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3 Things To Consider When Renting A Room In A Shared House

Updated on July 12, 2010

If you are looking to rent a room in a shared house there are several things that you need to consider to ensure that you find something suitable and that ticks every box on your list of requirements.

There are a whole host of different things on offer. You have to decide whether you want to share with like-minded people, if you want to live in the city or town where all the action is or if you would prefer to be in a quiet suburban area.

If you are a traveller making your way around the world or if you are someone who is moving to a new town due to work related reasons, you should think carefully about the type of place that you will be calling home sweet home. Here are just a few things that you should think about while pondering your choices. Make a decision about:

  • The maximum amount of money you want to spend on rent
  • The number of people you would be willing to share with
  • The type of people you want to share with

There are many things to consider when looking for a room to rent
There are many things to consider when looking for a room to rent

The maximum amount of money you want to spend on rent

Once you know exactly how long you intend to stay in your chosen area this will help to determine the type of room you should be considering to rent. Some people will be looking for tenants to take on a contract for a minimum length of time. This period can vary but it is usually 6 months. Some require a 12 month commitment so make sure to ask before you go round to see a room, fall in love with it and realise that the contract is too long.

The number of people you would be willing to share with

If you are new to the whole house-sharing experience you should really think about what type of environment you want to live in. If you are a traveller with your whole world in your backpack, you may favour a place that is filled with like minded people. This is a good way to make instant contacts and friends if you are new to the country or city.

Renting a room in a shared house - you bedroom is your private sanctuary
Renting a room in a shared house - you bedroom is your private sanctuary

However if you love your creature comforts and want to know that when you leave your accommodation in the morning and return at night that it will be clean and tidy with no overflowing bins or dirty dishes in the sink, you may want to consider renting a room with less people.  No-one intends to make a mess on purpose but in a big group of people it is difficult to get everyone to agree to keep all areas tidy.

A safe bet for a clean and tidy house is to look for homeowners who are renting a room in their houses in order to get help to pay their mortgages.  They have already made a huge investment in the property so naturally have a vested interest in keeping it in good condition.

Some properties owned by landlords are not treated with the same respect because tenants know that they will not be there for very long so will do the bare minimum in order to get their deposits back at the end of their contract agreement.

The type of people you want to share with

The type of people you want to share a house with will also affect your choice. If you are a student you will most likely want to live with other students because you will share the same ethos and daily habits. You will mostly likely want to completely immerse yourself in the whole student culture of working hard and partying hard which could if you are lucky, involve many raucous nights of raving and hooking up.

If you are a recent graduate or a professional looking to rent a room in a shared house, you may not find it so amusing to have drunken students throwing up all over the place and eating all the food in your fridge (believe me, it happens). You will want to make sure that you are renting a place with like minded individuals who understand the importance of a good night’s sleep.

Once you have confirmed the type of accommodation that you want to rent, you can start doing an online search for appropriate places. There is such a wide range on offer that you are bound to find the perfect abode that will suit you 100%.

Happy house hunting!


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  • Tracy Gregory profile image

    Tracy Gregory 7 years ago

    This article is so true. You have to be careful of who you choose to live with..and usually you never know if youre compatible with your roommates until after living with them. Great article!

  • profile image

    nicky 7 years ago

    i am sharing a house with a girlfriend and a boyfriend,at first they told me is jst the two of them and two weeks later they were bringing a 2yr old baby saying is theirs,i didn't like the idea at all because it so crowded now and the girlfriend she always leaves the bathroom and the kitchen untidy and their are the ones who are renting so i told the to leave month end,do you think is not fair to make them leave?

  • Tiptopcat profile image

    Victoria Virgo 8 years ago from London, UK

    @Annie - I would suggest that if you haven't got a contract, you need to find another room. Renting a room should be stress free and your landlord or landlady should respect your privacy. If you are not 100% happy, time to move on.

  • profile image

    Annie  8 years ago

    Ive been tring to find out what my rights are in renting a room in a private home if there is no lease, It seems they can come into my room with out notice to me and also everytime they have a issue that dont concerns me and don't like what I say after they reflect on me , they treathen me with "I'll throw you out". Ive never had a problem with my rent and Im a good tenant. quiet and keep a low profile, please help me,