Still sad about the sun setting on your time in halls? Follow these simple Do’s and Don’ts and living in a private housing can be even more of a laugh (really).
- Introduce yourself to your neighbour’s: Your neighbour’s are sort of like ghost housemates when it comes to private housing – you’ll probably rarely see each other, but if like my house, your walls are about as thick as a sheet of paper, you’ll certainly hear each other… Get in the good books early and say a quick hello.
- Sort out the best energy and Wi-Fi suppliers: Energy and Wi-Fi (unless agreed in your contract) are up to you to sort out. Have a search around for the cheapest and best student deals – my advice: gas is gas and water is water no matter what you pay; the same attitude with Wi-Fi however will leave you red-faced when you’re reduced to watching a pixelated, buffer ridden episode of your favourite show…
- Sort a rota for cleaning: Now, nobody is going to enjoy cleaning the toilet and if they do, please send them my way, but it’s a necessary job that needs to be kept on top of. Sort a rota early of who cleans what and when, to avoid needing an industrial biohazard suit around March.
- Sort out standing orders for rent and utilities: Sorting out a standing order means you don’t have to worry about paying every month – it’ll do it automatically – set up an account everyone pays into on a set day. By agreeing a set amount for utilities (include £5-10 on top of expected bills per month to cover incidental expenses, like toilet rolls, washing up liquid and fluctuation) bills will also be covered.
- Leave the washing up: The bugbear of all university houses – a sink that looks more like a game of jenga. Washing your plates up as soon as you’re done with them will have a surprising effect on everyone’s mood and save you having to explain how you accidentally broke your housemates grandmas treasured wedding glass because your jenga skills were certainly not ‘on-point’.
- Wake the street up at 4AM: Going out and having fun is part and parcel of university life, but your neighbour’s won’t take too kindly to being woken up by someone dressed in a bee costume at 4AM, trust me…
- Presume your street share your taste in music: There’s nothing nicer than coming home after a long day and kicking back to some of your favourite songs – just remember whilst you and your housemates may have similar tastes, the rest of the street probably won’t so, if you find yourself questioning whether something’s acceptable or not – play it safe, the last thing you want is to introduce the C-bomb to the kids down the road.
- Think the TV license people won’t find you: Many have tried, all have failed. If you’re watching live TV, or some iPlayer style streaming services, you’ll need a TV license. It’s the law!
For more information on private housing and general student accommodation, take a look at SPG’s Guide to Student Accommodation!
Written by Jack Abrey