November 24, 2017 | Barb Huntley
For various reasons, many people live with one or multiple roommates. While you can’t fully control how the living experience will go, you can try to put in place guidelines to aide in a successful living situation.

Establish Guidelines – The best way to avoid money problems with a roommate is to establish the rules and guidelines of the housing payments before you move in together. This includes cost of rent for each of you, will it differ based on the size of the room? If so, make sure both parties know of that expectation. Research what your expected utility bills will be and establish a payment plan for when the bills start coming.

Use Apps – To make splitting bills easier, use Apps such as Splitwise or Venmo. Splitwise allows you to enter your house related expenses on the go and set notifications of payments. A complete expense report will be created and can be accessed at anytime when conflict arrises. Venmo makes it easy for you to send and request money from roommates. Look at your Splitwise app to know the amounts you need to request and send it to your roommates every month.

Keep A Spreadsheet – If you’re not using an App like Splitwise to do this, make sure you’re keeping an updated expense sheet of all housing related purchases. Having documentation of purchases and bills will hold all roommates accountable for payments. 

Combine Every Purchase – Don’t spilt every purchase 50/50 when buying furniture for your place. Unless you and your roommate plan on living together for many years, when you do decide to live separately you will have to sort out all the furniture you both equally own. Instead of splitting every purchase decide what furniture you want to buy based on what furniture you think your future self will want to own. Maybe you buy a coffee maker and your roommate buys a blender. This is an example of purchasing items of similar value so you both are spending around the same amount but each of you now owns something that is entirely yours. 


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