Safely Finding the Perfect Roommate
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What safety tips should I use when searching for a roommate?
Roommate search sites are a quick, convenient way to find the perfect roommate but there are still a few things you need to do before making a final decision. One of the most important is to assure your own safety or the safety of your family. Use these quick tips to protect yourself:
- Ask for references and actually check them. Checking references isn't hard. Make sure your perfect roommate isn't a perfect mess. Ask prior roommates or landlords if they would rent to that person again...if not, ask why. Were they messy, loud, unreliable? Find out before making your final offer.
- Check the free sexual offender registry at www.familywatchdog.us or your state sexual offender website. This is an unpleasant subject but with reports of predators flooding the media it's better to be safe than sorry.
- Verify their income and employment. Make sure they can pay the rent. Request a pay-stub or take a more formal approach. Formal employment verification will require a release signature of the applicant plus other legal requirements. If you are unsure how to do this, use a screening service.
After narrowing down your roommate search, use these three tips to stay safe and assure you have really found the perfect roommate!