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Starting the Year Off Right with a New Roommate

Whether you hand-picked your roommate through Facebook, after meeting at orientation, or went random, starting your year together as roommates can be difficult. Sure, you may have told each other what time you usually go to bed, how you prefer to study, and how clean you can be, but now is the time to actually put your roommate-compatibility to the test and set the mood for the rest of the year. But don’t worry-it’s not as hard as it seems to be a good roommate!


The biggest conflicts between roommates are usually due to lack of communication. But if at the beginning of the semester, you and your roomie get into the swing of always communicating with each other- like what time your alarm will be going off, if you plan on staying out late, and if anything is bothering you that the other may be doing. If the two of you work out the kinks at the beginning and get used to each other’s habits, the rest of the year should be a breeze, even when conflicts do come up.

Know Yourself First
Here at Bentley, the RAs hand out Roommate Contracts within the first month of school. It includes a worksheet that the two roommates must fill out together, on things such as bedtimes, feelings on sharing things, and how the two should tell express to each other what may be bothering them.

My best advice for the contract is to absolutely know what you can put up with in a living situation before you set it in stone in writing. If you think you can sleep with a light on, but you’re not really sure, do not tell your roommate that it’s okay for her to stay up studying in the room while you’re trying to sleep. You should not try to promise any compromises that you’re not completely sure about. And the biggest thing: do not say you can keep your side of the room immaculately clean if you’re actually a slob who would just like to be a clean person!

If you and your new roomie communicate about what each other are up to, and what you can truly put up with, there should be no conflicts or problems that you can’t work out together. As long as you can “walk the walk,” and not just “talk the talk,” you’ll have a great start to the year, and be on your way to an awesome and fun first year of college together!

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Bentley University Class of 2016
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