Fresh approach speeds up hunt for housemates in Leeds

ICE BREAKER:  Students getting to know each other at the housemate speed-dating event at The Box
ICE BREAKER: Students getting to know each other at the housemate speed-dating event at The Box
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SHARING A house can help to cement a relationship - or herald the end of a beautiful friendship.

But one Leeds firm, which specialises in accommodating students, has found a way of reducing the risk of moving in with someone who proves to be a nightmare. It’s offering would-be “roomies” the chance to take part in housemate speed-dating sessions based on the tried-and-tested match-making technique.

Parklane Properties offers students the chance to be part of a series of face-to-face or group meetings with potential housemates.

The sessions also include games and activities aimed at assessing compatibility while participating students also have the opportunity to find out more about Parklane’s property portfolio or to receive advice and information about student living.

The first session was held at The Box in Headingley at the beginning of the month - and was hailed a success by PR student Rebecca Wharmby, 22,

She said the event had helped her and a friend find potential new housemates for their third year at Leeds Metropolitan University.

“Some of our current housemates are graduating this year so we needed to either find new ones or look for something else,” she said. “The event was great as it means we’ve already met another group of girls in a similar position to us and, as Parklane had iPads available at the event, we were even able to look at the sort of properties we might be able to share.”

Parklane branch manager Lorraine Walker said more speed-dating events are planned after the Easter break.

“Finding the right housemates when you’re a student is so important,” she said. “Get it right and you can make friends for life, and have a relaxing year. However, get it wrong and you can end up arguing about everything from washing up duties to cleaning and what to watch on TV.

“The sessions start with an ice-breaker, based on popular party games which help everyone to learn a bit about each other. The students can then set up the dates with groups or individuals they want to know more about.”

Parklane says it’s now planning similar sessions for the professional market with the first date and venue expected to be confirmed later this month.

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