Can a Roommate Actually Help Save on Housing Expenses?
Housing cost is too high, and not to mention, after the economic crisis, there has been a steep rise in rent, making it even harder for tenants to get by. Rent makes up a large proportion of monthly expenses, forcing a large number of people to live on a shoestring.
Rising housing cost is majorly affecting university students who are living on their part-time jobs. Moving out to a smaller house is not a practical option for everyone. With a weak budget, many people have found a way to make do with little money – sharing their rooms with their partners.
Sharing helps split the cost of rent, utilities, groceries, and all associated expenses, allowing for a wiggle room in your budget. You might not bother about it at this time, especially if you like your own company, but as times fleets by, more obligations will affect your budgets, like stowing away money for your car and a mortgage.
How sharing a room with your partner can split the cost
Here are the costs that you can split with your partner and save money:
1. Save on rent
As rent is a significant expense, it makes it difficult for many of you to save money for other expenses. Many of you do not realise that you need to have an emergency cushion along with a savings account for planned expenses like car, house, etc. and retirement funds.
You can decide to save money for retirement later, but you cannot compromise savings for unforeseen expenses and planned expenses. The more money you save, the better it is. Having a roommate will help ease your financial burden. They will pay half of the rent so that you can save that money.
2. Splitting furnishing costs
If you are to furnish the whole apartment or flat, it will be very expensive. Although you do not have to buy large pieces of furniture, you will still need to invest in essential furniture items like tables, chairs, sofas, couches, and the like.
Do not forget that you may have to spend money on household essentials like pots, pans, cutlery, and other essential items. Having a roommate will help bear half of the cost. You can split the bill in half, or you can be responsible for paying for every other item. However, the former will be the best option.
It is always advisable that you look for a flat or apartment that is already furnished. Buying new pieces of furniture can be a lot expensive.
3. Save on utility bills
Your roommate can share utility bills, such as power, gas, and cable. After the economic crisis, utility bills have sharply gone up. Most of the students are struggling to pay these bills. If you share your flat, you will be able to save half of the money on these bills. This will be a significant relief to your budget.
Do not forget that just utility bills are not what you need to take care of. A lot of other expenses are there, like cable bills, subscriptions, Wi-Fi, and so forth. Sharing nt only just helps you save some of your money but also enables you to utilise that money for other essential expenses.
4. Sharing the cost of household essentials
Household essentials take a large chunk of your budget even though it does not feel like it. Toilet papers, detergents, and trash bags are some of the daily essentials you will need. If you are sharing with a partner, you will be able to save half of the money on them.
However, technically it will not actually help save you a lot of money because the more people share your room, the higher the demand will be. Therefore, you should try to save money by buying quantities in bulk and from thrift stores.
You will likely get hefty discounts. These discounts will help you save a considerable amount of money. However, there are certain things you do not need to buy in bulk because you can share the cost, for instance, trash bags.
5. You can merge other living costs
One of the most incredible benefits of sharing a room with someone is that you can also save on expenses other than flat-relate expenses. It will have a good impact on your living costs. For instance, you can carpool to split the cost if you drive to college or your workplace.
Likewise, you can split the bill if you need to hire a professional service provider to clean your flat. In addition, if you need to buy supplies, you will just have to share half of the cost. Do not forget to include groceries. Everything you buy will cost you half the price.
6. You can pay off debt faster
Living life without debt at all seems like a dream to many of you. Whether you are living a student life or a professional, you might have some debts to pay off. Even if you have a small amount of money, it seems to be hard to pay off on time because of the rising cost of living.
In this scenario, having a room partner will be a white knight. As you will be splitting the cost of living, it makes it easier for you to pay off the debt smoothly. The more money you release from your expenses, the more comfortable the debt payment will be.
Timely payments can help you avoid having a bad credit score. Remember that you will need to have a strong credit rating if you want to buy a car and a house. Although you have a scope of taking out car finance with bad credit and no guarantor, you should still try to have a better credit rating to avail of lower interest rates.
Having a roommate has pitfalls too
Though having a roommate has some benefits, it has some drawbacks too. Take a look at them:
1. It can end up costing you more
You need to be a bit careful with sharing a room with somebody else. Chances are you will end up paying more rather than saving money. This is the case, especially when you are best friends or family members.
If you are too close, you will likely fail to set boundaries. You might end up paying more than half the price of what you buy out of courtesy. Further, if your roommate has fun with friends, you will end up paying higher utility bills, food, drinks, etc.
Do not fight shy of telling your roommate that you are on a limited budget. Make sure that your partner does not do anything that influences your budget.
2. You may fail to get along
It is not a cinch to find a roommate who is reliable and trustworthy. It is essential to take some time to think about sharing a room. If you do not get along well, it will lead to stress and financial difficulties.
The final comment
A roommate can actually help save you money but remember that you should find the one who gets along with you and make sure that you are not too close friends because both of you can take each other for granted.