Living with another person comes with its fair share of difficulties, but decorating shouldn’t be one of them. Having a roommate can make living arrangements feel temporary, which can make it tempting to avoid decorating, period. Actually investing in a home that isn't "yours" can seem like a waste of time, effort, and money. But just because you’re sharing a space doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make it your own; in fact, that’s even more reason to do so! Making your home feel like home — to both of you — is a great way to start your roommate relationship off right.
Find Common GroundDiscuss likes, dislikes, expectations, hopes, dreams...you get it. Keep in mind that neither of you is likely to get everything you want. But, each of you should be happy with the finished space. To get started, create a secret Pinterest board together to share décor inspiration — it’s a good way to see each other’s styles and visualize how they could work together.
Plan AheadTalk about what items you each plan on bringing into the shared space, and discuss ways to make those items work together. Then, figure out what else you’ll need and determine who will be purchasing what, keeping in mind how you’ll be splitting things up when you go your separate ways. On that note, you'll want to avoid splitting the cost of pricier pieces to avoid confusion around who gets — and keeps — what.
There are multiple opinions and styles to consider, and investing in a shared space can seem like a waste of time, effort, and money.
Keep It SimpleIf your tastes are just too different to work together, keep shared living spaces neutral. Choose a color palette that doesn’t favor one of your styles over the other — like whites, grays, or browns. Keep the furniture and decor simple, and add interest with personal photos, throw pillows, and rugs (in neutral colors, of course).
Be ConsiderateLife with a roommate is full of compromises, and decorating is no different. Consult your roommate before making decisions (or purchases) that will affect your shared space, and ask for his or her opinion; whether you heed that opinion is up to you, but it never hurts to ask. Make sure your design style isn’t overpowering your roommate’s, and if you feel like your opinion is being ignored, speak up! Your place is home to both of you, and you should each feel comfortable there.