Sometimes when you are moving out for the first time or looking to decrease the cost of living in an apartment, finding a room mate can be a great option! There are however important considerations before making the choice to share your living space. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages to having a room mate!
Rent is Cheaper!
In almost all cases, your monthly rent will be less expensive when you live with someone else! The difference in rent price when adding one or two extra bedrooms to the apartment can be minimal as you share all the common areas like the kitchen, bathroom or living room. Other expenses asides from rent such as hydro, electricity or internet are all less expensive when you split them two or more ways!
Two Heads are Better than One
When you are living with someone else, it means that you will almost always have an extra hand with things around the house. If someone goes on vacation, the other can take care of the dog, pick up mail or water the plants. When you are both around it means someone to cook or clean with, company on a quite night staying in or even some extra advice for work or school. You might be pleasantly surprised what you can learn from someone else who is in your direct living environment; often a good room mate can turn into a great friend!
At the end of the day, having a room mate means you are going to be two or more in the same home and for many people this can mean an extra sense of security. Whether you are living on your own for the first time or just prefer having someone else in your living environment, a room mate provides the security of never having to be alone and someone to rely on in case of emergency in the home.
It’s not All About You
When you live with a room mate, one of the few disadvantages is that you need to take your room mate’s opinion into consideration before making decisions concerning your common living space or household issues. This might mean that you cannot always react on your first instinct, which can be frustrating at times. You will need to find a compromise.
You have to Share Your Common Space
Sometimes when you need your own space or ‘down time’ you may only be able to find it in your own room. When you have a room mate, you share common space like the kitchen, living room or bathroom and your room mate is equally entitled to this space. Setting ground rules for having people over or noise at certain hours is often a great way to avoid conflicts but be forewarned that having a room mate does mean less privacy.
When you live with someone you both take on responsibilities, not all of them shared. One of the disadvantages of having a room mate is that you need to rely on the other person to pay their share of bills, take part in cleaning and maintaining a positive living space. If a good system is set in place from the beginning, you should not have too much to worry about, but it is something to consider.
If you decide living with someone is right for you, you should check out our recommendations for things to discuss with a room mate before moving in! It could save you a headache or two and make sure that you and your new room mate are on the same page before sharing a living space!