Congratulations! You have been admitted to college, and all you have to do is to find a home nearby. There is plenty of housing options for a college student, the most common of them is perhaps flat sharing. Many young people join forces with their college buddies and rent a flat or a house together. This is common not only in the USA but all over the world. Sharing a home wouldn’t have been so widespread if it were a bad thing. However, everyone doing it doesn’t mean it would be OK for you too. What are the perks and drawbacks of house sharing for a college student? Is flat sharing the right option for you? Read our overview of home sharing pros and cons and decide for yourself!
What are the perks of home sharing?
Good news first: let’s see what are the pros of living with roommates. These are the perks of home-sharing that are named most often. It’ll help you understand why is home-sharing so popular. And make you consider trying it out too.
1. Shared costs.
As a fresh-baked college student, you are probably just stepping into adult life and are short of money. It is no secret that housing is getting more and more expensive, especially if you pay the rent alone. The perk of home-sharing is that you and your roommates split the costs, so each of you pays less.
2. Shared house appliances.
House and kitchen appliances are quite costly, especially if you buy high-quality and new ones. Another great con of house sharing is that you won’t need to buy your own refrigerator or washing machine. You probably won’t need your own dishes either; well, at least, not too much.
3. Less cleaning work.
Admit it: we all hate cleaning the flat. It’s a necessary evil, even in a shared flat. But the plus of living with roommates is that you won’t have to clean too much alone. When you’re all done with unpacking, sit down and make a weekly cleaning plan. Who takes out the garbage on Saturdays? Or who washes the dishes on Thursdays? And who is responsible for cleaning the bathroom this Friday? And so on. If you plan the organization routine from the start, your shared home will be clean without anyone overdoing it.
4. It’s more fun.
Surely all college students will confirm this home sharing pro. If you’re living with your peers, a daily dose of fun is guaranteed. Living with roommates is a great socializing tip if you’re new to town. You’ll both get new cool friends and useful tips that will help you settle in.
5. Help and support are always near.
College life is not all fun and games. Sadly enough, you might have problems with your grades, get in trouble, need help with homework, or simply feeling depressed. If you’re sharing a home with your friends, you can always count on their quick help and support. Of course, if you’re living alone you can get help online, but a real-life talk is definitely much pleasant.
What are the drawbacks of living with roommates?
Home sharing sounds cool and fun, doesn’t it? Well, it is indeed so in many cases. However, living with someone new also has its cons. Here are some of the most often-named drawbacks of living with roommates. If you’re not ready to cope with them, consider living alone.
1. Less private space.
Even if you’re lucky to have nice and respectful roommates, they’re still strangers. So, you can’t be 100% free. You’ll have to say goodbye to walking around in your underwear all weekend. And you’ll possibly have to reject your partner’s suggestion to overnight at your place because your roommate will be home. Get ready to sacrifice a big part of your private space if you’re sharing a flat with roommates.
2. Sharing the bathroom.
The point we hate most about home-sharing is this. Living with roommates means a line to the restroom in the morning and to the shower in the evening. Much worse is if your neighbor is dirty and you go to the restroom after them. No more explanations are needed here we guess…
3. More cleaning work.
Even if you agree on a cleaning plan, there’s no guarantee your flat buddies will stick to it. There will always be the guy who leaves dirty dishes in the sink for days. Or the girl who never takes out the garbage when it’s her turn. Flatshare is a roommate lottery: we’re extremely sorry if you got to live with a pig. Reasoning messy neighbors usually never work long, so be prepared to become the housecleaner. After all, you don’t want to live in a pigsty, do you?
4. Say goodbye to studying at home.
Sharing a flat with party people and studying at home? Impossible. Well, maybe in the parallel universe it is. With noisy neighbors, be ready to do your studying in libraries, because you won’t manage to concentrate at home. Like with messy people, reasoning these guys won’t work, so don’t bank on their tactfulness. They just don’t have one. Keep calm and go to the library. And start looking for a single-room apartment.
5. It can ruin friendships.
Unfortunately, it happens more often than you might expect. Even if you’re planning to live with your friends. They might be cool and helpful at college, but at home, they never clean the kitchen after they cook. Sad, but true – a years-long friendship can crash over dirty dishes in the sink! If you don’t want this to happen, talk about your household habits with your roommate-to-be. Make sure you both agree on your responsibilities from the first day.
What is your experience of home-sharing as a college student? Would you rather live alone or with your buddies? We hope that our list of home sharing pros and cons has helped you decide.