Should I live alone or with flatmates at uni?

Posted 20 Nov 2020


If you’re browsing through university accommodation, you’ll probably notice that there are different options to choose from depending on whether you want to live alone or with flatmates. To help you make the decision which is best suited to you, we've considered the pros and cons of each option. Besides, the sooner you make the decision, the sooner you can get back to the fun stuff – like planning how to decorate your room or looking up local things to do! 

To start with, let’s break down the different types of accommodation:

Studio Apartments

Studio apartments offer self-contained spaces for you to live in privately. These will consist of your own kitchenette, bedroom and bathroom – so everything you need is in one space, just for you. Various accommodation providers (like true) will offer varied options for standard, accessible and premium suites – so that you can tailor your choice to meet your needs.

Shared Apartments

Shared apartments generally offer the privacy of your own bedroom and bathroom, but rather than a personal kitchenette, you will have access to a communal kitchen and living space. This is usually shared by around five or six students.

So really... it all comes down to the kitchen. If you would prefer your own private kitchenette, go for the studio. If a shared kitchen where you can socialise and eat or cook with others sounds more like your thing, we recommend going for a shared apartment.


Living on your own – the pros and cons

Like the sound of being a selective socialiser? Then this is the one for you! 

Living privately rather than in a shared apartment is a great option if you prefer your own space and company. Private suites tend to be more tranquil and calm, so if cuddling up to a good book sounds more blissful than entertaining drunken flatmates in the kitchen, you'll hit the jackpot with a cozy private suite. Living alone also means you won't face any angry group chat messages about washing the dishes or taking the bins out, nor will you have to clean other people's mess in the kitchen! Did someone say heaven? 

However, the downside to living alone is that you might get a bit lonely. When you live alone, it can be all too easy to accidentally shut yourself off from the outside world. Striking the balance between enjoying alone time and socialising with other people is really important for your mental health. 

You also don’t want to feel like you’re missing out a bit on the social side of your university experience. We don’t just mean boozy student nights out, but the little things like cooking group meals together or all cozying up on the sofa to binge watch a new Netflix series. That said, just because you live on your own doesn’t mean you have to disappear off the face of the earth! If you’re good at keeping in touch with friends and making social plans, you should have no issues and might just prefer the independence of private living. 


Living with others – the pros and cons

Like the sound of becoming permanently attached to a bunch of strangers that you now see everyday? Then this is the one for you!

Living with flatmates is great because you can form instant friendships. You might not remain best friends with everyone you live with, but chances are your flatmates will make up your first social group and you’ll probably find yourself spending lots of time together as you begin to settle in. From group themed dining nights, to movie days and trips to town together – you’ll probably form close bonds with your uni family and make everlasting memories. Those who live with others are all generally in the same position and want to make friends – so it can make the process of moving away far less scary.

The downside of living with others is that you might not get on all the time. Everyone is different, so you will have to be respectful of other ways of thinking. For example, you could have very different standards with regards to how tidy the kitchen is kept; or how loudly music is played when one flatmate has a coursework deadline. Just remember to be respectful of others - you'll appreciate it when the shoe is on the other foot. 


Conclusion 

Overall, the decision to live alone or with flatmates really depends on who you are and what’s important to you. If you like having your own space but worry you might get lonely, you can always take advantage of communal areas within your building and get involved in social events to meet new people. There are ways to avoid any potential disadvantages, so don’t worry too much – you can have the best of both worlds! 

Posted 20 Nov 2020