Whether you're preparing to move to a new city, looking for a first apartment or looking to save money on living expenses, finding the right roommate requires careful consideration and a few important conversations. Even if you've had positive experiences with roommates in the past, every person has a unique way of living at home, and that includes you.
Before you make plans to move in with a potential new roommate, you'll want to sit down and hash out a few important details that will help you both to live more comfortably together. Even the most relaxed and laid-back personalities need to have boundaries and mutual understanding in place when they decide to share a living space with another person. Voicing your own needs, while hearing your future roommates will help you both to sleep better at night at home.
Here are 5 things we highly recommend roommates work out before the big move in day arrives. Even if working through tedious details requires a little discomfort in the beginning, we're sure it'll save headaches and even heart ache down the road.
Furniture and Decor
While you may have a clear and distinct vision for your new apartment, remember that it may conflict with your new roomie's vision. You'll want to iron out any conflicts in design style right away. Ask your new roomie what furniture they have, or plan to bring. Do they have pieces they'd like to use in common areas? What decor style do they prefer? Share your own preferences and discuss openly how the two of you would like to make your new apartment a home. If you work out your apartment design and decor before you even move in, you'll find that move in day goes more quickly and smoothly than ever before.
What Is Your Definition of "Clean"
Let's be honest, some of us are neat, some of us are clean, some of us are both, and a few of us are neither. In order to be happy at home, you may simply need to have your surfaces looking shiny, while your roommate may like to organize, label and tidy up 24/7. You can coexist with a person who has different standards of clean, but you should talk about it in advance, and decide how you want to handle cleanup at home. Some roommates opt to hire a cleaning service to keep things simple, while others may agree to divvy up chores, or simply wing it, and see how it goes. Whatever you do, don't leave it up to fate, and make sure to talk about cleanliness before you start unpacking boxes.
What Is Your Sleep Schedule
If you're a night owl moving in with an early bird, it's best to go ahead and work out the details of how to respect each other's sleep in advance. Whether it's setting a time for sound to turn down and turn up, or making adjutments like buying headphones and rearranging your chores so that you give your roommate the zzz's they need, it isn't difficult to find a way to coexist with a nocturnal roommate or an early riser.
Guests and Visitors
While you may love being the host or hostess with the most and mostest, your roommate may prefer more privacy. If you know that you like to host friends and family members at home, or that you prefer your space and solitude, talk about it with your roommate. With preparation and mutual respect, you can work out a way for loved ones to visit and stay, or for friends to understand that your home isn't for outsiders. Either way, have an open conversation about the idea of potential visitors and guests with your roommate, and be sure you're on the same page.
It can be hard to talk finances with even our closest friends, but when you live together, share bills and share a roof, there's no more important conversation to have. Sit down with your roomie and hash out your preferred process for paying and splitting up bills. Make sure that you're on the same page with additional utilities like cable or internet, and that you both clearly understand your shared expenses and budget from day one.