If you’re a college student thinking of moving out of the dorms this year, it’s not too early to find an apartment. If you’ll be moving into your apartment when the semester is over you’ll want to find an apartment soon, but you can wait a bit longer if you plan on living at home for the summer.
Before you find an apartment, decide if you want to live alone or with roommates. Apartment living on your own has its benefits (like always having the quiet you need to cram for that Psych 101 exam, or being able to walk around in your underwear without offending anyone) but it also can be much more expensive and at times lonely. Don’t forget about your furry roommates. If you have pets, find an apartment that allows them or you could face steep fees or even eviction. After that’s settled, set a budget that includes all of your monthly apartment expenses including rent, utilities, and insurance.
Next, find an apartment in a neighborhood that’s right for you. Living close to campus can be expensive but it saves you the time, hassle, and costs of commuting. You should also find an apartment in a neighborhood that has services you need like a bank, library, and grocery store. Unless you find an apartment with a laundry room, you’ll also want to live close to a laundromat.
Be sure to find an apartment in an area that jibes with your lifestyle. If you like to spend your nights quietly studying, living next door to frat row is probably a bad decision. Likewise, if you plan on partying it up every night, don’t move in next to an old couple that will call the police during the very first verse of “Young, Wild, & Free.”
ApartmentSearch.com can make your quest to find an apartment easier. You can find an apartment by area, price, and amenities so you (and your roomies) end up someplace that really feels like home. Plus, you don’t even have to be a finance major to appreciate the $200 Renter Rewards you can get simply by finding your apartment through ApartmentSearch.com!
Moving into a new apartment always comes with a set of exciting challenges. If you’re planning (or hoping) to move in with another person, picking that roommate is right up at the top of that list. A well-chosen roommate has the ability to make a living situation much more enjoyable and affordable, offering you the appropriate mix of availability and privacy (and on-time bill paying) that you desire. However, a poorly chosen roommate can make any living arrangement, no matter how ideal otherwise, eminently painful. The last thing you want is a stressful situation brewing in your own home—after all, it should be the place you take refuge from your daily stresses. With that in mind, here are some tips for picking out the best roommate for you.
First, list what qualities you would consider ideal in a roommate. Think about your own traits during this exercise. Do you treasure a measure of peace and quiet when you come home after a hard day’s work? Chances are you’d prefer someone who is similar than someone who’s constantly inviting half the apartment building over for hors d’oeuvres.
Next, talk to friends. Ask them if they know of anyone looking to make a move in the near future. Also consider posting a classifieds ad in a local online forum, mentioning traits you’re looking for in a tactful, casual way. A demanding, bulleted list of roommate requirements will scare prospects away so fast it’ll make your head spin.
Finally, schedule interviews with any prospects you might find. The most important thing to keep in mind, when first meeting a potential roommate, is to be completely honest with yourself and with them. Don’t try to make yourself something that you’re not! If you have a less-than-stellar cleaning record, that’s totally fine; just don’t insist that you scour the floors with a toothbrush when your roomie-to-be asks about your orderliness. If she decides that’s a deal-breaker, that’s okay—you just avoided butting heads down the road.
Looking for an apartment for rent with a new roomie? Great! We’re here to help. Using our search tools, you can find an apartment in cities, towns, and hamlets all across America. We’re particularly fond of Dallas apartments, Phoenix apartments, Austin apartments and Seattle apartments, but search anywhere your heart fancies. Happy hunting!
Sharing an apartment with a friend can be a high-risk, high-reward situation. You get the comfort of knowing many of your friend’s habits before you move into the apartment together, so unexpected surprises like suddenly discovering your friend has insomnia and a serious addiction to reality TV likely won’t occur. You also know that you and your friend get along, which is likely why you’d decide to share an apartment together.
Living in an apartment with a friend can put stress on your relationship, so it’s important to take steps to ensure that you don’t lose your buddy when you gain a roomie. Here are some tips for doing just that:
Don’t Be Afraid to Talk
So your roommate leaves a mountain of dishes in the sink after dinner every night. Think she’ll get the hint if you wash them? Think again. You’ll start feeling resentful doing double duty and your roommate will likely not even notice. In situations like this, it’s much better to talk about it. Don’t hesitate to establish some rules about things like cleanliness and quiet time. You don’t have to do anything draconian, like write them up and post them everywhere, but talking about what your expectations are with your friend, especially before you two move in together, will make any future disputes much simpler to defuse.
Do Apartment-Oriented Tasks Together
This can really help alleviate the pain of things like chores and decoration, since both you and your friend are invested in getting the task done. Not only does doing work together ensure that you’ll both be splitting the load, it also makes it easier to get done. After all, you’re hanging out with your friend! What’s not to like about that?
Compromise, Compromise, Compromise
Here lies the crux of any successful roommate pairing: You have to make sacrifices. If you’re used to living in an ice box, while your friend’s more accustomed to sauna temperatures, you two will likely have to split the difference and keep the apartment at a middling temperature. If you’re a neat freak and your friend’s a complete mess, you’ll need to become a little more lax with your standards, while your roommate will have to pick up after herself a bit more. Obviously, you’d rather have everything exactly your way, but compromise is just part of being a good roommate, and you wouldn’t want to be anything less than that to your friend.
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The roommate search, oh my! Trying to find a roommate who does the dishes every night and puts them away, respects your belongings, agrees with you on temperature and pays their share of the bills on time is no easy endeavor. Finding a roommate who vacuums, cleans up without being asked and someone who is just generally pleasant to be around would be ideal.
Is there such thing as The Perfect Roommate? Of course not! We all have roommate search horror stories, whether it involves that guy who hogged the television all day and well into the night and always paid his share of the bills a week late, to the gal whose pet beagle howled any time she was away. The thing with a roommate search is that all too often, you don’t really know what you’re going to get — and realizing that you got a bad roommate is no fun. Maybe you were in a hurry to find a roommate, or maybe you just didn’t know what to look out for. Whatever happened, one thing’s for sure: There are a few things you can do that will help you with your roommate search.
- First, you need to be honest about who you are. Are you a slob? Do you get upset when there is even one dirty dish in the sink? Do you love to have lots of people over all the time? If you don’t like to clean and are always having people over, it’s not very fair to search for a roommate who likes things clean and wants the apartment to be quiet and private.
- Meet up with potential roommates to talk. If you don’t feel safe or comfortable meeting them at your home, meet at a coffee shop or another public place where you can sit down and have a conversation.
- Find out what their schedule is like. If they have a night job and sleep during the day, and you have a 9-to-5, that could potentially cause a conflict.
- What are their hobbies?
- Do you want to include pet owners in your roommate search?
- Do they drink, smoke or do drugs?
- Discuss the things that typically wind up becoming problems when they’re not first addressed: how chores will be handled, how things like kitchen utensils and food will be shared, what’s okay and not okay when it comes to having guests over, thermostat settings, out-of-town guests, when bills need to be paid and so on.
These are just a few ideas to help you get a good roommate search going. If you meet with a potential roommate and you get the feeling the two of you wouldn’t be the best match, don’t be afraid to politely tell them that. It’ll sure save you a lot of roommate frustration in the long run.