Three People, Two Rooms: How to Divide Living Expenses

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Three People, Two Rooms: How to Divide Living Expenses

Staff Writer · May 19, 2011

If you have three people living in a two bedroom apartment, you may be confused about how to divide your living expenses. While typically living expenses between two roommates are divided equally, a third roommate makes the calculation a little more difficult.

Base It on the Bathrooms

If two of the three roommates are sharing a bathroom, the individual with a private bathroom should pay a larger share of the living expenses. Usually, a private bathroom is worth $50 to $100 more a month, depending on the size of the bathroom. Note, however, that this solution might not work if the third occupant has a private bathroom, but the other two roommates occupy large bedrooms or have a more luxurious bathroom.

Base it on Square Footage

To determine the value of each space, calculate the square footage price of each room. To do so, divide the entire apartment’s square footage by the amount of rent you pay. This calculation gives you the price per foot of your apartment. Next, consult the apartment floor plan to determine the exact size of each room. Multiple the total number of square feet by the price per foot and voila! You now have the cost of that room. This method allows you to specify the dollar amount each roommate owes.

Estimate and Move On

While perhaps this method might mean paying a few dollars more for the square feet you occupy, estimating the amount of money the three of you should pay may be a more congenial way to handle the problem. After all, do you really want to be overly picky with the people you live with? As long the amount each party pays somewhat relates to their living quarters, set the amount and go have some fun.

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