Tips for Living With a Roommate

 In Blog

Kilroy J. Oldster said, “Roommates are like a cheap box of fireworks, you never know what they will do next.” And while you may laugh at this quote, you probably know that living with a roommate can be the best of times or the worst of times. Of course, a lot of it comes down to some simple rules and tips.

If you have a roommate or are thinking about getting a new roommate, take a look at these tips. They could go a long way in helping you to avoid “the worst of times.”

    • Set Some Ground Rules: Once you’ve chosen a roommate, the first thing you need to do is set some ground rules. In order to do this, make sure you talk about some of the essentials:
      • Rent
      • Utilities
      • Space
      • Chores
      • Food
      • Noise
      • Overnight Guests
      • Security Deposit
      • Moving Out
    • Track Expenses Carefully: Once you’ve covered the basics and agreed on what expenses you’ll be sharing, it’s critical that you track them carefully. After all, you and your roommate may not have the exact same financial means, and making sure everything is equal and fair is important.
      • Nowadays, there is no reason not to handle this task without an app. Use Splitwise or Venmo to share living expenses or even that Friday night pizza you ordered and split.
    • Open the Lines of Communication: While you may think leaving a note or shooting a text is a great way of communicating, sometimes good, old-fashioned talking is the best way to go. When you talk with your roommate, they are able to understand your emotions and tone.
    • Pick Your Battles: There are bound to be occasions when you feel annoyed with your roommate due to certain habits or things that happen in your apartment. When these things come up, decide if it is really a battle worth fighting. Some things are important – and others, not so much.
  • Solve Problems Quickly: If it’s a problem or issue that you feel needs to be resolved and can’t be ignored, don’t let it fester. Work to come up with a resolution quickly and amicably so that your roommate relationship doesn’t deteriorate.
  • Be Prepared to Compromise: This one says it all. You need to expect to meet in the middle when it comes to certain things. It can’t be all, “My way or the highway.” Some give and take will make both you and your roommate happier.
  • Be Respectful of Each Other’s Things: As tempting as it may be to borrow your roommate’s sweater without asking or finish his last bottle of beer, don’t do it. Always ask if you want to borrow or use something – even if you believe your roommate is going to say yes.
  • Be Respectful of Each Other’s Space: You love spending time with your roommate, but you should always be respectful of each other’s space. Be sure to not enter his//her bedroom without asking. Perhaps schedule times when you can each have the apartment all to yourself. Everyone needs a little time and space alone – so be sure to accommodate for that.
  • Be Self-Aware: As much as you may be aware of your roommate’s habits and idiosyncrasies, try to be equally aware of your own. This can help you avoid tense or uncomfortable situations.
  • Think About a Chore Chart: Chores are often a sore point when it comes to having a roommate. Who’s doing the dishes? Who cleaned the refrigerator last? Who’s turn is it to dust the living room? A chore chart can help prevent the problem of who needs to do what in order to keep the apartment clean.
  • Spend Time Together: You don’t have to be best friends to be roommates, but you should try to spend some time together. This gives you a chance to get to know one another better and can make you better roommates in the end.

Roommates can be the absolute best – especially if you follow these tips. Find your perfect roommate and get started on setting some ground rules and getting to know each other. It could make for a fantastic living situation.

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