Photo from Pexels.

Photo from Pexels.

Your roommate is someone you will likely end up spending more time with than anyone else during your first year. Being an only child, I had to learn to adjust to another person sharing the room and working around them. Living with someone can have its ups and downs, but if you talk to your roommate about these concerns before you move in, things will go more smoothly.

1. Activities

Do you have any common interests with them? Sports, clubs, music or anything like that will help you bond with them. Even if you don’t have that many things in common, that can still be a good thing. Being exposed to new activities can help you pick up new hobbies and you’ll be able to learn more about your roommate and their background. Also, if some of your activities overlap, you could even go to the first meeting of the year together, making the experience a little less intimidating.

2. Having friends over

How do you go about friends staying over? As an introvert, I had to prepare myself  to socialize when my roommate would have a ton of people over. So maybe you’re the type of person that needs a text five minutes before or you need a day’s notice before people show up at your door. Either way, it’s good to communicate this so there are no surprises. You could also talk about what times are appropriate. If you have to be up at six in the morning, it’s probably best if there aren’t people in your room at two in the morning.

3. Schedules

What is your class schedule/work schedule like? It’s good to know when you’ll have alone time in your room to study or hang out with friends. My roommate and I found it useful to know each other’s schedules so we could hang out or get food together. I suggest putting both of your schedules on a calendar. That way it’s convenient for the both of you since everything is in one place. Plus, knowing when they’ll wake up and go to bed is important so you won’t be surprised when you wake up at early to a blaring alarm clock.

4. Weekends

What do you usually do on the weekends? Some people tend to go home, others go out to get food at three in the morning, and some just stay in and watch movies. It’s good to discuss what you like to do and what your roommate likes to do. That way, you’ll be able to bond with your roommate while doing activities that you’ll both enjoy. My roommate and I would choose a different activity to do every few weekends or so, just to keep things interesting. It’s also good to discuss this simply because  you’ll know if you should wait up for them, or if you’ll have the room to yourself for the night.

5. Organization/Respect of Property

How clean are they? How clean are you? If one is neat and the other is not, things can get messy in the friendship pretty quickly. I was a bit more organized with my things than my roommate was, but luckily, we were able to work together to clean up when we needed to. Try to talk about who has what chores, like taking out the trash and who sweeps. Also, how do you feel about them borrowing your things? It’s good to have a healthy relationship and tell each other what items can be borrowed and what can’t. Drawing these lines can help prevent arguments.

Getting along with you roommate is going to be a challenge at first, as you’re getting used to living with each other. There will be some bickering over some things at first. But try to be open minded and figure out what works for the both of you. If you get the serious concerns out of the way, you’ll be able to enjoy the year and possibly become great friends with your roommate.

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