5 Tips to Find the Right College Roommate

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5 Tips to Find the Right College Roommate

Jessica Lee · Jul 25, 2023

Whether you’re an incoming college student feeling anxious about your potential dorm roommate or a budget-conscious graduate student preparing to embrace adulthood, choosing a compatible roommate can be a challenging endeavor.

Here are some tips for when you’re looking for a roommate: 

  1. Start looking now: Once you’ve decided where you’ll be attending, it’s never too early to begin searching for a roommate. Take your time and avoid rushing into choosing someone who only meets a few of your criteria. Get to know your potential roommate’s lifestyle, personality, study habits, and more before committing to living with them for a year.
  2. Know where to look: There are several good options for finding your next college roommate. Most universities have Facebook groups specifically created for incoming freshmen and new students, providing an opportunity to connect and get to know each other before setting foot on campus. This platform can be a great starting point to engage in conversations and assess individuals based on their profiles. Additionally, ApartmentRatings’ new Roommates Matching Program is another excellent resource. It allows you to create a detailed profile persona that includes your interests and goals, enabling you to find the ideal roommate that best aligns with your preferences. 

Source: ApartmentRatings Roommates Matching Program

  1. Ask the right questions: When searching for the perfect roommate, it’s crucial to consider the questions you want to ask. What are your non-negotiable rules? Are pets allowed?  Do you prefer a tidy living environment? Will both of you be studying and/or working from home and require separate spaces? Make sure to ask about their hobbies, class schedules, cleanliness, and more to gain a better understanding of their habits and preferences.
  2. Do some social media research: Social media provides a great opportunity to connect with most other students online. By conducting a quick search, you can uncover mutual friends, common interests, and shared goals. The Roommate Matching Program offers social media verification through platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and TikTok, ensuring that you are interacting with genuine people.

Source: ApartmentRatings Roommates Matching Program

  1. Be clear about your expectations: Effective communication is crucial in finding a compatible roommate. Discussing topics like noise levels, inviting guests over, and sleep schedules are great topics to start with. Clearly express what you expect from a roommate and be receptive to hearing their expectations as well. Establishing strong communication even before becoming roommates will lay a solid foundation for the duration of your lease.

Renter & Roommate Responsibilities

Finding a roommate online can be a great way to save money and make new friends, but it’s important to follow the proper procedures to ensure a successful living arrangement. One of the most important steps is to follow the application process and rental criteria set by the apartment community. This typically involves filling out an application, providing references, and passing a credit and background check, but can vary by community. Once you’ve been approved by the apartment community, work with the property manager to establish a lease agreement that outlines the terms of your tenancy and any shared responsibilities with your roommate. 

It is also important to always be cautious of requests for personal information. Never provide sensitive information such as your social security number, bank account details, or passport or driver’s license identification information, etc to a roommate. These details should be handled directly through the landlord or apartment community’s office team.

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