Student living 101: How to stay in your neighbours’ good books

Molly Judgeon 23 June 2021
two houses side by side

Check out our guide to moving out and making friends, rather than enemies, with your neighbours.

Moving out is fun and often one of the best parts of being a student. Of course, there are ups and downs, and you certainly learn how to deal with arguments (such as who buys the toilet roll), but the ups definitely outweigh the downs. Plus, it’s a rite of passage. 

There’s lots to learn about living away from home: from eating pizza every day to drinking excessively (as long as you’re over 18) and waiting until you’re down to your last pair of socks before doing the laundry. But, one thing you should do is stay on good terms with your neighbours.

It’s unlikely that everyone in your area will be a student. They may have young children, unsociable work hours or be elderly, so it’s important to be respectful. They’ll be the ones to take in your daily ASOS orders or let you borrow kitchen utensils you never thought you needed (corkscrews, electric whisks - you name it). 

So, here are some surefire ways of making friends, not enemies, with your neighbours. 

1. Say hi

Start how you mean to go on. Introduce yourself and get to know them. As a student, the more friends, the better, so make sure to say hello before the window of opportunity disappears. 

2. Keep it down

One of the biggest issues between neighbours, particularly when students are involved, is noise. We recommend keeping big events to the weekends and, if you have got plans during the week, go out instead. After a year of lockdown, who wants to stay in anyway? 

You can get into serious trouble if you are loud during antisocial hours (namely after 11pm). The police can fine you and confiscate noise equipment while your neighbours can report you to the council if you are repeatedly loud resulting in ‘noise abatement’ orders. Breaking these can result in incredible fines (up to £5000), and what student has that kind of cash?

3. Warn them!

If you are planning a party, post a note through their letterbox to let them know. If things get out of hand and it’s loud until the early hours, dropping round some chocolates or wine is even kinder!

4. Keep an eye out

Even if you don’t get to know your neighbours well, it’s nice to look out for them. This could include checking in if you haven’t seen them for a while or looking out for suspicious behaviour, especially when they’re out or away. 

5. Care for your property

Finally, this may seem unimportant, but caring for your property can make a huge difference to you and your neighbours. This includes taking the bins and recycling out when you’re supposed to, keeping them tidy and looking after your front garden if you have one. 

Now all that’s left to do is to get excited for move-in day! Check out this article on what to expect from your student house so you can prepare for the ups and the downs of fleeing the nest!

Molly Judgeon 23 June 2021