Family Magazine

Shared Living – Could You Do It?

By Therealsupermum @TheRealSupermum

As the younger generation moves out of the family home and start their own lives, many of the older generation are looking into shared housing.  This growing trend is an economic solution for those who are struggling financially and a source of companionship for those who would have lived on their own otherwise.

The majority of those that are embracing the shared housing way of life are women; statistics show that in the UK almost half a million women were living with a roommate whom they were not related to.

Why are women more likely to embrace the idea of living in shared housing? Experts seem to think it stems from our early caveman instincts; men went to hunt, as women stayed behind in groups socialising and taking care of the younger and more vulnerable.

If you think shared housing could work for you, here are some tips to ensure you have the best experience possible:


  • Background Checks – Don’t be afraid to dig a little deeper when it comes to potential roommates, you’re going to be living with them after all! Get references and ask questions. Get a clear picture of the person you could be living with, otherwise you could potentially live with someone with a criminal history, who’s entirely unsociable or perhaps has a penchant for using your wooden doors as a dartboard.


  • Sort out bills and spending early – Decide who pays for what; will bills be split evenly or divided by how much each person uses different appliances? What if a new roommate is a computer technician and uses much more electricity and internet connection? The earlier the finances are organised, the less likely you are to have any nasty surprises later on.


  • Think about any changes to your lifestyle you may have to make – You may keep your bedroom door open while you clip your toenails now, but with a house full of new roommates, you have to think how your habits affect them, and adjust certain behaviours to keep everyone happy. Pets, smoking and prospective roommate’s jobs are all things to take into consideration when it comes to lifestyle; you want to make sure that everyone is compatible in the living situation.


  • Communication is the key – If there is something wrong or something you disagree about concerning your new roommates, the most important thing is to talk about it to them. Keeping things to yourself will not help anything and you’ll end up harbouring negative feelings towards your roommates. At first it may be difficult to bring up serious topics, but it is vital to keep the doors of communication open and stay in the same frame of mind.


Taking the plunge and joining the rising numbers of mid-lifers embracing shared housing, is a brave and exciting new stage in your life, but remember to stay smart about who you’re letting into your home! Make sure you are comfortable with your new roommate and keep the lines of communication open, it’s a great chance to meet new people and make new friends as well as helping out your bank balance.

This post was written by James Harper on behalf of UK Oak Doors who supply all kinds of wooden doors. James writes on issues relating to homeowners and their homes.

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog