Get ready to hit the ground running at uni with some essential survival skills from Taz!
Ace your first year of university with this essential skills guide.
Moving to university can be just as challenging as it is exciting for those who have never lived away from their parents before.
Living in student accommodation requires a new and very different independence from freshers, such as learning how to complete everyday tasks that they’ve never done or thought about before.
Here’s my quick guide to acing everyday household tasks and leading a clean, and organised student lifestyle.
Keep it clean
One of the biggest shocks students tend to face in their first few weeks of university, is how quickly their bedroom and living spaces become dirty.
And although this is understandable due to the excitement of freshers’ week and starting a new routine, it is important to remember that hygiene must come first to ensure you stay healthy and have a clean and homely environment to work in.
A few handy things to keep in your bedroom include antibacterial spray and a clean cloth which you can use to wipe down your surfaces, sink (if you have one), mirrors and light switches. I also make sure I wipe my laptop and mobile phone down every so often to avoid catching any germs I might have picked up in the library.
To hoover your room, you will need to locate the communal hoover in your halls area and remember to return it afterwards.
If you have an en suite bathroom (which you’ll have to clean yourself), you will also want to keep a few separate cloths in the bathroom for wiping the floors, shower and toilet down. Bleach or toilet duck, hand soap, and a toilet brush are also must haves.
Although student halls’ kitchens get cleaned weekly by accommodation staff, you will also need to make sure you keep the area clean as this is where you’ll be preparing and eating your food.
To keep the kitchen as hygienic as possible, make sure you regularly wipe down the surfaces and fridge shelves with antibacterial spray. I also made sure I washed my tea towel regularly.
“Visible mess helps distract us from the true source of the disorder” ~ Marie Kondō
One thing you really don’t want to be doing at university is smelling bad!
Keeping a laundry basket in your bedroom is a good reminder of what you have and haven’t worn and will help keep you organised when it comes to doing your laundry load.
If living in halls, you’ll be given a laundry top-up card and told where the laundry room is located. You will need your own laundry detergent.
Before putting your washing load on, you may choose to separate your clothes into white, light and dark colours to prevent colours from bleeding into each other. This is especially important if you have new clothes that have never been washed before.
Alternatively, if you’re like me and are keen to save as much money and time as possible, you can purchase colour catcher sheets which will catch any straying colours for you.
Once you have washed your clothes, there will also be the option to dry them in the tumble dryer. This you can also do using your top-up card. You do not need detergent for this.
Whilst most students get through university without ironing a single piece of clothing, you may have to on the rare occasion that you have an interview, presentation or formal event to dress up for.
If you’re in halls, make sure you know where the iron and ironing board is kept and then take them to your kitchen or nearest communal area.
You need to make sure the iron has enough water in it and is at the correct temperature. I would also recommend that you briefly try the iron on the ironing board before ironing your clothes, just in case there is any limescale on the iron.
Afterwards, make sure you turn off the iron and let it cool before returning it to the relevant cupboard.
For more information about your cleaning responsibilities and where you can go for advice, visit this link.