An envelope has arrived, and inside it is information that may change your life forever. It’s the name of your new college roommate! It’s exciting, sure—but also a bit daunting. How can you move in with someone you have never met? Make the transition easier for both of you by reaching out and asking these 11 important questions.
1. How are you moving in?
Get the logistics out of the way first with a couple of questions about their move-in day plans. Are they arriving on move-in day (and if so, what time) and do they have help? Are their parents or friends sticking around? These questions are more for your benefit than for theirs as you can plan around their schedule and make the move-in process less hectic for everyone.
2. What are you bringing with?
Skip the awkwardness by arranging who is bringing what in advance. This mainly applies to big, shared items such as appliances, area rugs, and window treatments. You don’t want to end up with two refrigerators and televisions! Share our College Dorm Checklist with your roomie and mark off items together to avoid duplication!
3. What’s your style like?
If your décor is going to be shared, you will want to discuss style options. This may include if they had a theme or vision in mind or if they hate a certain color scheme. While both of you will have your own designated space, you do want to be considerate of their likes and dislikes as they will be looking at your area too!
4. Do you know anyone at school?
Some students start college with a blank slate and none of their friends joining them. Others pick colleges because their friends are there. If they have friends around, you may be having to deal with a social butterfly from the start. If that makes you uncomfortable, suggest setting down ground rules about friends.
5. What’s your intended major?
Some schools pair up students by their major or department. Others randomly toss students together. Break the ice by asking one of the most commonly asked questions for a college student: "What’s your major?" Their choice of study may reveal a lot about their personalities and habits. Such as, a music student may be bringing along instruments while a business student may be working while studying.
6. Are you a night owl or morning person?
Not everyone will sleep like you. Some will appreciate a late night out. Others want to wake up fresh with the sun. It’s hard to change sleep habits, so be respectful if you are not on the same page. Talk about bed arrangements so that one can sleep while the other watches television. Purchase noise-canceling headphones if they prefer to get up early with an alarm clock.
7. Do you have any allergies?
If your roommate has any allergies, you should know about them before you move in. It will prevent you from bringing in banned food, and it may even keep you from purchasing bedding that they cannot be around. If you’re the one with allergies or other medical issues, do not be afraid to bring it up so that your roommate has a chance to adapt in advance.
8. What’s your class schedule like?
Like it or not, 8 a.m. classes are a real thing. If you or your roommate is anticipating many early morning lectures, speak about it in advance so you can plan a schedule. This is especially important if you are sharing a common bathroom.
9. Any favorite activities?
Asking about activities will show you if your roommate plans to be out or if they prefer to do their own thing in the room. If their activities are things like playing video games or designing websites, they may be more homebodies.
10. What cleaning supplies should I bring?
Cleaning questions are two-sided. If they answer that they are bringing many supplies, you may have a roommate who is a neat freak. If they haven’t thought of it or do not care what you bring, you may want to be on the lookout for messy habits.
11. How can I be a good roommate?
It’s a simple question, but it can tell you so much. Being a good roommate doesn’t mean you have to agree with everything they want or change some things about you. It means that both of you are considerate of how the other person likes things to be and are open minded about how to make the living situation better. When both of you agree and make an effort, having a roommate can be the best part about college.What questions will you be asking your future roommate? Have you been in contact yet? Let us know!