While having a roommate is a great way to cut expenses and make sure you always have someone to hang out with, not every two people are capable of sharing a space in a harmonious manner. Sometimes, someone has to go. Unfortunately, there appears to be an unwritten rule that roommates who never pick up after themselves, are always late with their share of the rent and always drink the last beer in the refrigerator are somehow unable to pick up on a subtle hint to find a new living arrangement. If you find yourself with a roommate who is unwilling to take the hint and move out, here are some ideas for bringing the point home more forcefully.
Make sure your roommate is not listed on the lease. This is very important, as it will be necessary to negotiate a new lease if both of you are listed as co-tenants. Also, it is extremely difficult to get a roommate to leave if he has some type of legally protected right to live on the premises.
Prepare any legal documents necessary to assume full responsibility for the lease. This means having your roommate removed from the lease, as well as securing utility accounts in your name if some of the utilities are in your roommate's name. Positioning yourself in advance to live alone will strengthen your position significantly.
Start eating out. If your roommate never gets around to buying food but has no problem consuming what you bring into the house, stop buying food. As the cupboard and the refrigerator empty out a little more each day, living with you may begin to lose some of its appeal.
Get rid of the entertainment. If you are paying for high-speed Internet and cable television, arrange to have the services suspended for a month or so. Explain to your roommate that you had to make some budget cuts to cover her share of the monthly bills. With nothing to do at home, the deadbeat roommate may begin to look for greener pastures.
Cease being the housekeeper. Chances are, your lazy roommate rarely if ever picks up around the house. However, he does get the benefit of the dusting, vacuuming and general cleaning you do. As the dirty dishes reach the ceiling and the scum on the bathroom tile begin to show signs of life, your roommate may decide that seeking accommodations that are better kept would be a good idea.
Don't do the laundry. Instead of being a sport and washing all the dirty towels, only wash what you use. If necessary, use a laundromat for a few weeks. When there are no clean towels in the house, your roommate may get the idea.
Get a dog or cat. This one only works if your roommate is not fond of four-legged creatures. Make it clear the pet is there to stay and will have the run of the house. People who don't like animals can rarely stand to live in the same house with them. Besides, a cat or a dog will be easier to clean up after than the erstwhile roommate.
Be blunt with your roommate. If you have done everything you can to convey the idea that she needs to move out and nothing has worked, take a deep breath and tell her exactly what you want. Set a date for the move to be complete and stick to it. Bring home packing boxes so there can be no doubt the move is going to happen. On moving day, be available to help--and make sure you get the house key once everything has been moved.
- If the two of you plan on remaining friends, keep in mind that the relationship will change once your roommate is no longer living with you. Be prepared for there to be some distance for a period of time. See that as a good thing, as it gives both of you the chance to get over living under the same roof. In time, you can begin to spend time together again.
- Asking a deadbeat roommate to move out may cost you some friends, especially if the two of you run in the same social circle. While the loss may hurt for a little while, see this as an opportunity to make some new friends.