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4 tips for finding a roommate that is right for you

December 15, 2022 | By Roomrs


We all know finding an apartment is difficult, but with real estate sites and companies offering weekly rooms for rent, you’re bound to find a place that is perfectly suited for you.


What people think about far less often, is their roommates. Sharing an apartment isn’t always the most ideal option, but with rental costs in NYC being what they are, sometimes you are left without a choice.


Here are some tips to ensure you don’t get stuck with a roommate who drives you absolutely crazy

1. Don’t rush your decision

Sometimes life happens; and there are instances where you need to find an emergency replacement for a roommate last minute. However, if you have ample time to make a decision, do so carefully. There are several roommate finder websites where you can post listings for room vacancies.


That way, you can conduct interviews (make sure you ask all the important questions), and get to see whether you and your potential roommate would be a good fit.

2. Best friends are not always the best choice

Living with your best friend seems like the a dream come true. What could go wrong? In short, a lot.


Your best friend is not always the best choice when it comes to picking a roommate.


Although you enjoy spending time with this person, that doesn’t mean it will make for a compatible living situation. Your best friend may have habits that you won’t uncover until you are both living under the same roof. Lets say you enjoy a clean space; but every time your roommate cooks, she leaves open food on the counter and a sink full of dishes. That behavior will likely begin to affect you if left unchanged.


This could seriously hinder a great friendship. Try reaching out to other potential contenders before making the decision to move in with you best friend, it could save your relationship in the long run.



3. Ask the tough questions as soon as possible

Determine what matters most to you when looking for a potential roommate. If you’ve found someone who is interested in your listing, ask those important questions as early as possible. You don’t want to waste your time meeting someone that doesn’t posses any of the qualities on your checklist.


Some example questions may include:


  • What do you consider good qualities in a roommate?
  • What is your schedule like?
  • What time do you usually wake up/go to sleep?
  • Do you consider yourself a clean person?
  • Do you like animals? (something to consider if you have a pet)
  • What do you do for a living? (to determine financial stability, and whether they will be able to pay you on time every month)
  • Are you in a relationship? If so, how often do you think your significant other may be here? (some people essentially move their significant other in, its annoying, and likely something you want to avoid)
  • Do you often invite people over?
  • Do you smoke?
  • Do you listen to loud music?
  • Do you spend a lot of time at home, or are you constantly moving around?

These are just examples, but a good place to start to figure out your roommate compatibility. Think of what is non-negotiable, and make your own roommate check list. Ask all potential roommates the questions on your check list, and determine where they rank based on their responses.



4. Prepare a roommate contract

Once you’ve asked all the questions at the top of your list; you need to put something in writing that details what you expect from your roommate, and what they should expect from you.


While this is a more informal contract, it is still a good idea to have something in writing that you can refer to later if problems arise.


Based on an article written by 360 legal forms, it is advised you add these details to your roommate agreement:


  • Dates the roommate agreement will go into effect (usually move-in dates)
  • Names and details of all signatories
  • Residents Address (the home or apartment address in which you all intend on living)
  • Rent payments (this includes amounts as well as a payment schedule)
  • Utilities (same as above)
  • Damages (who will pay for damaged property)
  • Maintenance (cleaning schedule and other house maintenance duties like who will be responsible for trash, recycling etc)
  • Consequences (what will happen if one of the aforementioned outlined expectations are not met)
  • Signatures (all people living in the apartment are responsible for signing the document)

This clearly outlines each persons expectations, and will likely limit any confusion.


These tips are just the beginning, but highly recommended during your roommate search. Ultimately, the goal is to find someone who is going to be the best fit for YOU. This is entirely individual and requires asking many, many questions on your part, to help get an idea of who may be a perfect fit!

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