When looking for a roommate*, finding the right one is extremely important. You will be sharing intimate spaces such as the bathroom and kitchen. You may both be home-bodies who enjoy evenings on the couch binging your favorite shows. One of you may like hosting parties or overnight guests and the other prefers to be mostly alone. Someone may be more concerned with cleanliness than the other. There are so many dynamics between two people, and those dynamics get compounded with each new person added.
Before you ever start contacting potential roomies, take your time figuring out what’s important to you in order to feel comfortable and peaceful in your home. Here are some things to think about:
- Are you neat or messy? If you’re neat, can you handle someone being messy? If you’re messy, can you handle someone asking/expecting you to clean more?
- Do you mind if your roommate has guests over? How many? How late?
- Do you like having guests over?
- Do you want to be social with your roommate, or would you prefer you both do your own thing?
- Do you have pets, or do you mind if your roommate has pets?
- Does your roommate’s worldview matter to you?
- Do you want to have an agreed-up chore list?
Once you have a good idea of the type of person you might jibe with, there are lots of resources for finding this hypothetical person. Here is a list of apps and websites you can peruse:
Once you find a person or people that seem like a good fit, you should ask them some questions to see if they actually align with the things you decided you’re looking for, and also whether they’re likely to follow-through on their end of the bargain.
Questions to ask potential roommates:
- Do you have a job with a reliable, sufficient income?
- Do you have pets?
- Do you have any allergies?
- What is your schedule?
- How do you feel about guests? (overnight, parties, etc)
- What are you looking for in a roommate?
- What did you like or dislike about your last roommate situation?
- What are your cleaning habits?
- How often do you cook?
- Do you usually shower in the morning or evening?
- Do you smoke cigarettes?
- Do you smoke cannabis?
- Do you drink and, if so, how much?
- Do you have accessibility concerns?
- Do you have any references?
- How do you feel about COVID-19? Have you been or will you be vaccinated?
- Do you have furniture/cookware?
Finally, once you’re satisfied you’ve found your best match, there are a few things you need to decide on together, such as:
- Whose name(s) will be on the lease
- How many months or years are you both willing to commit to a lease
- How utilities, internet, etc. will be paid (cash, Venmo, Google Pay, checks, auto-pay, etc.)
- How much each person will pay towards rent and why (e.g. there may be a master bedroom with a separate bathroom)
While finding a quality roommate may seem like a lot of work, it will be totally worth it since you will be spending a lot of time with them and depending on them to pay your shared bills and cooperate in making sure your living situation is comfortable.
PickMy is also here for you when you and your roomie want to find the perfect pad. Sign-up here or login to see what’s available!
* Be sure that, according to your lease agreement, it is okay to have a roommate at all, and find out whether they also must be included on the contract.