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5 ways to deal with a messy roommate


A roommate is an essential part of the college experience. Your roommate can be a good friend, a close confidant or your worst enemy. Dealing with a messy roommate is anyone’s worse nightmare, unless you are the messy roommate. Here are a few tips to get along and live in harmony with your college roommate.

1. The contract

It is always wise to set the terms of agreement early in the relationship. Like any other relationship, defining the terms is important to keep all parties happy. A contract between the roommates with all major issues that need to be addressed is a great, easy way to meet each other in the middle. You can include rules on visitors, cleaning routines, privacy and other issues that you think are important to the wellbeing of all roommates.

2. Passive aggressive approach

This may seem severe, but it works for many. If your roommate is filthy with little to no respect for you or the space that you share, this approach may just do the trick. To execute this approach, you should pile all the dirty, smelly items that belong to your roommate on their side of the room. This shows that you mean business and you are not ready to tolerate any dirt. This is a clear signal to your roommate that cannot be ignored. This usually causes friction but always delivers results.

apartment drama

3. Friendly approach

A friendly approach can help sort out the messy situation without actually damaging the friendship. When applying this approach, it is important that one is stern, firm yet polite. Because roommates are typically friends, it is difficult for anything to be taken seriously. However, when you are firm and present the issue with a level of seriousness the results may be good. Who knows, you may even end up washing dishes together while happily singing to your favorite tunes.

4. Penalty approach

When all systems have failed, polite and drastic alike, sometimes it is easier to just lay down the law. Enforcing repercussions for not cleaning can be a great way to encourage your roommate to clean. A penalty fee for unwashed dishes or a messy bathroom can save you a lot of trouble and is a fair system once implemented.

5. Triple C approach

Cool, Calm and Collected is a state of mind that helps many overcome difficult situations and scenarios. Your ability to ignore the stench of dirty socks, rotting fruit and an overflowing bin requires a lot of mind power but is achievable especially if you want to avoid confrontation. However, it may not last long because everyone has a breaking point. The question is when will you reach yours?


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