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Living With a Roommate vs. Without One

My second year of college is coming to an end, and I’ve had the experience of both living with roommates in the dorm, and by myself. I had a roommate all freshman year, but when she moved off campus to do school remotely, I was solo for the first half of last semester. Now I have a new roommate, and I’ve loved living with them both! I feel like this experience has helped me see the pros and cons of both living alone and with someone else – here are a few things I’ve picked up on that might help you out if you’re still deciding on which way to go. 

Being friends with your roommate

This is something that I’ve been especially lucky with during my college experience so far. I became really close with both my previous and current roommates, and I’m even living with one of them again next year. If you and your roommate end up really hitting it off, you automatically have someone at college that you can rely on and who’s there for you. Sharing a living space and late-night talks with your roomie can really bring you together faster than other friendships! 

More living space

One pro of living alone, especially in a double room like I did, is that there’s just more room for everything. This is definitely a plus if you’re still living in the dorms, too. I converted the bed on the other side of my room into a couch that I laid on to do homework and that my friends could sit on. 

Sharing everything

It may not be this way if you’re not super close, but I’ve always shared stuff like the fridge, Brita, couch, etc. with my roommates. It saves you money on some stuff, considering you’ll only end up buying half of what you originally would.

If you aren’t close with your roommate

I’ve heard some of my friends talk about bad experiences with their college roommates. They either just aren’t super close, have pretty different schedules, or don’t get along well. I don’t personally have experience with this, but I do know that it can really affect your day-to-day life if you don’t mesh well. However, I think that as long as you can live comfortably with someone, you don’t necessarily need to be best friends.

Meeting new people 

Both of my roommates have introduced me to people that I’m so glad I met! By opting to have a roommate, you open yourself up to interacting with new people, which is honestly a really important part of college. This is especially helpful if you’re like me, and aren’t a naturally extroverted person. Your roomie can be someone that you go out and do new things and meet new people with!

More privacy

This one is kind of a given, but if you’re the kind of person who wants more privacy and alone time, I’d consider opting for a single room/no roommate. Living with someone, they will see you at your good times and your bad, and some stuff that you may normally do alone in the comfort of your own room will now be out in the open. 

 

These are just a few things that I’ve noticed after living in the dorms both with and without a roommate. I personally love having one, but everyone’s preferences and experiences are different! I hope that these points help give you some clarity on choosing whether or not to live with someone next year.  

Ruthie is a junior at SMU studying Psychology, Spanish, and Neuroscience. Born and raised in Texas, she loves to travel and enjoys reading, watching Netflix, and spending time with friends.
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