5 Tips for Staying Organized in a Shared Space
Even with all the benefits of co-living - having a built-in community and no worries about your roommates not paying utilities on time, to name a couple - we all still have to learn to share our space with a group of people with their own unique personalities and habits.
The good news is that it doesn't have to be difficult to keep your shared space positive and stress-free. Here are five tips for doing just that:
PLAN YOUR MEALS BEFORE YOU GROCERY SHOP
How often do you think before you shop instead of grabbing things you can graze on and pantry staples and hoping for the best? Plenty of guides exist online to help you get a large variety of meals out of less food, meaning less shoving things into the back of the fridge and forgetting about them until cleaning day arrives.
USE YOUR LUGGAGE TO YOUR ADVANTAGE
Your luggage isn’t living up to its full potential if it’s not packed with your off-season clothing and belongings you don’t use often but can’t bear to part with. Sweater weather is going to be in Brooklyn full-time soon, which means opening up your closet by hiding away last season’s shorts, sandals and tanks.
KEEP YOUR COMMON SPACES CLUTTER-FREE
It’s tempting to get to your breakfast dishes after work or to leave your homework on the kitchen table after a long night because you’ll have to pack it up in the morning, anyway. With loads of different schedules in the same house, though, you never know when someone else will need to use the common areas. Generally speaking, if you aren’t physically present in a common space, you’re belongings shouldn’t be, either.
DO A GROUP CLEAN-UP ONCE A MONTH
Sometimes life gets the best of us and our fridges, tables and counters take the worst hit. Not many of us would consider cleaning a hobby, but taking time each month to make sure nothing is getting out of hand means you’ll never open the fridge to find something that looks like it crawled out of the bottom of the East River.
Schedule a time once a month for the entire apartment to show up and help out, throw on some music and enjoy each other’s company and you’ll be done in no time.
RESPECT YOUR ROOMMATES
No one wants to come home from work hungry only to realize they have to wash a bunch of pans before they can make dinner, or get out of bed in the morning and trip over clothing that’s not theirs on the way to the bathroom. If you respect your roommates’ right to be comfortable and clean in their home, chances are that they’ll respect yours.
One of the great things about co-living is the community we get to form throughout our houses, and respecting one another makes for a better experience for everyone.
Besides — the less time you have to spend cleaning or rifling around for your belongings, the more time you’ll have to hang out and have a good time.
Photo credit: Kana Kamano