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If you are thinking about moving into an apartment with someone, here are the best questions to ask a potential roommate! 

questions to ask a potential roommate

Before jumping to sign your lease, you want to make sure you have thoroughly thought out exactly who you are living with. If you are signing for a one-bedroom apartment, you have nothing to worry about (and probably aren't even reading this post?). But, if you are living with one or more roommates, in a dorm or an apartment, you want to be 100% sure everyone is on the same page before agreeing to live together!

Living with someone else is a huge commitment, so you want to ask all the important questions you can think of before giving a definite yes. From how cleanly they are to what they like to do in their free time, asking these questions to potential roommates and knowing the answers beforehand will ensure your year (or more) goes smoothly! 

This post is all about questions to ask a potential roommate.


1. What Do You Like To Do For Fun?

Asking a potential roommate what they like to do for fun is a basic question, but one that can give you a lot of insight! Knowing what they like to do for fun can give you an idea of how similar you are and how well you will get along. For example, if you both enjoy outdoor activities, you know of at least one way you two can spend time together outside of your home. If you enjoy going to bars but they don’t drink, you know you may have fewer things to do together in your free time. 

These common interests are things to factor into your decision, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get along with someone who has different interests either! Use your best judgment when asking this question to a potential roommate.

2. What Does A Day In Your Life Look Like?

When thinking of questions to ask a potential roommate, make sure you ask what a daily schedule looks like for them. Do they get up early for work? What time do they usually get home? Knowing their daily routine can give you a better idea of how often you will be interacting with each other, what they do in their spare time, their work or class schedule, etc.

3. What Is Your Major or Profession?

If you are looking for a roommate in college, this is one of the most valuable questions to ask a potential roommate! Asking about their major is not only generally good information to know but can also help you find common grounds with a potential roommate. If you both have the same major, you may even be in the same classes or able to study together!

If you are looking for a roommate after college, knowing a potential roommate’s profession is helpful information! This can once again help you find similarities between one another and also give you an idea of their work schedule.

4. When Do You Go To Bed And Wake Up?

Knowing a potential roommate’s sleep schedule is super important. If they are an early riser, they are probably going to go to bed earlier too. This means they probably aren’t going to be happy if you are blasting music late at night or stumbling in at 3 in the morning. This goes for your sleep schedule too so make sure to consider what time each of you goes to bed and wakes up to prevent arguments and tension. 

5. Is There Anything That Would Be A Deal Breaker As A Roommate?

Being upfront about any dealbreakers for you or your roommate is the best way to avoid a messy situation before it happens. These dealbreakers can be anything from cleanliness to daily habits. Make sure to ask this question to any potential roommate to avoid conflict early on!

6. How Clean Do You Keep Your Space?

Making your cleaning standards apparent early on is super important when it comes to living with roommates. If you hate a messy room, I am telling you right now you will want to find a roommate who feels the same way. Leaving messes and neglecting to clean up is the easiest way to cause tension between roommates so it is important to know their cleaning habits early on.

7. What Is Your Decor Style

If you are someone who loves to decorate or cares a lot about the look of their space, asking a potential roommate about their decor style is will be important! If you have the same taste in decor, decorating your space will be easy. This is a question many people may not care about, but if you are anything like me, you will want to be on the same page about decor.

If they don’t have a preference, you pretty much have full freedom, but just know that means your roommate will also be less likely to pay for additional decor. 

8. How Would You Like To Split The Cost Of Shared Items?

Since you will be sharing a space with someone, it is important to plan how you will be splitting the cost of shared items. These things include cleaning supplies, furniture, cooking utensils, etc. Find out if your potential roommate has any of those shared items already or if not, how you will be splitting the cost of them.

9. How Would You Like To Split Groceries?

Groceries became a huge point of contention when I was living with my roommate in college, so if I can give you one piece of advice it would be to talk about this early on.

Communicate with a potential roommate and discuss how the cost of groceries will be split up. Will you take turns every other week? Share? Everyone for themselves? Make it clear early on how grocery costs will be split and stick with it to avoid petty fights about who ate what.

10. Are You In A Relationship?

This is a big question to ask potential roommates that you may not have even thought of. Make sure to ask a potential roommate if they are in a relationship! This may seem like a personal question to ask, but if you are living with someone it is important to know. If they are in a relationship, you know that their S.O. will probably be coming over frequently.

This third roommate situation may be completely fine with you, especially if you are in a relationship as well. But, if the thought of another person staying over frequently bothers you, you may want to look for another roommate.

11. How Close Would You Like To Be With Your Roommate?

Before agreeing to live with someone, make sure you understand exactly what kind of relationship you are looking for in a roommate. Are you okay with them being just someone you live with or are you looking for a friend? Make sure you are all on the same page about how close you are looking to be with your roommate!

12. Do You Have Any Pets/Are You Okay With Pets?

If your apartment allows pets, you need to ask your roommate how they feel about them. Do they have a pet they will be bringing with them? Are they okay with you bringing a pet? Any pet allergies? 

If one of you is bringing a pet, there will most likely be a pet fee as well, so make sure to discuss how the cost of that fee is being paid for as well!

13. If There Were To Be A Problem How Would You Like To Address It?

It is a good idea to discuss how problems will be resolved before moving forward with your lease. Thinking of a scenario where there is a problem and discuss how each of you would handle it. If you are both confrontational people, you may be able to work out your problems, but this could also cause fighting. If you are both reserved, it may be harder to talk about what is bothering you. Use your best judgment when deciding the personality of a potential roommate and think about how problems would be addressed.

This can also mean discussing how exactly a problem is addressed. Would a quick text be enough or would you prefer a sit-down conversation? These questions to ask a potential roommate will help you understand how problems can be resolved between you and your roommates before moving in and will make fixing them much easier.

14. How Would You Like To Split Up Rent And Utilities?

Before doing anything, be sure you and your potential roommates have discussed how rent and utilities are split up. This means understanding your lease and what utilities are and are not included in your rent. Plan which utilities you are paying for each month and make your roommate aware of what they will be paying for. 

This is so important if you are leasing a place with shared rent. You all depend on each other to pay your portion which means if one person doesn’t pay, it affects all of you.

15. Do You Smoke Or Drink?

Ask your potential roommates about their drinking and smoking habits! Do they smoke in the house? Are they okay with drinking and if so how often? These are general questions you need to ask any potential roommate!

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16. Have You Lived With Roommates Before? Are You Still Friends?

This is a great question to ask potential roommates to give yourself a better idea of how well they will work as a roommate. Have they lived with roommates before? If they have, how did it go? What was the reason for moving out? Are they still friends? Asking these questions to potential roommates will give you a lot more insight into how they are to live with.

17. How Often Do You Have Friends Over?

Set expectations with a potential roommate by asking how often they have people over and if they are open to you having friends over. You and your roommates are the ones paying the rent, so it is important to set boundaries for who can and can’t come over. If you and your roommate are okay with having friends over, are there certain times off-limits? Any restrictions on how many people? Knowing this information will help you decide if a potential roommate is a good fit! 

PS. If you and your roommates are okay with having people over, make sure to discuss personal boundaries. One of the biggest fights I had in college was about my roommates’ friends eating our food and using our personal items. Be respectful of boundaries and make them apparent ahead of time.

18. How Often Do You Cook?

How often do you and your roommates plan on cooking meals at home? If one of you plans on eating out a lot, you may not want to pay for cooking supplies and groceries as often. If you both plan on cooking, discuss what kind of food you make, who will be paying for the meals, etc.

19. How Long Would You Want To Live Together?

Most living situations are based on a 6-month or 12-month lease, so you most likely know the minimum time you will be living together. But, make sure you also discuss if you are looking for a roommate for longer. Will they be graduating and moving out? Do they plan on subleasing? All these questions are important to ask future roommates if you plan on living together for an extended period.

20. What Are Your Pet Peeves?

This may seem like a silly question to ask, but it really is important to know when it comes to finding a roommate. Is there anything that just really pisses them off? These pet peeves can be big or small but are good to know regardless.

21. How Often Will You Be Sleeping Somewhere Else?

Okay, this is a question I am telling to ask a potential roommate from personal experience. I would have never thought to ask this before, but after a year of bickering with my roommate, asking how often they are going to be sleeping somewhere else is essential. I lived in a 2 bedroom apartment which meant when my roommate was gone, I was alone. I didn’t realize she would be out of town or sleeping at friends’ houses so often which meant I was often home alone. While this may be a dream scenario for you, I hated being left alone for weeks in my apartment. 

Long story short, make sure you know how often your roommates will be gone and if they are going to be gone frequently, make sure to communicate with them about when they will be back!

22. What Is Your Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, Etc?

You can never go wrong with doing a little social media stalking before agreeing to live with someone. Ask them for their social media accounts and do a little stalking. Doing this will give you a ton of insight into their true personality!

23. What Days Out Of The Week Are Your Busiest?

A good question to ask potential roommates is what days they will be the busiest. This will give you an idea of how well your schedules line up together, what days they are free, and what days you know just not to bother them. ?

24. Do You Think Of Yourself As An Extrovert or Introvert?

It is always good to know the personality type of the people you are living with. Are they introverted and prefer to stay at home or are they extroverted and love to go out? Finding a roommate with the same personality type as you will make it more likely that your roommate will be more of a friend than just someone you live with - if that’s what you want!

25. What Furniture Do You Already Have That You're Planning On Bringing?

Living in an apartment that needs to be furnished? If you are, this is one of the best questions to ask a potential roommate. Make sure you discuss what furniture you and your roommate have already bought. This will prevent you from showing up with two couches on move-in day. 

After you have discussed what furniture has been bought, you can decide what other furniture still needs to be purchased and how the cost will be split.

26. Do You Consider Yourself Organized?

Looking for a roommate that is as organized as you? This is a great question to ask before agreeing to live with someone. Knowing their organizational habits will give you insight into how they plan their day, keep their space clean, and how likely they are to meet your standards.

27. Do You Have Any Allergies?

Make sure to ask about any allergies that roommates may have! No one wants to cause an accidental hospital trip just because you forgot to ask! These allergies can be anything from food to pets.

28. Would You Be Open To A Cleaning Schedule?

By now, you probably have a good idea of your potential roommate’s cleaning habits. Whether they love cleaning or just do it because they have to, having a cleaning schedule and assigned tasks will keep your space clean and prevent arguments.

Ask your potential roommate if they would be open to a cleaning schedule each week and which tasks they would be open to doing. You can guarantee there will be no petty arguments about who left dishes in the sink or who forgot to take out the trash!

29. Who Is Paying For Your Rent?

This may seem like a personal question, but it is so important to know before signing a lease with someone. This question applies more to students looking for a roommate in college. Your roommate’s parents may be paying for it or they may be paying for it themselves. If they are paying for it themselves, be sure they are reliable and have a good history of paying their bills on time. You don’t want your roommate’s inability to pay their bills affecting your credit score or causing utilities to be shut off.

30. Do You Have Means On Transportation?

Anyone ever had a roommate that asks you to drive them everywhere? This may seem fine at first, but it can become a point of contention if they are never paying for gas or expect you to drive them on their own time. Make sure to ask if they have a car or other means of transportation. This will prevent you from getting yourself into a “free Uber driver” situation with your roommate.

31. Do You Have Any Other Thoughts Or Concerns About Living Together?

After you have covered all your bases, it is always a good idea to ask them if there are any other questions, comments, or concerns they would like to add. Living with someone is an agreement based on two or more people’s opinions so make sure they feel like their voice is being heard as well.

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