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Finding the Perfect Roommate

In New York City, it can be a struggle to find the right person to share your living situation with. Utilizing UX methodologies in research and design, there is a solution to matching with your ideal roommate. 

roommates image.png

Project Overview

This app project was from a competition website, where you could submit designs based on existing needs and criteria provided from perspective clients.

Design a mobile product experience that appeals to millennials that makes it safe to find the ideal roommate in New York City. Design the experience from the perspective of person who is looking for a roommate as well as the one who is looking for the apartment. Once the ideal roommate is found, what else can this product do to make the roommate experience better?
We are looking for you to identify pain points in the “finding/keeping a good roommate” journey and to find ways to solve for those pain points.

My Role

Full Stack UX + Product Designer
Research, Wireframing, Design System and Prototyping

Research

Defining the Target Audience

54% of the world’s population live in urban communities, the average marriage age for men is 29 (up from 26 two decades ago) and for women is 27 (up from 23 in the same time period). Given these trends, city dwellers tend to spend most of their twenties living with roommates. Finding and keeping a good roommate, however, gets harder as more people swarm into cities.

 

Criteria for a "good" roommate

The definition for a good roommate is important to define, especially considering the matching criteria that would need to be applied. While there maybe varying definitions depending on different points of view, emerging patterns in the answers given were refined to:

1. Profession (this is important for defining whether a person is able to contribute to monthly expenses as well)

2. Sleep/Wake Schedule

3. Cleaning Habits

4. Whether a person is Introverted or Extroverted

5. Drinking/Smoking habits

6. Hobbies/Interests

7. Pet Status

 

The criteria for finding a compatible roommate also focuses on preferences both from a living space view and personal comfortability stand point:

1. Preference in living with same or opposite sex?

2. Number of people sharing space.

3. Location of living space.

4. Cost

5. Age Range

App Functionality Considerations

Initially I wanted to scope out and not limit the functionality considerations and narrow it down for what would be required for a MVP and successful user experience:
 

  • Create an account

  • Search for roommates

  • Return results

  • Favorite roommates

  • Set preferences

  • Search for rental types

  • Search for rental prices

  • Upload images of people/places

  • On-boarding surveys

  • Filter criteria

  • Connect with people

  • Messaging

  • Profiles for roommates

  • Images for apartments

  • Match potential

Initial MVP focus
The primary functionality needed was narrowed down to:

On-boarding, creation of account and survey.

Filtered returned results.

The ability to message potential roommates.

Roommate profiles

On-boarding

There are two types of users:

1. Those seeking a roommate

2. Those seeking an apartment
 

Both user's are seeking qualifications in living with roommate with slight variations for the on-boarding experience. With the criteria set for "good" roommate qualifications, I had devised a short list of surveying questions to help filter and match potential matches. This would serve as filter criteria to return initial results.

User Flow and Wireframing

To quickly conceptualize the user flow of the on-boarding process, I created wireframes to articulate the series of questions. Keeping in mind that this is a process, I wanted to set expectations for the users using a progress tracker. Creating the loose wireframes gave me the ability to see the entire scope of the on-boarding and reposition and differentiate information that would be different between the two types of users. 



 

wireframe-survey.png

I had also created quick wireframes of the results and profile pages, using this to articulate what type of information and potential functionality would need to exist.

results wireframe.png

Initial tone

I began working with an initial colors scheme and tone for the concept, but quickly realized that because of the initial colors and minimalistic tone, the concepts were not aligning with the vision of creating a friendly experience. I felt the initial concepts were more in-line with a technical industry. The imagery and shapes were not conveying the messaging.

I wanted to create an experience that invoked trust and had a friendly and reliable tone, while also representing the location the app was representing. This part is still in refinement. 

nycroommateconcept.jpg
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