Roommate Advice

He wants to clean weekly, I think every other week will MORE THAN suffice.

He wants HBO for $30 a month even though our trial period is over, if for no other reason that we can keep out box and have the option of purchasing $40 WWE pay-per-views. I say we are already paying $21.95 a month for Netflix, we don’t need to pay upwards $80 per month on viewing entertainment.

He wants a year’s paper subscription for $81, I never read it and get all of MY info from the internet.

He comes from a wealthy family and his mom has cleanliness as an OBSESSION. Though he doesn’t get much actual money from his parents, they DO loan him his entire college education at 0% interest while I am the one owing upwards of $13,000 to various creditors. He has a nice job making $12.50 per hour working part time.

To make matters worse, our new roommate next year (who I love to death) gets a monthly check from the federal government due to a family tragedy. She is ALSO getting a good portion of her education paid for by the state, scholarships and her wealthy step dad.

I am definitely not poor. My (divorced) mother and father made a combined $114,000 before my dad lost his job. This is also the reason I’m not in the work study program, they both make too much. I can’t work off campus because I don’t have the money for a car. It is tough to get a job on campus because…well…I digress. And I get little from my parents, I figure about 33% of what the government says they should. (Don’t misconstrue that as a complaint there are many more in a worse position that I, but they government also thinks I don’t make enough to be obligated to pay ANYTHING, yet I pick up the slack.)

I am also not a slob. Yes, there are two pop cans sitting on my computer table right now, but all my dirty clothes are in the hamper. I’d give you a picture of our living room, which has been a consensus among our friends as the cleanest place on campus, but alas I have no place to upload it to.

How have others worked crap like this out?

Living with roomates is always so much fun!

Seriously, I would tell him your views and be firm about it. Tell him that you are not going to pay for HBO or the paper because you don’t find them to be worth the cost to you. That way, he’s perfectly able to decide for himself if he wants to foot the entire bill. Of course, you probably shouldn’t read his papers every day after that…but it sounds as if that wouldn’t be an issue.

As for the cleaning, I’d try to negotiate with him. Every other week sounds like more than enough cleaning to me. However, if he insists on cleaning every week you’ll probably start to look like a jerk if you don’t help out.

Like I said, make your views known to him. If you don’t, the disagreements will fester. I see nothing wrong with saying, “Look, I don’t want this service (HBO, paper, whatever), but feel free to get it for yourself if you want.”

I wouldn’t pay for the HBO. Just say he can order the HBO if he wants, but you will only pay for your share of the regular cable. I had a roommate who did the exact same thing except before HBO, we were getting cable for free (it was all hooked up when we moved in, we never called the company to ‘fix’ it). I told him that I did not want HBO, but he ordered the whole digital cable package anyway and then I had to pay for my share of what regular basic cable would have cost (even though I had to pay nothing before he ‘needed’ HBO). Explain that you don’t have as much money to burn, especially on TV.
As far as cleaning goes, I would just go ahead and help out. Maybe if you simpky straightened up every week that would be good enough. Just remeber to keep communication open between your roommates and yourself. I’ve had to most horrible roommates in the world (three of them, all during different years) and the main problem stemmed from little issues, like TV and cleaning, snowballing into huge fights…

At least he cleans! my roommate does his dishes once every 2-3 weeks, and vacuums about every 3 or so months. He also turned on the a/c today and the high for the day was 80 degrees Farenheit! It was a rather nice day.

As for the rest of your OP, i suggest telling him that if he wants the paper, then he should buy it… since u dont read it. the tv issue shouldnt be one. you guys are in school to study and that leaves little time for tv.

Here is what I’d do:

HBO situation - I don’t think it would be a big deal for you to say you don’t want it. You’re under no obligation to help pay for additional luxuries you don’t necessarily want. This could bring up the issue of you watching it and not paying for it, but I don’t think that should be a big deal either. I think he’d be being out of line if he tried to complain about you watching it when you don’t throw down on it, because you don’t want it in the first place. Once its there, it doesn’t cost anymore the more you watch it. Maybe you could throw down a little on it, like $5 - $10 as a comprimise.

Paper - Again, I don’t think you should be obligated to throw down on something you don’t necessarily want, and definitley don’t necessarily need. But, don’t expect to read the paper much then. But, since you say you never read it anyway, that shouldn’t be a problem

Cleaning - Try your best to keep your own messes in the common areas of your place clean. If that means cleaing once a week, you should really try to do that, at least a little bit. But, your room should be your room. If you want to never clean your room at all that should be your business.

Your roomates financial situations in general - You are going to have to come to an understanding on the differences in the roomate’s money supplies. Let your roomates know that you can’t afford or aren’t interested in a lot of luxury items. Leave it up to them if they want to get luxuries without you, but they can’t expect you to contribute to a lot of them. It seems like your roomates have enough extra cash anyway, where they can probably afford these things without you.

In my view, it’s better to clean too much than to not clean enough. I would show you a picture of our pigsty if I could, but I can’t. only like 2% is my fault, and its in my area. I have 3 roommates. Yay.

But be firm yet willing to compromise on everything. :slight_smile:

How we have been doing things so far is dividing things by what would be nessessary for a “typical” household.

I never use the phone. I never get phone calls and when I DO I use my cell phone. But I recognize that that is probably an important part of a usual household, so I pay.

Roommates are not married. Nor are they family. This should be made clear if the happiness of all parties is to last. A lot of roommates like to assume that if something’s in the house, it should be paid for by everyone in the house.

Bull! If your friend wants HBO, tell him to pony up for it. You don’t want it and you aren’t paying for it. Same for the newspaper. Things that everyone uses which are hard to quantify, i.e., toilet paper, dish soap, paper towels, etc., should be rotated among each roommate, so that no one feels like they “always” end up paying for it. The roommates’ respective money situation shouldn’t matter; fair is fair. Just because Roomie A has rich parents who help him out doesn’t mean that his other roommates should pitch in and pay for things he would like in the house. As long as all bills are being split equally, no one roommate’s financial situation should give him/her the right to create non-essential bills for the others.

Oh, and in my experience, the “common areas” of the house are everyone’s responsibility; clean as you go out of respect for people who like things a bit neater than you do…and feel free to trash your room as much as you like.

Just my $0.02.