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Things to Look for When Screening Potential Roommates

Happy and compatible roommates taking a selfie on the patio of their rental homeYou should be aware of the things to search for if you’re thinking of sharing a Mt. Vernon rental home with a roommate. Thankfully, truly terrible roommates are rare, but there are enough horror stories to make anyone think twice about sharing their home with a stranger. The opposite is also true: your roommates could end up being some of your closest friends. While there are no guarantees, there are some red flags you can look for to determine what kind of roommate someone might be. In order to spot a lousy roommate, keep an eye out for the following signs.

Poorly Written Advertisement

Though not all can write great advertisements, a poorly written or incomplete advertisement may indicate that the advertiser is concealing something or is unwilling to put forth much effort in even the most menial tasks. In either case, an advertisement that contains misspellings or lacks basic information about the rental situation may be a sign of impending trouble.

Vague or Inconsistent Answers

Asking about your roommate or the terms of your lease is another cautionary sign to look out for. It is of the utmost importance to inquire as to why the previous roommate (if any) left, why they are moving in with you, and why they need a new place to reside. It’s possible that they were at fault if their responses to these inquiries are evasive or they appear unwilling to talk about it.

Overly Messy House

If you are responding to a roommate ad, investigate the living conditions prior to committing to anything. During your stay, examine the overall sanitation of the area, and don’t just look at the surfaces. Dusty ceiling fans and a mountain of dishes in the sink are telltale signs that things aren’t being cleaned regularly. If the rental home is filthy, that is sufficient reason to leave in haste.

Lack of Job or References

You should also inquire about the prospective roommate’s job and at least two references in addition to asking them about themselves. It’s a warning sign that something isn’t quite right if they don’t appear to have a job or refuse to give references. It could feel strange to inquire about someone’s finances, but it’s the only way to prevent being stuck with a roommate who won’t be able to cover their share of the rent on a monthly basis.

Significant Other

Consider whether your prospective housemate has a significant other and the amount of time that person spends in the residence. It is possible for a roommate’s significant other to spend so much time in the apartment that they effectively receive free housing. You may not be inclined to acquiesce to this arrangement, particularly if they are noisy or disruptive.

Listen to Your Intuition

A person could seem like the perfect roommate on paper, but when you meet them, something just feels off. Even if you cannot see what is wrong, that bad sensation may be your intuition warning you something is wrong. The best course of action is to follow your instincts and look elsewhere if something doesn’t feel right.

While having a roommate can be difficult, the perfect one could improve your life. Are you trying to find a rental house that you can share with one or more roommates? Real Property Management Results has a selection of top-notch rental homes in your area. Contact our office or check out our listings online.

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.

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