Would You Rather?

When it comes to roommates: Would you prefer messy or incredibly neat?

Share this Article

New Yorkers, by definition, live on top of each other, so finding the right roommate is high on the list of important things for every city dweller. Does the potential person like to cook or order take-out every night? Is he or she a homebody or a social butterfly? Perhaps most importantly, is the person neat, or messy??

We asked some New Yorkers which they’d prefer for a roommate—a person who's rather messy or a neat "freak"?
No roaches, please "This is New York! Bugs! I would say a neat person because I’m a neat person. You don’t want roaches and all those things!" —Carole, Crown Heights
Just DIY "I would probably rather have a messy roommate. I know that’s kind of strange but I’d rather clean up common spaces myself than have someone who’s really nitpicky." —Amy, Crown Heights (pictured below)
Ew "Definitely a neat roommate because I’m a really neat roommate. Messy people are gross." —Irena, Flatbush
Be realistic "Neat as long as they're okay with my periodic mess from life busy-ness. Totally hypocritical, but we all know that the only messes we are bothered by are other people's." —Anne, Hell’s Kitchen
It depends on what kind of “messy”... "Messy but not wet or food messy. Clothes messy is okay. Books, tapes, records messy is okay. Music equipment messy, no problemo. Art Supplies, like paint? Borderline. I like a dry messy." —Jeff, Marine Park

The kitchen needs to be clean "Having had both, I would 100 percent say obsessively neat roommate. It might be irritating to always have to wash your dishes immediately, but it is way more irritating to want to cook breakfast and have a pile of pots and pans left in the sink from the night before." —Caroline, Astoria (pictured below)

Need a little balance "I think I’ll go with neat. I’m definitely on the messy side, personally. I’d feel less guilty with a messy roommate but then the whole place would turn to decay!" —Jasper, Park Slope (pictured below)

Verdict: Neatness wins!