Handling Problems When They Arise

Alendy suggests you discuss problems as soon as they arise. Although it sounds nitpicky, being direct about minor concerns before they become large frustrations will save you from a lot of future tension-- and maybe from losing a friend.

How NOT To Handle Problems

Because he works as a housing mediatior, Alendy has seen the worst scenarios. Certain passive-aggressive behaviors are a surefire way to escalate the issue, he says, so avoid these:

Ignoring the issue

Ignoring the issue doesn't solve anything. In fact, it creates time for the problem to escalate, Alendy said. Megan ignored the problem for as long as she could and coped by telling mutual friends how she felt. Consequently, once she told her roommate what was bugging her, the problem went beyond domestic disagreements and became the end of their friendship.

Retaliation

Although it sounds funny, Alendy said he has heard of roommates retaliating against each other. For example, one girl hated how her roommate left dishes in the sink, so she tried to do the same to get the point across. But it backfired; the roommate didn't notice the increase in dishes, and the girl was forced to clean a larger mess in the end. Retaliation is never constructive and can lead to destruction of property-- a matter more for small claims court than a college relationship.

Don't close yourself off like this guy. Communicate.

Image courtesy stock.xchng.