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Finding Your Perfect Flatmate

Updated on November 4, 2014
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Whether you're looking for a new place to live or offering a spare room, finding a flatmate can be a challenge. It can be just like looking for a job! There are advertisements to reply to and write, interviews to attend and the decision of choosing the right flatmate for you.

Here are a few tips that will make looking and choosing a flatmate easier and more enjoyable.

Starting Your Search For Your Perfect Flatmate

From asking friends and family to placing an ad, searching for the right flatmate takes time, effort and perseverance. It's about understanding what you want in a flatmate and find that person or group in the location that you wish to live in. Here are some tips that can help get started and make all the difference in your flatmate search.

Writing down your ad on paper before typing it can help your thought process
Writing down your ad on paper before typing it can help your thought process
  • Decide the qualities of your perfect flatmate before you start searching. These qualities become your "perfect flatmate recipe".
  • Making sure that your flatmate ad is up-to-date, positive and free of spelling and grammatical errors can help you create a good first impression.
  • Adding a photo to flatmate ad can help your listing stand out from the crowd and get noticed by potential applicants.
  • If you find writing a flatmate advertisement difficult, you may find it easier to record a short video on your phone and adding it to your listing
  • When replying to flatmate ad or received a message from a mutual acquaintance you should use your potential flatmate's preferred contact method, eg, phone, email

Preparing For Flatmate Interviews

You've placed your ad and asked friends whether they know anyone looking for a flatmate. What's next? It's the all important interview. The objective of each interview that you attend is to gather information for the next step - choosing the right share house or flatmate for you. To help you make each interview a success and stay safe when meeting a prospective flatmate for the first time, you should:

Must-Ask Interview Questions
Why are you looking for a flat/house to share?
Have you lived with flatmates before?
What expenses make up the rent? Does it include electricity and water?
What are the food and shopping arrangements?
  • Make a list of questions to ask before attending to flatmate interviews
  • Prepare answers to questions that you feel you may be asked during interviews
  • Meet potential flatmates for the first time in a public place
  • Arrive on time to help ensure that you make a great first impression
  • Take a friend with you to interviews for a second opinion

Tips To Help You Choose The Right Flatmate For You

How do you choose the person that is right for you share house or flatshare? It's one of the most commonly asked questions. Even though your selection process may vary depending on your method of searching for potential flatmates, these tips can help pick the right flatmate or share house for you.

  • Make sure that your shortlisted flatmates or share house have the sought after qualities that you listed in your "perfect flatmate recipe"
  • Ensure that everyone in your share house has equal decision-making power and is comfortable with the final choice
  • Ask and check references before asking a potential flatmate to move in
  • Before making a final decision on a new place to live or flatmate, sleep on it overnight
  • Don't choose flatmates purely for financial reasons or alternatively you are running out of time to find a new place to live. You should make sure that you feel secure, comfortable and happy in any share house that you choose.

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Take This Quick Poll

Looking for flatmates is not always easy. By taking this poll, you can find out in which areas other people looking for flatmates are also having trouble.

When looking for a flatmate, what aspect do you find the most difficult?

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Common Flatmate Terms

Flatmate
A person who shares an apartment or house with 1 or more person to whom they are not related. This term is commonly used in Australia, New Zealand and United Kingdom.

Roommate
A term commonly used to describes flatmates in the United States.

Housemate
Flatmates who share the same house.

Share Accommodation
An apartment or house where flatmates live.

Share House
A house where 2 or more flatmates live.

Flatshare
An apartment where 2 or more flatmates live.

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