≡ Menu

When my roommate in my basement room moved out, I was in Africa and wasn’t home to find a suitable replacement. Instead of having the basement room go empty, I enlisted my other roommate to find a replacement roommate. To add incentive to his search, I offered a 20% commission of the first two month’s rent collected from the new roommate.

How did this turn out?

There were aspect where things went the way I wanted it to, but were some aspects that didn’t go as planned.


The roommate living in the basement notified me of his move out date in mid-December while I was still home(just came home from a trip). This gave me a few weeks to put things into motion before I was off to Africa for two months. This is when I enlisted my other roommate to help find a suitable replacement.

I left for Africa at the end of December. Mid-January to early February rolled around and I still haven’t found a replacement roommate. I checked the craigstlist advertisement and saw that it hasn’t been “renewed” so it was sitting as an older advertisement. This led me to believe my appointed roommate didn’t put forth a lot of effort or was busy with other stuff.

I was hoping that by offering a piece of the rental income for the first two consecutive months, it would entice him to stay proactive in the roommate search. So I guess my expectations were not met there.

Though, during the times when my advertisement was getting views, the roommate did go through with the effort to meet up with a number of folks in person to show the place before loosing interest.


Sometime mid-January, I e-mailed a formed colleague friend asking him if he could put up an advertisement for my spare room on his company’s internal forums.

Since I was in Africa, the advertisement had my roommate’s contact information just incase someone wanted to stop by and check out the place. A few weeks later, someone inquired to check the place out. So my roommate met up with him to show him he place and set the expectations.  An then my roommate didn’t hear back from him for several weeks.

One day while I was in Zanzibar, I received an e-mail from this potential move-in asking to confirm a few things. I replied appeasing any concerns with the landlord being overseas. A few weeks later, the potential roommate moved in, which was the week I returned from my travels. It turns out this roommate is so far reliable and pretty much keeps to himself.  This is where my expectations were met when I set my roommate to find a roommate.  He did his due diligence and asked the right questions, which is the basis of my guidebooks.


I was hoping my roommate could find a reliable roommate while I was gone, but in the end through the help of my friend at my former place of employment and my the appointed roommate, I was able to find a reliable roommate. I’m still going to pay my roommate what I said I was going to pay him because he did do the leg work to show the place and was the Point-of-Contact for any potential roommates and I think answering e-mails or phone calls have to be compensated.

In the future, I think I’m going to keep it to 15% of the first month because I think was a bit too generous offering 20% of the first two consecutive months.

What do you think of my commission structure?


Leave a Comment