Ah, roommates: I’ve had so many ups and downs while living with others over the last few years! I’m an only child and never had to split anything growing up, so it was a bit of a shock when I moved away as an 18-year-old and split a dorm room suite with three other girls my freshman year of college.
I just moved into my own apartment, sans roommates, four weeks ago, and I couldn’t be happier. However, I learned a lot by living with roommates for five years, mostly by trial and error. Here are five tips to make living with others as smooth of an experience as possible!
Make Sure Your Lifestyles Are Similar
First things first: get to know your roommate before moving in and make sure you have similar schedules/lifestyles. When I first moved out of college, I learned that I liked to wake up early. However, my first roommate out of college? She was a total night owl and would come in at 1 AM every night (and wake me up!). This ended up causing so many problems in the long run, and it could have been avoided had we discussed our schedules before moving in with each other. Also, think of the person’s lifestyle: are they religious? Do they party? Do they like to stay in on Friday nights? These can really be dealbreakers, so make sure to learn as much as you can about your future roommate!
Communication is Key
A lot of roommate problems can be avoided simply by communicating with each other. I’ve learned you need to pick your battles, and if something your roommate is doing is really bothering you, you need to discuss it with them as calmly as possible. I’ve also found that it’s best to communicate in person if you have issues rather than leaving notes/emails/texts.
Develop a Cleaning Schedule
What’s been the cause of most of my roommate issues? Cleanliness, for sure! Who hasn’t ended up in an argument about who swept up last, or dishes left in the sink? If you find yourself having these discussions frequently, it doesn’t hurt to set up a cleaning schedule. Rotate chores on a weekly basis so that there’s no question about who did what last.
Pay Attention to Your Bathroom
Have you ever realized how disgusting a bathroom can get? Between the hair in the shower, makeup on the sink and who else knows what’s in the toilet — it can get pretty grimy pretty fast! Did you know toilet bowls can contain as many as 3.5 million bacteria per square inch? Yeah, I didn’t realize this either!
Make sure you’re using quality products to clean up around your bathroom — I’m a big fan of the Clorox® Toilet Wand myself. Their system disposable refill heads are preloaded with Clorox® Toilet Bowl Cleaner to give you tons of cleaning power with none of the nastiness of a traditional, germy toilet brush. Simply click a refill head onto the wand, scrub to unleash the preloaded Clorox® Toilet Bowl Cleaner, then toss the head away. So easy, right?
Split Supplies Evenly
Another cause of arguments for me in the past? Splitting things evenly! We all don’t like to have that awkward convo of who bought what last. I found the best way to avoid this in the past was to go shopping with my roommates whenever we ran out of supplies like toilet paper, paper towels, cleaning products. We would pick out what we needed and ask the cashier to split the bill down the middle. That way, there’s no discrepancy on who bought what last. Easy, right?
What are your best tips on how to live with a roommate?
Thank you to Clorox for sponsoring today’s post! All thoughts and opinions are my own.