When Heather, 22, couldn't make the apartment tour with the two friends she had agreed to live with during her last year of college, she told her friends to sign the lease without her. Heather ended up with the smallest bedroom, and her friends — who snagged two much bigger bedrooms — insisted she still pay the same.
Heather's story isn't unique. Millennials increasingly can't afford to live alone, especially in big cities, so they shack up with either friends or family. In 2015, Trulia reported that 60 percent of people ages 18 to 34 had roommates, a 13 percent increase from 1995.
Choosing to bunk with a buddy often feels safer than living with a stranger, but fighting about money, space and guests — what relationship and etiquette expert April Masini calls "the trifecta" of serious roommate issues — can be even harder than duking it out with someone you met on Craigslist.
That's why we at CNBC Make It, along with our friends at Bustle, created a roommate "prenup" you can print out, talk through and sign before you sign a lease. It sets out expectations in advance and makes clear how you feel about crucial topics like how to split the rent, how to deal with pets and weekend guests, and whose turn it is to buy toilet paper.
Click to enlarge or drag to your desktop to print!