They say that starting a new job and moving house are two of the most stressful things you’ll ever do in your life. This is an over-exaggeration. Looking to rent a room in a house is great craic. And looking in Dublin?! Piece of piss. In case you are having trouble, however, do read on.
Rule 1: Lower Your Expectations
This is true of life and it is true of house hunting. Even if you think you might want a double bedroom en-suite for less than €600 a month, what you actually want is a single bed in a twin room. With six other tenants. And one bathroom. For €625 a month.
Likewise, you might think you need a place within walking distance to work, but what you really need is somewhere that requires a bus, a LUAS and a 20-minute jog. There shouldn’t be too many more bus strikes, you’ll be grand.
Rule 2: Look on the Bright Side
Who needs a window when you have an electric fan? ‘It’s the same thing anyway,’ as a wise advertiser once quoted.
Kitchen cum shower? You mean I can eat my Shreddies while I shave my armpits? This is the life.
Sharing a bunk bed with a couple on the top bunk? You’ll never feel lonely again!
Rule 3: Know Your Audience
Hipster household? Fantastic, you love photography. The lenses in your oversized glasses are useless. Exposed beams and sawdust flooring make up your dream interior. Maxwell House? What’s Maxwell House?
Fitness freak roommate? Well, that’s great, you love the gym! Of course you’d love to get joint membership. Torso Tuesdays? Sounds wonderful.
Digs mammy? Well, you’ll have to text her more than your own mammy. Let her know what time you’ll be home every evening; that way, she can have your dinner waiting on the table. What could be better than an overbearing live-in stranger?! Sure you never wanted to drink or have sex again anyway.
Rule 4: Sell Yourself
Treat your application like a dating ad, or a job interview. Include a link to your Facebook account; no person in their right mind wants to live with someone they haven’t creeped.
You enjoy long walks on the beach, but more importantly, you love hoovering. And disinfectant. A weekly cleaning schedule, you say? Splendid. Move in and wait for ink to dry on the lease before they realise you’re a slovenly cretin.
Don’t be put off by lack of responses; they are only playing hard to get. Re-send the same e-mail over and over again. That’ll get you noticed, you saucy minx.
Once you have obtained your dream residence, the rules are simple. Don’t snore. Don’t drink. Don’t eat pork. Do go home on weekends so as not to crowd your eight housemates. Don’t have friends over but don’t be a loner either. Do be sociable. But not too sociable. Don’t make any noise after 9pm. And finally, don’t put your teabags in the sink, you filthy animal.