The advantages and disadvantages of sharing a flat

Many students in Germany don’t live on their own or at their parent’s house. They mostly live together with at least one roommate in a Wohngemeinschaft, a WG. Living together with others, especially when you didn’t know them before, can be nice, but also exhausting. If you can’t decide whether you want to move into a WG or not, we have collected advantages and disadvantages. 

Privacy and peace

The most obvious disadvantage of living together with flatmates is the fact that you have to do without parts of your privacy. Having other people around you can be stressing very quickly. Do you have to pee after you woke up in the morning? Sorry, your flatmate is taking a shower. Do you want to cook a nice meal after you returned from work? Sorry, he is making a chili. Do you want to go to bed soon? Sorry, he is having guests for some beers. You must be able to handle such situations, or you are going to have a bad time.


Another very natural thing about a WG is the fact that you won’t have a lot of space compared to your own flat. You might have a room and most of the time, that’s it. You can be lucky if you have a big kitchen or even a living room where you can sit together. But in this case, you have to think about point 1: You will have to share it.

sharing a flat
© Wikipedia


Cleaning might be one of the biggest disadvantages of a WG: You do not only have to clean the mess your flatmates produced, but you have also clean much more and also much more often as it would be the case if you would live alone. Speaking of the bath, cleaning can quickly become more like a horror movie.

But of course, there are also some advantages!

New people

Especially when you are moving to a new city, it can get a bit lonely when you are living in your own flat. With roommates, you will never be alone and also will soon meet many new and exciting people. Your flatmates can also show you the coolest spots in your new hometown and make you feel welcomed from the first day.


A very pragmatic reason for living in a WG is, of course, the price: As soon as you share a flat with others, it becomes much cheaper for every single one. It is not only the rent itself but also the many additional costs. It’s just much easier if you can share the fees for electricity, water, the internet and, especially in Germany, the notorious Rundfunkbeitrag

Moving in and out

It is not only cheaper but also much easier to find a room in a WG than renting your own flat. It is also possible to move in just for a few months without making long-term commitments. And it is also easier to move out if you realize that you might better live alone again…

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