was when I was getting results two years ago. Don’t forget that, whatever happens, it will turn out ok in the end. Best of luck to you all!

Student House

Moving in to a student house is really exciting. Whilst halls are a great way to get settled in to living away from home, I think living in a student house is a brilliant next step. Choosing who you live with, having more responsibility for keeping everything clean, watching how much you spend on bills; it’s all quite different from halls but I’ve really enjoyed the experience this year. Rather than possibly boring you all with tales of my shenanigans, I thought it might be interesting to show you what my student house looks like.

IMG-20140506-00191

This is our little bungalow from the outside. I think it’s kind of cute.

IMG-20140506-00195

Our living room, somewhat tidier than usual. This is where I spend most of my time, normally watching Jeremy Kyle.

IMG-20140506-00187.The kitchen. It gets in a state every now and again but that’s students for you.

IMG-20140506-00190

My room which is one of the smallest of the 6 in our house but I love it anyway. I couldn’t take a picture of the other half of the room because I’m too ashamed of the mess but I also have a chest of drawers and a shelf buried somewhere under all the clothes.

IMG-20140506-00194

One of our two bathrooms (the other one is pretty much identical).

IMG-20140506-00193

Our garden: which is…garden-y?

In case anyone wants an idea of how much a house costs, we each pay £90 a week which includes bills, but obviously this will vary between houses.