Somerville with Townie Tim: Apartment Hunting

It’s that time of the year again to look around your living room and decide if you want to give it another year with these clowns. I know the schedule for hunting for apartments can undulate depending on where you live, and I have heard of students searching as much as a year in advance. But for everyone else in Somerville, it is around now that the decision to move in September is happening.

Don’t get me wrong, your boy Townie Tim is all for having roommates, and with the rent in Somerville, it’s pretty much a guarantee that you’ll be shacking up with someone. So, you might as well settle in and take some apartment-searching advice from your favorite Villen resident.

The first and most important thing in searching for an apartment around here is location. Not that anywhere is particularly bad, but from previous articles you know about my aversion to travel. So pick a spot that is easy to get to, is near a square and preferably has places to park. I know you think you have good friends, but as soon as you start making them, take the ‘Bridge Hopper’ because there is no parking on Broadway, they will suddenly get really busy.

The next most important thing is whom you live with. We all have horror stories about roommates, and that’s a key part of the college learning process. No joke, when I was an undergrad, I shared a room with a dude that had the last name of Gross. Needless to say, my experience proved he had an appropriate moniker. Roommates come in all varieties; the ones that are never there; the ones that are always there; the ones that buy a bunch of food and leave it in the fridge too long; the ones whose significant other is pretty much your roommate too; and finally, the ones that sleep on the couch at night for some inexplicable reason.

In my opinion, communication is the key to any relationship. Maybe because I am an outstanding listener, but I tend to hear more about people’s roommates than those folks’ roommates hear from them. That sounds confusing, but if you just tell people what’s wrong, they can either fix it or just straight up disappear for the rest of the semester out of embarrassment.

Lastly, and this is somewhat of a hot take, but being clean is the best thing for everyone. Seriously, being clean is the lowest-hanging fruit possible when it comes to being a decent person to live with. Yes, people can take it to an extreme, but just noticing how your stuff is distributed across your living space solves about 95% of all roommate drama. I am convinced that being dirty is really just being lazy about observing how your living can affect other people. A clean and organized apartment is a neutral environment, and I am far more likely to forgive you for calling me at 5 a.m. to let you in if you just picked up all your granola bowls off the coffee table. Happy hunting!


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