One of the big changes when you come to university is that you suddenly find yourself living with a group of strangers who you share your kitchen, and sometimes even your bathroom with. So, to not end up having a terrible year avoiding every communal area and keeping yourself locked in your room, I’ve written a few tips on how to be a good flatmate. After all, a little bit of kindness to your neighbour can’t do any harm.

Divide tasks:

It’s useful to make a cleaning schedule for the communal areas early on. Split up the jobs so everyone does a little bit of work. This will avoid arguments in the future, and will make the flat a nicer place to live in.

Share your kitchenware:

To make the flat feel more like home, don’t separate your stuff from your flatmates’ in the communal areas. Make it clear they can use whatever they want. As long as nothing gets broken, of course.

Keep it down:

If you like listening to loud music, make sure your flatmate is OK with it. Let them know they can message anytime to complain about the noise. If they ask you to turn it down, do so.

Travel together:

This is an useful tip, especially if you’re an international student like me. Invite your flatmate to go on day trips with you to cities nearby. It’s a great way of getting to know the country and the people who you’ll spend the whole year living with.

Always wash your dishes:

Keeping the kitchen and common areas clean is a must, and a big part of it is always washing your dishes. That way, when your flatmates need to use the kitchen they won’t run into a pile of your dirty plates.

Respect their privacy:

While it is important to become friends with your flatmates, make sure you never invade their personal space. Sometimes people just want to be by themselves, and we need to respect that.


The final and most important tip is to make your flatmate Nutella cake, or anything that has Nutella in it. I assure you that, if they didn’t like you before, now they will, because nothing beats Nutella. Just make sure not to eat it all yourself!