Every person is unique, so you won’t find a roommate who is exactly like you. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t find a roomie who is a great fit for you. If you are renting an apartment for the first time and don’t know who to live with, you might want to try finding a new friend that’s also in the same situation as you. But how do you find a trustworthy roommate that will fit into your life and mesh with your personality?
It turns out that a great first step is developing a roommate wish list. Of course, your specific list of what you’d like to see in a good roommate will be unique to you. However, here are some things to think about to help you get started.
As you make this wish list, think about yourself and your own qualities. Are you a neat freak or more casual about cleanliness? Do you like to spend quiet evenings at home or would you rather go out at night and come home late? Thinking about personal preferences and lifestyles can help you as you’re wondering how to find a great roommate.
One final tip is inspired by pandemic living. If you had to be quarantined, what type of person could you see yourself being quarantined with? It’s not a fun question, but it can help you identify which qualities are most important to you in a roommate.
Check with people in your life first for a new roomie
Once you’ve made your wish list, you’re probably wondering how to look for roommates. Your first stop should be asking the people in your life (family members, friends, and coworkers) if they know of anyone who is also looking for a new roomie. Think of it as networking, but instead of trying to get a new job, you’re hoping to get a new roommate at the end.
As you speak to the people in your life, you might find that a friend or a coworker is also looking for a new roomie. Before you jump in and agree to live together, make sure you can envision yourself spending every day with them and sharing the same space. This is when it can be helpful to refer to that roommate wish list we mentioned earlier.
Keep in mind that someone might be a wonderful friend but a terrible roommate. For example, you might realize that your fun friend from school is actually a slob, and you find yourself cleaning up after them all the time. That will get old quickly, which can lead to conflicts. As a result, before you live with a friend, make sure that you’ll be compatible as roomies.
Your social media networks are great places to find a new roommate.
When you’re wondering how to find a roommate in a new city, you can go online if you find your in-person connections don’t lead you to a new roomie. No, we’re not recommending that you go just anywhere on the web to find someone to live with. Instead, we suggest that you start with your social media networks.
There are tons of social media platforms out there, and most people are on at least one of them. When you’re in the midst of your roommate search, it can make sense to let your social media networks know it. Some social media sites that can help narrow your search include:
FacebookMake a post to your network to let them know you’re in the market for a new roomie. There are also many groups you can join to help you score a great roommate.
TwitterTweet to your followers to see if they or anyone they know needs a roommate. Try using hashtags for your area to help your post reach more people.
LinkedInAlthough most often used for professional purposes, LinkedIn gives you access to a whole other network than your other social media channels. Make a post about your roommate search and see what happens!
A simple post can get the word out to everyone you’re connected with. This can help you connect with someone in your network who is looking for a new roomie. Not only that, but it may also catch the eye of someone who isn’t looking for a roommate but knows someone who is. They can make an introduction for you so that you can see if it’s a good fit.
Social media isn’t the only place you can go online when you’re wondering where to find a great roommate. There are also quite a few great roommate apps out there, and RoomieMatch and Circle are two of the most popular.
RoomieMatch connects people in the metro areas across the United States and Canada to help them find their ideal roomie. To make the search process easier, RoomieMatch connects you with people who share your schedule, interests and other preferences. If you match, then you and your potential roommate can start chatting, not unlike a dating app.
Keep in mind that it’s free to let other people contact you. However, it costs $19.95 per year if you’d like to be the one to initiate a conversation.
Circle will also remind you a bit of a dating app, as you’ll swipe on different roomie profiles on this iOS app. All profiles have been optimized for assessing roommate compatibility. If there’s a match, then you two can start talking and see if you’re a good fit to live together. The benefit of this app is that it’s free to download and use.
Many people like Circle for its safety features. It only connects you with friends or mutual friends from your social media networks so that you know the person you’re talking to is a real person. Additionally, verified users on the app have passed a background check and had their driver’s license authenticated.
Once you’ve found someone who seems like a good fit to be your roommate, you shouldn’t just go sign a lease together. There’s still a little bit more work to do. Look back at your roommate wish list to make sure that this person’s personality and preferences check all the boxes that are important to you.
It can also be helpful to ask some more specific questions before committing to a new roomie.
If your potential roomie provides answers that mesh with your preferences and lifestyle, you can feel confident about taking the next step.
The roommate relationship is one that thrives on communication and compromise. As a result, when you select a roommate, you’ll want to take time to discuss what is important to each of you when it comes to selecting an apartment and living together.
This conversation includes more than just discussing whether it’s acceptable to leave dirty dishes in the sink or have overnight guests. It should also cover the following topics:
Having these discussions early is really important as you search for the ideal roommate. Additionally, they can help you have a great relationship with your roomie.
Now that you’re no longer wondering how to find a roommate in a new city, you might think it’s time to sign that rental agreement. It turns out that you should sign a different agreement first: a roommate agreement.
Unlike your lease, this agreement does not involve your landlord. It’s just between you and your roommate. The goal is to outline different roommate rules and expectations so that you can avoid conflicts later on.
You can put just about anything in your roommate agreement. However, we recommend that it at least covers the following topics:
Clear guidelines are the key to a good roommate relationship
You may also want to include sections that discuss food and mealtimes, pets, and even control of the thermostat. Setting up clear guidelines is the key to having a good roommate relationship.
If you’re still wondering how to find a roommate in a new city, we’re here to help. You can skip the roommate search when you find a coliving space with Common. You’ll enjoy a gorgeous, spacious apartment for an attainable price without having to search for a roommate yourself. Our coliving homes include:
Best of all, we’ve taken steps to help avoid roommate disagreements. Each roommate has their own lease and all the utilities are in your monthly payment. Not only that, but we also offer free regular cleanings of shared spaces and keep you stocked with supplies like toilet paper and soap. Common homes offer shared spaces where you can host gatherings without disrupting your future roommate. It’s a winning arrangement for everyone. Check out our homes in cities across the U.S. to find your next apartment and roommate today!