How to Get to Know Your Roommate Before You Even Move In
Many students have no idea who they’ll be living with until they arrive at their housing. However, you’ll be much more comfortable if you reach out to your roommate in advance. Then, by the time you move in, it will be more like meeting a friend than getting to know a stranger. Here are some easy ways to get in touch in advance.
1. Schedule a Video Chat
The best way to get to know your roommate is to have a video call. If this seems intimidating, you can always text a bit first. However, it is worth having a video call at some point, since you’ll find it easier to have a real conversation and you’ll avoid any misunderstandings. Besides, it will be more comfortable when you meet in person if you’ve already seen each other’s faces and heard each other’s voices. Talking like this will also give you a better idea of how engaged your roommate is in the conversation — showing you whether you’re likely to become friends or just remain roommates.
2. Follow Each Other on Social Media
Stay in touch over the summer by asking for your roommate’s social media handles. You can find out a lot about someone by checking what they post. In particular, you’ll gain a better idea of your roommate’s lifestyle and hobbies.
Bear in mind, though, that social media is often not representative of the whole person. People post the most interesting aspects of their lives and what they want other people to know about them. Whereas this is useful for learning about what your roommate is like overall, you do miss out on a large amount of information if you just rely on social media.
3. Prepare for Living Together
You may like to have another video call or drop each other messages throughout the summer to talk about your expectations for when you live together. For instance, you could talk about what each of you will be bringing to your housing to ensure you don’t double up on essentials. It’s also a good idea to start discussing expectations, such as about having guests over, splitting the costs for things like cleaning supplies and basic food items, and how you’ll divide up chores. It’s always best to avoid disagreements entirely — and opening up channels of communication will go a long way to achieve this.
In the worst case scenario, you’ll discover that you and your roommate are incompatible, which will give you time to request to live with someone else. However, this tends to be uncommon, since it’s possible to resolve most types of conflict. Moreover, first impressions don’t always do a person justice, and even if you don’t become immediate friends, it may be worth sticking it out to see if you can still live together comfortably.
You’re much more likely to have a great experience living with a roommate when you at least have your own room. For uOttawa student housing, there’s 1Eleven. You can decide how many roommates you want — or even decide you’d prefer not to share at all! Whatever you choose, you’ll be able to meet other students throughout the building, including in the games room, fitness centre, and communal kitchen. Better still, your apartment will be within walking distance of campus. Book a video tour to see why you’ll love living here.