Tips for sharing a bathroom
A lot of people worry about having to share a bathroom with strangers when you first move into university accommodation. Even if you have an en-suite room in your first year, there’s a high likelihood that you will have to share a bathroom in your second and third year if you live in a student house, as en-suite rooms aren’t always easy to come by at an affordable price. But I’m here to tell you that sharing a bathroom really isn’t a big deal.
I lived in Heronbank in my first year, so had my own bathroom. In second year, I shared a bathroom with my best friend. In third year, I moved into a different house and started sharing a bathroom with three other people, two of whom I’d never met before moving in, as I found that house last minute after my year abroad was cancelled due to the pandemic.
Waiting your turn isn’t an issue. Naturally, one of the biggest concerns when you’re sharing a bathroom is that you might have to wait to use it if someone is already in there. However, this hasn’t been too big of a problem. A lot of the time I don’t have to wait and if I do, it isn’t for very long. If someone knows that they’re going to be taking a long time in the shower, it’s common practice in my house to message the group chat and let everyone know.
Take turns to buy toilet roll and soap. When there’s a lot of people using one bathroom, you go through supplies a lot faster than if it’s just you. To spread the cost, take turns buying toilet roll and soap. The same applies to other shared stuff like washing up liquid, cleaning supplies, etc. Or you could allocate items that each person will buy regularly. Someone gets milk, someone else soap, etc. Whatever works for your house.
Clean regularly. Bathrooms get dirty quickly, and unlike on-campus accommodation, it doesn’t get cleaned for you. I actually really enjoy cleaning the bathroom. There’s something weirdly satisfying about watching the dirt wash away, leaving everything shining.
I have a blog post about how to clean here: https://our.warwick.ac.uk/how-to-clean-a-bathroom/
My on-campus en-suite in first year was cleaned once a week, but one of the benefits to not having an on-campus en-suite room is that you won’t get woken up by the cleaner. My room was always her first stop of the day, so once a week at 9am on the dot, she would knock on the door. I’m not a morning person, and getting up and ready in time to let her in was a struggle. There were times when I would be hiding under my covers while she came in and cleaned the bathroom, and that was always awkward. I also like being able to shower or have a bath without the fear that at any moment, someone in the building could burn their toast and set off the fire alarm.
And contrary to expectation, the showers in my university accommodations have each had stronger water pressure than my shower at home!