Finding a roommate often a necessity

In Madison, resources like the NEW UW Madison Sublet and Roommate Board in Facebook can help first-time renters. Students can also call in the help of their friends and classmates.

Ezra Peters and Niamh Biesel, Contributors

Most college students who choose to live on their own need at least one roommate with whom to split the costs in order to make ends meet.

According to ABODO, a national apartment listing service started and headquartered in Madison, the average monthly rent in the city is more than $900 for a studio apartment, about $1,135 for a one-bedroom, more than $1,400 for a two-bedroom and almost $1,900 for three-bedroom rentals

In Madison, there are different ways to find a roommate, or maybe even multiple roommates, such as social media groups or through word of mouth.

Signing a lease is a commitment, so it’s important to choose a roommate wisely – someone you can share positive experiences with – otherwise, you might have some roommate horror stories.

The first step is to actually find someone to live with. This is essentially the most important step, as most leases are for 12 months. For college students, the most popular way nowadays to find a roommate is to join a Facebook group that is specifically made for this purpose. Most of these sites are designed for students to find a sublease, roommate, or for posting a unit that is available. These groups have moderators to ensure the posts are appropriate and to approve requests to join the group.

A popular local page on Facebook is NEW UW Madison Sublet and Roommate Board, and has over 39,000 members. You do not need to be a student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison to join, there are daily posts, and one can reply directly or private message a user. There are always risk factors for meeting up with someone you contact online, so it is important to always keep that in mind when using an online platform.

Another way to find a quality roommate is by talking with people that you trust to get you in contact with someone they know is also looking. This way, you can feel more comfortable knowing you have a connection with this person and can safely meet them.

Sometimes when living with their roommate, it can take time before noticing incompatible behaviors.

If conflicts were to arise with you and your roommate, it is good to learn ways in advance for how to resolve them. According to local apartment management company Steve Brown Apartments, there are nine common reasons that roommates have arguments: being loud (partying), not cleaning, different sleep schedules, stealing/borrowing, generally not getting along, issues with guests, disagreements over bills, lack of respect and privacy.

Steve Brown Management also cites a 2008 study conducted by Boise State University, which concluded that 25 percent of students reported issues with their roommates within their first month, with female students having more issues than males.

Understanding your personal conflict resolution style will make it easier to express your feelings comfortably. For example, if you are the type to avoid conflict, you might feel more comfortable in a controlled environment with someone else present to keep things under control. If you are a more confrontational person, you will have no issue directly addressing the issues.

Another way to resolve conflicts is to always make sure you are communicating with each other directly, and not taking the issues to social media platforms for everyone to see because it will just create more tension.