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By Georgiana Damas | Uncategorized | 12 Sep 2017

Sharing an apartment: an excellent option for the friendly and savvy

We all know someone that lives with at least one person. Even you might have considered it. But for some reason, you are not quite sure it would be a positive experience. After all, not everyone is willing to let outsiders come into the privacy of their home. Here are some aspects to consider before making up your mind.

What is a room-share?

By definition, a room-share is an accommodation shared by different people. Therefore, they live on the same property and share facilities as well as utilities. There are different types of room-share.

It could be an apartment or house share, meaning a group of tenants come together to rent a place to live in. Thus, each person is responsible of the place and the full rent payment.

It could also be a room for rent, which means that a landlord rents one bedroom of the accommodation to specific individual(s), while allowing access to common areas of the housing. In that case, the tenant(s) will be held responsible for the rent of their bedroom only.

What can you expect from sharing an apartment?

The best thing to do is to simply have a talk with your roommates as soon as you or they move in. That way, you can establish standard rules from the beginning, and there will be no misunderstanding. It will ensure a good ambiance at home as you do not want any issues.
As mentioned, you will have to share basic amenities and define the common areas. That would include the kitchen, bathroom and living room. Of course, you will have your privacy since only you can access your bedroom.
However, not everyone thinks the same way, and you should understand that communication is essential to avoid crisis situations. Here are some examples of things you should talk about:

  • What are common areas? Which ones are private?
  • What about chores? And the organization?
  • How would the fridge be shared?
  • Can you bring guests?
  • Is there a curfew?
  • How do you split the bills?

Besides, I would recommend getting to know the people you plan on living with, to avoid unpleasant surprises. You do not want to discover afterward that your roommates play drums every day late at night, or that their exotic pet is a tarantula. Therefore, make sure you are all on the same page when it comes to the house rules and your lifestyles.

 

What are some benefits and drawbacks?

When sharing an apartment, the benefits are various.

  • The primary advantage would be that you save a lot of money since the rent is split among roommates. In an expensive place like New York City, it is a considerable perk.
  • Another advantage would be that you are not always alone. Someone is there keeping you company. It feels good especially if you recently moved to the Big Apple and you don’t know anyone yet. And who knows? This person might become your friend.
  • You can share the chores. Indeed, one can be responsible for some tasks and another for the rest of them. That way, you spend less time on doing the chores, and you have more spare time to do other things.
  • You get to upgrade your accommodation. Indeed, there are some beautiful apartments on the market. Unfortunately, they are off your budget but with the help of a few roommates, you would be able to rent one.
  • Deciding to go on a trip, having a hazardous issue or falling ill are all scenarios that imply there should be at least one other person at home besides you. You might not always be available in those situations but hopefully, having a roommate will help.
  • Having a roommate is simply a life experience. You will learn how to respect others, share, and also get to experience new things.

Some drawbacks of room-sharing include:

  • The main disadvantages of living with people are the lack of privacy and freedom. You will not be able to do everything you want unless everyone agrees to it, and as long as it is not disturbing. Moreover, sharing space with someone else can be awkward in some situations, and you might not always feel comfortable.
  • Having to share all the premises can be problematical since your roommates might not always be thoughtful and they can be selfish. They may keep common objects in their room, not share the TV remote, spend countless hours in the bathroom getting ready. Once again, the best thing to do is to talk about the issues before they accumulate and you vigorously explode once you cannot stand it anymore. After all, we think differently.
  • When living with other people, it is polite to ask for permission before taking decisions. For example, you should verify it is ok to invite people over, before throwing a party, or simply for redecorating common areas.

 

How to find roommates?

Usually, people tend to know already the individuals they wish to move in with. Nevertheless, it is also usual to do it with complete strangers. Indeed, living with a relative or a friend might seem like a good idea, but it often happens that things turn badly because, once again, not everyone thinks and behaves the same way. Moreover, it is more complicated to hurt a friend’s feelings by telling them they have made a mistake than to say it to a stranger.

If you wish to live with people you do not know; there are many popular platforms online that might help you do such thing. However, you must pay attention to the ads you see. People might have posted some ads in a hurry, which might result in a bad surprise for you at the end, while other ads are complete scams.

A good option would be contacting a Real Estate company that deals with room-sharing. That way, they will provide you directly with all the information you need. You can save both time and energy all at once. Indeed, agents will accompany you with everything you should know such as house rules, who your roommates will be. They would help you schedule appointments, make visits and handle the paperwork for you. Also, the agency will play the role of a mediator in case of a problem. Thus, choosing this alternative is a reliable and efficient solution.

Just remember, it is necessary to be careful with whom you choose to share a space with, since your decision will also have legal implications. Finally, choosing to live with someone else is a big step, but it can also be a fantastic adventure if everyone gets along well.

So, will you opt for an apartment share?

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