How to Handle Your Roommate Moving All the Furniture Constantly

By Danielle Wirsansky 

Roommates—you either love them or hate them. They are your best friends or your worst enemies. In college especially, roommates are a huge part of your experience and you do not want them to be responsible for making or breaking your experience.

Oftentimes, roommates come with their little quirks and quibbles. They might like to do their laundry at 3 AM or they might not be able to stand having dishes in the sink. College is also a very stressful time, and people deal with stress in different ways. Your roommate will probably handle and deal with stress in a way that is different from how you would. Different is not always bad, something you need to keep in mind when dealing with a stressed-out roommate.

One common way that people deal with stress is by moving furniture around. Constantly moving furniture around is often a sign of anxiety. PanicAway says, “Someone who fears that things will be out of control may constantly arrange and rearrange furniture or objects in the home.”

Perhaps your roommate is one of these people, and when they move around furniture, they not only move their own furniture but the furniture in the common spaces as well, which can be frustrating for you. So, what do you do when your roommate does this? Read on to learn some tips on handling your roommate moving all of the furniture constantly.


College Roommates: How to Handle Your Roommate Moving All the Furniture Constantly


Be Understanding

Like mentioned before, it must be remembered that just because something handles a situation differently than you would does not mean that it is bad. And even if it is not the most positive way to handle things, you must be careful not to cast judgment because that can oftentimes make a situation worse. You should not judge someone for handling things differently than you, and if someone is not handling a situation well, get them help instead of judging them.

Most importantly, be understanding. Your roommate is probably not moving the furniture in order to frustrate you or because they actually enjoy moving the furniture. It is more of a compulsion. They often feel they need or have to move the furniture in order to stay in control of their own lives. This might not seem like a clear correlation to you, but it is incredibly meaningful for them.

So, if they must move the furniture, try and be understanding of that and try to work with them or find ways to make the situation more manageable.

Set Boundaries

So, your roommate has a compulsion to move around the furniture in your common spaces. You are already making the first step, by being understanding that they need to do it in order to find relief from stress. You understand that they have to move the furniture. However, just because they need to move the furniture does not mean that they can just do so willy-nilly. You can be understanding, but within reason.

You have to set boundaries so that your roommate does not go too far and upset you with their actions, even if inadvertently. If there is something that would really bother you, like having your belongings moved or touched, or if they move the one chair in the apartment you actually like sitting in, you need to let them know. You have to tell them the things that they are not allowed to do so they know that if they do so, they will actually upset you. They need rules so that they do not overstep their bounds. Doing so will give them more structure when moving the furniture and stop them from doing something that will upset you, which would probably stress them out more, and so they are more likely to follow the boundaries you set.

Set Curfews

Lastly, even if you have been understanding and even if you have set boundaries, there is one more step to keep your relationship with your roommate harmonious even if they insist on constantly moving around the furniture is to set a curfew. Maybe it is fine. Their furniture is not a big deal to you. You understand their compulsion and appreciate that they respect your boundaries. However, what you cannot tolerate is your roommate deciding to rearrange all the furniture at 3 AM when you are trying to sleep.

There is nothing like being woken up in the wee hours of the morning to the screeching sound of a couch being tugged and pulled across the floor, scraping its way as it goes. Be clear about when the quiet hours in your apartment are and when it is an acceptable time for your roommate to be moving the furniture. They should be observant of your requests in order to keep the peace.

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