Anyone looking for a new roommate understands it is highly important to check references. For the most part, no roommate will ever be completely perfect, but when you are finding a roommate in the New York City area make sure there are no serious problems. You want to avoid any roommates with sketchy background information, a history of going from job to job or apartment to apartment. Here are some things to look for to make sure you are checking the right things when looking over a potential roommate’s references.
Think of looking over a roommate’s references as if you are an employer looking to hire someone for a job. You have to find someone qualified to fill the position. When you ask for references, ask for at least two or three. Get references from former roommates as well as family members or friends.
When you contact them you want to ask things that will back up anything your potential roommate has already told you. For example, when following up with a former roommate of theirs, verify the dates they lived together.
Verify if the rent was paid on time and the reason why the roommate left. Ask if the former roommate would ever consider living with this person again. One of the hardest things to ask is what the three worst habits were of the roommate. You need to do this in order to get a clearer picture of who you might be living with soon.
When you speak to a family member do not be afraid to ask things pertaining to the person’s personal habits around the house. Ask them if the potential roommate was neat and was good about cleaning up after him or herself. All of these things will help you do the important job of checking references.