When beginning a roommate situation, one of the most important aspects to figure out is what the cost of living will be for each roommate. In most cases, roommates split all major costs down the middle. This means each person is paying his or her share of the rent, utilities, sanitation, and common goods.
If this is your first time living with a roommate or you are in a more complicated living arrangement with multiple roommates, learning to manage the financial commitments of your apartment can be quite the undertaking.
Fortunately, technology saves the day by providing an entire army of applications to manage the variety of obligations you may have. Whether it’s groceries, rent, or splitting takeout, here are my top apps for making sure your financial obligations are in check.
This is your most basic listing app. It includes a variety of lists, from groceries and travel to work, family, and movies to watch. Wunderlist is a great app allowing you to communicate with housemates regarding household groceries, upcoming travels, and holiday plans as well as tracking household bills. If you and your roommate are the list-making type, Wunderlist is a great application to create, edit, and share lists to keep your commitments organized.
Cozi has been one of the highest-rated household management apps for the past three years! Having utilized this app during my time as a nanny and household manager, I can tell you, if you’re looking for an app that will do it all, Cozi is the way to go! The app has a great user interface that begins with you setting up your household. You connect the app’s household with your housemates, which allows them to access and edit the Cozi application. One thing I really love about Cozi is that it is all color-coordinated depended upon the housemate, easily allowing me to see what each member’s plans are for the week. On top of scheduling, Cozi also provides listing applications for groceries, wholesale goods, to-do lists, and a meals tab! The automation features and color-coding are what really make this app a gem for anyone living in a multi-person household.
This app is the ultimate in grocery and household goods tracking. If you are like me, you have encountered the issue of having too much of something in the kitchen between you and your roommate. After multiple weeks of having fourteen bananas and two gallons of milk between the two of us, my roommate and I began utilizing an online system to track common goods within the house. OurGroceries provides an easy way to manage household shopping lists and weekly recipes to ensure you and your roommate know exactly what groceries have been purchased and, if you share meals, recipes for the weekly meals.
Perhaps my favorite app in this series, Splitwise is the ultimate in debt and expense tracking between housemates, friends, and family members. Between takeout, movie tickets, and rent, this app keeps a ledger of debts you owe to other. To make things even easier, you can easily transfer payment to your housemates through PayPal via Splitwise’s interface. Personally, managing travel plans is my favorite use of Splitwise. You can set up specific “groups” of people for your household or trip-goers, and easily keep track of who owes what for all aspects of your travel!
These are just a handful of the amazing apps available to Android and iPhone users for managing their households. Utilizing any of these applications can be a sure-fire way to help keep housemates’ financial and task obligations in check. What are some of your favorite roommate applications? Tell us in the comments below, and stay tuned for more tips and tricks on apartment living!