Shared kitchen

melbelleAugust 15, 2008

I am in college & basically rent a room I guess, and share a kitchen & laundry with 2 other rooms which have 1 or 2 renters. We all have locks on our bedroom doors, as well as lock on the exterior doors of course. But the kitchen and laundry are open.

Has anyone else ever rented this way (where you share a kitchen & laundry room with people you don't even know) & how did you handle the food issues? Such as writing name on food. But then there are the coffee pot, crock pot, pots & pans, dishes & utensils which should be left alone but aren't.

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If I'm reading correctly, you share a kitchen but you do not share cooking equipment? In other words, the pots & pans are yours, not common to the apartment.

Have you tried to have a meeting with everyone and spell out rules for the kitchen and other shared areas? Are the other tenants aware that the equipment in the kitchen is not communal, but belongs to someone? Try to hammer out some rules--food with initials on it is off-limits, no initials it is fair game for everyone. Everyone uses their own cooking equipment, etc.

Do you have a separate space in the kitchen? A cabinet that is all yours? If so, and trying to set rules doesn't work, I would ask the landlord if you could put a lock on your cabinet.

Last resort, keep everything in your room. But I wouldn't do that until you have spoken with the other people. It might cause hard feelings if you just suddenly did that. Talking with people might clear up any misconceptions--maybe someone thinks the coffee pot is for general use and doesn't realize that it belongs to you.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 4:52PM
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If I lived in that situation, I'd want jointly owned coffee pots, even basic dishes, etc. Can you get a meeting together to hash that out? Everybody donates one item, or whoever is supplying most of them gets "rent" from everybody who uses them?

Or, I'd want us each to have a cabinet that locks (so I could leave my pasta & plates in the kitchen, and not have to lug them down the hall), and baskets in the fridge & freezer that we could lock.

Like these, which don't have hasps but DO have lids, and you could put a small padlock on all 4 sides (or just 2 opposite sides)

Of course, those wouldn't be great for tall stuff like milk, but maybe stuff like that you could keep in your room, in a small dorm-size fridge.

If you *did* end up moving all your stuff to your room, you could maybe find a basket like the supermarket shopping baskets to carry stuff back and forth.
this one might be a bit small
I think the large one in this set would be good. Maybe the small one could be the bathroom caddy.

Or, cleaning caddies might work, but they often have dividers that would get in the way of carrying bulky stuff.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 6:08PM
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this one could be useful; there's a shorter version, if this one's *too* big.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2008 at 6:10PM
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talley sue nyc, that first link is great & I think that will work for boxed food as well as in the fridge.

camlan, that is correct. We share the kitchen, but everyone is supposed to use their own stuff. Everyone is told the rules when they sign their lease, but there is one set of roommates who use other people's stuff, don't wash it for days, keep it in their room, etc. Another set of roommates & I had a meeting with them, and it got better, but only for awhile. I don't really have room in my room for a cabinet to keep my kitchen stuff in, and don't have a fridge of my own either. The kitchen does have a narrow cabinet (very narrow, a plate won't fit) for each person, and has a lock on it. I keep my dry food in there, and my dishes on my shelf in the pantry closet. Pots and pans are hung on a rack on the wall, and appliances are on open shelves.

The kitchen has very little storage or counter space, just enough counter space for a dish drain rack.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 7:51PM
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