I live in a shared house that has 5 bedrooms, I’ve lived here for 3.5 years. It’s unusual because unlike most shared houses, where someone moves in based on them meeting the existing housemates and everyone deciding they will fit in, here the agent shows someone round and they just move in. This suited me when I moved in because I’d been having trouble finding somewhere long term to live and was relieved to find somewhere where I could just pay the money and move in. This meant avoiding the frankly exhausting process of getting to know another set of housemates, who could potentially dish out yet another dissapointment by deciding someone else was their favourite prospective tenant. Experiencing this ease of moving in from the other side however, is less positive. It’s made me realise just how important it is who you live with, and not having any control over that can feel quite disconcerting. This is not helped by the fact that the first we hear about someone new moving in is when they come to the front door saying “Hi, I’m the new tenant”.

The unpredictability doesn’t end with who we share with. Because the bedrooms have locks on and we have separate tenancies the landlord is not required to give us notice to access the house (as I found out when I challenged them on it not long after I moved in) and they take full advantage of that. Fairly often we get random tradespeople, who they’ve given keys to just showing up and letting themselves in the house.

Then there are the prospective tenants who we didn’t know were coming knocking on the door because the agent is late, or a couple of times hasn’t shown up at all.

Occasionally they send us a letter giving us notice that someone is coming round to do something, but most of the times they’ve done that, no-one actually comes. It’s almost like they are trying to mess with our heads.

The agent responsible for our house is also utterly incompetent and I have no idea how he got his job. The only good thing he’s done is tripped over our coffee table and faceplanted on the carpet, which provided some entertainment for my housemate. Sadly I wasn’t in at the time.

So, what do you think ?