Calling potential roommates

Alison Czaplicki

Finding a roommate is exciting, but can quickly turn into horror. With everything else the end of spring semester brings, finding a new roommate for next fall is another item on many students’ to-do list.

Asking these questions when seeking a potential roommate will eliminate the extremes. Rolling into my fourth year of experience in this field has taught me what to ask future roommates to stop the terror before it happens.

1. How do you feel about a clean apartment/house?

I have lived with girls, guys and at
times a mix of the two. Both of these species are equally messy, and I had to find out the hard way. If you don’t mind sitting next to a McDonald’s bag of old, smelly food while watching TV, then skip this question.

2. What is your social life like?

A student with a pre-med major who is involved with eight different clubs, and president of most of them, is not someone who can live with a social butterfly having weekly get-togethers involving three cases of Natty Light. Agree on social gatherings and noise levels at the house before your study time turns into Drake shaking your walls for five hours a night.

3. Do you have a job?

If you plan to pay the bills, it is necessary your roommate has a source of financial income. If not a job, a parent’s bank account will work too. Paying for the amenities alone on a college budget, especially when beer money comes first, is not doable.

4. Have you had a roommate before?

It is an advantage if your roommate has past experience with sharing space. It is a red flag if they have seven
different roommates in one year. Find out their baggage.

5. What type of furniture do you have?

If your potential roommate has only a bed and dresser you will need to discuss finding couches, tables and chairs. You will need to find an affordable price you can both spend on necessary items. If the potential roommate comes with a huge flat screen TV, two couches and multiple furnishings, they are a rare find in college. Live with them.

6. Are you a night owl or a morning bird?

If you are most active and loud at night, you must find someone who can adapt to that schedule. Someone who has Biology at 8 a.m. every Tuesday will not want you blaring music and having friends over until late Monday night. If it is too late when you realize your schedules are opposites, thankfully there is ZzzQuil and coffee.

Now that you know the answers to these questions, ask yourself whether or not you can tolerate the answers. If the answer includes
an enormous TV for your living space, you may have to compromise living with the piles of dirty dishes in your kitchen.