Co-living accommodation is one of the student accommodation housing options for university students in Singapore. If you’ve decided that co-living is the best option for you, why not move into a unit with your friends? With each of your friends renting a room in the same condo unit, you’ll have a more enjoyable communal living experience since you know each other.
If you’re a foreign student in Singapore, having friends as your housemates definitely makes adjusting to life in Singapore much easier since you’ll share similar experiences.
However, living together with friends requires some adjustment and you may need to compromise and “give and take” so you can have a peaceful environment at the place you’ll be staying. Renting a room in co-living unit also means you’ll need to be mindful of your landlord’s house rules.
So if you’re a student who’s new to co-living in Singapore, here are some tips on co-living etiquette as well as general reminders to ensure that you don’t get into trouble with your landlord.
1. Assign household chores
Weekly housekeeping services are usually provided in co-living housing units. However, that does not mean that you should neglect general cleaning and hygiene. For example, you’d still need to throw the rubbish everyday. If rubbish has been left in the kitchen for days, this may attract pests and you certainly don’t want that. So, draw up a timetable with your housemates and have everybody take turns to throw the trash. For example, if there are 3 of you in the unit, each person can be allocated two days out of the week to throw the trash. For the remaining day, the housekeeper can do the job.
2. Agree on when use the washing machine
Have you ever found yourself in a situation when you want to do the laundry but find that someone else’s clothes in the washing machine? Or worse, you find that your housemate has left their clothes in the washing machine and had gone out the whole day. The best way to avoid a conflict from happening is to have a timetable on when to use the washing machine. For instance, someone can use it on odd days of the week and the other person can use it on even days. That way, when your laundry day comes around, you can be assured that you have full access to the washing machine.
3. Make sure to clean up after cooking
As a student, you’re on a budget. Cooking your own meals can be a great way to save money as eating out everyday can be expensive. Of course, the hard part is cleaning up thereafter. But make sure you put in the effort to wash the dishes, pots and pans, unclog the sink, and clean the stove after cooking. After all, no one wants to find a pile of dirty dishes in the sink.
4. Don’t invite other friends to sleep over
Once in a while, you may want to invite other friends over for dinner or just to chill, but they shouldn’t sleep over overnight. Your other housemates may not like it or your landlord may have even listed this as one of the conditions or “house rules” as part of your Tenancy Agreement.
5. Pay your rent on time
When you sign a lease with your landlord, you are obligated to pay your rent on time to avoid being penalised or being evicted from your rental unit. So set little reminder to yourself on your phone to transfer the rental payment to your landlord’s account each month.
6. Play your part in maintaining the property
Even though you’re renting a place and it’s not your own, you still have to play a part in maintaining it. Be very careful so as not to damage any furniture, fixtures, fittings and appliances in the unit. Otherwise, you may have to pay for the damage or repairs, depending on the terms and conditions in your Tenancy Agreement. Sometimes, the amount for the repairs may also be deducted from the security deposit when you move out. So remember to treat your rental unit like your own home.