5 Ways to Get On Better With Your Flatmates
Whether you’re living with your best friends or new friends, living in a flatshare can be a breeding ground for disagreements. Adapting to other peoples’ ways of living, different schedules and priorities is tricky, and it’s best for all involved if you can keep the living space harmonious.
Building and maintaining friendships – or at least a mutual respect and understanding – with your flatmates is really important, even if you already know eachother well. Moving in with someone is a big deal, and it’s important to build the foundations for a good friendship from the start.
We’ve come up with some great ways to improve relationships with your flatmates so when you do have to have an awkward chat about whose turn it is to wash the dishes, your good relationship means you won’t have a huge falling out over a small thing!
1. Go for dinner together
The way to the heart is through the stomach… or so they say. Going out for a meal is a great way to get to know eachother and have a good chat. Find out what kind of food your flatmates like – maybe you’re all vegan and can swap great recipes and restaurant recommendations, or love Italian food and can learn to make amazing sourdough pizza bases together. If nothing else, you’ll at least have some tasty food and spend a bit of time together outside the house. You can even get 2-for-1 meals or 50% discounts at tons of restaurants with a tastecard, so it doesn’t have to break the bank!
2. Don’t put off difficult conversations
One of your flatmates is really winding you up. They’re always playing music at 2am, keep leaving their wet towel on the bathroom floor, and coffee mugs in the sink. The best way to deal with these kinds of frustrations is to address them straight away: the longer you let annoyances fester, the more likely you are to snap at your flatmate and start an argument that blows everything out of proportion.
3. Do a group activity
Going out and doing an activity is a great way to build on your friendship, and is more fun than sitting on the sofa watching Netflix. Something competitive like go-karting, paintballing or going to an arcade is always fun and provides some good banter. A favourite spot for my flatmates and I is Four Quarters arcade in Hackney Wick for beers and retro arcade games!
Another great activity option is an Escape Room. They’re really fun, there’s always a cool theme, and you can usually choose your task by difficulty level. The aim is simple: solve the clues as a team and escape the room before the clock runs out. They’re like real-life video games, and we’re all for it.
One of our favourite Escape Rooms is Mission: Breakout in Kentish Town – they have two different game rooms and it’s a great challenge. At our Flatmate Bingo event at The Abbey Tavern on 16th October there’ll be a chance to win a voucher for a free escape room for you and your flatmates… plus all of those who attend the event will get an exclusive discount for their next Escape Room visit at Mission: Breakout!
4. Get organised
Take the stress off daily living by getting organised with bills and shared expenses. Make an agreement with your flatmate as to which home goods are communal and take it in turns to buy them: things like loo roll, milk, butter and washing up liquid are commonly shared between flatmates. Also agree on how bills will be paid: is one person responsible for collecting money and paying? Will you set up a direct debit? And most importantly: are you getting the best value and cheapest possible bills?
5. Respect eachothers’ privacy
Going out and doing stuff as a flat is great, but you don’t have to be in each others’ pockets all the time. If your flatmate needs some time alone, their bedroom door is closed or they are wearing their headphones to watch a movie – respect that. The foundation of a good relationship is proper boundaries, and no one wants to be the annoying flatmate that’s always pestering the others!