How to deal with messy housemates

Molly Judgeon 27 October 2021
How to deal with messy housemates

The first few months of uni can be crazy, but when everyone gets a little more settled, you may find that the messy lifestyle is no longer for you.

Having a mix of messy and clean housemates can lead to tension, so it’s best to start how you intend to go on and tackle it before patterns start, which can be harder to break down the line. But if some time has already passed since it became an issue, don’t worry: this article will help you figure things out. Here are our top tips for making a change while keeping the peace:

Have an honest conversation

While it can be tough voicing an issue that’s already come up a few times before, you need to tell your housemates how you feel. They won’t change a habit they don’t see as an issue.

Avoid passive-aggression

It can be very easy to resort to angry sticky notes and messages in the group chat, but these will escalate tensions without improving the situation. 

Make a rota

Set up a cleaning rota, where a different housemate has to clean the communal areas each week. While this can be a big job, it means that each person will only have to clean once every few weeks.

Set up cleaning zones. 

An alternative is cleaning zones, where each housemate is responsible for keeping a certain area of the communal space clean. This means having to clean every week, but there’ll be much less to do than the rota method. It also means that you can all hang out and socialise to make the job go a bit quicker.

Keep your stuff in your cupboard. 

If washing up is a problem and you can never find any clean utensils, it might be worth keeping yours in a separate cupboard. That way, no one else will use them and you’ll always have clean stuff to cook with.

Move accommodation.

This should only be a last-resort option, but sometimes enough is enough. If things are unbearable, talk to your uni about changing accommodation. It may be awkward to have this conversation with your flatmates, but you need to put your well being first.

What’s your top tip for a tidy household? Join our panel and let us know. You’ll get 1,000 reward points when you sign up.

Molly Judgeon 27 October 2021