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Office of Residence Life
100 College Drive
Allentown, PA 18104
Fax: 610-740-3789

Living with a Roommate

One of the best, and one of the most rewarding aspects of college life is having the opportunity to live with a roommate. The skills you will develop while adjusting to life with a roommate will inevitably help you out down the road as you work on communication and compromise. Here are some tips to help you adjust to living with a roommate:

Respect! Respect! Respect!

Approaching your living situation with an open mind is necessary in making the most of the living experience.  The fastest way to have a wonderful year is to respect your roommate’s differences and living space.

Communication is Key!

Developing a relationship with your roommate is important for setting the groundwork for a good year. Especially initially, getting to know your roommate and what she expects from you and the living situation will help you down the road. Roommate contracts are available from your RA and are an excellent way to set the rules for the year. Talk over everything from how you prefer to study, to what is okay to share. Be sure to discuss how you will deal with conflict—is a note the best way to communicate when something is making you unhappy, or do you need to go out for a cup of coffee to chat things through?

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff, But Also Don't Ignore It

The best way to keep your roommate relationship running smoothly is to address concerns as they arise. Your initial reaction to this might be to ignore small problems and pretend like they don’t bother you.  However, the more you do this, the larger the problem becomes. Recognize that small problems will normally have an easy solution.  Don’t stress about talking to your roommate, you’ll be relieved once you’ve talked about your concern.  Roommate conflict is natural, but communication and a positive attitude will help you resolve conflicts.  Trained Resident Advisors are also available on each floor to assist with conflict resolution.