Shared Living for Parents: Everything You Need to Know

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Modern living as we know it is always changing and evolving, bringing new opportunities and ways of living to people from all walks of life. However, one of the biggest (and perhaps best) changes in recent years is shared living.

Contrary to popular belief, shared living is not just for students, post-graduates or young singles. Many parents, especially single parents or those moving to a new city, are choosing to rent a room over an apartment or house due to the many benefits that come with it.

We’ll tell you everything you need to know about shared living, whether you’re thinking of renting a room in Denver or looking for a shared space in New York.

Shared Living for Parents

The Benefits of Renting a Room

The main allure of room renting is often cheaper rent. Skyrocketing real estate prices and living expenses have made it nearly impossible for many people to afford a comfortable and safe space for their families. Rooms are a lot cheaper than entire homes, which already means you can save a lot more money. Not to mention, sharing a home can significantly reduce the cost of other things, such as water, gas, and electric, as these are likely to be included in the rent.

However, these benefits extend beyond just economics.

  • A sense of community – Sharing a space can combat the isolation felt in today’s digital world. This is particularly beneficial for new city dwellers looking to make friends or single parents who would benefit from a support system. If you can find another single parent to live with, then that’s even better! The two of you will be able to navigate parenthood together – including all its challenges and all its joys.
  • Shared responsibilities – Since shared living also comes with communal areas (such as a kitchen, bathroom, and living room), living with others typically means sharing chores and responsibilities. This can actually be super helpful when it comes to parenting, lightening their daily load. If you get lucky and your housemate is also a parent, they’ll likely be more understanding towards any mess your child makes and will happily share the burden of responsibility.
  • Broader experiences for children – Interacting with a variety of adults can enrich a child’s life, providing them with even more perspectives and valuable life lessons from a young age. This means they’re more likely to grow up tolerant and accepting of other people’s beliefs and differences.

Creating Harmony in a Shared Home

While shared living brings many advantages, it also presents unique challenges, especially when you involve children. However, it’s easy to foster a peaceful and productive environment if you’re willing to compromise. Here’s a quick guide that may help you out in the long run.

  • Open communication – Start discussions about your child’s routines and needs. Make sure to address any concerns your housemates might have about living with children. It’s important to do this before you move in to make sure you and your new housemate are compatible. For example, if they like to host house parties, then this might not be the right environment for you and your child.
  • Respectful boundaries – Teach your children the importance of privacy and personal space. Make sure they know which areas are off-limits. This is especially important for their safety and the well-being of everyone in the house. However, children will be children, so make sure your housemate knows to keep dangerous or important objects out of reach of little hands.
  • Consistent Routine –  Implementing routines for your child will help maintain harmony in your household. Coming to an arrangement about curfews with your housemates will help minimize arguments in the long run, too. For example, you might want to make it clear that there should be no parties or any other loud social gatherings on school nights that might disrupt your child’s rest.
  • Sharing the responsibilities – Make sure that childcare remains your responsibility, and avoid taking advantage of your housemates unintentionally. They may have offered to babysit once, but that doesn’t mean they’ll want to do it all the time.
  • Organized and respectful living – Living with children can be messy. Come up with storage ideas to manage your personal belongings and keep shared spaces tidy. Encourage your children to respect the belongings and spaces of others.
  • Shared activities – If your housemates are up for it, try doing things together to strengthen trust. This can be anything from board game nights to days out. However, keep in mind that not everyone will be interested in this. Every single house share is different.
  • Balanced social life – Talk with your housemates about inviting guests on both your side and theirs. This will ensure everyone’s comfort and safety, particularly your child’s.

Final Words of Wisdom

Choosing to live with others as a parent is as much about finding the right space as getting into the right mindset. Embrace the experience with an open heart, clear communication, and a commitment to mutual respect and understanding. Shared living is about creating a balance that works for everyone in the household, especially the little ones who look up to you.

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