From college students moving into a dorm and 20-somethings getting their first apartment, to older adults who would like to find someone to share expenses with, there are a number of situations that involve living with a new roommate.
What all of these scenarios have in common is the need to keep some tips to keep in mind that will help you to have the most successful relationship possible with your housemate.
Communicate as Often as You Can Ahead of Time
Prior to moving in together, try to spend some quality time video chatting, emailing and/or texting. As Discover notes, connecting before the move-in day is helpful because it will allow you to get to know your roommate and vice versa, and also go over items that you plan on bringing to your home. This will prevent the potentially awkward move-in day when both of you have a couch and a TV, but neither of you has pots and pans or a small fridge.
Agree on Ground Rules
Another great way to start off your roomie relationship on the right foot is to come up with and agree to a list of certain rules. This will help prevent a lot of potential problems later on. For example, you should discuss things like sharing food, having overnight guests, borrowing each other’s items and cleaning. You may find that you both are cool with sharing your chips, K-cups and bottled water, but that one of you is a night owl and one is up at 5 a.m. This conversation is the perfect time to iron out how the early bird will stay quiet so the late riser can sleep and vice versa.
Consider a Security System
While you have a good feeling about your new roommate and you hope he or she feels the same about you, it is still a good idea to install a security camera system in and around your new place. In addition to helping you both feel more secure, if there is some dorm or apartment vandal going around causing trouble, the cameras can help capture footage of the jerk that you can turn over to the police. And although you hope you’ll like your roommate’s friends and vice versa, an indoor security camera can help resolve potential conflicts, if an item suddenly goes missing and you suspect a visitor to your apartment. When shopping for home security camera systems, opt for a wire-free security camera system from a company like Lorex; in addition to capturing crystal-clear footage, the battery-operated devices can be installed almost anywhere inside or out, and when you move out someday, you can easily take them with you.
Respect Each Other’s Personal Space
Even if you hit it off like old friends, Education First notes you should still be aware of giving your roommate enough personal space. If you come home from work and he is wearing headphones and texting away on his phone, this is probably not the time to tell him all about your day. The same can be true for you; if you are in your room and the door is closed, your roommate should not take it personally, but rather as a sign that you need a quick nap or some time alone.
Roommates Can Become Lifelong Friends
It can be a bit nerve-racking to know you are about to share a home with a total stranger, but with some pre-move-in day chats, a good security system and plenty of honest communication and respect, your roommate may blossom into a lifetime BFF.