Since I moved away from my parents five years ago, I’ve been living with roommates. All sorts of roommates – some where friends, even close friends, others were just roommates with whom I shared a laugh and a nice meal with every once in a while and one in particular was definitely not a friend, on the contrary.
Having moved to Amsterdam now, I’m sharing an apartment with two other lovely ladies – one of which is a dear friend of mine, the other I didn’t know beforehand but look very much forward to getting to know. Although I have wondered if it would be a good idea to move in with my friend, fearing if it would eventually lead to an ending of our friendship, I’ve come to following conclusion: Why not!? We’ve been friends for almost a decade now and are both up-front and straight-forward people who handle situations as they come and are more than willing to compromise for the better good of our friendship. As such, I think we have a good basis for developing into good roomies as well. However, my situation has made me think: Are there ways in which to prevent clashes between roomies?
In my five years of roomie experience, I’ve come to believe that rules can prevent clashes between roomies along with compromise and a general consideration of each other. In general, I think you come a long way with respect and common courtesy. As such, there are certain basic rules I find important to discuss when moving in with roomies:
- Noise: At what hours is it for example okay to wash/dry wash your clothes, hear semi loud music, argue with a boy/girlfriend or, simply, just vacuum your room?
- Personal privacy and space: What privacy needs do your roomies have and when it is okay to disturb them?
- Personal daily routines:When are you cleaning, cooking, showering?
- Guests and boyfriends: Is it okay to just bring people over to the apartment? Or should you let your roomies know in advance? What if people are staying for an extended period of time?
- Parties: You should probably ask for permission to throw parties anyway. However, what about rules for parties? And party guests? Is it okay to invite friends of friends? Can they sleep over in the living room? Who cleans after the party and when?
- Kitchen: There are many rules to be set in the kitchen… Cleaning after cooking, dishes or dishwasher, personal fridge and cabinet space, meal routines etc. Also, do you share your food? Is it okay to dig into your roomies supplies?
- Cleaning: How often, what rooms, when during the week and how much cleaning?
- Decoration of joint areas: Joint areas are joint – should you ask for permission from roomies before decorating?
- General behaviour: The passive aggressive thing – not cool. Always treat others the way you yourself would like to be treated, and remember that you come a long way with respect and compromise.
What are your experience with roommates and rules? How have you dealt with clashes? Please, do share – advice is always well received!
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