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Outreach & Services

Roommate Selection

Selecting roommates and housemates is serious business. Once you sign your leasing agreement you and your roommate(s) become jointly, legally responsible for each other’s payment of rent and, in some cases, utility fees. Be sure your roommate is trustworthy, dependable, and able to honor the terms of your lease before you enter into a leasing agreement with her or him.

Conflict among roommates is inevitable, but it does not have to become destructive. Develop effective strategies for addressing concerns with each other early on and avoid letting issues fester. Discuss issues as they arise and resolve them completely. Devise a strategy for dividing and paying bills before you create them because if one of you fails to pay the rent, the landlord can, and usually will, sue all of you. Even, if the person who did not pay leaves, the remaining roommates will face a lawsuit for eviction even though they paid their portion of the rent.

This may not sound fair, but it’s true. Think about it this way, from the landlord's point of view, the apartment is rented to one household. So it is up to you, the members of the household, to work out the details of living together successfully. And success begins with choosing the right roommates. Click here for some helpful questions to ask potential roommates before deciding to live with them.

If you or your organization is interested in having our Community Liaisons provide a presentation on factors to consider when selecting your roommates please email us at campuscommunity@illinois.edu.