It’s one thing sharing a home with your family but it’s a whole other sharing one with complete strangers. When you first get to uni it’s most likely that you won’t know your flatmates, Edge Hill, via facebook page does tend to encourage students to get to know their flatmates before Welcome Sunday by setting up groups for each building/set of buildings. This can be very helpful but nothing is going to prepare you for living in halls until you actually experience it. I absolutely loves my first year in halls, although most of my friends lived in different buildings I got along with my flatmates quite well. This post is intended to answer a few questions you might have about living in halls and how to combat any problems that may arise.
Getting to know your flatmates
The best way to get to know your flatmates is to spend time in communal areas like the kitchen. Staying in your room all the time is not going to get you anywhere if you want to make friends with the people you’re living with. Maybe arrange to go to social events with them or host a flat party? I found parties a great way to break the ice. Once you start talking to your flatmates you will hopefully find some common interests and develop friendships, making living together far easier.
I was lucky enough to live in accommodation that came with a cleaning service for the communal areas and being the neat freak I am, my room was often immaculate (if I do say so myself). But of course, between the times when the cleaning lady would come the kitchen would get pretty messy (with eight people sharing and all cooking different meals that’s not surprising). My advice to people who are or live with particularly messy people is to sit down with your flatmates and discuss the situation (avoid passive aggressive post-it notes!) and come to a conclusion wherein the offending flatmates do whatever it is they aren’t doing and the flat lives in harmony. This technique can also work for other disagreements or problems that may arise.
It’s important to spend some time alone in your room, whether to do work or just chill out, you can’t be expected to be social all the time. Hopefully your flatmates will respect this, because after all everyone needs alone time. However if they worry about you or feel like something’s wrong, just politely explain to them that sometimes you need to chill on your own and its no reflection on them. This time is important as it will help you keep calm and will help in keeping the flat happy and friendly. If you’re all living in each others’ pockets some people are bound to start getting a little bit frustrated or annoyed, it’s human nature, so by taking occasional time to yourself you can limit the possibility of that happening.
Until next time! 🙂