Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Renting with Roommates

With September just around the corner, that means many first time renters are just about ready to leave the nest and live on their own.  With rental prices so high, many have considered taking on a roommate, and are looking forward to living with friends. However, sharing an apartment with friends isn’t as easy as many think, here are few tips on how to make the transition smooth.


As many first time renters are usually students or recent grads, they’re usually under strict schedules and lots of stress. If this is your case, you probably don’t want to be up all night because your roommate decided to throw a party in your new apartment. Be sure to set up ground rules, best thing is to have a white board calendar setup so you and your roommates can keep each other posted with study times, parties, tv times etc. You can also write when you’re on late night shift or early shifts, so your roommates will know when to keep the noise level down.


In addition to splitting the cost of rent and utilities, roommates also share the responsibility of keeping the apartment clean.  So be sure to discuss all the chores that need to be looked after, from taking out the trash to vacuuming. Be sure to establish what “clean” means so you’re all clear with what has to be done, by when and how. Sometimes it’s best to go room by room to create your chore list, this way you won’t forget anything. Once you have a list of chores divide them up, try to split the chores as evenly as possible, and establish a schedule for when chores must be done. Also, set up a rotating schedule, so either every two weeks or every month you switch chores. Be sure to set up a chart for everyone to follow and keep track of the chores. If you know you or your roommate won’t keep up with the chores list, then come up with a set of consequences to impose when someone fails to do their chores. This will help you from slacking off and will make sure you keep your apartment clean.


Are you having difficulties agreeing or find yourselves always arguing then it’s time to set ground rules. Talk thru whatever the problem is; don’t keep it bottled up as this isn’t helping anyone solve the issue. Try to bring things up as you notice them; don’t wait for weeks to go by before you bring it to your roommates’ attention that you don’t like them borrowing your things.  Most importantly, to avoid conflict set up rules, like no people over on study nights, no borrowing without asking, if you finish the milk then add it to the grocery list, or if you finish the toilet paper then put a new roll etc. etc. These simple rules will help prevent the little things from turning into a big issue.


Make sure your roommate and you agree to notify each other if you’re having company, especially if your guests are going to be spending the night. Be sure to establish that each one of you is responsible for your guest along with the mess they may create and any damages they cause.  This is important as you don’t want to be cleaning after your roommate’s guests.


Remember you’re no longer living at home, so no one will be looking or cleaning up after you. So be responsible, clean up after yourself, tidy your apartment, and manage your time and money wisely. Don’t forget, you just signed a 1-year lease so you’re legally-bound to your new place and your roommate.


If you’re still searching for that perfect new place in Toronto, that is close to work or school be sure to visit for complete list of availabilities, floor plans, pictures and property videos. With 11 buildings around the city, renting couldn’t be easier!

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