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New housemate

(120 Posts)
NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 19:25:46

We are 4 people living in a 3 bed terrace. One of th edownstairs living rooms is used as a bedroom - the other living room is shared living space.

New hsemate has moved a lot of big furniture and her stuff into shared living room and 'designed' it so it has gone from a bare but spacious room with a sofa, bookcase and some bits and pieces to a very clutterd room with desk, wardrobe, paintings on wall, wall hangings, etc. The two bikes that are used in the house are also keot in there. We also use it hang our washing when it is drying.

The romm is no longer usable in any practical sense - it is too clutterd to realx in and some of the furniture is so cumbersome it just makes you want to close the door. I have been here a long time, she has been here 6 months and did this without saying anything to anyone. Other hsemates are new, dont have much stuff and havent said anything.

She has also done the same to the garden. I mentioned several times that I want to do veg. She planted flowers all over the borders, and in every single space in the harden and left me a narrow space about 3 inches wide to use.

In her defence she is enthusiastic and some of here stuff is nice but when I look in the drawers and cupboards in the living room (it's for us all!) it is full of her stuff. She has also taken a huge cupboard upstairs that is originally for everyone.

She is not easy to approach, has seemingly already got te other female housemate eating out of her hand. She is not here much but I just feel she has used the communal spaces as a dumping ground for her stuff at our expense.

I have a large room so keep everything up here but feel that I shouldn't have to keep my fixed exercise bike/printer. etc in my room if we have lost the living room to her stuff.


NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 19:27:25

Gosh, apologies for all the typos. I really should wear my glasses.

Letsallscreamatthesistene Sat 04-Jan-20 19:31:15

YANBU - this type of selfish behaviour irritates the shit out of me. I shared a flat in London with three others. One girl moved in and decided that her stuff was way better than ours, and replaced our stuff with hers. It was insulting.

When she did it she should have asked you, however its been 6 months now so I think you've left it a bit too long to complain at her.

olympicsrock Sat 04-Jan-20 19:34:34

What do the others think? If they agree could you all have a word about it?

NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 19:50:39

Sorry, to be really clear.

She moved a small amount of stuff when she first moved in. Two of the old hsemates left, so she moved into their old room which is bigger. We got two new hsmates in. Then just before Christmas she shifted all this new stuff in. She has been away a lot since and we are all going to have a chat in the next few weeks when we are all here.

The room is somewhere between a nice room to sit in if there was no washing/bikes/quite so much stuff but as it is it isn't really possible to use it to read or chill out in. We also used it for friends when they stayed over. I think I am within my right to put my stuff in there as it now really an all purpose room ( a bit of a dumping ground).

NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 19:54:11

I reckon others won't say anything - I'll be painted as the difficult one and then when it comes to the garden in the spring she will get her way. It is complicated because I need to have surgery and had explained that due to the surgery, I would need to sleep in that room for the first few days. in the considerable amount of time I have been here, others including hert have all had friends stay overnight/up to a week in there so we are used to sharing it. I dont think me needing it for surgery is a huge ask for everyone as it is a one off.

NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 19:56:20

@Letsallscreamatthesistene What did you do? Did the others say anything?

Hefzi Sat 04-Jan-20 20:08:07

You're not unreasonable about the sitting room/storage locker, but as you have been living there a long time, why hadn't you already put vegetables in the garden? She may have got fed up with you "going to" do it, and gone ahead with the plants thinking that-as you'd already been there a long time and hadn't bothered, and then she's been there six months and you still haven't, that it was more of a vague fantasy than a concrete plan.

Are the plants things that are good for one season only, or are they things like shrubs and bulbs? If the latter, could you stop talking about vegetables, and actually take action - by getting her to move some things to the pots, or setting up vegetables in pots instead? Potatoes and carrots do well in tubs: so do celery, leeks and some legumes. Growbags and/or smaller pots work well for salad leaves, beetroot, radishes, cucumbers, peppers, chilli's, aubergine etc

Hefzi Sat 04-Jan-20 20:12:01

I do feel your pain on the sitting room, though - I had a housemate who dumpster dived his work skips, which then got put in our living room - metal table missing a leg, ten foot high set of pigeonholes that was twenty feet wide, dining room table you could only get round by flattening yourself to the pigeonholes etc.

FiddlesticksAkimbo Sat 04-Jan-20 20:18:34

If you've already written off the communal room as now being a storage facility, and you don't mind doing so (and if three out of four housemates agree you may not have much choice) then just move your exercise bike, printer, empty suitcases etc in there, and focus on decluttering your own room and making it a nice place to hang out. They can hardly complain.

NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 20:20:17

@Hefzi - you make a fair point. This summer I was busy on a new project so everything got put on hold. She mentioned that she hadn't seen me do anything with the garden and I said it was because of the project but I wanted to get back to it. I had planted stuff in there in the past and another hsemate took it all out (long story!).

She was doing the garden at this stage and that is when she left the small strip.

When I moved in the garden was a huge mess with lots of rubblish/very overgrown. I have worked hard to get it in to some sort of shape over the years. I appreciate that as she is new she couldn't see that but I did tell her when she moved in. We have tubs, a patio, a small greenhouse and a huge tub aswell as the lawn area and the borders and a big area at the back. She has planted in everywhere. She has also moved a big flowering bush at the back (uprooted it). My issue is also that the landlady (who loves her plants) would not have been pleased. She is iverall a good landlady, its a cheap house for London and in our interests to keep it nice and as the landlasy requested. I dont like disturbing things too much without checking with the landlady first as I did when i asked to plant the veg.

I get your point but I still think her actions were presumptious. she can also see that, as I have injured my leg I am a little bit less physical than in the past. Finally, on eof the hsemates who left was using th garden to plant beg this summer and I left him to it.

NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 20:26:33

That's what I was thinking - just consider it a room for storage.

I have a big room, so I tended to think the onus was on me to keep as much of my stuff in my room to free it up for others who had smaller rooms but not to this extent (and now she has a medium size room for this house).

I am trying to be fair as I have been here the longest but also each time a new person moves in there is a change of something or other and it is exhausting. This feels to me like she needs somewhere to dump her stuff and it a huge amount of stuff. Every day there are parcels for us to take in, she has taken away one of the bookcases so my books that were in there are just stacked on top of one another on her wardrobe!

To be fair to her, I think she wa strying to create a nice aesthetic (she's an artist) but there is too much stuff and as it also needs to hold our laundry it just looks a nightmare.

Cherrysoup Sat 04-Jan-20 20:26:45

Ask her to move stuff out of the communal room and let the landlady know it’s unusable. As for the garden, I’d say lost cause bar maybe the big shrub she’s uprooted-again, let the landlady know if this woman is destroying the established bushes.

NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 20:42:52

The bizarre thing is that when I first moved in, I asked landlady about garden. You couldn't physically walk through it as it was so dense.

I said I would be happy to deweed it and plant veg in one spot if that was ok. She said yes but wanted to keep all th eshrubs, etc she had planted (she had spent a lot of money on it you could tell. I planted (in small pots) some herbs and thought if I can keep them going over the winter then I would bed them properly in soil. Come the spring new hsemate moved in and together with old hsemate (none of us are friends or new one another - just individual rooms rented out in a house) they ripped everything out of the garden. And I mean everything. every shrub, herb, fruit plants, my herbs in pots got thrown away. The new hsmeate wanted a completely sterile looking garden.

Bizarrely, when the landlady saw it she said nothing!! I don't understand

After that, I figured I would wait until this hsemate left as it was then winter and then another hsemate planted in one area summer just gone.

I have never lived in a house that on paper looks such a good deal (near station, cheap, white walls, lovely wooden floors, huge room, garden , kitchen a nd living roo in nice area yet theer has been nothing but stress living here.

Landlasy is lovely but the inconsistency of messages is half the problem. Our contract says not to prune, cut, change anything in the garden or put nails into walls. i have respected all of this. New hsemate has banged nails in walls and hung pictures and said landlady says it is all ok. ( I feel a bit that landlady is picking on little things with me and other tenants who are easy going and gentle natured and then wont challenge more ballsy tenants).

Apologies for the epic and if this feels drip fed. I feel some times that the normal rules of play are so disrespected and I dont know the best course of action to take.

NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 20:44:25

knew not new! I really am losing it.

BumbleBeee69 Sat 04-Jan-20 20:46:57

tell her to move it ALL into her bed room.... the end flowers

NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 20:48:48

@BumbleBeee69 I like your approach!

MiddleClassProblem Sat 04-Jan-20 20:53:27

Have sex on the desk

Bluerussian Sat 04-Jan-20 20:53:55

You're not unreasonable, she should have asked first but has been in the house six months and it could be difficult to ask her to move things now. She'd probably ask why you waited so long to say anything.

However: BumbleBeee69 Sat 04-Jan-20 20:46:57
tell her to move it ALL into her bed room.... the end flowers
Yes! Let Bumblebeee be your right hand man/woman/whatever! There'd be no messing & all sorted in no time.

Letsallscreamatthesistene Sat 04-Jan-20 20:55:18

OP I asked her why she'd swapped our stuff out, she just said because she thought hers was better. She was a bellend. We left that flat a year later and all went our separate ways, I haven't spoken to her since.

MiddleClassProblem Sat 04-Jan-20 20:56:01

Also you say she loved a bush but you also said “ Come the spring new hsemate moved in and together with old hsemate (none of us are friends or new one another - just individual rooms rented out in a house) they ripped everything out of the garden. And I mean everything. every shrub, herb, fruit plants, my herbs in pots got thrown away. The new hsmeate wanted a completely sterile looking garden.” this is a bit confusing. She did it with someone else plus wanted it sterile but planted loads? 🤷🏽‍♀️

Hefzi Sat 04-Jan-20 21:06:00

Aha. Well that's a bit more difficult - if the LL actually cared about the plants/garden, she wouldn't have let it get in a shit tip in the first place, so it seems like she's just imposes standard terms. But it's out of order for them to uproot your herbs (as well as LL shrub) angry. She may have thought, though, that your bad leg was another excuse for not actually planting vegetables and getting on with it, so decided not to bother chatting about it any more and just to take unilateral action, which is a pain.

It sounds like a big space, though - is there really not room for some vegetable planters as well? Is she using all the greenhouse space? Can you sit down and agree a compromise with her as it seems LL isn't interested in addressing it? Can you suggest some kind of natural pesticide type planting like they have at RHS Gardens, with flowers mixed in with veg in the beds - do you think she'd go for that?

It's a pisser when you've done all the hard work of sorting the jungle though. sadangry

Any chance she's planning on moving? It does sound like you're at the stage with her where-understandably-every little thing is now an irritant - and also like your LL and housemates are not at this stage as yet. Obviously, as you've been there a long time, and it's suited you up til now, then it's not for you to move: so if she's not going anywhere, can you have a house chat/one to one, and lay out what you've said here really calmly: she knew you had plans for the garden, and you are really disappointed that she's ridden roughshod over these, and what does she suggest? Plus the sitting room is no longer as functional as it was owing to the lack of space, and as it has already been discussed that you'll be sleeping there after your op, can she make arrangements to shift her clutter? (Or, if you are feeling harsher, be honest that it's neither fair nor reasonable for her to dominate the common space, and it needs sorting...)

House shares can be shit, especially when you have no other choice - you have my sympathy flowers

NewYearsRevolution2020 Sat 04-Jan-20 21:14:40

Also a basket of her shoes in there and a small chest of drawers which on other side of room.

Thank you everyone, for your comments. I was starting to feel like I was being mean or petty for noticing this.

Verily1 Sat 04-Jan-20 21:20:52

Just focus on saving for a deposit.

Why invest so much emotional energy on stop gap housing.

A house share will never be a home.

Thehop Sat 04-Jan-20 21:21:52

It’s a horrible room now. Can you just move?

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