Comment: Food-stealing, snot-snorting and public toenail-trimming do not a good housemate make

Who wouldn't want to share a house with someone who trimmed their toenails in front of the TV?

Who wouldn't want to share a house with someone who trimmed their toenails in front of the TV? - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

According to a survey released last week, annoying habits around the home can result in relationship breakdowns.

This doesn’t surprise me in the least. From leaving lights on in empty rooms to cups, plates and bowls being discarded around the house, my other half is guilty of the majority of offences listed. (I however am an absolute pleasure to live with and I never do anything annoying, ever...)

Having lived together now for more than 15 years, we’ve grown to accept each other’s quirks without any major bust ups, but others haven’t been as lucky – or perhaps they’ve just been more irritating.

A fifth of those surveyed that said they had pet peeves admitted they’d experienced a relationship breaking down because of these irritations getting out of hand.

While none of my partner’s habits have pushed me over the edge (yet), I can see how it could happen. And it can affect all kinds of co-habiting relationships, as experience has shown me.

There was the woman in the east London houseshare who used to eat everyone’s food. She once huffed that she didn’t know why I was so upset about it, as she preferred eating another housemate’s stuff to mine.

I’ve avoided any truly gross housemates, however (not including my kids). A friend was less lucky, living with a girl who liked to trim her toenails in front of the TV.

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Another friend’s dad was equally as grim, kicking off each day by loudly expelling snot from his nose in the shower, one high volume trumpet at a time.

Of course, the trouble with home-based irritating habits is that we probably don’t known we’re doing them. After all, home is a space to relax and stop worrying too much about making an effort, and we tend not to be too aware of how we’re coming across.

So to everyone I’ve ever lived with – I don’t know what I did but, whatever it was, I’m sorry.