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6 Red Flags Regarding Roommates

Willow Springs Roommates Arguing Over Dirty DishesIf you are thinking of splitting a Willow Springs rental home with a roommate, it’s vital to grasp what to look for. Although really bad roommates are fortunately rare, there are as many horror stories to make anyone think twice before sharing their home with a stranger. The opposite is also true: occasionally roommates get to be some of the close friends you’ll ever have.

As there are no guarantees, there are red flags you can detect to help learn what type of roommate any person might be. Here are various things you seek that can aid you to spot a deplorable roommate.

1.   Badly Written Ad

Not all of us are that good at writing ads, but take note a poorly written or incomplete ad may mean that the person who posted it is hiding something or isn’t open-minded to spend much effort on even small tasks. Either way, an ad filled with misspellings or one that is missing basic information about the rental situation may be an indication of a problem ahead. Keep in mind that Real Property Management does not advertise on Craigslist. Always apply directly from our website.

2.   Answers to Questions are Vague or Inconsistent

Another red flag to watch for is while asking questions about the roommate or rental arrangements. It’s indeed vital to ask why the last roommate left (if there was one) or why they are moving in with you and why they need a new place to live. If their answers to these issues are vague or they seem unwilling to talk about it, it’s possible they were somehow at fault.

3.   Messy House

If you are responding to an ad for a roommate, verify the living conditions before committing to everything. Throughout your visit, look into the cleanliness of the space – and not just on the surface. If it is possible, see traces that things are not being cleaned frequently, namely dusty ceiling fans or dirty dishes piled in the sink. If the rental house is unorganized, that’s a probable reason to walk away. Nobody wants to lose out on a security deposit because of a bad roommate.

4.   No Job or References

Along with asking the roommate about themselves, ask with regards to the potential roommate’s job and for at least two references. If they don’t seem to have a job or are disinclined to provide references, both are red flags that something isn’t right. Despite that asking questions about a person’s finances may feel awkward, it’s an effective way to steer clear of getting trapped with a roommate that won’t be able to give payment to their portion of the rent each month. If putting in an application for a rental through RPM Property Management Excellence, our screening process includes landlord references in order to identify prior tenant behaviors.

5.   Significant Other

Another really important thing you should know is whether your potential roommate has a significant other and how much time that person spends in the house. Occasionally, a roommate’s significant other will spend a lot of time in the place where they practically live rent-free. This may not be an arrangement that you are ready to agree to, in particular, if they are noisy or disruptive.

In the case of a landlord-tenant relationship, a significant other should ALWAYS submit an application. Otherwise, this may be a case of an unauthorized tenant which may be grounds to terminate your leases.

6.   Listen to Your Intuition

In a few cases, a person may look like the right roommate on paper, but when you meet them, something feels off. That nervous feeling perhaps your intuition telling you something is not right, even if you can’t immediately see what it is. The effective way you can do this is to listen to your gut and seek elsewhere if you don’t feel comfortable.


Living with roommates can be a problem, but finding the right one could make your life even better! Are you searching for a rental home that you could share with a roommate or two? RPM Real Property Management Excellence has an inventory of quality rental properties near you. Ultimately, our thorough tenant screening process helps eliminate red flags. Browse our rentals and apply online today.

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.

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