Why You Should Run a Background Check on Your New Roommate

There are several reasons why one needs to run a preliminary background screening on a new roommate. Here are the most important.

Why You Should Run a Background Check on Your New Roommate

10 Reasons to Check Your New Roommate

No matter if you are going to share a house or room with a new guy, you should take a good look at their employment and renting history, criminal and court records, and credit score.

1. Is your new roommate a criminal?

The primary reason to check your new room or flatmate is to see if they have a criminal record. Hardly anyone wants to share their living space with a former inmate. One of the top sites for criminal background checks is Rentberry.

2. Can they pay their part of the rent and bills?

The second apparent reason to run a background check on an incoming roommate is to see if they will be able to pay their rent and bills.

A glimpse at their employment history will tell you a lot about their work ethics and ability to take responsibility.

Information.com is one of the best websites where you can check your roommate's current financial situation.

3. Is he or she a responsible tenant?

If you are going to share a room with a new guy for the next year or so, you'd better check if they are a responsible tenant. You'd better visit a dedicated tenant-screening site like FirstAdvantage or SmartMove.

4. What family does your roommate descend from?

Before you move in with someone for whatever reason, you should check what family they descend from.

Even if your roommate's criminal record is clean, you may find out they come from a Soprano-like family. Instant Checkmate and PeopleCheck are famous for their detailed reports on family and relatives.

5. What property do they have in their name?

A standard background check invariably includes a section dedicated to the checked person's property status.

Information.com has taken things to the next level, revealing if your target possesses an airplane or a boat.

In any case, if your roommate has lots of or no property in their name, this can be a red flag. If they are a person of means, it's odd that they would want to share a room with someone.

And if they have nothing on their name, how can they be trusted to pay their rent on time?

6. What are their hobbies and interests?

If you are going to share a room with someone, it's good to have some background information on their hobbies, interests, and political affiliations.

Most people search and screening websites include social media accounts and blog posts in their reports. It's never a good idea to share a room with a radicalized fanatic.

7. Have they filed for personal bankruptcy?

Let's come back to a background screening's financial section. You should notify your landlord if you notice your roommate has filed for personal bankruptcy. This means that they are not very good at managing their means.

8. Is your roommate a responsible driver?

When a new guy moves in, you may want to carpool with them. If you work close to each other, you can save quite a lot on gas by sharing a car.

To do so, you must make sure your future roommate is a reliable and responsible driver. If, on the other hand, your roommate has been registered as an aggressive driver, they may bring their aggression into the shared living space.

9. Your roommate must cosign the lease

Having a new roommate or flatmate is like starting a new business relationship. They will have to cosign the lease with you, and their name will appear on the utility invoices alongside yours.

And if they fail to pay on time, the utility companies and the landlord will hold you responsible. Therefore, you should check your roommate to see if they have any defaulted loans.

10. A background check will reveal drug-related charges

You should be extra cautious if the background check on your roommate uncovers past drug-related police records. It's unwise to share a room with someone who's had issues with controlled substances.

Final Thoughts

If a new roommate is going to enter your life, there are at least ten reasons why you should check them up online.

If you notice some red flags, you should not risk your personal safety. It's better to pay the whole rent and bills than share your living space with an aggressive and unpredictable individual.