14 Questions to Ask Your Roommate Before You Move in Together

By Lorena Roberts on July 11, 2017

It’s about that time of year again, where everyone starts connecting with their new roommates on social media, discussing room layouts and decor ideas. Some of your first questions are probably, “what kind of music do you listen to?” and “are you planning on joining a sorority?”

But if you’re smart, you’ll ask your new roommate these 14 questions before you move in together. There’s still time to request a roommate switch.

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1. How late do you stay up on weeknights versus weekends?

My freshman year roommate thought it was fun to stay up on Skype with her boyfriend until three in the morning. I had class every morning at 8 a.m., so I was quite pissed 99 percent of the time.

2. What is your class schedule?

If you’re sharing a room with someone who doesn’t have class until the afternoon and you have class early every morning, that should be a topic of conversation before the semester begins. I don’t know how many horror stories I’ve had to endure about people sleeping through exams because their roommate was up all night on video games or on the phone with people.

3. Do you plan to regularly have people over? Guests overnight?

You’re going to be annoyed if your third roommate becomes the significant other of your actual roommate. It would probably be beneficial for you to know what kind of lifestyle your roommate is about to live in regards to guests before you actually move in together.

4. Do you drink/smoke?

If your apartment is going to smell like smoke all the time (or good ole Mary Jane) or you’re going to come home to a bunch of drunken jerks every night, you’ll definitely want to know that ahead of time (or change to a different roommate).

5. Will you be staying here on weekends or heading home most of the time?

My freshman year roommate went home every weekend and it was awesome. I totally had the place to myself and I could do whatever I wanted (including having anyone over that I wanted).

6. Do you tend to be pretty tidy or does appearance not matter?

It’s important that you live with someone who has a similar living style. If you move in with someone who’s super messy and you’re constantly trying to keep the place clean, you’re going to run yourself ragged. You won’t have the energy to go to work or study after having to come home every day to a wreck of an apartment.

7. What’s your opinion on splitting cleaning responsibilities?

One of the most popular reasons for roommate fights is because they don’t share the responsibilities of cleaning. One roommate always feels charged with the responsibility of keeping everything organized and clean, while the other free-loads off their roommate’s motivation to keep things clean.

8. Have you ever lived with someone before?

This can change everything. If you’re moving in with someone who’s never lived with anyone before … this might be a struggle. It’s hard to get used to sharing your environment with someone. If you’re going to have to go through that learning curve together, you’re going to want to know ahead of time.

9. Do you have pets/want pets?

If you’re wanting to get a pet, you should probably check with your new roommate. If that’s not something they’re comfortable with, then you may need to go ahead and request a roommate change.

10. What are you bringing that you’re willing to share?

It’s always good to find out what you can and can’t share before you move in together. No need for two coffee pots if you can share one, right?

This is especially helpful if you’re getting ready to move into a shared apartment that isn’t furnished. You don’t all want to show up with a couch if you only have room for one.

11. Do you prefer hot or cold temperatures?

This was one of the biggest problems between me and my last roommate. She always wanted to keep the room at 75 degrees and in lofted beds, that was horrible. 

12. How do you study?

Music on? Music off? Late at night or early in the morning?

It’s best we sort these things out now instead of later, huh?

13. Do you have any allergies?

You probably don’t want to bring a lot of peanut butter around if your roommate is severely allergic. Make sure you sort that out ahead of time.

14. When are you moving in?

Probably one of the most obvious questions is sorting out who is going to move in and at what time. You don’t want to both be there at the same time trying to move things around … or maybe you do!

Communication is important when it comes to getting a new roommate (or two). One of the best decisions you can make is ensuring you have conversations before you move in together as well as soon as you do live together.

Don’t let things pile up. If you’re unhappy with the way things are going at your place, address them with your roommate before they become too big of problems to fix.

Student at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville (Go Vols!), part-time preschool teacher, part-time musician, part-time trying to get my life together. I'm studying psychology, while aspiring to become the greatest School Psychologist and Education Reformist in the Nation. You can usually find me sitting in a coffee shop, holding my favorite warm drink, and scrolling feeds of various websites.

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