Advice We Wish We Received Before Getting Roommates

April 5, 2021

Now what kind of people would we be if we didn't speak up about pressing topics?? Here at Chillow, we want to give you the best advice possible based on our past experiences and what we've learned from them thus far. It's up to your if you decide to take it with a grain of salt or treat it as valuable information for your future endeavors.

Whether you're about to be living with roommates for the first time or have already experienced living with other people but are wondering what keeps going wrong, we've got advice on some things you should know and understand before moving in with someone else.

Something bothering you? Speak up

We’re all adults here. If something is making you uncomfortable and you fail to address it to the other person, unnecessary tension can arise and the other person may have no clue at all. Once you bottle up your feelings and fail to express them, it becomes a snowball effect. Start on a positive note of being open with your roommate and continue it throughout your time living together.

You're roommates, not necessarily best friends

Sometimes with friendship comes bottling up certain emotions to spare the other person’s feelings. While you can still do this with a roommate, there’s not as much pressure. There is a good chance once your lease is over you’ll never see this person again. If you feel the relationship isn’t positive, give it space and don’t feel the need to treat it like a friendship.

Good friends don't always make good roommates

If only we had gotten this advice sooner.. Rooming with a good friend can sound great since you already know them and have a strong bond. But the truth is living with that person can be a completely different story. You may begin to notice their habits and not agree with them. Spending all your time together and living in close quarters may bring out their true colors. Our advice? Pay attention to who your friend is and if they would be a good roommate before making a spur of the moment decision.

Exchange emergency information just in case

There’s a very slim chance they’ll be texting and becoming best friends with your mother. But would that be the worst thing in the world? Definitely better than them not knowing who to call if you haven’t come home in the past couple of days. We suggest exchanging your parent’s and best friend’s contact info so you don’t have to scramble if a potential situation arises.

Compromise, then compromise some more

Teamwork makes the dream work. There is unfortunately no such thing as the perfect living situation with a roommate. Talk through what your expectations are first, then depending on what the other person says, create a solution that pleases both parties. If you’re unable to do so, take a break and revisit the conversation.

Talk about the unacceptables

Some things cannot be compromised. For example, it’s okay to tell your roommate you won’t allow smoking in the apartment. The same goes for them asking you not to randomly come home with a pet because they are severely allergic. It’s okay to know your limits and not allow some things to happen!

Let them know if you're having people over

...Because it’s the courteous (and adult) thing to do. It’d be unfortunate if you had a test to study for all weekend and your roommate decides to throw a party. The same goes for letting them know if your parents will be making a visit so they can tidy up the place. It’s important to let each other know who will be coming to the apartment. Which brings us to our next piece of advice.

Let them know if your significant other will be living there too

...Instead of them showing up one day and never leaving. Yeah, you’d be surprised how common this one is. This can be a VERY uncomfortable situation to be in so please just don’t spring this up on someone, especially without talking about it beforehand. You guys have made an agreement and signed a lease with your names on them, not the boyfriend’s. Especially if they are not offering to pay a portion of the rent, utilities or groceries, they should find somewhere else to call home base.

Take note of your habits

There are 7 billion people in the world (and counting). We can almost guarantee the way you were raised isn’t the same as how your roommate was. You each will have different habits that may seem normal to you but foreign to the other. Just be aware of what you’re doing in your living space each day. Need an example? Not cleaning up the dishes as soon as you’re done with a meal, leaving the toilet seat up, taking three or more days to do laundry… you get the idea. The more courteous you are, the more courteous your roommate will be.

Getting roommates doesn’t have to be a nightmare. With the advice from this blog and Chillow’s app to guide you through finding reliable and verified people in your area, luck is on your side! Our mission is to make living with roommates a good experience. We hope you think of this information as valuable advice and use it for your future decision-making when it comes to living with someone else. Until next time!

-The Chillow Team