Share accommodation is a cheaper option when you leave care. It basically means you share a house with others. They can be other people you know, or sometimes people that you hadn’t met before. It’s a great option too, because it is not as lonely as being out on your own.
Often before you move into a share house, your potential flatmates will want to interview you. It’s usually pretty relaxed and is a chance for you to suss each other out and check out the house.
When you do move into an existing share house you will have to come up with your share of the bond – usually 4 weeks rent plus you will need to pay 2 – 4 weeks rent in advance.
Before you move in, know how much money you are up for. The best idea is to pay rent to the real estate agent directly. That way you know where your money is going – rather than handing it over to a flatmate who may forget to pay.
Tips on living with people
• Don’t borrow your flatmate’s stuff without asking
• Try and share a meal together or hang out at least once a week
• See what food/house expenses you can share ie. take turns buying toilet paper or bread
• Respect your flatmate’s privacy
• Do your share of the housework
• If your flatmate is not doing his or her share, talk to them about it. It’s really important to be able to talk to each other rather than just getting annoyed
• Another thing some share houses do is to start a ‘kitty’. This means everyone puts in $5 or so every week and from that house kitty you buy things you all use together like toilet paper, milk etc
Regular house meetings are a great way for you to talk about any issues that might be going on in the house. It can be over a dinner and a great way to catch up and you can chat about bills, work out who is going to pay it and how much everyone’s share is. It’s also a good time to work out a shopping list for food and other stuff you need for the house. This meeting can also be used to discuss housework and who’s going to do what for the next couple of weeks. Keep in mind that we all like to different things, so if mowing the lawn and hanging out the washing is your thing and vacuuming and dusting is someone else’s and it works for everybody then stick to it ..
Make sure everyone gets a chance to talk at the meeting, that way no one can say they did not have a say towards the running of the house.
A house calendar
A house calendar can be used to mark down when bills are due and whose turn it is to do housework, as well as to book in the next trip to the movies.
Mess around the place can make you feel scattered and can make things hard to find (like bills and the remote control). But if you can get into the habit of doing small tasks (like the vacuuming) before they feel like big tasks, doing the housework won’t seem stressful or overwhelming. If you are sharing a house, it is a good idea to sit down with your other housemates and work out a roster that suits you all, for things that need doing around the house.
How to find a flatmate
If you are looking for a place to live, tell everyone that you know – especially those you get along with. You never know your luck. They may be looking for a place too or they may know someone who is looking.
The best place to look is online at websites such as: