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Pros and cons of roommates

Advantages and disadvantages of living with others

Before making the decision, you need to crunch the numbers and figure out if you can live on your own at all. If you can't, that'll make up your decision pretty quickly.

The benefits of having roommates:

  • Life's cheap. You can split the costs of rent, utilities, and food.
     
  • Shared responsibilites around your place, dishes, vacuuming, etc.
     
  • Upgrading is easy. Because you're splitting costs, you can afford a bigger place, premium cable channels, etc.
And the cons:
  • Lack of privacy. You may be comfortable with your roommate(s), but what about their boyfriend/girlfriends coming over at 10PM?
     
  • You have to rely on someone else for you to live. If they don't pay their rent on time, can you afford to pick up the slack?
     
  • Your roommate's problems can become yours. This is open-ended, they could be family problems, relationship problems, etc.
Other things to consider:
  • You don't need to know the person prior to becoming a roommate. While some may think this is unusual and creepy, it's actually pretty common.
     
  • A good friend isn't a lock to be a good roommate. There's an old saying: you don't *really* know someone until you live with them. Okay, that's from around 1998. But still, the message speaks truth. You don't know someone until you find out they're a slob, pay their bills late, and have six friends over every night.
     
  • There's a huge adjustment period. An old roommate of mine worked until 10PM at night and when he got home, stayed up for another 5 hours watching television and making noises that kept me awake. He wasn't being rude, he simply had a different work schedule than I did.


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