The four struggles of moving into a share house

January 03, 2017
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The prospect of moving into a share house is both exhilarating yet scary. Signing our names on the lease will make us feel like we’ve aged about five years at once and it feels almost criminal when the real estate agent hands over the keys to our new house.

As much as we prepare beforehand, it’s true that we can only plan for trouble so much in advance. Most of our problems with the house will come all at once and we can only deal with them right then. The super exciting thought of living with best friends or throwing a party without our parents will outshine the woes, but there are certain struggles we all experience when tackling share house living as a legit adult for the first time.

Choosing roomies

There’s really no best-kept secret to choosing the best housemates. Some people swear that we shouldn’t move in with close friends while others have complete horror stories from finding random roommates online.

It’s best to use intuition and try to move in with people who match our morals and lifestyle. If you’re more relaxed about washing the dishes, then living with a clean freak is going to be extremely difficult for the both of you. You also want someone who’s going to be reliable on paying back money and respect the wishes of the landlord.

Money for the basics

Let’s trust our older cousins when they tell us that living on your own is expensive. Like, really expensive. This is the time where we’re pretty much asserting our financial independence and setting up the rest of our lives.

To begin with there’s rent and bond; (hopefully) we all hope for a full bond refund when we vacate any premises, but for now it feels like a waste of money. On top of that there’s electricity and water bills to pay and internet on a monthly basis.

Not to mention, all those things we expect to work smoothly in a household have a lot of dollars attached to them. Then there’s groceries every week and every necessary household item. You’ll soon realise why some student houses look minimal. That’s called a minimal budget, folks.

Practically setting up a new life

When thinking of what we’ll need when we move into a share house it’s very much touch-and-go. Of course we’ll need our bed and desk and all our clothes, but communal areas are much harder to coordinate.

Who’ll buy the fridge and who’ll go shopping for a couch? A good rule to go by is making sure you agree to own what you pay for when you all move out. Don’t expect to have too much in the house at first because it all adds up. Look out for cheap deals and accumulate the less necessary items later on.

Playing happy family

It takes time to get to know how new roomies operate in their home lives and what particular things annoy them. Being friends with them first will only get us so far; everyone has a unique way of living and certain nuances.

Living with people our own age is just not the same as living with our parents. They were the ones telling us to clean up everything and to do things around the house. Now we’re supposed to be responsible and see things that need doing and think about scrubbing and washing and drying and mopping every day. Ah, the joys of #adulting.

So the struggle is real. It’s serious adult business having to cook more than toast for dinner, manage money and attempt to put together and fix things without relying on good old dad.

Still, share house living definitely comes with its perks. Binge-watching Netflix in pyjamas all day and getting tipsy with friends at night in the comfort of your living room? Happy sharing!

Grace Potter

Grace studies Communications & Media at the University of Wollongong and is an avid fan of Harry Potter and coffee.

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