How do I deal with noisy housemates?

My house mates have been playing loud music, partying and staying up late all the time, even when I am trying to study. I am getting sick of their behaviour, what can I do?

Share houses can be very tough and they often challenge our communication and negotiation skills. In normal social contexts we often avoid conflict. This can be harder with housemates where issues may impact more areas of your life and it’s harder to escape. This is also harder if the people you are living with are not interesting in changing or compromising. If there is a chance that they are happy to listen and consider your needs, then it is important to be able to talk to them openly, honestly and fairly.

Having a weekly house meeting over dinner often works well with share houses. This may seem a bit forced, but it can be very useful, as it acknowledges that problems are common and that everyone needs to consider how to ensure the situation works for everyone. Within that you might also have a structure where people say what is going well and what is a problem, otherwise things get discussed only when you are very angry or upset. If you raise the problem and there is no real agreement or change, consider another house, and don’t feel obliged to remain where you are.

It might be worth having a think about how you deal with conflict in your relationships. You may already have the skills to deal with this and just need to adapt them to this situation, or you may need to learn how to communicate effectively when there is a conflict.

Good information on dealing with housemates can be found here. You can also find some resources on assertiveness here, and check out our webinars for some more help on effective communication.

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