The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
So you’ve moved into your flat, organised your clothes and started to realise, with pure horror, just how expensive nights out can be. But how have you gotten on with making friends with your cohabitants?
If you are lucky, maybe you all get on wonderfully and will be friends for life! But sometimes building these friendships can take a little bit more conscious effort and this list is going to give you a few ideas as to how you can get your flat bonding, WITHOUT using any ice breakers or repeating the same questions about what course they are taking and where they are from!
1. Fajita Friday!
How better to work your way into people’s hearts than with food! The heat of the kitchen can be a great place to get to know the personalities of your flatmates and whilst I give the suggestion because of how easy it is to make, you aren’t restricted to just Mexican foods. If you have a mixture of cultures in your flat, you could try food from each cuisine; I promise that nothing bonds people like attempting to have incredibly spicy foods together and then scrambling to find the milk.
2. Quiz Nights
Most universities have these, and a lot of pubs run them through the week too. Take your flatmates out or take part in your pajamas on zoom and have fun bickering over the answer to which country invented ice cream (fun fact: it was China!). Doing quiz nights can be a great way to talk to each other about everything and anything that comes up in the questions. Even if you all simply throw on The Chase and see who gets the closest to winning, playing competitive and low-stakes games can be a great way to socialise.
3. Card Games
Chances are, someone in your flat thought to bring a deck of cards, and if not, then they are incredibly cheap at Poundland. With an unlimited number of games that can be learned and taught to flatmates, a deck of cards can be one of the best ways to spend an evening. For those of you looking for activities to do during pres on a night out, Ring of Fire is notoriously fun and I highly recommend it!
4. Flat Parties
Following the previous idea, having flat parties can be a fantastic way to learn about your flatmates and the friends they’ve made in their course and in their life outside the flat. Organising a night of drinks and music, or maybe even karaoke (I swear, this is the best and worst thing you can do to yourself!), can enable you to make more friends as well as bond with the ones you already live with.
5. Random Acts of kindness
This one is a bit different to the others, but probably my favourite. Doing an extra few bowls of washing up or making a cup of tea for someone that is doing their work in the common room can mean a lot and helps to create a really friendly and supportive environment. The likelihood is that doing a few of these kind gestures will lead to others returning similar favors and an overall comfortable dynamic being built. A great example of this can be found within my own flatmate who, despite not sharing my love of clubbing, often sits at the table by the time I return from a night out and has made a cup of tea for us both. Honestly – nothing has ever warmed my heart more than that little gesture of bridging our lifestyle gaps.
The overall takeaway from this is to spend time with your flatmates and treat them as friends immediately. If you can build a bond with them, your day-to-day life will be so much more enjoyable and you will have so many terrific and hilarious stories to tell by the end of the year. Who knows – you might even find that you choose to live with some of them again next year!