Sharing an apartment with roommates has many benefits, especially when it comes to saving money. However, splitting bills might cause some issues.
Learning how to manage your money is one thing, but learning how to manage money as a group is a whole other world. Here are some tips that will help you:
Set ground rules
First thing first, the same way you agree how much rent each one is going to pay, consider creating some general guidelines for the bills. Organize a house meeting to discuss who is going to be in charge of which bill or, if you decide that one person is in charge of paying, determine how the money will be collected in order to pay that person back.
Make a spreadsheet
Once everything is agreed, make sure to write it down. This way, no one will forget. The best way to keep your bills organized (and paid in due time) is to clearly know how much each one should contribute and when the money should be chipped in.
Don’t pay until everyone contributes
When you share your bills with your roommates, it is important for things to be clear. Put the money together before you have to pay. If your roommate is going on vacation, for example, ask for the money in advance, the same way you contribute in advance if you’re the one going away.
Keep some things separate
Splitting the bills and the rent is one thing, but try to keep some other things separate: each person should buy their own groceries and store them in separate shelves. A nice idea is to also have a “shared-goodies” shelf in the kitchen for those nights when you want to spend some roomie time together, so get some snacks and split that bill!