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When you decide share a property, a home or accommodation with a person or a group of people there are three areas which ECHS covers on this advisory page. House / flat share, which is suited and usually applies to people of a common age group and interests. Secondly, Homeshare deals with living situations where one person is elderly and/or disabled. Room mates has similarities to house/flat sharing, but the accommodation is normally short term and can involve a commercial residence. For the Homeshare and Room Mates guide, select the 2nd or 3rd links in the sub-menu to the right of this text above. For house and flat sharing, click on any of the following links that are of interest to you.

House share: House and flat / apartment Types of sharingFinding suitable people Advertising.

House Share
House and flat / apartment share.

sharing homes and properties in europeSharing a property involves two or more people living together. Each person usually has their own bedroom and the remainder of the property is for equal access. There are different reasons why people share. A reduced cost of living is one choice and the possibility to live in an area you desire, that may otherwise be too expensive, is also a benefit of sharing.

Various people provide and look for shared accommodation and rooms which range from students to mature adults with spacious property and professional landlords. There are options to filter your choices for searching for property and people with ECHS and defining who you are and your expectations when you advertise yourself.

There is always a risk when sharing accommodation and ECHS attempts to remove advertisements that are not legitimate. A commenting facility is integrated into the ECHS advertising system to allow users to leave comments about adverts adverts. A more general Watchdog forum is also available for the comments of ECHS users.

Types of sharing.
Conditions for house/flat share vary differently in European countries, but remember any such property agreements are bound by law. The landlord or the person who is renting shared accommodation to you may or may not live in the same property as you. A "live out" landlord will have separate agreements with all the people in the household and you are principally an entity within the property, bound by the same rules as the other occupants. In this situation, a landlord can find any person they feel is a suitable candidate for the house/flat share and the existing parties may or may not agree to the new tenant. The landlord will usually have the final say in this type of agreement, as the landlord's objective is to have paying occupants in the property. However, it is in the interest of the landlord to encourage harmony between tenants in a household. "Live in" landlords tend to be less desirable and there is an obvious inequality in this arrangement and in some cases a "big brother" feeling. Though the property is likely to be better cared for when landlords are live in.

Finding suitable people.
When choosing a house / flat share or a person to share with, consider the compatibility factors:

  • Are you looking for someone with similar interests and want to develop more friendships or do you simply want a place to live and not be too concerned who you share with?
  • Make sure you meet all the residents of the household before making a decision to begin a house/flat share, as you don’t want any unpleasant surprises.
  • Hygiene is essential for health, who cleans what and when in the shared areas! Is the person or people in the home clean and presentable?
  • Are you attracted to a person who you may share with? Would like to have more than a house / flat share agreement with a person? If so, then do not choose to live in a home with these desires primarily in mind, as there are other ways to develop your social intentions.
  • Time schedules! Are you an early riser for work and need to sleep? If so you should not consider sharing with people who stay out late and arrive home with groups of friends.
  • Ask about the rules of the home and decide whether they are suited to you. House / flat shares have various written regulations and unspoken ones (include those in your questions).
  • Allow your comfort level to have some measure of influence in your decisions to share a property. If the level is not reached in one place continue your search.

A visual ECHS advertisement, (a listing that includes pictures) and/or having a link to a homepage with media images of a property and perhaps its tenant(s), will receive a far greater response than just a text advertisement. Have an advertisement title that captivates, for example "Scenic Riverside Studio." This explains the type of accommodation, its appearance and location in a few words. A listing's heading and picture is what people look at first when browsing advertisements.

You have up to 2000 characters to describe the property you share, so the room, type of property and its people, the best features of the whole property (such as a balcony or garden) and its location should feature in the advertisement. Make people feel that they would want to view the property. What are the local amenities like? Are there cafés, a gym, parks, shops and restaurants nearby?

Keeping your advertisement fresh with updates should be done within the 45 days your advertisement is valid for. Who is responding to your advertisement, their expectations and if you are having too many or few responses will guide the changes that you make. Therefore, think about and write down specific points to include in your advertisement before posting it on line.

For an additional advisory on matters relating to renting homes, such as contracts, disputes, insurance etc. visit the ECHS tips page for European home rentals.

Back to the European house share home page

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