Moving from Liverpool uni halls to a house is so tragic and this is why

Shit, who forgot to take the bins out again?

It’s getting to that time of year when Freshers tend to start sliding in some hints about next years living arrangements. Whether it’s the standard question “so, who are you thinking about living with next year?” Or, tactful guilt-tripping about wanting in on an already established group, or even just winging it and hoping something comes up, living in a house is definitely different to the clean and cushy living arrangements in student halls.

However, there is some knowledge you need to know before taking the plunge into the deep and confusing abyss of deciding to live in a real-life house with some other students you may not know that well yet. This knowledge mostly takes the form of forewarnings of issues to come.

The commute gets longer

The one and only choice for many students is living in Smithdown. And unless you were unlucky enough to live in Greenbank or needed to commute from home, you won’t be used to waiting in the rain to get a lift either to uni, town or the library, that’s if you can be bothered with the bus at all. Even if you do decide to live in Kensington or the Georgian quarter, the privilege of being minutes away from uni will forever be lost. and greatly missed. RIP.

There is no reception to collect your parcels

Locked out? Tough. Lost your keys? You’re paying to get them replaced. Want someone to constantly be there to pick up your millions of ASOS parcels? Sorry babe but no can do. You’re on your own now kids.

Your neighbours are real people and they probably won’t like the noise

Whether it’s Smithdown, Kensington or the Georgian Quarter, your neighbours were there before you and they will be there after you, and they want you to know it. You might be lucky and get some pleasant enough neighbours, or you’ll get a strange old lady giving you evils through her blinds from across the road every time you turn your lights on.

Someone will have to get the shit room

There’s always one room that just isn’t as good as the rest. In halls, the rooms are identical and wouldn’t even realise this could be a problem. So, if you’re lucky, you might have that one kind person who says they’ll take it and everyone else will secretly jump for joy, or there will be an unspoken war about who gets the bad room until it comes down to Rock Paper Scissors or a game of short straws. FYI whoever gets that shit room is going to be bitter about it all year.

No locks on doors

Not all student houses have locks on their doors and this means you need to choose to live with people you can trust. Whether someone is getting too comfortable letting themselves into your booze stash or likes to play pranks that just go a little too far, it is important to be aware of people’s boundaries and privacy which self-locking hall’s doors ensure.

The tiny kitchens

Student kitchens are tiny and for the first time you might have to actually cook for yourself. Students in halls often have the luxury of not having to cook ANYTHING, whereas in your house, unless you manage to get yourself a house wife, it’s all on you. Hopefully, the scurvy will kick in later rather than sooner and the pieces of pasta that have been on the floor for the past four weeks won’t go green in the process.

There’s no cleaner?!

No one is coming to clean up after your scruffy habits and baby you well into your 20s? Disgusting, I know! Just beware, it takes approximately two days for a kitchen to turn into a bomb site and no, forcing hair down a plug hole is not the same as cleaning the bathroom. No one wants to be the one to make a cleaning schedule, but it is truly amazing to see the differing opinions on what is clean, and what is not.

You pay a deposit you probably won’t get back

In housing, the contracts you sign are often joint tenancy agreements. AKA your damage is my damage, and my overuse of the water, the heating and the electricity is your overuse of the water, the heating and the electricity. Basically, house politics is a completely different ball game and there just isn’t an option to be a lone wolf doing whatever you want. Unfortunately, you have a joint responsibility to each other if you want to still be friends at the end of the year, and that might mean paying for that hole in the wall.

The living rooms can be far from ideal

Sometimes, they are just horrifically ugly. Your furniture probably won’t match, it will probably be a bit decrepit and there is not much you can do to make it look better unless you want to be fined for sticking things to your walls. Also, you probably won’t have anywhere to eat your dinner except on your lap which equals more dirty clothes and thus more washing. But, on the bright-side, it won’t cost you a million pounds to wash and dry your clothes anymore (and I mean actually dry, rather than being left with clothes that are still pretty soggy because you can’t afford the extra ten minutes).

Heating wars

There always seems to be two mortal enemies in every house. The one that thinks it’s cold in April and the one that’s always sweating in December. The result is a never-ending series of passive-aggressive clicks on and off of the boiler. There is no solution.

It requires a little bit more adult responsibility

Living in residential areas away from campus comes with all the dangers of living in any city; you can get robbed, you can get into disagreements with neighbours, you need to take your own bins out and ultimately, be responsible for yourselves. There are no RA’s to fall back on if you get into an argument with your friends, and you might be the only person staying in the house at some point which might be scary

However, of course, it’s not all bad! Most students who go into housing never even think of going back, and, even better, you never have to deal with a broken lift again.

It’s not a lucky dip

Unless you’re one of those lucky students who are put into halls with a whole group of people who you feel like you have known since birth and could never be without, you actually get to pick who you live with. So, you can say goodbye to those rude flatmates who don’t know how to say hello or wash a plate.

It’s pretty much half price

Halls is bloody expensive, and with a lot of student houses being available for around £85 or £95 a week, what’s not to like? You have plenty more money to spend on books and stationery, of course.


It’s more chill

Within reason, in a house, you can do what you want. The aim is to be with people you really like and when you live in a house together the sense of friendship only grows. There will be disagreements, and someone is still going to make a mess all the time, but because you like each it’s okay and you get over it.

You can look like a tramp and no one is going to judge you

Having to walk out of your halls with your washing basket, dressed like a homeless person, to be faced by the freshers who have spent too much money on their brand new quirky uni outfits, is the stuff of nightmares. If you just want to do your washing in peace or put the recycling out, no ones gonna bat an eye.

You get to know the city better

In first year, if you lived on campus, I doubt you’d have explored much further than up and down Brownlow Hill. As soon as you move out of the city centre, you find there is a lot more history and culture in Liverpool than you would first expect, and you are more likely to visit places such as Lark Lane, Crosby, Formby or New Brighton beaches or to even venture across the water to Wirral which also has a lot to offer a wandering student.

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