How to Create Your Own Space in a Shared Place

May 17, 2023

Living with a roommate can have many benefits. It significantly reduces your rent and makes it possible to afford a larger apartment or live in a nicer neighbourhood.

Even if you have great housemates who are respectful and clean up after themselves, there is one major downside when living in shared places – privacy. When you don’t feel comfortable in your own house, unpleasant emotions like anger, impatience, and worry are more likely to surface. Obviously, nobody likes to feel stressed in their own home.

Create a more enjoyable and stress-free shared environment with these simple tips.

Agree on Rules and Communicate Often

To avoid misunderstandings, it’s essential to be on the same page. You should agree on ground rules, such as knocking before entering, deciding who gets to shower first, or not disturbing a sleeping roommate. Discuss if it’s appropriate to play music or vacuum on weekends. Decide when it is okay to bring guests. Setting boundaries in advance will help make living together smoother.

Disagreements are natural. You’re two unique individuals with your own preferences. Find healthy ways to blow off steam, and don’t bottle up your frustrations. Address conflicts quickly through a heart-to-heart talk or a politely written letter.

Create a Cleaning Schedule

Nobody wants to come home to a cluttered or messy living area. Different attitudes towards cleanliness can lead to friction. To avoid this, create a schedule for cleaning duties, ensuring each roommate clearly understands their housekeeping responsibilities. Make a list to divide up the cleaning tasks. This ensures that everyone contributes equally to the upkeep of your home, avoiding any ill feelings or perceived unfairness.

Make it a habit to clean up after yourself, whether a big spill or just some crumbs. Leaving food scraps or dirty dishes in the sink can attract pests, creating an unhealthy environment. Be considerate; no one likes to feel they are constantly picking up after other people.

Designate Specific Areas and Keep Belongings Separate

When living with roommates, it’s easy for personal belongings to get mixed up or get lost in the shuffle. Although it may not seem like a big issue, stuff ending up in another person’s room without permission can lead to frustration and resentment. Establish boundaries and designate separate storage areas in common spaces. After a long hard day at the office, nothing is worse than getting home to find that your roommate has “stolen” your favourite snack.

While you and your roommate may have different tastes in food, essential items, like milk, coffee, condiments, and sauces, will be more cost-effective to buy in bulk. You can save money and avoid disagreements by discussing how to manage household supplies and groceries.

Soundproof Your Sleeping Area

Not that you should turn your room into a studio, but there are simple ways to reduce the sound coming in and out of your bedroom. A few strategies include pushing heavy furniture against the wall, hanging tapestries, sealing gaps in the windows and doors, and laying down area rugs.

You can install soundproof curtains designed to absorb sound and minimize noise. These drapes are usually made of thick, heavy fabrics like wool, velvet, or burlap. A white noise machine also can help mask unwanted sounds. You may find it beneficial for falling asleep or if you need to concentrate.

Spruce-up Your Bedroom

Creating a bedroom that is comfortable and inviting to retreat to after a long day is essential when sharing a home. Adding a few personal touches can go a long way toward giving your bedroom a homey feel. Sprucing it up with artwork, pictures, and plants will make you feel more at ease and at home there.

Lighting enhances the mood and atmosphere of your bedroom. Warm, yellow-toned light can help promote relaxation and calmness. Table lamps with soft, ambient light are ideal for winding down before bed. Bedside reading lights with movable arms provide direct reading illumination while avoiding harsh overhead lighting.

Enough storage space is essential to avoid clutter and organize your space. Utilize under-the-bed storage containers, shelves, or hanging organizers to keep your room tidy.

Sharing a living space with friends can be exciting, but it’s not without challenges. Consider implementing these tips to create a more peaceful and private living environment for yourself. Trust us; it’ll be worth it in the end!

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