What to include in your ad for a housemate.
Horror stories of the housemate from hell abound, but you can increase your chances of finding a good match by carefully crafting your advertisement and planning your strategy in advance.
Whether you are setting up a new pad or looking to bring someone into an existing share apartment or house, its all about taking the time to define the kind of person that will fit this place at this time.
Essentials to include in your ad
Start by making a list of essential characteristics - location, price and proximity to public transport obviously - but are you looking for a male or female; would you accept couples; what age range; are pets, cigarettes and alcohol acceptable; what personality types would best fit in; how long do you want them to stay; and do they need to share the same interests and hobbies as you (if so, what are these)? Remember to include a few words that describe what (furniture etc) and who is already there and what their priorities are.
Ads need to be succinct but not so light-on that prospective flatmates can't recognise themselves - or you. If you include short answers to all these questions you will have cracked it, we're sure.
Protecting your privacy
Tip: Set up a separate email account to use when you are contacting potential flatmates - you can do this for free at Hotmail, Gmail or Yahoo and you will be able to access the email account from any computer with an internet connection. It's a great way or maintaining some privacy and keeping all the correspondence in one place.