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How to Find a Great (Not Just Any) Roommate

There are plenty of reasons people choose to share a place with a roommate. Naturally, the most popular and major reason is financial. It is way cheaper to live in a two-bedroom apartment and split all costs between two people than to rent a studio by yourself. But there are also other pros of having a roommate: you will not feel lonely, you can share your chores with someone, you can go on a two-week trip and be sure there is a person to take care of your plants… The list can go on and on.

However, for this to happen, you need to find a person with whom you will feel comfortable and whom you can trust. Fortunately, there are many ways to find a great roommate, both thanks to your network of contacts and online!

Talk to Your Friends

Talking to your friends should be the first step in your roommate hunt. You might not even suspect that one of them has been actually considering changing a place to live and would happily move in with you!

Keep in mind that living with friends can be risky, so you should agree on specific points before moving in and specify what are you going to do if it turns out your living habits are incompatible. 

Nevertheless, even if you don’t want to jeopardize your relationship, bring up the search for a roommate in your conversation with friends anyway! They might know a friend of a friend, a coworker, or some distant cousin who is dealing with the same problem as you are. 

Inspect Your Other Connections

If talking to your inner circle will not result in finding a new roommate, don’t start searching for strangers to move in with right away! Think about other places and groups of people with whom you can bring up this topic. You can ask your colleagues at work, co-students at the university, or, maybe, the members of your book club or volunteer community.

Don’t underestimate the power of connections! Even though someone might recommend you a person you’ve never met before, it would be better than living with a total stranger. There’s still a person you know who can vouch for your future roommate and who can provide you with their opinion about them.

Use Social Media

Talked with everyone you know, including a guy working in the nearby bodega, yet no leads on a potential roommate? Take advantage of a combination of your weak ties and modern technology! Sounds too complicated? Simply speaking, write a post on your Facebook or Instagram profile, or post a few tweets.

Similarly to reaching out to your colleagues or friends, you let your contacts know that you’re looking for a roommate, except that your online connections might be those you know, or at least briefly got acquainted with, but haven’t talked to for a while. Maybe you will reconnect with your high-school friend who plans to move to the same city or find a perfect roommate thanks to your cousin’s repost. 

how to find roommate

Switch to Dedicated Online Services

If you fail to find anyone you know who is searching for a roommate as well or just don’t want to become BFFs with the person you’ll share your apartment with, use some online roommate finders.

These days there are plenty of websites dedicated to helping people with the same problem as yours. For example, you can use good old  Craigslist or created specifically for this purpose, Roomster. You can also check out some groups on Facebook or even try your luck on Reddit. Just make sure to carefully read the applications, listen to your gut, and don’t rush into agreeing with the first stranger you find on the Internet!

The trick, of course, is not to only find a potential roommate but also to confirm you’re on the same page and, what’s even more important, they are reliable and trustworthy. Here’s what you should be aware of when making a decision.

How to Make Sure Your Potential Roommate is The One

  • Do a Background Check

Moving in with a stranger is always a risk. That is why you should always do your best to verify the credibility of the person you are going to share an apartment with. First of all, you can run a background check on your roommate using a screening service. Additionally, check out their social media accounts to get a general understanding of what kind of person they are. 

  • Ask the Right Questions

You will be sharing a home with this person, so you have the right to ask questions about their lifestyle and living history. Of course, stay polite and don’t cross the line! Think about all the questions you want to ask before your meeting or, even better, write them down, especially those not common for a standard roommate interview. For example, if you are vegan and can’t imagine living with a person eating meat, ensure it will not slip your mind during the conversation!

  • Tell the Truth

Don’t try to present yourself in the best light possible when you get to know each other and discuss details of your possible co-living. Be honest! If you decide not to mention that you’re a smoker, love playing guitar in the evenings, or host couchsurfers over the weekends, it might cause big trouble later. They will find out everything quickly, and you’d be forced to start from scratch. 

Finding a roommate might be a lengthy and exhausting process, or it can turn out to be a piece of cake. Use a few ways of searching for potential roommates at once and make sure to verify the person before moving in with them. This will guarantee a successful and, hopefully, long and happy co-living! And if you are still looking for a place to live in as well, use Rentberry to rent the best property for you.

Author Bio: Mariia Kislitsyna serves as an editor and writer for the Rentberry and Landlord Tips Blogs, dedicating the majority of her time to finding great new cities and interesting real estate information to write about. As a polyglot and literature fanatic, she also enjoys writing about culture, travel, and career, and she’s been featured in and written for a variety of publications across the web.

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