Hey there freshers! Are you panicking about housing yet? You really should be, but not for the reason you’d think…
You see, I’m not talking about the panic of actually finding a flat, although it is a gold rush at the start of next semester. I’m talking about who you’re going to be living with. To decide that you’re theoretically going to spend the next three years living with a group of people you’ve known only four months is crazy, but sadly it’s a thing we have to do.
So, my young ones, take the advice of an anonymous and embittered fourth year who has had their fair share of shocking housemates, and avoid these textbook psychopaths before it’s too late. These are the last people you want to find yourself stuck with when that lease is signed on the dotted line.
1. The one who doesn’t clean shit
The flat. The dishes. Their clothes. Their bodies. Beware this group of quite possibly the most disgusting human beings on the planet. Now, I’m not saying that people have to live in a state of total cleanliness (we’re students, let’s be real), but be very cautious about those who are quite happy to let things fester and mould, particularly if it’s on their own clothes, bedsheets or bodies.
2. The one who parties HARD
Sure they’re fun in Freshers’ Week, but what happens when the work starts? Do you want to be woken up at 3 am five nights a week? Do you want a raucous flat party or pre-drinks when that essay is due the next day? This flatmate definitely has their perks, but unless they’re competent cleaning up their own vomit, coming home quietly and respecting when you’re stressed out, avoid at all costs.
3. The one with the ever present significant other
They don’t pay towards your rent, your energy bills or your wifi, and yet you feel as though you might as well start receiving their mail since they’re hanging around so often. These are flatmates that need to learn some boundaries. Supposedly St Andrews has the highest rate of post-uni marriages, so flatmates coupling up is a fact of life, but it would be nice if these couples remembered that other people in the world exist too.
Also, having sex quietly is a skill very few have. You do not want to find yourself listening to that every night of the week.
4. The one with the overbearing parents
This is the pinnacle of horrendous flatmates. There is nothing worse than arriving home to find your flatmate’s parents sitting around. Every. Single. Week. This gets particularly weird and awkward if you’re not arriving home alone…
These types of parents also like to get very involved in any dispute, and from my experience tend to actually be worse than the flatmate. Whether it’s the decision over who gets which room, who is paying what portion of the bills, or even just a bit of bickering over cleaning, they like to stick their oar in. This gets very irritating very, very quickly.
5. The one who takes passive aggressive to a whole new level
From post it notes to silent protests, a passive aggressive flatmate can make your living situation unbearable. These are typically people who take a “my way or the highway” approach to life, and woe betide anyone who doesn’t comply. If you or your flatmates have issues, for Christ’s sake just talk it out. The confrontation might seem daunting, but it’ll make your life (and the lives of those who live with you) far easier.
In conclusion, be very careful about who you agree to live with. Maybe have a chat with the people they currently live with for some honest truths, and let them know about your own annoying habits. We all have them! Even if you’re already the best of friends, choosing to be with each other every day might just destroy that friendship.
You’ve all been warned. Now happy hunting, freshers.