However, there are things you can do and prepare to take off the nerves and make the experience as enjoyable as possible. Here are ten tips for university living with strangers.
Understand That Everyone is Going Through the Same Thing
For the vast majority of students, this will be their first experience of living away from home, so you won't be alone in your feelings of excitement and possibly terror. Your roommates may look like they have everything together, but, likely, they're just better at handling it.
Have Your Own Utensils
The main aim when living with new people is to avoid conflicts. You may not get on with everyone you live with, and that's okay as long as you can be amicable with each other. A good way of avoiding conflict is to bring your own utensils and kitchen equipment, so you can avoid using other people's stuff. If you do need to use something belonging to someone else, always make sure you ask first, and wash it when you're finished.
Keep Your Door Open
A great way to encourage socialising is to leave your bedroom door open so others can say hi when they pass. This means you can open your boundaries without stressing yourself out and can make the entire living experience easier for everyone.
Socialise Early, Socialise Often
While living with strangers may be scary at first, it will become terrifying if you don't beat your nerves and socialise as early as possible. This is a constant process though, so try to chat with your housemates more often than not. You don't want to end up being scared to make yourself a cup of tea or coffee just because your flatmates are in the kitchen.
Have a Weekly Flat Night
Spending time bonding with the people you're living with will make your entire university experience much easier. Having one night a week where you and your housemates spend time together watching a movie, cooking, or going to the pub can help reduce tension and ease your nerves.
Introduce Your Friends to the People You're Living With
You may have friends visit your student house or flat, either for studying or as a social call. When this happens, make sure you introduce them to your housemates so you can reduce the shock of sudden visits in the future. It's also good manners to announce to the flat that you have a friend visiting.
Keep Communal Spaces Clean and Tidy
Communal spaces are important for the flat so everyone can spend time together. This is less likely to happen if the communal space isn't clean, so make sure you put in the effort to keep it nice and clean. This is extra important if you were the main culprit of the mess; no one likes cleaning up after other people.
Don't Interrupt Studying
Nothing is more irritating than trying to study but being interrupted by your housemates who are making lots of noise. It's important to treat others how you wish to be treated, which means respecting the study habits of your housemates and not disturbing them. By respecting their tranquillity when studying, they will hopefully do the same for you.
Respect the Privacy of Others
Though studying at university is a very social experience, everyone needs and deserves time to themselves. If your housemate doesn't answer when you knock on their door, don't get offended, they probably just need a little privacy for one reason or another. As with most things in life, respecting other people's privacy will make them respect yours.
Know That You Don't Have to be Best Friends
It's very common for people to believe that just because you're living with other people, you have to be best friends with them. This simply isn't the case, and more often than not you probably won't fully get on with the people you're living with. This is okay though because you can still be kind and polite to each other.
What is Unihousing?
Unihousing is a student accommodation provider near the University of Birmingham, operating since 1984. All of our accommodation in Selly Oak is owned by us, so we can respond quickly to any requests using our qualified team of tradesmen. Our property office is located on Bristol Road, only a short walk away from all of our accommodation. This means we can deal directly with our tenants.
Unhousing was selected as the Number 1 Student Letting Agent in Birmingham by the UK's biggest fresher community, Unifresher.