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Tips to managing costs as roomies


They say sharing is caring, but sharing your living space isn’t always easy. Living with a housemate is cost-effective and can help you save some bucks, by splitting costs of living. Local comedian Tumi Stopnonsons Matila comes from that life. He reminisces on his days of living with a housemate and how he bought his first car cash from what he saved.

Here are his tips on how to manage costs when living with a flatmate:

Communicate upfront

When dealing with money matters, the number one rule to having a roommate is communication. Be upfront about when monies must be ready to be paid, because everyone has different paydays. Discuss who pays for what and which expenses will be individual or shared.

Buy furniture separately

Going halfsies on a cute couch for your apartment always seems like a really great idea until the time comes for someone to move out. Deciding who gets to take it to their next place can cause avoidable conflict. Sharing furniture like a TV, washing machine, microwave, etc is common, but it’s a good idea to buy these items individually. 

Have a guest policy

While most roommates are happy to let your friends occasionally crash on the couch or have your significant other stay the night, sometimes it can be too much. If one of your roommates has a girlfriend who is spending the night many times a week and regularly taking showers and using the house Wi-Fi, it is reasonable for her to start sharing part of the living expenses. Develop a fair system.

Have an approved grocery list

Everyone has their preferred foods and favourite brands. When you share a living space and buy groceries together, it’s important to sit together and create a grocery list that has items you both approve of.

Stay informed! Visit the SA Department of Health's website for COVID-19 updates: