Tips for a Great Roommate/Suitemate Dynamic!

As Move Week concludes and housing assignments solidify for the rest of the year, we understand that living with new people in close quarters can be challenging. That is why we are providing some helpful tips on how to create a healthy roommate/suitemate dynamic!

Roommate Agreements

This year we are requiring every resident in every building to complete a roommate agreement with their Resident Assistant (RA). Having this conversation early on will help create clear boundaries and expectations. Topics such as cleaning, noise, temperature, guests, and shared belongings are covered in each roommate agreement. Because the roommate agreement is in writing, there should be no confusion as to what guidelines have been laid out. Remember: Roommate agreements can always be revised if something isn’t working out as it was initially discussed.

Communication

We can’t stress this one enough. Communicate with your roommate(s) or suitemate(s) any time something may be bothering you or if you believe someone has broken the roommate agreement. Don’t approach the conversation in an accusatory manner. Just politely express your concerns and see how things go from there. If the conversation goes well, then fantastic! If it doesn’t go quite as planned, then you may need to consider a different approach. Remember: Don’t let things stew. The longer you wait to address a concern or issue, the more likely your roommate(s) or suitemate(s) will feel blindsided. If you never tell someone that what they’re doing is bothersome, they will continue thinking that there are no problems. By addressing issues sooner than later, you can establish healthy lines of communication.

Resident Assistants

As suggested by their title, Resident Assistants (RAs) are there to help! If after talking to your roommate(s) or suitemate(s) still hasn’t resolved the issue, don’t be afraid to reach out to your RA for help. RAs go through extensive roommate mediation training and know how to offer an unbiased ear. If things continue to go awry after a mediation with the RA or the RA establishes that the issues are beyond what they are capable of handling, the Resident Director (RD) of your area may need to step in at that point. Remember: Asking for help is never something you should feel embarrassed about. By acknowledging you need assistance, it shows that you are dedicated to improving a situation for you and the people around you.