There's an App for That: Roommate Dramas That Can Be Avoided With Your Phone

There's an App for That: Roommate Dramas That Can Be Avoided With Your Phone

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Carley Knobloch
Sep 14, 2016

Passive aggressive refrigerator notes. Arguments about how to split the utility bill. Dust bunnies that Just. Keep. Growing. These are just a few everyday scenarios that illustrate the ways in which living with roommates can be challenging (to say the least), whether those sharing the space are best friends or total strangers.

Thankfully, tech can help. There are now apps that address almost every aspect of rooming together, from the dreaded search for someone who doesn't mind cuddling with your pug to splitting up bills and chores. Here are the best apps to help with five common roommate issues—whether you're still shacking up with someone (city rent prices. ugh.) or are sending your kid off to a tiny dorm for the first time.

1. Finding a Roommate

No, Craigslist is not always a good idea. Instead, try Roomi—it matches you with potential roommates based on shared interests and habits (like a dating app!), and Roomie Match has an actual human vet every profile to filter out scumbags and scammers.

2. Managing Bills

Power, cable, internet... instead of updating a confusing spreadsheet, try Splitwise. Roommates can add bills they've taken care of, and Splitwise will do the math to figure out who owes who (and keep a running record). Then, use Venmo to make fast, easy payments—with emoji-based explanations, of course.

3. Keeping Groceries Stocked

No more picking up a milk carton out of the fridge with only a single sip left. OurGroceries allows you to keep a synchronized grocery list with roommates, so if you're swinging by the store, you'll know your housemate just finished the peanut butter.

(Image credit: Ashley Poskin)

4. Handling Chores

Chorma makes it easy to organize what needs to be done around the house and who's taking care of each task. Better yet, use Handy, an app that lets you book fast appointments with professionals who will clean the place for you, at a really affordable rate. (Just don't forget to add the cost to your Splitwise tally.)

5. Staying Super Organized

If you find yourself needing more than one of the previous apps, you might be better off just getting HomeSlice, which almost does it all. The platform includes tracking for chores, bills, and house supplies, plus a "whiteboard" space where you can communicate with roommates on the go (and you'll never have to worry about the marker going missing).

What other roommate issues do you wish an app could solve? Share with me in the comments!

Greetings! Carley Knobloch here, digital lifestyle expert and girl boss at CarleyK.com. I'm also a regular correspondent on the Today Show and the smart home expert for HGTV, where I help audiences understand the ever-evolving world of home technology in an easy, approachable way. I'm on a mission to tackle those home tech headaches that make you want to rip your router out of the wall and go live in a yurt. (Don't do that!) For more tech hijinks, check out my blog or follow me on Instagram or Twitter.

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