The 5 C’s to Consider Before Rooming Together

While living with a roommate can have its advantages, there are downsides as well that can make having to share your space with another person more of a hassle than a help. Before signing a lease together, consider the following 5 C’s to make sure you and your roommate will be compatible living partners in an apartment rental.

1. Commonality

Two woman sitting on the couch laughing together while looking at their phones.

What interests do you share with your potential roommate? Will you be able to get along What interests do you share with your potential roommate? Will you be able to get along with your new housemate, or will it be just too difficult? Can you find activities that both of you enjoy doing in common? Do they have pets that will clash with yours and cause problems? How often are they having people over, and is this something that would bother you? Remember, a good roommate can become a great friend, whereas a bad one can make life difficult. With these things in mind, finding the right person for the job should be much easier.

2. Consistency 

Two men sitting on the couch looking at notebook together.

Having consistent schedules is important. This includes work life balance, common work schedules, and similar weekend schedules. For example, if one of you works nights and the other person works days, it may not be the best fit. You should also consider how often you’ll be home on the weekends because your roommate will need time to themselves as well. A great way to figure this out is by scheduling two weeks’ worth of different possible schedules for each day in order to figure out what will work best for both people. Ask questions like, what time do you normally wake up and go to sleep? What time do you typically come home on your days off? What do you like to do on the weeknights/weekends?

3. Commitment

Roommate Agreement form.

Do you want to live together for just the summer, or do you plan on staying in this place for years? If you both want to stay for at least six months, or ideally one year or longer, then it can make sense to sign a longer lease agreement and share rent costs. You’ll need to be sure that all roommates will abide by the agreement and fulfill their commitments throughout the term of the lease, as breaking such an agreement could end up costing you money! You may also need to agree on whether one person should cover utilities bills each month so that everyone has fair access without an awkward argument over who should pay what bill.

4. Cleanliness

Remember that living with someone isn’t all about making sure they keep their side of the room clean, you also have to make sure that the shared spaces are clean and tidy, too! Even if you’re living with someone with impeccable taste, there will come a time when you’ll need to clean. Who wants to scrub the toilet? That doesn’t sound like fun. But we all know that with regular cleaning, nothing is all that difficult to keep up to high standards. Cleaning supplies are easy to find, and we can give you some cleaning tips.

5. Cooperation

For roommates to live harmoniously, it’s important that they respect one another and work together. Different lifestyles can lead to differing opinions on how much money is spent each month. It may be best for roommates if one person pays more than the other or if both split costs evenly. What are your habits? Living with someone who has different daily routines can disrupt your own schedule and routine. Talk about what work schedules, bedtimes, and habits you have in order for your roommate not disrupt them too much. Are you looking for a friend or just someone who will share space with you? Having clear boundaries is important in any relationship, whether platonic or romantic. Know what each roommate expects of another.