Living with a roommate or housemate can be particularly challenging at times, since each person has his own habits, which somebody else may find bothersome. So if you’re going to live with a roommate, especially for an extended period of time, then it’s important to try to find common ground, since otherwise things can become aggravating. No matter how calm you are or how good your ‘people skills’ tend to be, an annoying, stubborn or difficult roommate can really get on your nerves. With that in mind, here are seven reliable tips to help you deal with an unfriendly roommate:
1. Discuss Your Expectations From Day One
We all know that it’s easier and better to prevent than to treat, and this principle applies to roommates – why suffer through an argument if you can prevent it from arising in the first place? It’s important to talk about your expectations from the beginning. How will the two of you deal with intimate visits? How will you agree to use the common rooms, such as the bathroom or the kitchen? What about noise? How will you share the rent and the bills? All of these issues are important, and they are better discussed face-to-face rather than via email, text messages or post-it notes. Make sure to clearly state your expectations for your roommate, and to listen to his or her expectations at the same time – keep in mind that having a roommate is a two-way street. Also, many people would agree that posting a whiteboard with the ‘house rules’ on it can help you remember each other’s expectations and to avoid running afoul of them.