Moving into a house off campus can be very exciting and liberating. You finally get to take the reigns as an adult, gain independence, and learn to handle the everyday tasks of running a home. But how do you decide what you and your roommate pay for? And how do you share the expenses? Before you get stuck in an unfavourable situation with your roommate, read on as we help guide you on the best way to share the expenses.
Create A Plan
Before you sign anything make sure you and your roommate sit down and discuss how you would like to handle all the bills, groceries, decorating, cleaning costs, and furniture purchases. Open communication beforehand can help you outline all the details and avoid any misunderstandings later on down the line.
Pay Rent Separately
Many landlords only want one person to be in charge of the rent. It makes it easier on them for collection. But if you’re the one responsible for your roommate, it can also mean trouble if they pay late, or end up with financial issues. Odds are you will be much more lenient with your roommate than a landlord would and some people will take advantage of this. You can avoid uncomfortable conversations and arguments by ensuring everyone pays the landlord separately.
Put All Names On The Bills
Similar to rent payments, everyone should also be held responsible for the bills. Don’t just put your name on the bills, or split bills, instead put each persons name on the bills. Splitting bills may seem like a clever idea, until you get one that’s way more expensive than the bills your roommate is paying. And chasing after people for owed monies is never a fun experience, so avoid it if you can.
Keep A Record
Always keep a record of the expenses. This includes all rent payments and bills. If you plan to split groceries or the cost of furniture, keep track of what was purchased and what is owed and by whom. This will help solve any disagreements or forgetful roommates right away.
Address Issues Immediately
The worst thing you can do if a problem arises is to sweep it under the rug. Being passive aggressive and letting issues build up will not do any good for anyone. If there is something bothering you regarding the expenses or living arrangement, speak up, be clear, and have a solution to present.
Having a roommate can be a lot of fun. But don’t be naïve and think that everything will sort it self out when it comes to sharing expenses. Friendships can often end over money disputes. So make a plan, ensure it’s fair and stick to it.