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Dealing with Housemates

There are a variety of options open to you if you need to raise concerns about a housemate. You may wish to speak with a Sunderland Students’ Union advisor who can explore the options with you.

You can raise concerns through the following ways;

  • Challenging the individual(s) concerned
    • Sometimes people may be unaware of what impact their actions are having, they may even be shocked to learn it is having an impact. If you believe you can challenge an individual then this is encouraged where appropriate and possible.
  • Call a house meeting
    • If you and the individual(s) concerned can’t resolve the issue, holding a house meeting may be a way forward. Invite all housemates to attend and give everyone a chance to speak and raise their concerns. To get things resolved it may be necessary to decide on action by a majority vote.
  • Raise concerns via the landlord
    • You can try approaching a landlord to see if they will take action, particularly if there is anything in your contract regarding the behaviour of tenants. You should keep records of any requests 
  • Legal action
    • If you hold any joint liability with another housemate and they fail to pay rent, bills or cause damages, and other methods have not resolved the issue, you may wish to speak to shelter or seek someone else trained to give legal advice in such a situation; to see if you can take legal action against the housemate for any monies owed etc.
  • Mediation
    • An informal method by which a university supplied and trained mediator can support all students to reach a positive outcome.
  • Police and Security
    • If you ever feel immediately threatened in your home, we advise you use your judgement to call emergency services on 999.
    • police can support you with issues of sexual violence, harassment, hate crime, aggression and other potential criminal issues.
    • PC Daniel McGwinn, the campus police officer can be contacted or 0191 515 3999 or campus.police@sunderland.ac.uk. You can also reach the security team on campus at 0191 515 2028
    • University Security and the Campus Police are happy to give advice and guidance via phone, email or face to face on issues such as alcohol use, consent, burglary prevention, parking, cycle or vehicle safety, anti-social behaviour, drink spiking, fraud & scams, personal safety, protecting your identity, safety on social media, travelling by taxi / private hire vehicle
  • Disciplinary processes
    • The university has rules regarding conduct of students and an internal disciplinary process can deal with an allegations of misconduct
    • Allegations of misconduct should be made to an appropriate member of staff (such as a course tutor, head of faculty of senior manager in a service) with responsibility for the student alleged to have committed misconduct. Alternatively you can raise concerns via the Academic Registry (0191 515 2059, studentcasework@sunderland.ac.uk)
  • Report It
    • If you ever experience or witness sexual violence, harassment, hate crime or aggression Sunderland Students’ Union has been working with the University of Sunderland to create a new system for you to report it.
    • Such reports will be considered seriously by the academic registry

You should not be disadvantaged by making a complaint in good faith.
In any action you take through the university you should be reassured that you will not be disadvantaged for raising a concern in good faith, which is assumed unless it can be demonstrated to be a malicious allegation which can have consequences.

Page last reviewed: 01/03/2019
Next review due: 31/08/2020