(Sorry I’ve been AWOL for a few days guys but I’m planning a few new blog posts and next week I’ll be back on my usual schedule!)
It’s been almost 2 weeks since I moved into a cute little Studio flat in my University town. I’d lived in a shared flat last year in the same building, so I only had to move my life two levels down to a room on a lower floor. As this is my second year in Uni accommodation, I thought I’d do a small post with my tips for living in a student flat.
- Get your desk space organised:
Obviously we’re all at University to learn… *Ahem* So organising the small amount of available desk space in your room is really important. You need to create a space that you actually want to sit at for hours on end… Well, maybe not want to, but you know what I mean… Anyway, I achieve this by buying stationery that I love and filling the shelves with my favourite books and items from home.
2. Take note of everything wrong with the room:
Arguably the most important tip on this list. Write down everything that is damaged or broken and make sure that you take pictures! At the end of the year, your room will have to have an inspection and you could be charged for damage even if you weren’t the one responsible. To prevent yourself being charged extra or losing your deposit, provide proof that the damage was already there when you moved in.
3. Bulk buy essential items:
I stole this tip from Sheldon Cooper on an episode of the “Big Bang Theory”..! As I don’t have a car at Uni, I have to walk to the shops and carry everything back with me. Because of the trek to the closest Morrisons and the very real desire to not turn myself into a Hunchback after three years of lugging heavy shopping bags, I now bulk buy certain items. The trick is to buy items that have a super long sell by date or won’t perish at all. For example, I buy boxes of Diet Coke cans which I store under my bed, and essential toiletries like Shampoo, Conditioner and Toothpaste.
4. Make a comfy bed:
For me, the bed is the most important furniture item in my room. I sleep in it, I watch TV from it and occasionally I’ll even grab a tray and have a picnic in it! I’m not one for piling hundreds of decorative cushions on my bed, so at the moment I only have three. I chose a large bear-shaped body cushion and two small ghost cushions from Monki to make everything more comfortable. Make the bed as cosy as possible, choose bedding that you like, ensure that you buy a mattress protector and try not to think about all the people that slept in it before you…
This is the fun bit! Fill your room with things you love. Don’t stinge on the photos of family and friends and bring anything that will make your space more homely. You can use apps like FreePrints to print as many photos as you want for a really low cost. This room is for you, so don’t worry about having “cool” items – just bring whatever makes you happy and eases you into living away from home.
(My favourite signed print, my gorgeous Fidelity record player, a skull cushion and a Pterodactyl my Dad won for me at the arcade)
6. Keep the kitchen clean:
If you have a shared kitchen area, make sure you clean up after yourself! This means taking the bins out and wiping down surfaces to remove bacteria from raw food. The last thing you want is a food poisoning breakout in your flat because someone didn’t clean up after themselves properly.
7. Make space for course notes and books:
The notes and books needed for your course are probably the most important things you will have in your room. Make sure you put them on a shelf within reach of your desk and actually read through your work every once in a while. It can be tempting to ditch the extra reading assignments and refuse to step foot in the library, but I recommend getting on top of readings and assignments straight away – and organising your books and notes is the best way to start!
8. Get that noticeboard sorted:
Last year my notice board was my saviour. I normally use it to organise my Uni life by pinning my keys, student card and timetable on it. I’ve found that with my accommodation company you’re giving a notice board as standard with your room, but it might be worth buying your own board if you’re not sure if you’ll be provided with one.
9. Organise that wardrobe:
A new wardrobe acts as a yet another chance to finally organise those shoe and clothing collections… I was expecting a wardrobe that would be similar in size to the one I had last year, so I left quite a few clothes at home thinking that I’d be greeted with a fairly small wardrobe when I walked in to my Studio. However, I was wrong and I actually ended up with a floor-to-ceiling double wardrobe this year! Hooray! I recommend taking clothes to Uni based on the weather conditions and Seasons. For example, I have no Summer or Spring clothes with me at the moment but I will be exchanging clothes when I go back home for Christmas.
10. Keep the bathroom clean!
This follows the same kind of theme as the cleaning kitchen tip, but cleaning the bathroom is definitely something that needs to be kept up! Silver fish can cause a very real pest problem if things get a bit damp and dirty and I’ve found that mould grows extremely quickly. The last bathroom I had was absolutely covered in mould from the previous tenant, so I’ve learnt from their mistakes and cleaned the tiles and shower until they sparkle!
What are your tips for moving away from home for the first time?
Foo Fighters –> The Sky Is A Neighbourhood