Dorm Room Survival Tips or How to Get Along With Your College Roommate

Living in a dorm can be incredibly fun – you have easy access to events and activities on campus, a ready community, close proximity to food at all times, and an easy way to meet people right where you live (and dorm housing has definitely improved since your parents went to college)!  As good as it sounds and as much fun as it’s going to be: it’s completely normal to stress about dorm living.

Is your dorm room turning into a pig sty? Tidy up and keep the peace!

Chiot's Run / Susy Morris

Hands off: If it’s not yours: don’t touch!  It might be incredibly tempting to borrow your dorm roommate’s iPod, snack, or even clothing (especially if you have neglected your own laundry lately) – but don’t!  Starting the borrowing game without permission is only going to lead to hurt feelings and plenty of conflict, especially if something accidentally gets lost or broken! Keep the peace and keep your hands off of anything that doesn’t belong to you.

Boundaries: It’s important from the start to lay down a few ground rules, like preferred visiting hours or quiet time or when it’s just too late to listen to a dorm roommate texting someone at 3 in the morning! If there are specific times that one or both of you would prefer to have quiet for studying, make sure that that is something that you work out before there are any problems!

Clean Up: So, yes, there are plenty of other things you would probably prefer to do with your time than cleaning — but no one likes living with a slob. When space is at a premium, it’s important to keep things tidy – so there’s more room for you to live (and less chance of stubbed toes or lost homework). If your things keep creeping over the “Great Divide” you probably want to start thinking “dorm organization” — get to cleaning and organizing now rather than later!

Neglecting your laundry? Resist the temptation to dig through your roommate's clothing!

suzettesuzette / Suzette Pauwels

Jot It Down: Did someone stop by your dorm room looking for your roommate? Make sure to let your roommate know: it’s just good manners. After all, if someone stops by to see you, wouldn’t you like your dorm roommate to return the favor?

Branch out: Just because you live together doesn’t mean you have to spend every single waking minute together!  It’s great that you get along with your new dorm roommate and are total BFFs – just don’t forget to branch out a little too. Make friends outside of your dorm room. The people who live on the same floor as you and are in your classes are a great place to start. Don’t feel like you have to include your roommate on every little thing – but don’t feel hurt if they do the same.

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One Response to “Dorm Room Survival Tips or How to Get Along With Your College Roommate”

  1. Josh says:

    It’s good that you posted this because although I scan dozens of college blogs I have never seen a post about tips on how to survive living with someone else. I’ve seen lots of tips on other things. But often people don’t realize that you have to really work at it to successfully live with others. Good tips! Hopefully more people will begin to learn about this and post about it even more.

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