Moving out of home can be a very rewarding and enriching experience. You gain independence, free yourself from the tyranny of your parents and get to eat whatever you want, whenever you want. But if you don’t choose your housemates wisely, it can also be the worst decision of your life.
At the tender age of 19, I was independent enough to make my own lunch, therefore I decided I was more than ready to take on the challenges of living out of home.
I had saved enough money to get through one month of rent, artfully claimed furniture from my parents and stockpiled a week’s worth of food from the family pantry. I was ready. Or so I thought.
What I had not prepared for, was the chaos of many clashing personalities living under one roof. I had not prepared for my housemates.
They say the best way to test your friendship is to go travelling. But whoever said that was wrong. When you travel, at least you have the relief of knowing that you are not stuck with this person forever. But a bad housemate invades your personal sanctuary, your home.
To save you the anguish of having to work this out for yourself, I’ve dissected every housemate you’re bound to live with at least once.
With my help, hopefully you’ll spot the warning signs from a mile away and will save yourself 12 months of contractually-obliged agony.
Best of luck.
Arguably one of the most infuriating housemates, the leech will rarely buy household items unless asked, and will always dip into your supply of milk. You’ll never obtain the leech’s banking details, because they will never offer to pay for anything.
Symptoms: Snakelike tendencies, a dismal selection of basic groceries spanning white bread, margarine and Mi Goreng.
The home chef
Also known as the golden housemate. A housemate that cooks (well) will save you a load of cash and will turn your house into a homely sanctuary of chorizo and spice. Ever heard people raving about how long it’s been since they’ve had a homecooked meal? Because that shit is golden.
Symptoms: Often works the standard 9-5, just so they can be home in time for dinner. Spice rack in tow.
The worst of all the housemates and unfortunately, the most common. The slob will stop at nothing to turn your house into a pit of despair, never cleaning up after themselves and instead leaving behind a path of destruction.
Symptoms: Diagnosed allergy to dishwashing soap, pungent smell, general offensive demeanour
The one who ceases to exist
The most divisive housemate. Some people love the disappearing act; others hate it. It’s great if you like your own space but after a while it kind of feels like you’re living alone, which defeats the purpose of having a housemate.
Symptoms: Undertakes full-time work in hospitality, is in committed relationship
The Mother Teresa
Another sought-after housemate. The Mother Teresa is the proclaimed mother of the household. They have the answer to everything, work a steady job, and can get the stain out of any clothing item. If you happen to get lucky and find the unbeatable combination of the Mother Teresa and the home chef, never let them go.
Symptoms: Giving nature, slight resemblance to Julie Goodwin from MasterChef season one.
Ensures the day-to-day monetary requirements of the household are being met. This person oversees all the bills and never misses a payment.
Symptoms: Is overly enthusiastic about Excel spreadsheets, possesses organisational skills akin to the head of the Swiss Bank.
Every night is a party for the boozehound. You know all the boozehound’s friends on an intimate level, because they are always at your house. There’s no such thing as a quiet Friday or Saturday night when this person is your housemate.
Symptoms: Often possesses DJ decks, a subwoofer and an endless supply of craft beer.
The environmental warrior
While this person is good to an extent, their bid to save the earth from the evils of humanity gets old really quickly. They don’t believe in the harms of radiation from microwaves, and won’t let you purchase any cleaning product that isn’t bicarb soda. Do not even think about insulting them by attempting to buy bleach.
Symptoms: Anti-fluoride mentality, regularly brews Kombucha, lobbies for use of turmeric in all home remedies.
Illustration by Twylamae