At some point, just about everyone is looking for a roommate. Sometimes it’s as easy as calling a long-lost friend, other times it’s tougher than an overcooked pork chop. If you’ve opened your roommate search to include strangers, there are some very important questions to ask before committing to a lease with someone you don’t really know.
Just to make sure you cover all the bases, make a checklist of important matters to discuss before you meet your potential roomies. It’ll be easier to compare notes later if you ask all the candidates similar questions. Use those below as a starting point, and add your own. Remember, if you don’t ask, you’ll never know.
1. Whaddya got?
It’s important to discuss the volume of belongings a potential roommate will be bringing in, especially if the residence has shared storage space. Discuss furniture and electronic item placement in shared spaces only with serious candidates. You can plan accordingly after you choose a roommate.
2. Are you looking for a new best friend or half the rent?
The above is a surprisingly overlooked question for its importance. You may be surprised to find a new BFF isn’t quite what you’re in the market for, or that a seldom-seen loner isn’t your idea of company. It’s up to you, but it’s certainly a question worth asking.
3. What’s up with your love life?
Love is inconstant, temperamental, and in the case of roommates, up in your face. Don’t be afraid to ask your potential roomie about their love situation, as it’s more than likely the significant other will spend the night at your house at some time or another.
4. Do you have any pets?
This question is a vital one if your apartment doesn’t allow pets. Ask in advance and make sure your candidates understand the policy. If your place doesn’t have such restrictions, it’s still a good idea to ask. People keep interesting pets these days – you never know what could show up at your doorstep.
5. How do you relax?
It’s important to know how your potential housemate spends their free time, as you may find the hobby conflicts with your lifestyle. Does the person ski? Play computer games non-stop? Collect rare poisonous bugs? Drink paint thinner? Whatever the case, you’ll be glad you asked.