5 tips for keeping organized with your roommate

Living with a roommate or two can be a fun life experience! If you are fortunate enough to be able to choose your roommate, you’re probably already aware of their habits and like them enough to want to live with them. Even so, it’s still good to have a plan in place to stay organized, especially if your are self-isolating or spending long hours indoors together. Consider these tips…

1. Set expectations

Have a conversation with your roommate(s) to see where everyone’s level of cleanliness and organization lies. It’s likely that some are going to have higher expectations than others so sitting down and talking is a good way to figure out where you can compromise. By agreeing to keep the shared spaces clean to everyone’s standards, the more likely you will all continue to get along.

2. Designate personal spaces

If you are able to, you may want to consider assigning each roommate their own space within each room. For example, in the kitchen, everyone can have their own cabinet and drawer to place their food, cookware, dining ware and utensils. You can also take it as far as dividing up the space in the refrigerator if that is something that everyone is open to. In the bathroom, again, each roommate can have their own shelf space or drawer for personal hygiene items.

However, if you all feel comfortable sharing spaces and personal belongings, that is completely up to you as well. Just remember to make note of or label certain items that you are not open to sharing, if any.

3. Buy multi-purpose furniture

If you live in the GTA, and find yourself in one of the smaller Toronto condos, it may be more difficult to keep things clean when there is less space to put things. While having less belongings is ideal, it’s not always practical. In this case, having multi-purpose furniture in the home can be both efficient and help keep you organized. For example, in the living room, having a couch that has storage underneath or an ottoman that doubles as a bench and extra storage would be ideal for smaller spaces.

4. Create a chore list

While this tip may seem a bit silly and juvenile, creating a chore list is a good way to hold everyone accountable for their part. When living with other people, it is very common to find that some people enjoy certain chores that others don’t so it will not be as hard to designate tasks. For those chores on the list that no one particularly wants to do, it’s up to you to decide how you will tackle it whether it be an alternating chore between household members or if it’s likely to be a collective effort chore. No matter how you choose to assign cleaning tasks, it is important that you stick to it!

5. Schedule monthly cleanups

As long as you are sticking to your chore list, your shared spaces should be clean and organized for the most part. Scheduling monthly cleanups in addition to everyone’s individual cleaning tasks are a good way to get everyone together to hang out, even if it’s just for cleaning, and possibly discuss anything that may be bothering someone, in terms of the upkeep of the home. This would also be a good opportunity to talk about anything you may want to get rid of or add to the shared spaces.

Whether you are already rooming with others or you are currently looking through Vancouver or Toronto real estate prices with your roommate(s), remember these tips to ensure that your space remains organized during your stay.

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