Welcome to London! No doubt you’ve been on the hunt for a place to live, if you’ve not found one already, and if you’re here on a student visa, it’s likely you’re hoping to get acquainted with some of your classmates. If you need some room-mates to help share expenses, and at least three of your classmates or even work mates (if applicable), are amenable to it, why not try sharing a house?
What Are The Benefits of a House-Share?
It’s no secret that London is expensive, and it’s also likely that you might still be feeling just a tiny bit out of place yet, even if you’re here as a student or employee. But if you’re new to the city, sharing a house with others, especially those who have come to know you fairly well, has benefits you might not otherwise have thought of.
Here are some ways a house-share is better than going it alone:
1) New friends ease any potential loneliness. Sure, you might be excited to live in a place you’ve never been, test your mettle, have new experiences and learn more about yourself. But it’s also likely that you might feel a touch lonely now and again since you’re in a strange place and you don’t have your old friends around, physically.
However, if you’re house-sharing with even two or three other new friends, they can be the ones to help you get your footing a touch faster, especially if you’re all working in similar fields, learning the same subjects in university, or have similar interests outside of work or school. You can call out for pizza or other takeaway, head out for drinks, or attend a particular function as a group.
Pretty soon, you’ll be laughing and joking, forming bonds with people you would not have otherwise met, expanding your circle of friends rather than just missing the ones you left behind. And chances are, these new bonds are sure to be lifelong, if you all get on well together. So, house-share with new friends and never be lonely in a strange country.
2) Share in the cleaning duties. While being by yourself in a flat is a source of pride for many, it’s easy to get bogged down with work or school, and not feel like you have time or energy to take care of necessary housecleaning chores. Here is where sharing a house with others pays off because you all can draw up an agreement between the lot of you, deciding who cleans what, and when. Having a cleaning routine gets things done faster, allowing you more time to do other things.
Plus, having a mutual cleaning routine agreement is likely to keep laziness to a minimum, especially if you agree to hold each other accountable.
3) House-sharing means split costs. While ‘many hands make light work’ applies to chores, it also can apply to splitting the costs of letting the house in the first place. For instance, if there are four of you, and rent is 1000 pounds a month for a house-share situation, divided up, the rent will only cost 250 pounds per person. But that’s just the rent. You also have to consider utilities and council tax as well, among other expenses.
4) House-sharing can mean friends during special times. Depending on the length of your stay in London, it’s likely you’ll spend your first holiday season, as well as your birthday, away from your family and friends back home. This can make some people feel a tad lonely.
All the more reason to share a house with others and have people around to celebrate with. Your new mates will know the best places to go out and have fun, whether you end up splashing out, or head out on the town with frugality in mind. The point is that you’ll have new friends with you no matter what you end up doing.
Between splitting the bills, doing chores and kicking back on your off-hours together, having friends to share a house with can mean the difference between a slow, perhaps somewhat rocky start in London, and hitting the ground running.