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February 6, 2020

'Should I live alone?' Why living by yourself could be the right move

  • Local Moves

These days, you'd be hard-pressed to find anybody who thinks single-person homes are purely the domain of hermits and recluses.

In fact, according to recent numbers from the US Census Bureau, one-person households now account for 28.4% of all American residences. For comparison, 50 years ago, that number was 16.7%.

So, with more than one-quarter of homes containing only one occupant, if you don't already live alone, you might be wondering if it's right for you. Assuming you can afford living by yourself instead of having roommates, you might want to try it out.

Here are a couple important factors to consider when you're deciding if you should live alone.

What do you own, and what do you borrow?

Any good roommate knows that one of the biggest perks of communal living is that sharing resources means more than just splitting the rent.

If you and your roommates have a cordial relationship, you probably wind up sharing lots of things, like a TV or stereo, a car that helps with big grocery runs, furniture, kitchen supplies or any number of other items. You may even share favorite books, recipes or movies with each other.

Having a roommate may add some security, too. Potential burglars might find it harder to track whether or not a certain unit is unoccupied if it has multiple residents.

That said, you might not miss the time you spent in front of your roommate's TV, and it might be a relief to no longer feel like you have to give them a ride to the store every weekend. Plus, you can still stop by and visit your friends to talk about books and share them as you both see fit.

The socialization factor

You likely have a good sense of how introverted or extroverted you are. The question is, how do you handle that?

The central issue you need to resolve when you're deciding whether to live by yourself or not is understanding how much you value your privacy versus how important it is for you to have other people around.

You may be the kind of person who really enjoys having the company of others on a regular basis, and meeting new people through your roommate could be a huge benefit for you. If you're single, that can even be a good way to meet potential dates!

The flip side of this equation is that you might put a high premium on your alone time, not wishing to be disturbed when you're deep in thought or otherwise absorbed in your solo hobbies and interests. You'll go out to see people, if that's what you want! Plus, if you want to have people over, you don't have to check with your roommate before sending out invites when you live by yourself.

As far as dating goes, if you live alone and things start going well with your special someone, it can be easier to ask them to move in with you than it would be if you had roommates.

If you're hungry for the extra dose of freedom that comes from striking out on your own, contact your area Altas agent to learn what they can do for you.