What not to do in when living in halls

Arriving at halls on the first day of university is probably the thing that students dread the most. Where will I get my key from? Will my flatmates like me? What do I talk to them about? These are just a few of the panicked questions that most students find streaming through their minds, as I arrived as a fresher.

Finally the moment comes, and it’s not so bad! You arrive and give rushed hellos to your flatmates, before continuing down the hall to unpack. The hard part is over right? Don’t get me wrong, everyone wants to make friends at university and is sure to be nice, but introducing yourself is the easy part. What happens when the parents leave and there are six nervous fresher’s left to live alone? In order to live in perfect harmony, here are some top tips on what NOT to do in halls.

1. Don’t be the one to set off the fire alarm

I know that putting a pizza in the oven can seem like the most brilliant idea at 3 am, but I can assure you that late night cooking (which is usually an intoxicated, or sleepy decision) tends to ends up being a bad decision. As you’ve set the alarm off, making the entire block having to stand outside in their pyjamas. Never a good way to start! Plus living in the UK, it’ll probably be raining and believe me, everyone will be waiting for the maintenance man to call out the flat number of the alarms origin. So that they can direct their groans and eye rolls in an appropriate direction. Oh the shame. Let this not be you!

2. Don’t constantly lose/forget your key

Everyone is bound to have chaotic days at university, I mean there are important lecture’s to be attending, books to be reading, life long friends to be made and all that jazz. So if you get caught up in the hustle and bustle of university life once or twice and forget your key. It’s ok! The possibility that your flatmate will be happy to come down and let you in, is high. However seriously, you don’t want to be that flatmate who’s constantly without a key. Pretty soon your flatmates will be avoiding your calls when you pop up on their phones, knowing that answering means abandoning work (a two hour deep, Netflix binge), to walk down to the block entrance. Don’t let that be you!


Modern living room

3. Don’t be a hoarder!

If you are lucky enough to live in a flat with a shared kitchen, it’s most likely that after a couple of weeks into term, the many kitchen utensils that you bought (thanks mum), will become communal in the flat. This seems fine at first, it bonds you together and sharing is caring. Plus no one likes the guy that keeps his forks and saucepans under his bed or puts nametags on his mugs. However, nothing is more annoying than wanting to cook your dinner and not being able to find ANYTHING to cook or eat it with. We all like a snack and a cup of tea in our room, but please bring everything back washed and ready for use. This is guaranteed to avoid kitchen tension.


4. Don’t be rude to your flatmates!

This is the most important tip I can give you. Your flatmates may not turn out to be the people you spend most of your time with at university, but you will still have to see them everyday of first year. You want your flat to be a place to relax in and have fun, not a place spent hiding in your room to avoid someone, or a place filled with awkward silences when cooking dinner. So if you’re having a bad day and your flatmates are being inappropriately loud, try to bite your tongue. It may be worth your while. You never know when you might need a friend for a favour; say to let you in when you’ve forgotten your key….


So keep in mind these four top tips whilst your living in student halls, as it may make your life and time a university, a little bit easier.

Undergraduate, Cardiff University




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