Unless you have some sweet seed money or a well-paying job, moving in with a roommate after leaving dorm life or your folks’ house is logical. There are downfalls to sharing space like different levels of cleanliness and different standards of what a home should look like, but what often starts out as something done out of financial necessity has benefits that for many far outweigh the convenience of autonomous rule over space.
With both immediate and long-term benefits, your wallet and social life will thank you.
1. You can split bills.
Let’s start practically. You split the rent, split the utilities, split the bread and split the booze. To increase the quality of the home and decrease the sketchiness of the neighborhood you can afford, it is easier with a roommate.
2. You watch out for each other.
If you live alone and you go missing on a weekend, who would know? Until you have to show up to work on Monday and don’t, no one will know something is wrong. You could be dead in a ditch somewhere. Your roommate will likely notice your absence before anyone else. Even your mom (unless your mom is your roommate, then it kind of happens at the same time).
3. You have an automatic friend.
A roommate is kind of like a surrogate sibling. You might get cranky with each other, but ultimately, it’s nice to have the consistent (although not necessarily constant) company of someone else.
4. Get experience with cohabitation that doesn’t have to end in divorce.
If you expect to do the marriage or romantic cohabitation thing one day down the road, good luck navigating that without adult experience of what it’s like to share space.
5. There is always someone to talk to.
When you’re both home, your nearest social interaction is only a few feet away.
6. You don’t have to eat meals alone.
Every shared meal is like a friend date!
7. You don’t need to cook every meal.
Don’t mind if I kick my feet up and relax until it’s time to eat. I know it’s my turn next time, though. Then I’ll be Martha Stewart and you can relax.
8. Someone to hang out with when the weather sucks
Raining? Snowing? Generally gross outside? Let the storm pass and stay inside, you have a roomie! Wait for the storm to pass with your live-in comrade, watching movies and drinking wine. They won’t judge you for drinking at 1 pm, they know you aren’t about to drive anywhere anyway.
9. Someone to hang out with when you’re sick
Unless you have the bubonic plague (or if we’re being current here, the measles), your roommate is familiar with you enough that your sickness does not gross him or her out. It’s like when your mom is sick: you still hug her. Let your roommate cook you some Campbell’s and lend you NyQuil.
10. Someone to hang out when you look too ugly to go outside
They’ve seen you at your best, and they’ve seen you at your worst. No make-up? No problem. Unbrushed teeth and rat’s nest hair? Marvelous. Your roommate can handle it. Maybe you don’t look beautiful, but you look beautiful enough for them.
11. Someone to hang out with…period.
Ready-made social life…go!
12. You can share clothes.
This isn’t always true, but if you’re a similar size and dress for the same gender, your closet doubles just by their existence!
13. You have a platonic cuddle buddy during cuffing season.
Who said you need a boyfriend to keep warm? Cuddle up with your roomie. A human body that you love is a human body that you love!
14. Someone to say goodnight and good morning to
These little joys in life act as great bookends for your day. It just feels nice.
15. Someone who knows all the weird shit you do on the low and grows to love it (and you) anyway
Your roommate does not care if you sit Tom Cruise style, hand in pants, while watching the weather over and over. You’re a weirdo and they love you. As long as you don’t mind this person dancing around your living room in underwear, which you definitely don’t (because you join in).
With the ebb and flow of life, who knows what will come of you and your roommate in the future? You may just have each other for a season and move on to living alone or with someone else, or you might create a life together. He or she could just be the person you cultivate patience useful for future relationships because of—or you might just have a best friend for life.