8 Tips on Being a Good Roommate for the Clueless
Listen, for those who have never lived with another person before other than your family members, it might be confusing to see why you might have made your roommate upset or what caused them to avoid you, or even why they’ve secretly moved out – like what Phoebe did to Monica in “Friends”.
After all, not all of us are blessed with a great personality or even the sensitivity to know how to act when you live with another human being. Some of us need to be explicitly reminded if we have annoying habits or have done roommate faux-pas. Well, you are in luck, because we have some tips for you to become a good, and ideal, roommate.
1. Pay Your Share of Rent on Time
You should always be on time (or even early) with your rent. It is an important thing, if not the most. You have partial responsibility for all the finances that go with the apartment. Don’t put your roommate in a tight spot and have them pay for your share. You don’t want to be labeled as a freeloader, do you? Also remember, If you are the type of person who constantly leaves the lights on or tends to have a long shower and rack up the water bill, don’t forget to pay for the extra costs.
2. Ask for Permission
When sharing a home, it is sometimes inevitable to use each other’s belongings. But it’s always mandatory to ask for permission. If your roommate gives you a green light to eat their cereal once, it doesn’t mean that you can do that whenever you want (unless they specifically said so themselves). Don’t get mad or offended if sometimes they say no. Respect their wishes. You didn’t buy that milk? Don’t drink it! You’re out of foundation? Don’t use your roommate’s, buy it yourself! It is stealing if you don’t acknowledge their refusal.
Moreover, without being said, it is also your responsibility to take care of their stuff when you borrow them. If something spills on a sweater you borrowed, take it to the laundry or replace it. By respecting their belongings you’re also showing that respect them and vice versa.
3. Clean Up After Yourself
Let’s be honest, not a lot of us like to clean up. But if you’re living with another person, it’s not an option. If you spill your popcorn on the sofa, clean it up or when you finish eating, clean your dishes. Basically, if you’re the one who makes the mess, you should be the one to clean it up. Don’t expect your roommate to clean up after you. Besides, you don’t want to see clutter or spoiled take out containers on your coffee table either right?
You shouldn’t leave the mess for too long either, and let your roommate wake up to a disaster so early in the morning. Maybe once or twice will be fine, but it won’t be too long before they bear a grudge towards your less-than-desirable trait. So grab a towel and some cleaning detergent, and start scrubbing!
4. Have Good Hygiene
We all know that everyone has that day when you just don’t feel like taking a shower. But if you see yourself wearing the same shirt every day for the past two weeks or have a gruesome odor coming from your body., that might be a problem. So please, get a hold of yourself and shower!
Culminating good hygiene is generally required, but it is one of the most important things you should do when having a roommate. Daily showers are essential if you don’t want your roommate to run away at the sight of you turning into the corner. So take showers regularly, brush your teeth twice a day, and most importantly remember that deodorant is never optional. Because if you don’t have good hygiene, your roommate (and other people around you) will be the one to suffer.
5. Respect Their Boundaries
Everyone requires privacy and personal space, so it is best not to intrude into other people’s personal matters or be too codependent with your roommate. Never go through their belongings, burst into their room without knocking, or go through their phone. Setting boundaries early on might be beneficial for you and your roommate in the long run. It is a healthier way to avoid future issues that might come up. If you find that you’re starting to get too attached to them and they seem uncomfortable by that, it might be best to spend some time apart.
6. Communicate Honestly
Communication is key for a good relationship, including between roommates. If you have something that bothers you, say it right away instead of burying them and letting the problem simmer. Trust us, you will eventually blow up and start a heated argument where the trust you’ve built crumbles down. However, it is important to still be mindful of what you say to others. Be sensitive, and speak clearly and calmly. The conversation might be hard for both parties, but it will surely help the situation and positively impact your relationship in the long run.
7. Sharing is Caring
The most attractive quality you can have is being considerate, especially when living with others. When rooming with another person, you’ll inevitably be sharing other things with them, from food to financial responsibilities, and even your deepest darkest thoughts. Sharing is what makes living with other people worth it. Be generous and share some food once in a while and socialize with them. Who knows you might be in the process of building a life-long friendship.
8. Don’t Take All The Space
One more thing to remember is that living with other people means sharing space. Do not use too much of the living room or the kitchen like it is your own to use. Respect
the room arrangement and try not to be that guy who always hangs out in the living room and hogs the sofas. If you do, pretty soon, your roommate(s) will throw an intervention for this particular habit of yours.
We hope some of the tips above will help you be a good roommate. Always be mindful of each other and stay positive!