Moving to university is an exciting time and you won’t be short of new people to mingle with. Probably the most important group of people you’ll meet right at the start of your university journey will be the people you live with, either in student halls or other student accommodation.
For some students, their housemates become friends for life. For other students, they’ll spend the academic year avoiding the people they live with and praying for a new group of roomies in the second year.
We’re hoping you fit into the first category, but if you do find yourself in housemate hell, just remember it’s only for a year and then you can move on.
Regardless, here are 10 things that will definitely happen when you live in shared student accommodation:
#1 – you’ll become a food hoarder
Student accommodation is notorious for food mysteriously going missing and no one knowing anything about it. It won’t matter how many post-it notes you leave on your cheese, at some point in the year you will fall victim to the food thief.
This makes all students expert food hoarders, with some even going to the effort of having a mini fridge in their rooms (check your letting agreement before you do this).
Sweet treats, crisps, juice, they’re all common items to find stashed in cupboards and under the beds in student accommodation. A student’s gotta’ eat, right?
#2 – you’ll have to lower your kitchen/bathroom hygiene standards
Another student stereotype, and one that is very true in 99% of cases, is that the kitchens and bathrooms are hotbeds for germs, dirty laundry, and even dirtier cooking equipment.
Some student households opt for everyone having their own crockery, cutlery etc. and others use things communally. Either way, there will always be at least one person who doesn’t pull your weight and you’ll find yourself on strike at least once during the year after having to wash one too many dishes before you can make yourself some toast.
#3 – toilet paper, it’s a precious commodity
Just like food, you’ll find your house gets through toilet paper at an alarming rate and even if the cleaning team in your halls tops it up, there still never seems to be any when you need it.
We suggest you keep a stash of your own, hidden out of sight with all that food you don’t want anyone else to eat…
#4 – arctic circle or tropical paradise, there is no in between
If you prepaid your bills in halls or bills are included in your rent then it’s likely that come the first chill of winter you’ll ramp the heating up and spend the rest of the year living in a tropical paradise.
If you’re not so lucky, and your housemates are just a stingy with the heating as you are, it’s time to buy a few blankets and some woolly socks.
#5 – there’s always a “mum” in the house
This is the person that nags about the housework, makes sure you all get to bed safely after a night out, and is up at the crack of dawn to make that all important hangover fry up on Sunday mornings.
#6 – students are surprisingly passive aggressive
If you’ve been thinking that food and toilet roll stashing is passive aggressive, we can assure you it gets worse.
From post-it notes being left on food and dirty dishes to coming home from a night out and finding a white board leaning against your door with a list of your misdemeanours, students should be able to earn their degree in passive aggression without needing to take a single exam.
#7 – your fridge will resemble a toddler’s weekly shop
Finger foods, snacks, and possibly the makings of a fry up will make up the bulk of what’s kept in your shared fridge. Add in your secret food stash and you’ve got a diet that isn’t that dissimilar to the foods you ate as a toddler, except less healthy…
#8 – you’ll live “very” closely with your housemates
Paper thin walls are all part of the fun of shared student accommodation so you’ll find yourself privy to everything that goes on in your housemates’ lives, including messy break ups, partying, and the rebound “special time” they’ll have with a random they met in the SU bar.
#9 – most group activities will end with drinking
Pancake Day, boxset marathons, and even finally tackling the mountain of washing up… all group activities are bound to end up with a few drinks or two with your roomies.
#10 – you’ll always remember your housemates
Whether it’s fondly or not, you’ll never forget the people you live with when you’re at university. From your student halls bestie to the crazy housemate that only appeared under cover of darkness and you’re pretty sure was sacrificing chickens in their room (OK, we’re exaggerating on this one) you’ll always have memories of your time in shared student accommodation.