Toxic Roommates: Asking Someone to Leave the Community

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It is important to understand that when you are building community there can always be unforeseen circumstances that come up regardless of the rules that you might have in place. So, when making arrangements for new housemates to enter the home it is important to know what to do if it doesn’t work out. How do you handle toxic personalities and what is the safest way to ask them to leave? Here is some practical advice for handing this kind of unpleasant situation in your shared home.

1. Understand your rights a tenant or homeowner. Much of your leverage when it comes to asking a housemate to leave is based on the original wording of their lease agreement. Laws surrounding tenant eviction vary from state to state so be sure to check with your landlord or, if you own the home, check with your local government. Since community living can be based on home ownership or a rental situation it is important to know where you stand before a situation occurs.

I encourage you to click below for two more important tips on handling negative situations.

2. Know the importance of communication. It often feels like avoiding confrontation will be the best strategy but passive aggressive behavior will usually backfire in the end. If you’re feeling like a situation could get out of hand it may be time to call for a house meeting to discuss behaviors and attempt to work out an amicable solution. It is better for everyone if you can solve the problem or if the group decides together that the individual should leave.


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3. Keep safety first. Hopefully the situation would not escalate to unsafe proportions but it is important to keep in mind that a legal eviction process can take some time. If tensions are running high during this period things have the potential to get out of hand. Keep the toxic housemate from having access to your personal space and items, make an effort to avoid each other as the processes is ongoing, and talk to your network of friends both within the house and outside of it so they know what is going on.

Community living can be a wonderful experience but we must not fool ourselves into believing that bad situations won’t happen to us. Try to avoid negative living situations and create a community that is caring and open to avoid most potential problems.

Do you want to learn more about building a shared community as you age? Contact me today to learn more about my story and how you can build community for yourself.



  1. […]  Exit Strategy. Each housemate should have an understanding of what would happen when they leave the household. There should be plans in place for breaking a lease early and for providing notice to the home owner. It may also be important to know what to do in the case of a toxic roommate. […]

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