Having a roommate is almost like being in a marriage. Think of it this way: you live with this person every day, they're usually the last person you see before you sleep, and the first when you wake. You share meals with them, shop together, hang out together, and the list goes on! Now, in the same way that you date someone before you marry them, the same should happen before you choose your future roommate.
Okay, calling it a marriage may be an exaggeration, but the key takeaway here is whomever you choose to be your roommate, you better be compatible.
You do want someone who can commit to your lease and not suddenly leave when a more attractive option becomes available. You do want someone who will pay their bills and rent on time each month. You do want someone who will contribute their share of the housework. But most importantly, you must have someone you enjoy being around and can live comfortably with! Thankfully, the choice is yours.
Your future roommate could be anyone: your best friend, your freshman year dorm-mate, the guy you thought was chill in one of your group projects, or a total stranger. Whoever this lucky person is that gets the privilege to call you "roomie", they should not only be who you want but also who you need.
Confused on what that might look like? (OR Confused on what this person looks like?) Well don't freak out, because PolyRents has it all laid out for you:
There are tons of other questions you need to ask yourself when deciding what you want from a roommate, but we want you to remember these five important deal-makers (or deal-breakers).
The biggest element/factor to keep in mind is:
Whomever you choose to live with will have an effect on the amount of sleep you get each night, your social habits, and your academic habits.
Now to be clear, we're not saying that living with an Albert Einstein roommate will instantly boost your GPA to a 4.0. What we are saying is that if your roommate is a Sunday night party animal and you have 7am Monday morning class, that may hold you back a bit. There's only so much sleep deprivation coffee can make up for.
Alright folks, that's everything you need to know to find your perfect roommate! But wait – you'll probably need more than a single roommate to keep your rent low. Take our advice: replicate the process and go find your ideal roommates. Consider this roommate relationship to be an open marriage...
Once you have your roommate group established, it's time to choose your fearless group coordinator. In the spirit of keeping things simple for the landlord (and your roommate group too), you'll need one contact person for each property you apply to. This person should be well spoken and available to quickly reply to landlord's emails throughout the day. If this person is unprofessional or slow in their email response times, they could blow it for your whole group. Choose wisely – rotating contact people for each landlord isn't a bad idea either.
Get on the same page: Talk with your potential roommates. Make sure you're both looking for something in a similar size and price range (we’ll discuss this in detail next).
Your roommate will affect your habits: Seriously, don't pick someone incompatible. If your roommates stay up late or party, you'll be more inclined to mimic those behaviors (or at least get frustrated when they conflict with yours).
Pick a group coordinator: Establish one person as the main point of contact. This will make organizing everything 10x easier.