The Unwritten Roommate Code (That You Should Write Down)  

ApartmentSearch_Roommate-CodeIf you’ve ever shared in a 2-bedroom apartment, you know the roommate life can be rough. Dishes, turning off lights, or noisy late nights – whatever the little things are that irk you, don’t let it ruin your living situation. Here are some guidelines that all roommates should follow but might go without saying.

Share Chores Equally

You can try as hard as you want to keep your apartment dwelling separate, but you can’t avoid sweeping the kitchen floor. If your roommate is a little less tidy than you are, there are ways to communicate what’s important to you to keep fair. Putting a list of divvied-up to-dos on the fridge can be an easy way to remind your roommate of things both of you needs to keep up with.

On the flip side, if you’re not the cleanest one in the apartment, you’ll need to step up and take some chores on in order to keep the peace.

Be Respectful With Significant Others…

20-something couples tend to spend a lot of time at each other’s places, roommate or not. It is your apartment and you can have guests when you please – but be mindful of how often. You don’t want your roommate feeling like your boyfriend or girlfriend is living there too.

Oh, and never give out your apartment key without asking.

…And Other Guests

Have a friend coming to town for the weekend? Make sure you clear it with your roommate before you let them crash on your couch. After all, we can’t imagine you’d be too excited to wake up with a stranger in your house without getting a heads up first.

“Yours,” “Mine,” & “Ours”

“Yours, ” “mine,” and “ours” are not interchangeable terms. It’s important for roommates to set boundaries about what is personal versus shared space and belongings. For example, don’t eat your roommate’s food or get too used to watching Netflix on their console without having the OK from your roommate first. Be respectful of their property and expect the same in return.

Whatever You Do, Don’t Be Passive Aggressive

Say your roommate has left a pot of half-eaten macaroni and cheese on the stove for a week. While you’re doing your own dishes, you decide, “I refuse to clean that.” This builds up resentment. Simply reminding your roommate it’s there is transparent and effective – and will probably have you rolling your eyes less.

Know that Roommates Don’t Have to Be BFF

Your roommate may not be your best friend – in fact, many prefer live with people outside of their social circle. And truthfully? That’s okay. Do your best to maintain a healthy, communicative relationship but if your roommate isn’t the first person you’d ask to go grab a burger with, don’t let that put the entirety of your living situation into question.

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