There is great freedom that comes with living off campus, but with that independence comes more responsibility – especially during a pandemic. Whether you live in a large household or alone, having a plan to balance pandemic restrictions while maintaining your physical and mental health is vital.
Fans of the “The Big Bang Theory” will recall Sheldon and Leonard’s regular references to the stipulations of their “roommate agreement.” While this generated laughs for that sitcom, you can use a similar strategy for the more serious undertaking of navigating the pandemic as a household.
The basis for a good roommate agreement is open and honest communication – and this applies to both unrelated roommates and familial households. People have different tolerance for risk, so don’t make assumptions about how others feel. Invest time to truly listen to their preferences and share your own:
- What public health recommendations apply inside the home – Wear face coverings? Share food or drinks? Stay 6 feet apart? Disinfect regularly?
- Who will be permitted inside the home?
- What are the expectations for visitors – Is there a limit on numbers? Time? Wearing face coverings? Remaining 6 feet apart?
- Are overnight guests permitted?
- How will travel be handled? What will be the re-entry requirements into the household?
- How is the household prepared to handle illness?