Off to university and will be living with others? Here's some first-hand advice on how to NOT annoy them...
15 April 2015| Last updated on 24 May 2017
Read our how-to and become the most perfect, heavenly housemate that all of your student friends will be making cups of teas for you endlessly.
For most students, going to university is the first time that they've lived away from home. It can be a daunting experience when you see several other new faces who you may end up sharing the next year with, but remember... Everyone is in the same boat, in the same city, as a new student! So the good news is, you're not the only one.
But before we continue, we must reiterate that it is against the Sharia law here in the UAE and in Dubai to live together with someone you are not married to. You can only live together with a member of the opposite sex if you are married to them, or if they are a family member. So consider that when searching for your student digs and your roommates - so as a female student, we recommend choosing housemates that are also female.
So here are some top tips for being a good housemate during your university studies...
1. Mix with your flatmates
We all like to have time to ourselves, whether it's to revise for that all important exam or to catch up with your favourite TV programme. However, try to balace 'alone' time with social time! Staying in your room constantly can appear unsociable to others, so make an effort to mix with your flatmates. Plus, the city of Dubai has so many options and events available for all ages of students... Just check out the events to find out where to head to!
2. Draw up a bin/tidying rota
Cleaning isn't everyone's favourite thing to do after a day of lectures and seminars, but it has to be done. Drawing up a tidying rota makes sure that every flatmate takes responsiblity for keeping their shared housing or flat clean, and that the cleaning isn't always left to the same person.
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3. Split the bills evenly
This is something you and your flatmate will have to organise and come to an agreement over quickly. Remember to be fair and equal to all of those living in the same flat or house. And try and organise it: take it in turns to pay each month, or split the bill equally every month, or all put money into a kitty to then contribute towards bills. Just make sure you are all on the same page. This goes for rent, too.
4. Wash your dishes
You wouldn't believe the amoung of students who leave their dishes in the sink for days. Not only is it unhygienic, but make it difficult for others to wash up, too. Which is very unfair on your fellow housemates! So please remember to wash your dishes, and take responsiblity for your own mess. If you and your roomates feel that you could do with a little hand - use sites such as our Classifieds to aid your search for a helping hand.
5. Respect your neighbours
All students like to enjoy themselves and have a good evening out; whether this is a trip to the cinema, a meal out with friends or if you're the legal drinking age, a night at one of Dubai's many bars or nightclubs. But after all the excitement and fun, you might be persuade to get giddy, be a little louder than normal when returning home... sing... and stuff. So, remember that your surrounding neighbours may not appreciate being woken up or disturbed because of your noise. Remember, you can have a good time, just keep the noise down when you come home! Plus, with the penalties enforced in the Emirate regarding noisy neighbours, best to not risk anything.
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6. Don't be a pressuring peer
A lot of students may feel a little under pressure to join in with their peers, the active lifestyle, the many events that occur... But don't worry, this isn't the only thing expected of you from university life. So don't let it consume you. You have to rememebr that there are so many different cultures and nationalities here in Dubai, so respecting everyone's beliefs and wishes is imperative to being a good housemate... And a decent human being!
7. Don't take without asking
Being a student generally isn't cheap, perhaps more so for students in the UAE, so when it comes to snacking or cooking... Don't take someone's food without asking first! You might generally have a fantastic relationship with your roommates, but it doesn't matter. If you know those cookies in the cookie jar ain't yours, ask first. It's highly frustrating finding empty cupboards.
8. Try food shopping together
If you and your flatmate regularly buy the same products, then why not start shopping for food together? This can make food shopping cheaper, and reduces any risk of having food taken without permission. Try cooking together throughout the week, too. Good food = good bonding time.
9. Have fun!
Most students are only in university once in their lives, so take the time to enjoy the experience of having flatmates. Try having a sort of "date night" with your roommates, organise group events, help each other out when needed. University is supposed to be the best time of your life, so enjoy it.