Finding a roommate is one of the most daunting aspects of going to college. You’ve most likely never lived away from home before, and you’re not sure how to find someone compatible to live with.
Your first year in college can be overwhelming and lonely, especially if you don’t know anyone at your new school. But just because it’s hard doesn’t mean that finding a roommate shouldn’t be part of your college experience.
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Living in College: How to Find a College Roommate
You and your roommate are going to spend a lot of time together, so you must find someone you can get along with. If their habits irritate or frustrate you, then getting through the school year could be difficult.
Follow our top six tips to find a college roommate to make new memories and enjoy college with:
- Ask Your Friends and Family
When you’re beginning your search, let your friends and family members know you’re looking for a roommate. Ask them if they know anyone going to your school. Your parents could even ask their coworkers to see if their kids are attending your college. Checking with your network first is a great idea because chances are, you’ll be more comfortable living with a “friend of a friend” rather than a total stranger.
- Make a List of Qualities You Want in a Roommate
To find the perfect roommate, you must first make a list of qualities you want in yours. Consider things like gender, age, interests, habits, and personality. For example, if you’re an extrovert who loves to party and have friends over, you may not want to live with someone who prefers quiet time at home. Be honest about your expectations from the beginning and keep the list up-to-date as your needs change.
- Find a Roommate on Social Media
There are many social media websites you can use to find a roommate. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are popular platforms among college students today. For example, you can join your university’s Facebook group and create a post announcing your search for a roommate. Introduce yourself and share what you’re looking for in a roommate. You never know who you’ll find!
- Try Roommate-Matching Websites
Roommate-matching websites make finding roommates online easier. The most popular ones are RoomSync.com and Roommates.com. You can think of them like dating websites, where you share the basics about yourself and match with other people looking for roommates with something in common. When joining these websites, you’ll provide information about your interests, academic major, personality traits, habits, gender, and more. Get to know other people’s pet peeves before even meeting them in person!
- Prepare Interview Questions for Potential Roommates
Make the most out of your in-person roommate meetings by preparing a few interview questions. You’ll have the best shot at finding a good fit by asking these questions:
- What do you like to do for fun?
- Where did you go to high school?
- What are your hobbies and interests?
- Why did you choose this college?
- What are you studying?
- How long have you lived in the area?
Next, discuss lifestyles and what you hope to get out of living together:
- What is your typical sleep schedule like?
- How often will you be home?
- Do you have a significant other, and will he/she be over often?
- Do you require total quietness to study without distractions?
- How do you feel about studying together?
- Are you introverted or extroverted?
- How do you feel about having friends over?
- Are you allergic to pets? (if you plan to bring a dog or cat with you to college)
- Would you consider yourself to be a neat freak?
- What time do you get up in the morning?
- Do you smoke, drink, or party?
- How do you prefer to communicate? (text, phone, email)
- Meet People in Person to Gauge the Fit
Once you’ve exchanged a few texts or online messages with someone, it’s time to get down to business and meet them at a public place. You want to make sure that you not only like the person but that your personalities mesh well with each other. It’s also smart to meet with several potential college roommates so that if one doesn’t work out, there are other prospects.
Interacting in person allows you to get to know each other better and see how that person would fit in your life and vice versa. Remember to keep the interview questions in mind as you search for “the one.”
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Finding a Good Roommate Can Enhance Your College Experience
Having fun college roommates that align with your lifestyle can make school more enjoyable. But finding the ideal roommate may take some time. Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t find a good match right away. As long as you’re persistent and keep looking, you’ll eventually find someone who fits your puzzle!