Soon-to-be college freshmen, as you prepare over the summer to move in to dorms this fall,you may want to prepare to have a frank conversation with your future roommate. It can avoid a lot of pain later on - say like tripping over your roommate's artificial leg.

I'm not making this up, it actually happened to a friend of mine with his freshman year roommate. One morning he actually woke up earlier than his roommate and tripped over the guy's "leg" - until then he had no idea his roommate had an artificial leg!

In all seriousness, you don't have to ask questions like "do you have an artificial leg?" But, it probably wouldn't hurt to have a frank discussion and lay down some ground rules BEFORE issues happen. Three months into the semester, you'll be glad you did.

Some questions to consider asking a future roommate:

How often do you think cleaning should be done?
How do you want to split cleaning duties?
How often do you study?
How do you like to study?
Where do you like or plan to study?
Are there any items we could share (like TV, mini-fridge, microwave)?
What items do you consider off-limits?
Are you a morning person? A night-owl?
Do you have a boyfriend or girlfriend?
What's your stance on overnight visits?
How do you feel about setting guidelines now so we don't annoy each other later?
Taking the time NOW to ask some tough, potentially uncomfortable questions - and setting up ground rules based on the answers -- will make your life easier. That way, neither one of you get unwelcomed surprises or find yourself in an unbearable situation that ruins your freshman year experience. Your new roommate may or may not become a good friend, but mutual respect can go a long way to keeping it friendly and civil!

Your Smart Plan For College Assignment:

Figure out what you can and cannot live with in a roommate. AND understand that compromise is necessary. Once your new roommate has been assigned, first get to know each other a bit and then work out mutually agreed to guidelines to help transition to college life easier.

Of course, if you're a college bound high school sophomore, junior or rising senior, you've got to get in to college before you even start thinking about laying ground rules with your college roommate!

Author's Bio: 

Jeanmarie Keller has helped thousands of students get into colleges they love while making sure their parents save a fortune on the bill. Jeanmarie is the creator of the Smart Plan For College System which teaches her client-families how to get noticed in the admissions office, get in at the colleges right for them and how to get the money they need to help pay the bill.

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