Roommates 101

Learning to live with a roommate is sometimes one of the most difficult parts of college life. Even if you've shared a room with a sibling before, living with a friend or a stranger is a little different.  The best thing you can do is sit down with your roommate and have a discussion about everything! Remember, your roommate doesn't have to be your best friend (although she might be!), but it's a good idea to be cordial with the person you're going to be sharing a space with for the next few months.

A few things you might want to discuss are:

1. Cleaning responsibilities

UAB residence halls have monthly room inspections. Your RA will be checking to make sure you're not breaking any rules and that your dorm hasn't turned into a science project. In order to keep your room under control, it's a good idea to go ahead and figure out how you will handle cleaning the room. Most people decide to take the responsibility of cleaning up whatever they mess up personally and then alternate cleaning the common areas (kitchen, bathroom, etc.) This really comes in handy because everyone knows what they need to do to make sure you pass inspections. The last thing you want to do is end up in a frenzy when you find out room inspections are happening. 


2. Pet Peeves 

In all honesty, you can't please everybody, but it's okay to hear each other out. In a small space, it's easy to start getting on each other's nerves. Discuss the little things that tend to work your nerves. You two may not agree on everything, but you both can try to compromise on minor things to make living together as pleasant as possible. Your dorm should be a place that you feel relaxed, not completely annoyed!

3. Your general daily schedule 

It's probably smart to get an idea of what each of your schedules is like. When do you have class? Work? Of course, you don't need to tell your roommate your every move, but knowing each other's general schedule is helpful. You can get a whiteboard or calendar and write your schedules on it and even contact info. This way if something happens, you have any idea of where your roommate might be and how to contact them.