How you can get on with your room search while #stayingathome

If you’re feeling a little lost and confused amidst the global health crisis, you’re not alone. All of a sudden, very little about our daily lives is the way it was only a week ago, and on occasion it can, understandably, feel surreal and overwhelming.

At Badi we are doing everything we can to keep serving our community in the best way possible at this time of uncertainty. One thing we have done is apply a free cancellation policy to all cases where either the tenant or the landlord have been affected by the COVID-19 situation. You can get more specific information here.

If the crisis caught you in the middle of flat hunting, don’t despair, there are still things you can do to make progress with your search and not feel (as) stuck. However, please stay responsible and always follow the instructions of your local authorities surrounding the crisis. Whether your country has imposed official confinement measures or not, social distancing has shown to be the best way to stay safe and help slow down the spread of the disease, so our best advice is to stay at home and make the most of it.

Badi stays remote and contactless

One good thing about a virtual rentals platform is that not many things have changed from how we normally do them. The Badi app is fully operative, which means you can still search for available rooms and connect with prospective flatmates. As of today, we haven’t experienced a major decline in available rooms, but we do expect both tenants and landlords to look for a postponed entry date, given the situation. That means that you can use this time to get to know the landlords of the flats you like most, and arrange a later time of entry if you find one you’d like to move to.

Jump on a video call to get to know your prospective flatmates

As always, use the built-in inbox feature of the Badi app to ask your potential flatmate any questions and resolve any quick doubts. The Badi app is equipped with everything you need to book your room from the comfort of your couch, but we understand that you may still want to see the place before you seal the deal. Except that right now, you can’t.

But what you can do is request a virtual tenant interview. When you visit a potential flat, you’re not just checking the amenities, you also want to gauge how the people already living there make you feel. So if you don’t want to defer your flat search, that’s what you can do – hop on a video call and get to know your potential flatmate.

There are plenty of tools to choose from, including WhatsApp video, Facetime, Google Hangouts, or Zoom. All of them are free of charge and you can connect more than one person if you happen to be flat searching with a friend who’s currently living elsewhere. All you need is good internet connection.

Just make sure you’re back in the Badi app if you want to book a room – we ensure a safe environment for your payments and keep you protected in case of unforeseen circumstances, such as the current coronavirus crisis. Take a look at all of our safety best practices.

Use the time of confinement to get to know your prospective flatmates virtually
Jump on a video call to get to know your prospective flatmate

Ask the right questions

When we meet new people in person, we often rely on the unspoken, subconscious cues to judge how we feel about them. This is, arguably, going to be a bit more difficult when you meet them online, but as long as you get the conversation going and keep it natural, you will still be able to get a good idea of how you’d get along.

Here are some questions you may want to ask your prospective flatmate, in order to determine whether you’d be a good fit:

  • What does your typical day look like?
  • Do you often work from home?
  • How do you spend your weekends?
  • Do you expect to have people overnight, like friends from abroad or family members?
  • Would you say you were more of an introvert or an extrovert?
  • Do you cook your own meals or do you often eat out?
  • What do you look for in a flatmate?
  • Are you still friends with your old flatmates?
  • What are some of the biggest challenges of flat sharing, based on your previous experience?

Even though you want to ask as many questions in order to get a good picture of what the other person is like, try to keep the conversation organic. Avoid sounding too robotic, as if you were checking items off the list. This is really important when you’re not in the same room with the other person and they can’t use your body language to judge the vibe. So make a list of questions about things that are important to you, but try to let the conversation flow as naturally as possible and let your personality shine through.

Be clear about specific requirements

The interview is also a good time to be open and clear about any specific requirements or restrictions you may have. Your flamate will probably share theirs too, but it’s important to think about the following:

  • How will you tackle cleaning?
  • Are animals allowed in the flat?
  • What about parties and sleep-overs?
  • What are the rules around smoking?
  • Does anyone have any serious allergies?

It is ok to be relaxed and not impose any strict rules or schedules, but it is important that both parties take the same approach. The clearer things are from the start, the happier and smoother the coliving is likely to be.

Take a virtual tour

Lastly, ask your potential flatmate to show you around the flat. To ensure good quality of the video, try to schedule the call during daytime – good natural lighting will help you get a better idea of what the spaces look like. Ask to see the entire flat, just as if you were visiting it in person, including what would be your room and any shared spaces.

Do a virtual flat visit to make the most of your time during confinement over coronavirus
Ask your prospective flatmate to show you around the flat

Book your room with a later entry date

And if you like the flat and hit it off with your prospective flatmate? If both of you agree, you can choose a later date in the future as your move-in day and proceed to book your room as you normally would through Badi. This way you know that when things get back to normal, you will have your new home waiting for you. And should you need to reschedule or postpone your intended move-in day if the crisis were to continue, you can count on us to help you handle any possible modifications or cancellations. Read our current cancellation policy update.

We are in this together. Contact our Customer Support team at bookings@badi.com if you need any assistance or advice regarding your existing or future bookings through Badi.