Regardless of your own experiences, you've probably met people who have raved about great roommate relationships they've had as well as people who have complained about problems that roommates have caused them.
This shows that having a roommate can be a positive or a negative experience, and it reminds us of two truths when it comes to finding a roommate:
- Roommates aren't for everyone, and they may not be for you at all times of your life.
- A great roommate for one person may be a poor choice for another.
Keeping these important points in mind, here's a three-step plan you can follow to find the perfect roommate:
Step #1: Understand What's Behind a Great Roommate Relationship
You'll greatly increase the chances of finding the right roommate if you learn what great roommate relationships are made of.
To start, keep in mind that finding a roommate is different than finding a friend. Sure, you and your roommate should like each other. But it's more about compatibility than likeability. When roommate relationships don't work out, it's usually because the two people realize that they're not compatible with each other.
Also, although just about anyone can turn out to be the perfect roommate, some types of roommate candidates are more promising than others. In fact, it may surprise you to learn, for example, that someone other than your best friend may prove to be a wiser choice when selecting an apartment roommate.
Step #2: Decide if Having a Roommate Is Right for You
There are strong, convincing reasons to have a roommate just as there are compelling arguments why you might want to live alone. Remember that the decision of whether to share your apartment with another person is personal and only yours to make, and you should do it carefully.
Review and weigh the pros and cons of having a roommate, and then determine for yourself whether sharing your apartment with another person is the best situation for you.
Finally, if you think you do want to live with a roommate, take a moment to consider whether you're doing so for the right reasons. Just because you've done it before, for instance, doesn't mean it's the right answer now -- even if the experience was completely positive.
Step #3: Find the Right Roommate
So, you've decided you don't want to live alone and you know what you're looking for when it comes to apartment roommates. All you have to do now is find the right person.
Many apartment dwellers look for a roommate at the same time they search for an apartment. Others already live in an apartment and, for whatever reason, decide at some point that they want to share it.
Whichever situation you're in, don't despair if you have no idea whom to consider for your roommate. Some apartment dwellers are lucky because they already know someone who would make a great roommate.
But if you don't know anyone, you can find a roommate online using Web services. Most notably, several online roommate-matching services let you create a profile or ad, search a large database, and meet potential matches.
Once you've found a roommate candidate or two, take the time to get to know more about the person. Set up roommate candidate meetings so you can meet candidates and ask them questions that go toward helping ensure that you'll end up rooming with someone with whom you're compatible. Also, don't forget to make sure you keep safety in mind when arranging these roommate candidate meetings.