Wanted: roommates who are clean, quiet and friendly. Must not
snore, complain, eat my food, make a move on my boyfriend, steal,
breathe loudly, be better looking than myself or make weird chewing
sounds when eating. References are a plus.
The hunt for the perfect roommate, or at least, the adequate
roommate, is similar to online dating – some people can never tell
who their potential roomies are, whether they be the real thing or
just dirty old men trying to score. All analogies aside, some
students may have an easier time selecting a residence for the next
year than with choosing people to live with.
Trusting your gut instincts about people becomes harder when all
you have on your mind is getting that house on Church Street (the
one with the big front porch – perfect for Welcome Week parties and
just a few feet away from Rick’s!). This in mind, we’ve taken the
liberty to give honest answers for some of your most pressing
questions regarding roommate selection …
Help! I can’t find a house to fit all 23 of my best friends!
You may need to sit down for this one, because you simply can’t
force yourself to live with too many people. You really don’t want
to live with all of your “best” friends anyway. From our own
studies, it appears that guys can easily fit up to 10 people in a
house, while girls cannot exceed two or three, unless sanity isn’t
This is the time to be selfish. Try to find people who mesh well
with your style of living. If you wish to study in the peace of
your own home, avoid living with anyone who thinks that beer
relieves a hangover or anyone who has ever fashioned a wooden
LSA junior Jean Franzino said her group of roommates shrunk from
six to four due to personal differences.
“Next year, I’m living with four people and we’re all pretty
good friends,” Franzino said. “It’s not our whole group, because we
didn’t know who wanted to have party house or a quiet
You may also find that those you consider your close friends
magically morph into demonic clean freaks when put under the same
roof as yourself. This isn’t to say that a dirty house is best,
but, when the happiness of the house is dominated by cleanliness,
your roommates are lame, and so are you.
“I’ve heard of people getting into fights over how clean the
house is,” Franzino said. “One girl is really clean and the rest of
us, who are a little bit messier, will need to help out and divide
Just because you don’t live with all of your good friends
doesn’t mean that you will drift apart or stop hanging out. True,
you will feel left out of the fun they’ll have in their own homes
or apartments, but, you’ll be happy to have your own place and to
have these outside friends as outlets to vent to when your
roommates piss you off.
My friend claims to know a girl who is “cool” and “just like
me,” and she wants this girl to live with us. Should I trust my
One thing you will notice is that many people often bring an
ally to the pool of housing candidates. This ally may or may not be
a desirable roommate, and you should not feel obligated to accept
them into your future home simply because your friend insists on
Take caution when someone is described as being “just like you.”
Although having similar interests and living styles can work can
provide for an enjoyable living experience, it can also backfire.
How similar are you and this girl? Do you really want someone “just
like you” to always be around and make you constantly analyze your
habits and mannerisms?
Consider the film, “Single White Female.” When Jennifer Jason
Leigh moves inwith Bridget Fonda, Leigh’s character goes to
extremes to mimic Fonda’s life, from copying her haircut, sleeping
with her boyfriend and even killing her puppy. It makes
individuality worthy of patenting.
Is it a good idea to live with members of the opposite sex?
This is can be a win-win situation. In many cases, men and women
who live together often teach each other about the lifestyles of
the other gender and end up sharing a unique experience.
Jamie Binder, an LSA junior, lives with two of her female
friends and four men she did not know coming into the school year.
So far, she says there have been no problems and she has made plans
to live with another guy in an apartment for next year.
“Girls can be catty, guys are not into that,” she said. “They
are more relaxed, but also cleaner than the girls … It’s a good
diversity. They answer our questions about guys, and we help each
other. Before we go out, we always ask: ‘Do I look okay?’ It’s the
best of both worlds.”
In addition to learning about the opposite sex, sexual tension
can peak in this situation, especially if the other roommates are
attractive. While it doesn’t hurt to have eye-candy walking around
the house in a towel, hooking up with a roommate can be dangerous.
If you submit to your hedonistic desires, you risk a looming
awkwardness that could hang around for the remainder of the school
year. Jealousy could also ensue if the hot roommate has an annoying
significant other that sleeps over all the time. That said, stick
to the hot roommate’s friends.