How To Keep The Peace Through These Common Roommate Arguments

When deciding to embark on a new living journey with one or more new roommates, it's normal to feel a mixture of excitement and nervousness. There is something fun about starting out on a new journey, but it's normal to be nervous about sharing the most intimate parts of yourself with someone else. Whether this person is a best friend or an acquaintance, sharing your home is a big undertaking. When you move in with another person, they are going to know your bad habits, your weaknesses, and your deal breakers. This is why it's important to have a conversation about what you expect in a roommate beforehand.

Before you even sign that lease agreement, you need to have a conversation with this person about your boundaries. There is so much to consider and discuss, so it's helpful to break these boundaries down into categories (via Elite Daily). By having these conversations early, you and your living partners can start off with an understanding without conflict or resentment. 

Splitting up chores

Before you even sign your lease agreement, have a conversation with your new roommate about chore division. There are easy ways to do this before resentment builds into passive-aggressive suggestions. First, find out what everyone's preferences are. Maybe one of you enjoys doing the dishes, one of you doesn't mind tidying up, and another prefers to clean the bathroom (via Elite Daily). Or, to keep everyone from getting sick of their favorite chores, switch things up each month.

It's even more likely that a chore rotation schedule would benefit you so that the day-to-day work is already decided. No matter how you choose to assign the chores, having a conversation from the get-go is essential to peace at home.

The rules with company

Even if you and your roommate are already friends, chances are you have different friend groups that don't overlap. In addition, one of you may need to work early in the morning, while the other roommate may be a night owl. State your expectations for how each of you will welcome guests. 

How much notice do you need and where will they stay are great decisions to be made. Is there a time at night when you can no longer be a great host or hostess? Draw a boundary for guests in your own home and allow your roommates to do the same (via Room Surf).

Paying the bills

Although each of you will have your own personal bills, there will be bills you share. Gas, water, electric, cable, and rent are all essential bills that need attention each month. Establish who will pay each bill and how you will each get the money to one another (whether you're giving cash each month, doing a Zelle transfer, or cutting checks). Find out the due dates for the specific bills and decide which day the roommate needs your share of the money in order to remain in good standing with each company. 

Money Geek suggests writing it all down and putting it somewhere you can all access it. Moreover, even if it's difficult, it does help to discuss what you'll need to do if one person falls short during any given month. Having a plan for your financial obligations may be one of the most important plans you can outline.

Significant others

Inevitably, one or more of you and your roommates will have a significant other who will want to visit and possibly stay over. Decide from the outset how that will work with each of your boundaries. If you have separate rooms with closing doors, this conversation may be easier than if you have an open-air loft. 

It's imperative that each person living in their own home feel comfortable with what is happening in the home. Rent explains that common significant other mishaps include a partner staying too long, using too many utilities or resources, and failing to pick up their messes. Because you have entered into a lease with your roommate and not their partner, it is definitely important to outline your expectations before it becomes an issue.

The perfect temperature

A big point of contention with anyone who has ever shared a living space with someone else is the temperature. If one of you runs pretty warm and the other is always cold, there may need to be a compromise made. The person who prefers the indoor temperature to be at 67 degrees may need to come up a degree or two to meet in the middle with a person who prefers it to be 73 degrees. 

Living together means compromise, and the temperature expectations should be outlined before you move in, says Irish Heating and Air. Be empathetic and willing to adjust to keep a happy home.

Using each other's things

There is nothing worse than going into your closet or refrigerator looking for something you know you left there, only to find out it's been taken by your roommate. In addition, there are always going to be times when you run out of something and may need to borrow it from your roommate. 

When it comes to clothes, shampoo, and even food, have a conversation about what's acceptable for you. Maybe you don't mind sharing, but you expect your supply or your item to be replaced in a day or so. In addition, asking permission is a courtesy you may expect. State these expectations early for harmony at home, says Thought Co.

Cleanliness expectations

Since everyone is different, each person has a different tolerance when it comes to day-to-day cleanliness, discuss with your roommates the expectations for community spaces. Maybe it works better for all of you if each person washes their dish just after they use it, or maybe making sure the common area is clutter-free before you go to bed each night is needed (via Doorsteps). No matter what you decide, stick to it out of respect for your roommates. 

Sharing a living space with someone else doesn't have to be stressful. In order to optimize fun and peace at your home, sit down with your roommates and discuss each point of potential contention before even putting your name on the lease. You'll be glad you've defined boundaries, and you'll be more likely to enjoy your living space that much more.