The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

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The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

Roommate rules 101: how to be the perfect roomie

Over the past year or so, I’ve had some interesting conversations with friends about roommate problems. If you are one of the few people who can’t relate to this, then count yourself lucky!
You’ve obviously discovered a secret many of us are forced to learn the hard way.
For the rest of us, the first solution of “don’t have a roommate” is clearly out. For college students, money is tight.
Having roommates becomes a necessity as it is one of the many ways to cut expenses.
The other option then is to learn how to prevent disastrous roommate situations and be the kind of roommate you would want to live with.
I have had my fair share of good and bad roommate situations, so I’ll share what I’ve learned from these experiences. I guess we can go ahead and call these “roommate rules.”
The first is to be up front and explicit about expectations right from the start. I’ve noticed that many people assume their roommates to be mind-readers. Let’s just say I wouldn’t be writing this article if they were.
If house parties during the week or dishes left in the sink are not your cup of tea, say something. It doesn’t get much simpler than that.
The next rule is to communicate about problems in person.
Writing a novel of complaints on Post-It notes and sticking them on bathroom mirrors and refrigerator doors is not the way to go. I’ll give you points for creativity, but this is not going to solve any problems.
One of the biggest complaints I’ve heard is about roommates being slobs. I’ve also heard arguments that a little messiness leads to a more homey environment.
The problem is that everyone has different definitions of being messy and what is crossing the line. The best way to avoid this is to confine the mess to your room. If you don’t mind not seeing your floor, there’s nothing wrong with that as long as you leave those habits in your own area.
The last rule plays off of something we were taught starting in kindergarten: Most of you may know it as the Golden Rule.
This entails treating your roommate how you would like to be treated. It’s not fair to expect behavior that you aren’t reciprocating.
Basically, don’t expect your roommate to play housewife if you come and go as you please. You aren’t living with your mom anymore. When in doubt about appropriate behavior for a situation, this is your go-to rule.
Many people ask whether it’s better to live with friends or find roommates through online websites like Craigslist. Kendall Skolnik (senior, Communication Studies) has had positive experiences with both.
“I’ve lived with one of my best friends before and we had a really good time together,” Skolnik said.
“I’ve also used roommate finder websites and have been happy. You could build a really good friendship with someone that you didn’t know you could. You just have to be safe and really interview each other prior to moving in.”
Your roommate situations should be positive experiences of your college years.
Be conscious of some of these rules and you’ll notice your roommate complaints to be fewer and far between.

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Roommate rules 101: how to be the perfect roomie