Whether you’re in student accommodation or you’re sharing a flat with a couple of mates post-uni, the chances are that you’ve got at least one flatmate who doesn’t pay their share of the bills on time.
You might let it slide the first time it happens, and perhaps even pay their share yourself to keep the peace, but after a while, it can become frustrating and cause a rift.
The truth is that most people run into money problems at some point in their lives, and so you should be sensitive when discussing household finances, but you shouldn’t take on their burden or assume they’re going to pay you back in a month’s time.
Below, we’ve rounded up some top tips on how to encourage housemates to pay their share of the bills without hassle.
Not everyone is organised - whether you’re at university or you’re a graduate working in the city, there are so many distractions in life, and paying the gas and electricity can fall to the bottom of the pile when you’ve got deadlines to meet. To ensure everyone knows what bills are due and when; consider buying a calendar for the kitchen and populate it with bill dates.
Rather than appointing one responsible housemate to pay all of the bills and collect others’ shares, consider splitting the bills. One of you can pay for gas and electricity, one television and broadband, and the other council tax. Granted, you’ll likely be paying different amounts and may need to throw a tenner someone’s way, but making sure that everyone has at least one bill coming out of their bank accounts will make everyone a little more financially aware.
Have you been managing the bills single-handedly and chasing housemates for their share?
Consider hosting an emergency house meeting and running through every bill, when it’s due, and why it’s so important that they pay on time. Many people bury their heads in the sand when it comes to finances, so having a frank and open discussion may change their attitudes and encourage them to take a healthier approach when budgeting for the month.
If you’ve got a mate who flat-out refuses to pay their bills on time or always has an excuse for paying late, get together with your other housemates and give them an ultimatum.
Either start paying your fair share (and square up on what you owe already) or you’ll have to leave the houseshare. It can be tough and can cause friendships to suffer in the short-term, but it’s sometimes a necessary evil. Be calm, fair, and keep records of payments and dates.
Managing the household bills causing you a headache?
Consider enrolling your housemates onto Billing Better, where you can instantly set up all of your household bills and pay only your share.
We manage the bills for you (energy, water, council tax, TV license, TV package, cleaner, and broadband), pay them on time, and bill you once per month for an equal share. If your bills come to £800 per month and there are six of you sharing a flat, you’ll each be charged £133 month by Billing Better on the 1st, allowing you to budget for the rest of the month.
It’s the hassle-free way to manage bills when living in a houseshare, and you’ll gain access to a dedicated UK-based account manager who’s available on WhatsApp should you run into any problems. Students and professionals across the UK are loving working with us (check out our Excellent Trustpilot rating), and we’d love to work with you and your pals, too.
To find out more about Billing Better and get a free quote for your houseshare, click here.