Living in a co-living space has many benefits. But it also comes with responsibilities. One of your key responsibilities is to get along with those living together in the same apartment. If this is the first time you’re renting a room in a co-living space, it can take time to get used to living with people you don’t know initially.
You will certainly have to follow the house rules set out by your landlord so that everyone can live harmoniously under one roof. Here are 5 simple tips on how to respect your housemates and get along well with each other.
1. Designate a place to put your belongings in communal spaces
While your rented room is your own private sanctuary, there will also be communal spaces such as the dining area, kitchen and corridors in your co-living unit. The best way to avoid disputes with your housemates is to designate the areas where you can place your personal items.
For example, each person living in the unit can have a designated shelf to place their shoes in the shoe cabinet. The same goes for the kitchen. Each flatmate can have a particular shelf in the fridge and kitchen cabinets earmarked for them to place their food and other personal kitchen items.
If you’re sharing a common bathroom, it’s best to work out an allocated space to place your personal toiletries. For example, the vanity cabinet can be divided up such that you have your own space for your toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo and bodywash. Only keep what’s necessary in the bathroom. Store other more personal items such as your makeup and hair brushes and perfumes in your own bedroom.
2. Only use your own things
To avoid any misunderstanding, you can go one step further and label your personal food items in the kitchen or your toiletries in the bathroom. This will make it very clear that those items belong to you. For example, labelling the bottles of cooking sauces or jam spreads in the fridge will go some way in avoiding “fridge wars”.
If you see a packet of crisps in the cupboard that don’t belong to you, don’t eat them! Avoid eating your flatmate’s food. Get your own instead.
The same goes toiletries in the bathroom. Respect your flatmates belongings and never ever be tempted to try out their shampoo or body wash!
3. Clean up after using the common bathroom
It’s also important to be mindful and respectful when you use a shared common bathroom. For example, you may have to flush the toilet bowl twice or use the toilet brush to clean it if you’ve used it heavily . Or, if you’ve accidentally splashed too much water on the bathroom floor, wipe it up so that it won’t be slippery when your flatmate comes in to use it.
4. Clean the kitchen after cooking
If you’re in the habit of cooking your meals, make sure to clean up the kitchen after you’re done. Wash your dishes, pots and pans and stack them neatly in the dish rack. Otherwise, don’t be surprised if your flatmates flare up when they find a dirty pile of dishes in the sink.
Another reminder: wipe or clean the stove and kitchen countertops after cooking to prevent stains. Throw away any food waste as well. Don’t leave them behind for your weekly housekeeper to do so. Otherwise, this may result in foul smells and may attract unwanted pests.
5. Keep the noise levels down
Are you a gamer, like to listen to music or like to binge watch your favourite Netflix shows from the comfort of your room? If so, remember to keep the noise levels down, especially at night. We suggest investing in a pair of headsets. That way, you won’t get complaints on the level of noise from your flatmates.
When you respect the house rules and are mindful of your personal habits, you can enjoy a comfortable and harmonious living condition with the other flatmates in your co-living space.