How to Find a College Roommate

Good luck, you’re gonna need it.


Whether you’re already committed to a university or you’re just curious to learn about the process, finding a good potential roommate is a big deal for incoming first years. Some seniors are confined to strictly randomized roommate match-ups, depending on their college of choice, but a majority of us are faced with the task of venturing out into the social media world and finding a compatible living partner. For the students going in-state, they are fortunate enough to be surrounded by trustworthy peers in high school that will attend the same university as them. As for the students trekking out into other corners of the world, it poses as a much more challenging assignment.

For the most part, the procedure is the same, regardless of your future college. Facebook group pages usually pop up once acceptance letters are released, giving the incoming class a platform to express themselves and meet new people from across the country. Sarah Norman, who is committed to University of South Carolina, is an expert in the process and was kind enough to provide some advice regarding the dreaded roommate search.

If I have to babysit someone, they’re going out the window.”

— Anna Tortorici

Sarah highly recommends using the Facebook group pages to search through countless posts of other freshmen looking for a roommate. Unfortunately, the posts become a bit redundant and it feels like every girl is “looking for a fun night out, but also down for a chill night in to watch Netflix”, which can get a bit tiring after a while. Sarah suggests to look for red flags within Facebook posts, such as girls that are obsessed with their boyfriends, or students that possess strong religious or political views. It seems like it’s common sense to avoid these problematic people, but it is often difficult to spot these issues right off the bat. The solution? Once you start talking to a potential roommate, find a way to suggest Facetiming them. Not only will you be able to hear their voice and observe their mannerisms/body language, but you will also be able to gauge whether or not you and this complete stranger mesh well.

In addition, Anna Tortorici has some solid requirements for her future roommate, all of which I recommend that you adopt. She’s looking for someone with a moderate level of productivity; no one wants a roommate that sleeps in past noon every day. It’s sad. Anna also stresses the importance of someone who displays nonchalant humility, as she would not be able to tolerate a roommate that is abnormally obsessed with herself. I don’t blame her. Sarah also supported these requirements, but she was looking for a couple more specifics, such as social habachi-eaters. Once more, I don’t blame her—those kind of details are important.

My most important suggestion? Find someone that is tidy. You do not, I repeat, you do not want someone that has their trash and clothes scattered throughout your dorm room. It will cause you unnecessary stress (feng shui is a real thing) and will most likely cause a riff between you and your roommate. That being said, the same applies to you: please just clean up after yourself. The best way to find an amazing potential roommate is to be the person you want to live with. If all else fails, and you cannot stand the girl/boy sleeping across from you, you can always go to administration and claim that you’re allergic to something in the room. Feigning an allergy will certainly get you out of that prison cell and hopefully give you a room of your own.

I wish you the best of luck on this journey.