There are so many advantages to living with a roommate. All the expenses are cut in half, and you have someone to help clean the place and occasionally hang out with. But all of this might not be worth it if you’re living with an awful roommate. And if there’s anyone who’s an expert on bad roommates, it’s me.

I seem to be a magnet for people who don’t know how to clean the dishes (or clean anything for that matter), have no idea what personal space is, don’t know the difference between their food and my food, and seem to think that they’re the only ones living in the apartment. So I’m here to share all of my knowledge to help you avoid chaos before you have to actually live through it. There are a few red flags to watch out for to help you avoid a bad roommate:

They Have an Awful Ad

If you see a posting from a potential roommate, the ad that they put up can say a lot about them. For example, if their ad is riddled with spelling and grammar mistakes, this may be a red flag. If they don’t take the three seconds to read over the ad that they made, what are the chances that they’re going to take the time to, say, do the dishes, lock the door at night or take out the garbage every once in awhile?

Their References Have Nothing Good to Say

It’s always a good idea to ask for references for your future roommate, like a person that they previously lived with. Chances are, this person is going to be honest with you about their experience living with your potential roommate. For example, if someone called me about a reference to my past roommate, I would probably let them know that she spills things and leaves it there until I clean it up.

They Don’t Have A Job

Avoid roommate problems by asking if they have a job or a way to pay the bills. Unless their parents will be paying rent for their apartment, the fact that they don’t have any income may mean that they could have trouble paying the bills, leaving you with the monthly rent every time. You want someone who is going to be consistently reliable financially so you can avoid a renter’s nightmare. It’s no fun living from month to month not knowing if your roommate will be able to pay the bills this time.

They’re Messy

Look up your potential roommate’s social media profiles. This may offer you some in-depth info on not only their personality, but how they live as well. Maybe there’s a photo of them in their room. Is their room extremely messy and covered in clothes? You want someone who is going to be able to pick up after themselves so you’re not ending up being the maid every time the apartment needs to be cleaned.


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