There are rules to this roommate thing. While most of us know this, some of us seem to have skipped over this lesson growing up. Every roommate wants different things. Some don’t mind a fairly messy space as long as the kitchen is clean. Others need their home to be spotless in order for them to live well. Whatever your preference, it is best practice to find a common ground with those around you so that you can have a stress free home environment. Here are a few tips we thought of to help you out.
Acknowledge Your Differences
We are all different. This is a fact. If you’re lucky, you may become housemates with people who think, act, and live just like you. But if you find yourself living with someone who is the total opposite of you, this is okay — you just need to acknowledge what those differences are so you know how to cater to them or find compromise. You do this by having conversations with them. Asking questions and getting to know who you live with. You may even find some commonalities and create ways to cater to one another.
Being considerate of the needs of others is perhaps the first and most important step in being a good housemate. This looks like knowing how they like their space. Not eating their leftover food (unless you’ve had this conversation beforehand), cleaning up behind yourself, and maintaining a reasonable noise level when other people are around. It’s best to consider that the people around you may not be just like you or like the same things you like. Find a way to honor your own needs while also considering theirs.
Find Your Strengths
The good news about living with someone else is having other people to help shoulder the burdens of the home. Taking out the trash, replacing toilet tissue, cleaning, etc. We all have our strengths and it may help you to identify what those are on your own as well as with your housemates. Work together to figure out who should take care of household tasks. You can play to your strengths and get things done at the same time.
If all else fails, you need to know how to communicate with your housemates. And not just any communication — effective communication. Cordial communication. If a problem arises, try to listen to the other person’s point of view before imposing your own. Also, if there is a persistent problem, try to address it when you’re calm, before it turns into an argument. Lastly, initiate resolve by providing a few solutions to the problem. Offer up ways you can help the problem instead of putting the blame solely on someone else.