Splitting Rent When Roommates Boyfriend Moves In

Hi there,

I have been living with my roommate for 2 years in the same place. It’s a 2 bedroom, that is $1300/month plus utilities. We both pay $650.00. Her new boyfriend is moving in and they want me to continue to pay $650 while they split and pay $325 each. They did say we would split utilities evenly. I want to note my room is a bit bigger than hers but not substantially. I’ve had a few friends say that that is not fair because you don’t just pay for your room, you pay for the whole place. Plus it’s an inconvenience to have an extra person there (the place isn’t that big).

So how much do you think everyone should pay? Thanks in advance for any advice!

Since the OP is looking for advice, let’s move this over to IMHO.

General Questions Moderator

I’d calculate by square footage with my portion of the common areas being 1/3. But I’m anal that way. :slight_smile:

In my opinion, if you’re sharing parts of the apartment like a kitchen and bathroom then it should be viewed as a joint rental. And everyone living in the joint rental should be paying an equal share.

But don’t be surprised if they don’t see it this way. In any situation where there are two possible answers, most people are going to believe the answer that favors them is the “fair” one. If you tell them you don’t think it’s fair for you to be paying half the rent in an apartment with two people, they’re probably going to say it isn’t fair for you to want them to pay two-thirds of the rent for their half of the apartment.

Don’t go looking for a fight but don’t be surprised if this turns into a fight.

Frankly I don’t like the idea of someone moving a boy/girlfriend into an established residence. Typically a 2 bedroom flat is pretty much sized for 2 people to live in.

That being said, 3 of you in the same residence, split everything 3 ways. Or she can move out and into the BFs flat, and you can get a new single roommate.

If they use half the rooms/bathrooms and 2/3rds of the utilities then the suggested pay scheme sounds pretty fair.

Ultimately, there’s no one absolute “fair” price, just one that seems reasonable and doesn’t involve roommate warfare and hatred (nor of them determining that they can walk over you). The only suggestion beyond their scheme that I might suggest is figuring out the total square footage of the unit and of the communal areas and allocating by that. For example, if the total area of the unit is 2000 square feet (sf), their bedroom and bathroom is 300 sf, yours is 400, and the communal area is the remaining 1300, then you would pay ((400 + (1/3) * 1300) / 2000) * RENT and they would pay ((300 + (2/3) * 1300) / 2000) * RENT. Since RENT is $1300 per month, in this example it would be $541 for you and $759 for them.

They should pay somewhere between 1/2 and 2/3rds (non-inclusive) depending on if they share a bathroom with you and how often they use the common areas.

If they don’t share a bathroom with you and NEVER use the kitchen or common areas, then maybe I could see an argument for them paying just half.

3 people, rent splits 3 ways.

They’re still ony taking 1/2 the bedrooms: rent 50/50.
Utilities/heat/AC/food/intangibles: 1/3 you, 2/3 them.

I have been in this situation a few times, and we have always just divided the rent by the number of people. As others have said, you don’t just rent the bedroom, but all the common space as well. Couples who hope to take advantage of 1/2 off rent by sharing a bedroom selfishly ignore the imposition of an extra person on the other roommate.

Yeah, divide into thirds. Let them know you’ll be happy to split it into 4ths when your boyfriend moves in with YOU. :slight_smile: Maybe then they’ll understand it’s more than sharing a bed.

Rent stays 50/50. Utilities get split three ways. I’d accept and even demand a more favorable deal depending on the layout.

Also did you get a choice about the BF? That’s when the finances should have been negotiated.

This is, to me, the closest thing to a fair option.

You agreed to pay 650 a month for an apartment shared with one other person. By the boyfriend moving in, you lose a lot of privacy, and have less access to common features like the fridge. Sounds like they decided to single-handedly renegotiate the terms.

Time to move.

I might feel like a weirdo to propose this to them, but I think it’s the fairest way to go. I don’t think they should be paying a full 2/3 of the rent but I don’t think they should only be paying 1/2 either.

Tell them you plan to move a fourth roommate in, so that EVERYONE can pay $325 a month.

Are they horrified? Of course.

Tell them, that’s how I feel about the CURRENT situation.

They have to pay extra for all of the time you’ll spend waiting for them to stop sucking face in the kitchen while they prepare a smelly vegan dinner so you can get in there and grab a Lunchables from the cupboard before retreating to your room for the rest of the weekend to avoid having to run into them any more.

At least that’s how it worked in my experience (in my own home, with a guy living there for free, and his girlfriend who was just “visiting.”)

I’ve always made it very clear to roommates just visiting ends after 1 week.

Also if they are just visiting I expect it to be supervised visitation. They might trust whoever their fucking with all their hearts but I’m not going to trust them with my stuff.

Yeah, in my experience the social dynamic that emerges when you have a couple and one or more single people living in a rental house is not a healthy one. The couple is going to naturally tend to dominate the common areas as well as having an unbreakable majority in household decisions. The situation becomes more similar to a couple taking in a boarder than three supposedly equal partners, and so IMHO the rent paid by the single person should reflect that.

Maybe things may be different here since the roommate relationship came first and therefore might take some priority over the boyfriend one, but I wouldn’t necessarily count on it. I agree it’s time to start thinking about moving.

I have serious, serious issues with confrontation. I am the great enabler.

Another vote for more than 1/2 but less than 2/3. How about 3/5 (chosen arbitrarily)?