To Get a Roommate or Not?

To Get a Roommate or Not?

To Get a Roommate or Not?

If you have lived at home with your parents and have finally made the adult decision to move out, it can be an exciting step. Maybe you are upgrading and moving to a bigger, better house in a well-liked neighbourhood and ideally would like to have the place all to yourself. Reality comes crashing down hard and quickly, however – costs, loneliness, a whole place to maintain alone and other responsibilities.

Having a roommate or renting an apartment with housemates can help alleviate these but can also be a headache. The best thing to do is to evaluate the pros and cons of living with other people and that should help you decide if it is truly the best idea for you.

Pros of Having a Roommate

diverse roommates
Roommates hanging out. Image via rawpixel.com

Your domestic life can be glorious with the right living companion.

  1. Split Expenses

    The biggest reason why most people get a roommate is to be able to share the rent. With two or more of you renting a property, it means you all chip into the cost so it comes out less for each of you. The same goes for utility bills like electricity, water, cable television and the internet. When you live alone you are more conscious of finding ways to keep your electricity bills low.

  2. Furnishings

    Paying rent is only part of the battle. Many rentals come unfurnished, meaning you also have to spend to buy a bed, wardrobe and other common area items like a dining table, living room couch and coffee tables. If you are moving in with a roommate or two, you can each contribute what you have. You might luck out with a roommate that already has a full living room set or kitchenware, so you can just focus on your own bedroom! Money saved.

  3. Shared chores

    Sure if you lived alone you would still need to clean up after yourself but there’s just something about knowing there is someone else also helping that makes housework less of a drag. You and your roommate can agree certain days or weeks for which you are each responsible for sweeping, mopping, doing the dishes or cleaning the fridge easily.

  4. Friendship

    Having roommates or housemates can also mean making new friends! If you get along, it’s nice to have a friend close by every day to discuss your days with, ask how your outfit looks, and even make weekend plans with. Some roommates remain good friends for years to come even after they move away.

Cons of Having a Roommate

unhappy roommate

Having a roommate is not always a sweet deal, sadly. The pros are amazing but the cons may make you think again.

  1. Hygiene-less

    Socks on the living room floor, dishes left unwashed for days, the fungus growing in the fridge that looks like maybe it was bread in a former life…How can anyone live this way? And now you signed a lease with them for a year. If you are stuck with a nasty roommate who is turning your shared home into a pig sty, it can be annoying and stressful.

  2. Do Not Disturb

    For some people, the idea of personal space is thrown out the window when they get a roommate. Do they have to knock before entering your room and not use your things before asking before? Who knew? With such roommates, say goodbye to privacy.

  3. Anti-Social

    Sure when you move in with someone it means you both have to compromise but if you move in with an antisocial person, it will seem like they are against anything fun. The TV is always too loud for them. Your friends are always over too much as far as they are concerned. Your differences in lifestyle may create a division. If things really go wrong, you two may become bonafide enemies who can’t stand to be around each other and coming home will become uncomfortable, and who needs that?

  4. Money Matters

    You both paid rent upfront so that’s not a problem but if your roommate always has an excuse when the utility bills come, it can cause a rift. You agreed on these terms in the beginning but your roommate might all of a sudden ask to skip this time and leave you to pay the full electricity bill. Not good.

Rent costs force most people to need a roommate. If that is your situation, this should help you be better prepared for all the good and bad possibilities. Take the time to “interview” your potential roommates to get a better idea of if they are likely to be a good roommate match.

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