Lead time on apartments is generally two weeks to a month, so plan accordingly. I was down to the wire, finding my current room just one week before I needed to move in. It was the 30th room that I saw. My most recent experience was searching for roommates to fill the two vacant rooms in my apartment. I put together a post that looked like one I would respond to, including a bounty of details and great pictures. Not so surprisingly, I received 10 responses overnight, and about 40 overall.
I weeded through them, met with about a dozen people, and found the two perfect roommates. The entire process took less than two weeks.
The moral of the story is that while it can be exhausting, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. When writing a post or reading a potential roommate's Craigslist post, think about the seemingly small details, such as a dishwasher or how recently the apartment was renovated.
Of course, first you'll want to check for the basics: Chances are, if the poster is thorough in their write-up, they will be an equally respectful and organized roommate. Is the grammar messy or are there are a lot of all-caps phrases?
Onto the next one. The more it feels like a scam, the more likely it actually will be. For all you animal lovers out there, make sure it is A-OK with your new roomie s.
I was looking to adopt a puppy within the next six months of my roommates' move-in, so I specified that in my post, along with OKing someone bringing Fido along with them.
Thankfully, the two women moving in were just as excited as I was, but it's always good to do a quick allergy check. You may have some quirks even you're not aware of. And once things get farther along, you should also ask to see a copy of the lease, and hammer out the details about utility accounts ahead of time.
Even if your prospective roommate seems perfectly on the level, you'll want to confirm all the details in the paperwork for yourself.
For those searching for an apartment, if you're not familiar with the neighborhood, look it up! Oftentimes, cross-streets are listed, so you can use Google Maps to see what the street actually looks like. There are also a wealth of online resources available to help you investigate a neighborhood's crime stats, rodent issues, noise complaints, and more we've got a full guide here.
Also, don't take anyone's word for it when it comes to neighborhood; people often fudge the details to make it sound like their apartment is in a more desirable or popular neighborhood than it really is, so you'll want to confirm the details yourself. If you're the one posting, don't exaggerate the particulars—like saying you're in Williamsburg when you're actually in the outer edges of Bushwich—it'll just cause more confusion and more non-viable candidates to contact you, thus wasting your time.
If you've lived there for five years and never had any issues, be vocal about it! Once you've covered the basics financial responsibility chief among them , try to get a feel for your potential roommate's personality and lifestyle: Is she a young professional looking for someone to fill the gap her sorority sisters left post-college?
Is he a grad student who needs the apartment quiet at all hours? Lahav also advises doing some social media sleuthing, citing one client who realized, via Facebook, that a potential roommate was a hard-drinking party boy, and nixed plans to move in together.
Regardless of how amazing the place sounds or looks, none of that matters if you can't get along with your roommate; you must be on the same page, even if you aren't best friends.
The easiest way to find someone you'll get along with is by identifying shared interests. When writing up a post—or responding to an ad via e-mail—make sure to write about what you like.
When weeding through dozens of e-mails, similar design ideas and favorite TV shows separated my potential roommates from the pack, and during my last search for a room, my cooking and baking skills won everyone over. And like I said before, don't be afraid to share details about yourself and the apartment. It's better to say too much than too little. Plus, you'll be answering fewer questions if your post is informative.
People are notorious for skimming long paragraphs of text, especially on the Internet. To help potential roommates along, I've found that bullet points are helpful, but I still end up answering a lot of questions that are easily answered by reading the post.
To prevent being faced with annoying questions I've already answered, I include a reading test at the bottom of my post. For example, last time, I wrote, "To ensure you read the entire posting, please include your favorite TV shows in your response. I've found that you can typically get a good feel for people via e-mail, but always plan to spend at least 30 minutes with a person before signing on the dotted line.
Whether you're looking to rent out your room or trying to find one, ask plenty of questions; think of this as roommate speed-dating. Find out about morning routines and job schedules so that no one is scrambling for the shower, but also ask if they are a night owl or a light sleeperno one wants a grumpy roommate!
While there are plenty of great roommate sites out there, the Bellhops team likes Craigslist because of its versatility, its localization, and easy screening capabilities. Not everyone knows how to post on Craigslist, and some find it a bit intimidating. You will then need to upload photos from your mobile phone or computer. Lastly, you will receive an email with a confirmation link from Craigslist… click the confirmation link or copy and paste it into your browser.
You should expect your Craigslist ad to go live about 15 minutes after confirmation. When looking for a roommate, make sure you are paying attention to the details. How much time and care have they put into their ad? Are the pictures crisp? Are there a bunch of typos? Have they been specific about what they want in a roommate? This may seem like a no-brainer. Sharing a space together is, after all, sharing a pretty big part of your life. Why not make sure that you will actually have some things to talk about and do with your roommate?
If you find a place and a person that you mesh well with, take an hour to meet up and see their place. When you do, ask if you can use the bathroom. While this may sound odd, the bathroom is a great peek into how clean and tidy they keep their apartment. Before we see you off for the day, we wanted to touch on how to find a roommate on Craigslist safely.
While Craigslist is a great tool, like any roommate finder, you need to be careful and you need be safe. Always take a friend and always have your phone fully charged before heading over. Also, a good rule of thumb is to always meet at a public place first. Grab a cup of coffee and feel out the person before you agree to see their place.
Lastly, always trust your gut. As long as you use common sense and are safe about looking for a roommate on Craigslist, it can be one of the best tools out there. Where to Find Roommates? Roomie Match Unfortunately, a lot of the roommate finders out there get littered with spammers. Roomi For the younger professional between the ages of 23 to 35, Roomi is a great option. Roomster Roomster is the best option for roommate finders who are looking to do some additional research when it comes to finding a roommate —— like checking them out on Facebook and LinkedIn.
Padmapper If you are looking for a roommate in a specific area, like a block or even a neighborhood, Padmapper is a great option for you. Craigslist You knew it was coming. How to Find a Roommate on Craigslist Start by posting an ad for a roommate. Sweat the small stuff. Look for shared interests. Ask if you can use the bathroom..
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