Shared Housing (Home-sharing) #2 Compatibility Checklist

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How do you find a compatible person or family with whom to share housing? Carefully! And here are some good steps to help you do that. You want to get to know potential housemates as well as possible as quickly as possible, and with care.

Fill this worksheet out before you meet with anyone, then bring it along when you meet anyone face-to-face – use it to keep yourself honest. Having your ideas in writing will help you focus on the important questions and the understandings you hope to arrive at by the end of your meeting. When meeting a second time use both this and “20 Questions” to move your discussions forward.

This worksheet will help you get to the business at hand, and will, at the least, give you lots to talk about.

A) Personal & Family Traits:

1. I’m used to a home being (check all that apply)

__a pig pen __tidy __messy

__cluttered but clean __”white glove” clean __ loud and lively

__quiet __calm soft music or tv

2. I clean up after myself (or my kids/pets) (check all that apply)

__Immediately __ once a week __ seldom __ only if reminded

__even if it’s not mine __if it’s yours, I’ll let it sit ‘til it rots

__I’ll teach whoever left the mess how to do it themselves next time

__I’m oblivious unless I fall over it

__other

3. I want to be able to smoke in my house ___yes ___ no ___only outside

4. I don’t want any smoking anywhere near me __yes __ doesn’t matter

5. I’d like to share food in the house __yes __ never __sometimes

6. Our / my diet is (circle one): vegetarian omnivore no pork vegan

fast food no sugar no wheat other (describe)

7. I /we eat: ___a lot of desserts __some sweets __no sweets

__deal with diabetes or special needs __a lot of garlic

8. Pets __are wonderful - any type, size, or shape

__ bring up issues around allergies - let’s talk

__are problematic, OK if small and quiet only

__can’t be in the house, with, possibly, the exception of goldfish

__ what would not be okay in terms of animal behavior or care?

9. Meals at home are:

__ the very best, daily __ OK, occasionally

__OK, but I like to eat alone __best with friends

__sometimes OK to cook with others in the house

__other

10. Alcohol in the house:

__I drink some wine or beer occasionally

__is a must. __cannot be tolerated __in moderation

__is a problem, since I’m recovering from addiction

__Illegal drugs in the house – discussion is needed

11. My behavior /personality changes when I drink alcohol __yes __ no

When I take prescription / over the counter drugs __yes __ no

12. I have had problems with alcohol or drugs in the past __yes __ no

(describe, or be ready to talk about this)

13. Someone would describe our family’s/my health as

__normal __rarely sick __frequently ill __having ongoing problems

14. Mental health issues:

__depression __ anxiety disorders __non-existent __other

15. The most important social, political issues to me are:
How might it be for me if my housemate held equally strong and opposing positions?

16. Issues of religion and religious practices are:

__important to me __don’t matter to me __good for starting discussions

B) Schedules and Activities:

__ Lots of scheduled activities

__Home during the day

__Lots of travel

__Home weekends __home evenings

__Some company __ hate company __Lots of company

My style of living is: __hectic __busy __ flexible __empty __unpredictable __undependable __relaxed

If there are children: __I have custody of them (sexes & ages)

__there is shared custody ___Life is focused on them

If there are pets: __they are small & confined (breed: _______________)

__well-behaved (or)__wild-crazy ___As/more important as people

C) Relationships:

1. I have a boyfriend/girlfriend I like to have over ____times a week

__We usually have dinner, watch TV, talk

__I like to have her/him spend the night __times a week/month

__I’m not in a relationship right now but

__I won’t be in one, and can’t live with someone who is

2. I invite the following people over occasionally or regularly:

3. Overnight guests:
__OK with advance notice __Not in my space __OK if occasional ___not in the bathroom when I’m around

What defines that they’ve moved in?

What has to be agreed upon ahead of time for this to occur?

4. I have left a domestic violence situation. __yes __ no How long ago?_________________

I feel that there is still danger __yes _no

5. I presently have a restraining or protection order against someone __yes __no

6. I’d like a housemate to be: (check all that apply)

    1. _____just a reliable person with whom to share housing
    2. ___someone who understands & can share responsibilities
    3. __an extended part of the family
    4. __my friend (and one to my kids, if I have them)

7. I think the relationship can change over time: __yes __no

8. I hope that this arrangement will last __________(how long?)

9. I think that this is:
____my next adventure __a last resort __interesting to explore

D) Communication: Answer yes or no to each

1. If there’s conflict:

__I like to talk about things right away, staying away from blame

__I take some time to figure out how I feel

__I try to fix things on my own

__I talk with others, outside of the situation, first

__I want to move out and on

__I want to figure out who’s at fault

__I shut down

__Other

2. I would like to:

__have regular house meetings

__think all who are living in the house should participate

__think “agreeing to disagree” can be viable

__want to be kept informed about what’s going on in others’ lives

__ to listen to complaints without getting defensive, even if they’re not presented tactfully

3. I hate being asked “is something wrong?” ___yes ___no. If there is, I’ll say so ____yes ___ no

4. I hate the feeling that something is amiss, but the other person isn’t saying anything and even denies it ___yes __no

5. If I ask, but am told nothing’s wrong, I put it out of my mind __yes __no

6. I like to write notes __yes __no

7. What really pushes my buttons is:

8. It’s frustrating when an adult:

9. It’s frustrating when a child:

10. It’s frustrating when a pet:

E) Other:

  1. ___I have a current drivers license __yes __no
  2. ___I have a vehicle. Type? I will / won’t share
  3. ___I have current insurance __yes __no
  4. The disadvantages of homesharing for me are:
  5. The advantages of homesharing for me are:
  6. If I own the home, I will try to make the other feel welcome by:
  7. If I am moving into someone’s home, I will make myself feel at home and help them feel comfortable by:
  8. When things get broken, how will I respond when it’s my favorite ___?
  9. If I want to get/receive service instead of paying, what could I receive? Offer
  10. I would want to end the arrangement if:
  11. How might prejudice limit the people I’m willing to consider?

The ideal homeshare would be:

Resources: