At some point following college, every guy must decide when he must stop living with his fellow male friends. Perhaps a girlfriend suggests that he move in with her. Perhaps he feels that having his own place would make him more of an adult in the eyes of society. Or perhaps he simply wishes to masturbate more privately.
Whatever the reason, the day is inevitable when you realize you’re just too old for roommates. But what is that age exactly? I surveyed 21 acquaintances (10 male, 10 female, one my mom) representing various demographics, and found that — get this — not everyone is on the same page.
The “Right After College” Division
Alex (Age: 28/Location: Austin, TX/Job: Business School Student): “It’s 22. If you’re single, your own place is ideal for having ladies over. If you’re not single, it’s the perfect time to try out living with each other.”
The “You Have A Couple Years, But Then Grow The F*ck Up” Division
Tom (27/Jersey City/Lawyer): “It’s 25 and it’s because you realize that other guys are pretty gross and you hopefully can afford your own place.”
Jason (34/Los Angeles/Producer): “Hmm, I don’t know. 25? Who gives a sh*t?”
My mom (66/Scituate, MA/Retired Nurse Practitioner): “I’d say 25 if you can afford it. –xo”
The “Late 20s” Division
Stephanie (32/New York/Studio Manager): “27. After that, lifelong bad habits settle in and you become the 40-year-old virgin type or the gross feral-man type.”
Ryan (27/Los Angeles/Writer): “27. This isn’t college, you need to show some responsibility and ambition and getting your own place does both.”
Kase (25/Brooklyn/Editor): “I’d say 27. You’ve been out of college for five-ish years by now, so it’s time you quit letting your shared DVR hold you back from what you really want to watch.”
Mike (24/Washington DC/Accountant): “Mid-to-late 20s… I think it breaks down to when it becomes emotionally exhausting or hinders maturity to the point a girl is worried.”
The “Big Three-Oh” Division
Carolyn, (23/Miami/Assistant): “When you are ready to start buying your own furniture from anywhere but IKEA — hopefully by 30 — then it’s time to ditch your bros.”
Eva (26/New York/Consultant): “30. It’s around the time people start living with significant others — and if they don’t, they should be flying solo anyway.”
Nell (27/Washington DC/Teacher): “I feel like when you hit 30 and you are still living with other dudes, playing video games and doing weird ‘manly’ projects on weekends to feel more adult, it’s weird.”
Jen (27/Omaha/Teacher): “I guess by 30. And btw: It’s a plus if your all-bro apartment is not a frat house.”
Shelby (26/Orlando/School Psychologist): “30. You’re out of college and should be building a life, not leeching off someone else’s.”
Jamie (34/Los Angeles/Producer): “If you can’t afford your own place by 30, you are f*cked and a hack at life.”
The “Gettin’ Cozy In Here” Division
Brad (28/New York/Sports Marketing Professional): “32. I just think that NY has a longer grace period because it’s so expensive.”
Jess (26/Brooklyn/Designer): “I think it used to be age 30, but now it’s through 33 thanks to stuff like ‘New Girl.’ But I just told my friend to get his own apartment to help him get a girlfriend.”
John (27/San Diego/Producer): “Let’s say 35. If you can run for president, you can live alone.”
The “You Can’t Put A Number On It” Division
Fred (30/Boston/Lawyer): “The age you cry to your fellow roommates about your relationship status? It’s that age, minus one year.”
Brooke (35/Milwaukee/Editor): “The age it starts to get in the way of romantic relationships…that’s when.”
The “Roommates For Life” Division
Lily (27/Jersey City/Teacher): “Never. If you’re single, and you don’t have family, and you have a good buddy…what, are you going to die alone?”
Cory (24/Los Angeles/Actor): “Dudes should never stop living together, and be on the constant chase for tail.”
— Ladies are probably more lenient about this than you think, so, y’know, feel free to live with your friends until you retire.
— Somewhat surprisingly, respondents’ own living situations (with an exception or two) had little impact on their answers.
— My mom needs to chill…I’m only 28 and I’ll get my own apartment eventually!
Photo Credit: Joe Shlabotnik/Flickr