You only have to pick up a college publication to read horror stories about messy or inconsiderate roommates. Nearly every dorm room has one. Here are some hints that the sloppy roommate is you.
1. Your Roommates are Quick to Suggest Chores for You
If you’re the messy roommate, chances are your roomies are trying to drop hints all over the place without offending you. One of these hints may come in the form of a brand new chore schedule.
While a chore chart doesn’t necessarily mean your roommates think you’re a slob, you may learn something from the chores they decided to assign you. If you got dishes, trash, or bathroom duty first, you may want to look at your cleaning habits in that area.
2. You Have Lots of Tripping Hazards
When you were a kid, your parents may have convinced you to clean your room by warning youthat firemen wouldn’t be able to get you in an emergency because of the stuff on your floor. If you can’t make it from your bed to the bathroom in the dark without stepping on something on something or tripping, it’s time for a cleanup.
Not only does loose debris pose a tripping hazard for you and your roommates, it can be legitimately dangerous in an emergency.
3.You’re Always Losing Things
If you’re constantly asking “have you seen my [fill in the blank]?” you could just be forgetful, or you could be disorganized. Your pencils, beauty supplies, or kitchen utensils can be misplaced, sure, but if it’s a relentless struggle to find them, chances are you could do with some plastic storage bins, a pen cup, and a concentrated organizational effort.
4. You Have Pests
Messes, whether they are clean laundry that hasn’t been hung up yet or piles of food wrappers, are ideal hiding places for common pests like these:
One of the best ways to prevent pests (and get rid of your current infestation) is to do some cleaning. Don’t stack things near walls or baseboards and store all your food in airtight containers (source: North Shore Pest Detective Ltd., a Vancouver exterminator).
5.There’s Very Little Clear Counter Space
When you’re getting ready in the morning if you have to hold your flat iron in one hand and keep your toiletries from rolling off the counter with the other, it’s time for a change. Remember that you have to share this space with at least one other person. Respect their space, even if it doesn’t look like they’re using it.
Keep your bathroom and kitchen supplies in your designated space and clean up before things start to overflow.
6. You Get More Calls on Cleaning Check Days than Any Other
If your roommates rarely text or call you except to remind you that cleaning checks are that day, you’re probably the messy roommate. While a little clutter is only to be expected, no one wants to be penalized for a mess they didn’t make.
Even if you’re having a hard time keeping your space clean on a daily basis, make an effort to clean up before your RA comes in for checks. Put cleaning checks on your personal calendar so they don’t sneak up on you. Give yourself at least an hour to get your room up to the cleaning standards. You, and your roommates, will enjoy fewer probation periods and fines from failed checks.
7.Your Dinner Comes in a Bag
If you rarely go grocery shopping and mostly orderin, chances are your trash is full of greasy wrappers and fry buckets. Unless you empty your trash every day or take the pizza boxes right out to the dumpster, chances are your side of the room stinks.
If these signs describe you, chances are you are the messy roommate. The good news is that you can make simple changes to leave less of a mess. Talk to your roommates about establishing chore schedules, lines of communication, and rules about messes to help you clean up your act. Coming up with a solution as a team can build friendships and a healthy, cooperative living environment.