Saturday, April 19, 2014

Sharing a Bathroom with a Roommate

#SharingABathroom with your roommate can be difficult.  Apartment Therapy has some tips for how to handle sharing an #apartment bathroom so you don't have to fight over doing your business.

First of all, communicate with your roommate about when you need to get in the bathroom.  Don't wait until they're taking a shower you deem "too long" and get angry because you're going to be late because you just need to put in your contacts or use the facilities and leave.  

Schedule your use of the bathroom.  If you're fortunate enough that one of you can use the bathroom at night and the other in the morning, then perfect!  Otherwise, you need to discuss how you will both have time to get ready.

Some housekeeping tips:  always clean the drain after you take a shower and change the toilet paper roll if it's empty.  Buy more if you're out, don't always wait for your roommie to do it.  Also, schedule a weekly cleaning where you both always pitch in and help.  Be aware that if have a higher standard for what is clean, you'll probably be doing more work.  Accept it and move on.

Let your roommate know if you have a special situation where you have to take your shower at a different time than usual or need more time to get ready for something special like a job interview or date.

Put your stuff away when you're done using it, but go easy on your roommate if they are in a hurry and don't put away their blowdryer.  If it happens often, go ahead and have a discussion, but wait until you've calmed down and can be rational.

Be sure you've got something fragrancy, like matches, a candle or air freshner, for those situations where a smell diffuser is called for.

Need help finding an apartment with two bathrooms so you don't have to worry about sharing?  Give Austin Apartment Specialists a call today at 512-241-1111.  We've got all the latest information on vacancies, move-in specials and amenities!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

How to Choose a Roommate

#ChoosingARoommate is an important part of renting an apartment.  Often you may begin living with someone and be great friends, but the stress of being incompatible can drive your relationship to dissolution.  The Austin Tenants' Council helps you make sure you and your roommate are compatible housemates.

First, it's important that the person you choose can be trusted to live up to their financial commitments, such as paying rent and bills, as well as their commitment to assume equal responsibility for taking care of the shared living space.  Being afraid to come home because you are in a fight with your roommate is a very unpleasant situation.  By discussing things such as expectations on the amount of noise in the apartment, acceptable hours for guests, and acceptable level of cleanliness for the apartment before you sign a lease with someone can prevent you from winding up in an untenable situation.  These sorts of things can be clarified in a roommate agreement.

As far as financial responsibilities, your landlord and utility companies only care that they are paid, they do not care where the money comes from.  If you do not come up with the complete rent or utility money, all inhabitants of the house are responsible and will have their credit dinged for any late or missing payments.  When it comes to utilities, one person will have to write the check and collect payment from the other roommates.  If one roommate wants cable and another doesn't, perhaps that bill can't be split down the middle.  That is another item to be discussed in advance.

The Austin Tenants' Council has a Renting Together Contract that provides a useful way for all roommates to agree to their responsibilities, as well as laying out the procedure if a roommate wants to move out.

Need help finding an #apartment with a floorplan perfect for roommates?  Give Austin Apartment Specialists a call today at 512-241-1111.