Open and honest communication between you and your roommate is the linchpin of a successful living arrangement.

To make sure you’re both on the same page, it’s best to learn as much about each other’s personalities and preferences up front. To help, we’ve come up with 20 questions to ask your roommate at (or before) move-in.

Do you have any allergies?
How often do you cook at home?
Do you share your food?
Do I have to ask to eat it?
Am I expected to replace it?

Is there anything you won’t share?
Do I have to ask to use your possessions?

Daily/Sleep Habits
What’s your daily routine?
Are you a morning person or night owl?
When and where can there be noise and light?
What do you do on the weekends?
How often will you be home?

How neat or messy are you?
How do you want to divide chores?

Do you have any allergies?
Do you want to own a pet? If so, when and what?

Visitors and Guests
Do you want notice about visitors and/or guests?
Do you expect to have your significant other stay over?

How should I communicate about grievances (in person, notes/texts, etc.)?
Are there days/times when it’s best not to communicate with you?

Asking your roommate these questions is helpful, even if your apartment community offers a roommate matching service (like The Reserve on West 31st in Lawrence, Kansas and The Commons on Kinnear in Columbus, Ohio). Don’t wait until issues arise to establish rules and guidelines for your household!