In August 2012, I was starting my freshman year of college at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. However, I didn’t know I would be going there until May, just three months before the first day of class. I handled the transition pretty well, the only problem was that roommates were slim pick-ins. All of my friends that were going there had already picked roommates so I was stuck with, cue the horror music, a random roommate, and thus began the worst 9 months of my life.
I would wake up to all of the lights on and Playhouse Disney would be blasting from the TV. I would receive threatening texts if one of my friends entered our room, saying they couldn’t be trusted. The room was literally divided, all we needed was the tape to go down the middle. It was a pretty miserable experience, at best.
Now, three years later, I have come across a new company called room.me, a start-up that started last August based out of Berlin and San Francisco. It is essentially Tinder for finding a roommate, and it could have saved me three years ago. This July it introduced its services to the bay area of San Francisco, and there has been a lot of talk and speculation about this new company.
Room.me’s mission is pretty simple: we’ll help you avoid horrible roommates by matching you with like-minded people. In order to find out who you’re compatible you must go to room.me and begin the process. Sign up through Facebook or Twitter, create a profile, and answer nine questions. The questions are pretty traditional: early bird or night owl, smoker or a non-smoker, and your preference on noise.
Once you finish this quick survey, you are taken back to the homepage and you can choose if you’re looking for a roomie or a room to stay in. If you click roomie, people’s images pop up and it gives you a percentage of how compatible you are with them. If you choose rooms, you can see how much each space is, what they are asking for, and how well you would mesh with the other roommates living inside.
The process is quick and the website is very user-friendly. There’s no app, but I’m sure there will be if this start-up takes off, and I believe that it will. According to a recent Zillow study adults are relying more than ever on roommate living situations to save on expenses and doubled-up households account for more than 76 percent of all living situations nationally. Furthermore, San Francisco is one of the most expensive cities to live in, and young adults simply cannot make enough money to afford a living space by themselves. It only makes sense for room.me to enter the market.
Room.me fills that void of trying to move to a new city while stressing about finding the perfect roommate. With room.me you can see who you’re compatible with, exchange information, and see if you are really meant to live one another without actually moving in together.
The website is still being developed and there are some features that could be better, but that is all in due time. In the future, I could see it having a much more comprehensive list of questions and hypothetical scenarios that happen day-to-day. The more answers that you share with a person, the more likely it is that living together will actually work out.
Though it is being tested in San Francisco, room.me will probably move into all the big cities in the United States, and may even transform itself to be used on college campuses. This would help so many young adults as they transition from high school to college or college into the real world. Instead of being worried about moving, they will be excited knowing they have one or two or three people waiting for them to arrive!
Most importantly, with the help of room.me, you will avoid situations like my freshman year travesty. Skip the Playhouse Disney watchers and get on room.me now!