by Liv

Finding your First Roommate 101

When it comes time to finding a college roommate, choosing someone that you are going to live with for an entire year can be both scary and exciting!

Some people find comfort in pairing with someone who they already have some relation with. It may seem like a better idea to room with your best friend, or even a high school acquaintance rather than a random stranger you meet online. However, your perfect roommate doesn’t have to be someone you already know. Today, I’ll share why I think rooming with a stranger is a good idea!

At the end of my senior year when it came time to find a roommate, I panicked a little. I contemplated just living with a classmate from high school in fear that I might otherwise end up as another victim of the roommate horror stories you hear about… For example, living with a roommate who eats chap stick, brings their cat to school or communicates only through ventriloquism would be highly unfortunate. These are only stories…

Despite your fears of ending up with the unknown…The truth is that everyone else has the same fear too. Your roommate does not have to be your best friend, nor do you have to know them before coming to school. No matter who you decide to live with, your roommate situation is going to be just fine.

College is a time to meet new people! Be accepting of the many diverse backgrounds that you will soon be introduced to. What I suggest to you is to start your college experience by finding someone entirely new!

Let me ease your nerves by telling you my freshman roommate story…

Instead of choosing to room with one of my high school friends, I opted to branch out! A great place to do this is through the Iowa State incoming student Facebook page. The most important part of this process is how you choose to portray yourself. First, I introduced myself on the page. This is where you want to be as honest and authentic as possible. Try to include details that describe your living preferences. I chose to talk about my hometown, intended major, hobbies, preferred bedtime, music interests, movie favorites…etc. Don’t try to make yourself sound extra cool by saying that you stay up late or something like that. Just be honest!

After sharing my about me post, I began reading other profiles on the page. Remember, the goal is simply to find someone that you can live well with. I chose to initiate further conversation with some of the girls I thought I might live well with. After talking to a couple of people for a week or so, my roommate and I decided that we would live together.

We were still both uncertain of what we were getting into. Although my future roommate was seemingly normal, how much can you really judge from meeting someone online? Surely I would find out.

Long story short is that my freshman roommate and I clicked immediately. We both had the same taste in music, shared similar bedtimes, and enjoyed our room fairly clean. The fact is that we lived well together and have become great friends because of it…and we have been living together ever since!

The lesson to take away from this is that if I would have stayed in my comfort zone and roomed with someone I already knew, I wouldn’t have made a best friend in the process!

Just in case you were curious, here is a picture of my awesome roommate and I living the life at Iowa State!

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