Everyone hopes that their roommates will be their best friends. And for some, that is true, whether it’s because they’re rooming with their best friends or because they were lucky enough to have the people they roomed with become their best friends. However, for most people, maintaining a positive relationship with roommates takes some work. Here’s some tips to get you started.
1. Start with a roommate contract.
Not all schools have roommate contracts in place, but it’s definitely helpful to make your own. This will help with dealing with issues and resolving problems that are sure to come up later on in the year.
2. Have a chore sheet/schedule.
This should include vacuuming, trash, wiping the sink, and anything else you can think of that should be done regularly.
3. Define your guest policy.
Guest policies tend to become lax throughout the year, and it may be difficult for you to discuss them if they are not set early. Although schools have their own policies, make sure you identify any times or specific dates you don’t want people over.
4. Drugs and Alcohol Zones
Although drugs and alcohol are restricted on college campuses, it is still important for you to discuss the presence of these in your room without your roommate.
5. Sleep Schedules
Remember- there are those who sleep during the day, those who sleep at night, those who never sleep, and those who always sleep. Sleeping schedules change throughout college, but generally you must respect your roommate’s sleep schedule if you want them to respect yours.
6. Communicate with your RA.
Your RA is trained in teaching you to help solve issues. Keep communications open and they will be happy to assist you!
7. Be forgiving and friendly.
Roommates forget things- they’re human, and you are too. Unless its a repeat offense, it’s best to mention in a nice way instead of being short-tempered or rude. Remember, you want to keep a positive environment in your room.
8. Analyze your own habits.
You don’t really have control over others, just yourself.
9. Communicate in person rather than via text or note.
Texts and notes are easy to ignore, and in-person communication is the best way to get your point across in the tone you wish for it to be communicated.
10. Don’t take all the blame.
Out of everything on this list, this is the most important tip. If you take the blame for things you are not responsible for, you will become the scapegoat. If it’s not your fault, say so.
Roommates can be difficult, but they can also be wonderful if you stand up for yourself and acknowledge your own issues. Good luck!