Do Friends Make Good Roommates? The Signs Someone Will Be The Perfect Person To Share A Space With
Ideally you should be friends with your roommate, but your closest friends don't always make the best people to live with. In the last living situation I was in, I lived with four other women who I all considered to be my friends. By the time our lease ended, I didn't want anything to do with two of them — and the feeling was likely mutual. I haven't spoken to either of them in the five months since. Another one of them, on the other hand, is still my closest friend, which isn't surprising since we've shared a space throughout our college careers and never had it jeopardize our relationship. She's a good roommate (and a great friend) but there are reasons I can live with her more easily than others.
"If your friend is trustworthy it's a good sign they'd make a good roommate," Kimberly Hershenson, a licensed therapist, tells Bustle.
If you're about to sign a new lease or looking for a new person to share your apartment, there are ways to decide whether or not you'll get along with someone when you're forced to live with them. Here are five signs your friend will make a good roommate:
1. You Can Trust Them
Sharing an apartment means another person will have access to your possessions and likely your personal life, so it's important that this person is someone you trust. "When told something in confidence, they do not share the information with anyone even their partner," Hershenson says. "It is difficult to be vulnerable and share problems with others. When someone is able to open up it is important to not break their trust."
2. They're Good Listeners
Sometimes after a long day, you just need to vent. It'll be much easier to do that if the person you're going home to is a great listener. "The ability to listen to other's problems and lending an ear is an important quality for someone you live with to have," Hershensen says. "This lets the person know you are fully present to listen to them."
3. They Can Admit When They're Wrong
One of the major red flags I should've noticed with my past roommates is that one of them decided to sublet my bedroom while I wasn't there, and kept the money for herself. When I found out, confronted her about it, and let her know I was upset, she acted like she did nothing wrong. Messing up is one thing, but not taking ownership for your actions is another. "They are accountable," Hershensen says. "If they say or do something wrong they apologize."
4. They Communicate Well
There's nothing worse than finding a passive-aggressive sticky note on the bathroom mirror. "It's important to have a roommate who can talk out problems without getting defensive," Hershensen says. If someone can be honest about how they're feeling and have tough conversations, they'll likely make good roommates.
5. They Actively Show They Care
Another major sign someone will make a good living partner is that "they are supportive," Hershensen says. If your friend is constantly encouraging you to reach your goals and genuinely wants to know what's going on in your life, they'll likely make great roommates. Not only will they be a positive force in your home due to their general supportiveness but they'll also understand when you leave some dishes in the sink because you were running late for work.
If your friend is trustworthy, supportive, and good at both listening and communicating, they'll likely be a great person to share your living quarters with.