Living with someone you get along with is easier said than done. Follow our tips on How To Choose the Right Housemates.
1. Be honest
If you want a housemate that enjoys chatting and being social, say that. If you seek a housemate who is quiet and studious, then make this known. Being honest helps narrow down the most suitable housemate.
2. First impressions count
Whatever your first point of contact with a potential candidate is (be it by phone or email) use it to find out as much as you can about them prior to arranging a meeting with them in person. By doing so, you will weed out the undesirables before going through the effort of meeting them all.
3. Preparation is key
Have a list of questions and topics to discuss so you both know where you and the potential housemate stand. Typical issues you might want to cover may include – how much the rent and bills are, what cycle they are paid on, as well as whether they have a stable income and what their typical weekly routine is. Also mention if there are any existing house rules or routines that may conflict with other housemates.
4. Address the same criteria to each potential housemate
When seeking a housemate, you will more than likely speak to quite a few people before deciding. Make sure each question you ask is the same for each person, so you can easily compare your responses.
5. Enlist the help of a friend
Once you’ve narrowed down your preferred candidates, ask a friend who knows you well to come along and meet them too. Often a second opinion is helpful and provides perspective. They may be able to spot red flags you overlooked.
6. Reference check
Always check references. Speaking with people who used to live with each candidate is a great way to find out what they’re like to live with.
7. Trust your instincts
If you have a bad gut feeling about someone, don’t ignore it. If you have negative feelings about someone you only just met, it’s unlikely that feeling will go away.
If you’re looking to re-decorate your rental, see our Interior Design Tricks That Won’t Upset Your Landlord.