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Student Accommodation

10 most annoying housemate habits

We've all got our own pet peeves, but a new survey has uncovered the most common housemate gripes.

annoyed woman next to toilet roll and angry emojis

Credit (woman): Cookie Studio – Shutterstock

Most of us end up sharing a house or flat with other people at some point in our lives, whether you're at university or a young professional. You may share with your best friends or people you don't know, but inevitably your co-habitants will sometimes rub you up the wrong way.

It can be difficult to let them know how you feel – especially if you want to avoid tension in the house. And even if you do tell them, sometimes they just won't listen!

So, without further ado, let's have a gander at the 10 most common things that get people's knickers in a twist!

Check out our advice on how to deal with tricky housemates (spoiler: having a massive row isn't advised).

Top 10 most annoying things housemates do

grumpy cat

Credit: JStone – Shutterstock

Smart Energy GB, a company aiming to educate people about their energy consumption, released the results of its survey on what it's really like to houseshare.

Here are the flatmate habits that anger you the most:

  1. Leaving dirty dishes lying around (61%)
  2. Leaving the lights/electrical appliances on when not in use (48%)
  3. Not changing the bins when full (45%)
  4. Not changing the toilet roll (38%)
  5. Not removing hair from the plughole/sink (37%)
  6. Out of date food left in the fridge (30%)
  7. Leaving the toilet seat up after use (28%)
  8. Leaving the window open when the heating is on (25%)
  9. Taking excessively long showers (24%)
  10. Moving their boyfriend or girlfriend in and not asking them to contribute to bills (21%).

There is one overwhelming conclusion from these stats: anything unsanitary, or anything that adds to the bills, will anger people.

The ranking also underlines the fact that money is a massive consideration in students' lives – after all, leaving electrical appliances on was considered to be more annoying than leaving mouldy food in the fridge and not changing the bins when full.

And, according to the survey, 90% of those living in shared accommodation lose their cool at least a few times a month over their housemates committing the above misdemeanours.

If it's mouldy grub in the fridge that's got your blood boiling, use these tips to find out how to keep your food fresher for longer.

How to deal with bad housemates

willem defoe saying tell me how

Credit: Columbia Pictures

Alongside the survey, Smart Energy also asked inventor and designer, Dominic Wilcox to come up with some humorous solutions to these daily problems, including a mechanical hand that's designed to switch off unused lights when no-one's in the room.

His other solutions include:

  1. The 'Clothes Drying Wind Tunnel' – A pedal-powered device which quickly dries garments and prevents wet clothes draining heat from radiators.
  2. The 'Sound Proof Disco Bed Box' – A magic box designed for lovers of anti-social loud music, to give housemates a bit of peace and quiet.
  3. The 'Toothpaste Wiper' – A handy wiper to get rid of unwanted splashes on bathroom mirrors.
  4. The 'Rumbling and Grumbling Recycling Bin' – A bin that lets forgetful housemates know that it needs emptying before it becomes an unruly mountain of milk bottles.
  5. The 'Toilet Seat Pulley System' – A mechanical pulley to make sure the loo seat is never left up again.

All of the above sound pretty useful, but our favourite has to be the 'Rumbling and Grumbling Recycling Bin'. It's unlikely that any of your housemates would ever avoid putting the bin out if one of these was residing in your kitchen.

If you're looking for more general tips on living happily in a house share, then honesty is the best policy. Sit down with all of your housemates when you first move in and have a discussion about how all of you would like your house share to work.

Discuss points like heating (and other bills), cleaning and buying communal products, and make a fair plan which means no one person is putting in any more work or money than another to keep the house running smoothly. Oh, and avoid the passive-aggressive post-its – they never go down well.

No matter how bad things get, chances are your home won't be anywhere near as bad as the student house from hell.


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