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How to Pick a Good Roommate

Happy Austin Roommates Moving Into a New HomeFinding a good roommate can appear to be a big challenge. In the end, how can you know whether you will get along well with someone after meeting them only once? However, you may be able to do things to boost your chances of obtaining a roommate you will wish to share an Austin rental house with. Even though there are important traits that you can search for in any potential roommate, the most crucial aspect is whether you will get along well. If you want to locate that person, try to use one or more of the following strategies.

Advertise Selectively

Where and how much you advertise must mirror the kind of roommate that you want. It is usually true that people who share things in common tend to get along better. This comprises the ability to share a particular life stage or situation. For instance, whether or not you are a college student or a young professional, you may find that communicating with someone else going to school or starting a career is a good fit. On the other hand, a mid-career professional or retiree may get along far better with someone in a similar life stage. Concentrate your advertising on venues that will reach the people you’d like to have as roommates.

Ask Good Questions

Before you accept a single application, screen anyone who responds to your ad in that first phone call. This will save you a lot of time and effort in the longer term. Describe your rental situation and your ideal tenant, and introduce yourself. Then ask questions. It’s a great idea to have a list of questions prepared, in the event that you get uneasy. You’ll want to ask about the caller’s source of income, major expenses, whether they smoke, if they own pets, what their work schedule is like, and if they are dating anyone. That final question may seem a bit personal, but you will want to know whether or not a significant other might be spending the night at your place. When you’ve asked your questions, be sure to give them an opportunity to ask questions of their own.

Check All References

If you’ve made it past the screening phone call, it’s time for you to gather information about your potential roommate’s past rental experience – including references. Employers, former landlords, and friends can all give you a clear picture of who the applicant is and how they relate to others. Be sure to contact each reference and ask good questions about the applicant. It’s also important to have a background check completed for all prospective roommates. You don’t want to be shocked by your roommate’s criminal record soon after they’ve moved in.

Don’t Rent to Friends and Family

It may look as if it’s like a good idea to provide your home to a friend or family member, but living with someone you already know isn’t always a good idea. Although some people can make it work, there are many possible problems with signing a friend or family member on as a roommate. You might find things about the person you don’t like, which could create resentment and even damage your relationship. It’s also much harder to enforce a lease agreement with someone you care about, especially if subtle reminders to wash their dishes or clean up their messes aren’t working. What is more, if a friend or a family member falls behind on their rent, you’ll be in an extremely difficult situation. Whether you try to get them to pay or you ask them to leave, the chances are high that your relationship is never going to be the same – even if they seem to be understanding at the moment.

While it may take some effort, it is worth it when you find a great roommate. After all, you’ll probably spend a lot of time sharing the same space, so it’s important to pick someone that will make doing so as pleasant as possible.

Whether you are a tenant or owner, Real Property Management Advisors take the stress out of the roommate hunt. Our Austin property managers incorporate a rigorous screening process to ensure quality tenants. For more information, contact us online or call us at 512-777-2597.

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