TV makes moving in with friends seem like the best thing ever. You picture yourself joking around like Joey and Chandler, going on adventures like Dennis and Mac, and maybe even sharing a bathtub like Bert and Ernie. In reality, it’s messy. I just had a friend who accused her roommate of stealing her money, now she’s refusing to pay for bills, which by the way she has no proof that the roommate actually stole the money.
So to keep you from gaining a roommate, and in-turn losing a friend, here are some tips to keep your shared space drama-free:
- Get the awkward money chat out of the way. When you’re looking for a place together, be upfront about your budget, and if you’re in charge of the house hunting, make sure you follow everyone else’s. And there are going to be shared expenses down the road, so make sure everyone is on the same page before issues even pop up. How are you splitting the internet and streaming services? Are you in charge of your own groceries? Get ahead of as much as possible.
- Don’t be the slob. Your room is your sanctuary. If you want to live like your on an episode of Hoarders, that’s your place to do it. But when it comes to communal spaces, keep it clean and tidy. Nobody wants to live with someone that leave’s dirty dishes and clothes everywhere. It’s just disrespectful and your friends will have every right to hate your guts.
- Spend time together. Seeing each other in the kitchen every once in awhile doesn’t count. Make time to have a real hang like you would before you became roomies. That way your friendship will outlast your lease.
- Be honest about problems. I know you’re “best friends” and you “never fight” but you should still make sure to check in on them and ask how they’re doing. Listen to any issues they have and make compromises. If you have issues, be honest with them. Don’t let things fester because that will only build resentment. Nobody wants to come home to toxic nonsense so be kind and work things out!