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What to ask a potential roommate to see if you’re compatible

Published on January 15, 2018

Living with roommates can be an enjoyable experience, however, realising that you and your roommate are completely incompatible can ruin an otherwise peaceful home.

Here’s our Questionnaire to help you get at the heart of a future roomie’s lifestyle without being intrusive and find out if you’re a match made in roommate heaven.

Can you put down a deposit?

You need to protect yourself in case your roommate skips out on the rent.

Are you a smoker?

The answer could be a deal breaker depending on your own habits. Your housing agreement may require smokers to smoke outside, so it’s important to know if potential roommates smoke and how often.

What do you do on the weekends?

A good question to find out if you have anything in common. Knowing what interests your future roomie has can help you to discover if your living arrangements will be successful. For instance, if you’re more of a homebody then you might not have much in common with someone who’s a party animal.

Do you have pets? Are you thinking of getting any?

Your building may have pet restrictions, especially if you’re renting. And not to mention any allergies that you may have yourself.

What do you do for a living?

Finding out the occupation of potential roommates is a good idea as you’ll want to know their hours of work or if they work from home. It’ll also come in handy to know if interviewees can afford the rent, especially if they work part-time.

What’s your workday like?

This will help you get a sense of when they shower to make sure you both don’t use the bathroom at the same time every morning.

Do you work from home?

Will it annoy you to have your roommate home during the day? Having someone in the apartment all day will also lead to higher electricity and utility bills.

What time do you go to bed?

A handy question to ask as you might not want to live with someone who is a night owl if you go to bed early. Also, if you’re a light sleeper, someone who blasts music at odd hours may not be ideal.

How often do you clean?

Rather than simply asking if they’re clean or not, find out how often they pick up a cleaning sponge. Ask them which chores they like and which ones they hate. Be honest about your habits too and check whether they’d be up for investing in a professional cleaning service.

What’s your relationship status?

You don’t need to care whether potential roommates are single or in a relationship but it could potentially be a problem if their other half likes to stay over a lot. Suddenly, you’ll find yourself signing on for a third roommate you’ve never met, a messier home and more utility costs. On the other hand, your roommate may end up spending less time at home which might be an unforeseen benefit.

How do you plan to stay?

Life doesn’t always pan out as we hope it to, but if you’re looking for a long-term roomie, weed out those who know they’ll only be in the city for a short time.

Do you have references?

Always get references as you don’t always know if a future roommate is being completely honest. Ask for a reference from a former roomie or landlord in order to discover if the candidate will make a good roommate.




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