Flatmates wanted: Why you need to avoid these types

By Zoe Scheltema

The people you live with are important: They can become your best friends, or your worst enemies. Photo / Getty
The people you live with are important: They can become your best friends, or your worst enemies. Photo / Getty

With a large portion of the population dubbed "generation rent", it's fairly safe to assume that most people in their 20s are living in a flat, house share, communal party ground, or whatever you want to call it. A lack of funds combined with a genuine fear of the dark when alone will find you in this position.

The people you live with are important: They can become your best friends, or your worst enemies. So choosing your "flat family" is not a task to be taken to lightly. The flat viewing is a crucial part of this process, but 20 minutes to assess someone's personality, interests, financial status and personal hygiene can mean huge room for error.

In your search for a new flatmate, here is an easy to follow break down of the people you are likely to encounter and whether you should sign them up or avoid them.

1. The clubber

Watch out for: The person who was still in a club an hour ago.

Props for getting out of bed and making your way to a flat viewing, but no thank you kind sir. You can't be worried about someone you don't even know yet vomiting on your couch.

2. The suddenly singleton

Watch out for: The recently heart broken.

Who wants to go from living the loved up, picture perfect couple's life to a flat where you can't fart freely and have to wait your turn for the shower.

This person will not appreciate your presence in your own home. Instead they'll likely see you as a blaring reminder of the living situation they've lost.

3. The young one

Watch out for: The fresh out of home types.

Look, everyone has to start somewhere. But it doesn't have to be in your flat. "The youth" is a fresh out of the womb child who is moving out for the first time. They don't know about bills, they don't know about laundry and they'll have all their five-year-old friends over all the time because they're the first to leave the nest.

4. The loved-up but not shacked-up.

Watch out for: Taking on one flatmate and ending up with two.

It always pays to sneak in a question about relationship status. There's nothing worse than getting two flatmates for the price of one. Remember, Grab One is generally the only place you'll find good two for one deals.

5. The cave dweller

Watch out for: People who live like moles.

This is a rare find, given this person is usually found in said cave. But everyone needs a new house sometimes, which is what forces this enigma to emerge.

If you're happy with a room in your house being designated to their entire being, and the walls rotting as a result, then you're in luck with this one.

6. Mr Popular

Watch out for: The one who's too cool to hang at home.

Who even are you? We wouldn't know, since you're never here. Look out for telltale signs such as talking about all the parties they go to, all the restaurants their friends own, and all their Instagram followers.

7. The one with job perks

Keep an eye out for: Someone who works in an area involving many free goods.

There is no shame in giving someone an interview just because they work in Coca Cola's marketing department.

Be sure to ask about their occupation, their role within the company, what their allowance on free goods is and how many family members have already claimed rights over those goods. Divide this figure by two, carry the one and that is approximately how much free stuff you will get with this person as your flatmate.

8. The handyman

Keep an eye out for: A can-do attitude and round-the-house nous.

You can put them to work straight away with all the light bulbs that need changing.

The handyman also usually has handyman friends so it will be a great way to meet the love of your life, thus ensuring you never have to take on DIY jobs.

9. The dog owner

Watch out for: A station wagon and hair on their clothes.

This is a rare gem. If you're dumb enough to adopt a dog when you're still flatting you're going to find it hard to get a room. But for those wanting a dog with no strings attached then this is the holy grail of flatmates.

Just make sure you dress it up as a human for flat inspections.

10. The one with parents who don't want their child living in squalor

Keep an eye out for: Parents lurking outside in a flash car.

"Yes Mrs Jones, I think it would be essential to get a new smart TV. Thank you ever so much."

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