AskDefine | Define flatting

Dictionary Definition

flat adj
1 having a horizontal surface in which no part is higher or lower than another; "a flat desk"; "acres of level farmland"; "a plane surface" [syn: level, plane]
2 having no depth or thickness
3 not modified or restricted by reservations; "a categorical denial"; "a flat refusal" [syn: categoric, categorical, unconditional]
4 stretched out and lying at full length along the ground; "found himself lying flat on the floor" [syn: prostrate]
5 lacking contrast or shading between tones [ant: contrasty]
6 lowered in pitch by one chromatic semitone; "B flat" [ant: natural, sharp]
7 flattened laterally along the whole length (e.g., certain leafstalks or flatfishes) [syn: compressed]
8 lacking taste or flavor or tang; "a bland diet"; "insipid hospital food"; "flavorless supermarket tomatoes"; "vapid beer"; "vapid tea" [syn: bland, flavorless, flavourless, insipid, savorless, savourless, vapid]
9 lacking stimulating characteristics; uninteresting; "a bland little drama"; "a flat joke" [syn: bland]
10 having lost effervescence; "flat beer"; "a flat cola"
11 not increasing as the amount taxed increases [syn: fixed]
12 not made with leavening; "most flat breads are made from unleavened dough" [syn: unraised]
13 parallel to the ground; "a flat roof"
14 without pleats [syn: unpleated]
15 lacking the expected range or depth; not designed to give an illusion or depth; "a film with two-dimensional characters"; "a flat two-dimensional painting" [syn: two-dimensional]
16 (of a tire) completely or partially deflated
17 not reflecting light; not glossy; "flat wall paint"; "a photograph with a matte finish" [syn: mat, matt, matte, matted]
18 lacking variety in shading; "a flat unshaded painting"


1 a level tract of land
2 a shallow box in which seedlings are started
3 a musical notation indicating one half step lower than the note named
4 freight car without permanent sides or roof [syn: flatcar, flatbed]
5 a deflated pneumatic tire [syn: flat tire]
6 scenery consisting of a wooden frame covered with painted canvas; part of a stage setting
7 a suite of rooms usually on one floor of an apartment house [syn: apartment] adv
1 at full length; "he fell flat on his face"
2 with flat sails; "sail flat against the wind"
3 below the proper pitch; "she sang flat last night"
4 against a flat surface; "he lay flat on his back"
5 in a forthright manner; candidly or frankly; "he didn't answer directly"; "told me straight out"; "came out flat for less work and more pay" [syn: directly, straight] [ant: indirectly]
6 wholly or completely; "He is flat broke" [also: flatting, flatted, flattest, flatter]flatting See flat

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. the practice of living, with others, in a flat

Extensive Definition

A roommate is a person with whom one shares a residence who is not a relative or significant other. Synonyms include suitemate, housemate, or flatmate ("flat": the usual term in British English for an apartment). In the UK, the term "roommate" means a person sharing the same bedroom, whereas in the United States, "roommate" and "housemate" are used interchangeably regardless whether a bedroom is shared. This article uses the term "roommate" in the U.S. sense of a person one shares a residence who is not a relative or significant other.
The most common reason for sharing housing is to reduce the cost of housing. In many rental markets, the monthly rent for a two- or three-bedroom apartment is proportionately less per bedroom than the rent for a one-bedroom apartment (in other words, a three-bedroom flat costs somewhat more than a one-bedroom, but not three times as much). By pooling their monthly housing money, a group of people can achieve a lower housing expense at the cost of less privacy. Other motivations are to gain better amenities than those available in single-person housing, to share the work of maintaining a household, and to have the companionship of other people.

Who lives with roommates?

Housemates and roommates are typically unmarried young adults, including workers and students (the practice of sharing a bedroom is mostly limited to students). It is not rare for middle-aged and elderly adults who are divorced or widowed to have housemates. Married couples, however, typically discontinue living with roommates, especially when they have children.
Roommates are a fairly common point of reference in Western culture, especially in North America. In the United States, most young adults spend at least a short part of their lives living with roommates after they leave their family's home. Therefore, many novels, movies, plays, and television programs employ roommates as a basic principle or a plot device. On the other hand, it is less common for people of any age to live with roommates in some countries, such as Japan.
Many universities in the United States require first-year students to live in on-campus residence halls, sharing a dormitory room with a same-sex roommate. Studies have found that the academic grades, study style, social behavior, and personality of one roommate will affect the other roommate's academic performance.


The change in the cost of housing makes the consideration of roommates more attractive. As the housing market increases, so too does the roommate ratio rate. When house prices drop, the opposite can be expected. This has been seen extensively in cities such as Washington D.C., Phoenix, and San Diego.
Student exchanges are getting more and more popular with globalization and has influenced a lot in the Roommate Boom. The Erasmus exchange program in Europe has contributed as being the biggest exchange program in Europe. Exchange students can live in university residences but a growing amount want to share apartments with other international students in shared apartments.
Roommates and house-sharing are not limited to students and young adults however. American politicians Chuck Schumer, William Delahunt, Richard Durbin, and George Miller famously share a house in Washington, D.C. while Congress is in session.


One difficulty is finding suitable roommates. Living with a roommate can mean much less privacy than having a residence of one's own, and for some people this can cause a lot of stress.
Another thing to consider when choosing a roommate is how to divide the cost of living. Who pays for what, or are the shared expenses divided between the two or more roomies. Can the potential roommate even be trusted to pay their share and trusted to pay it on time? Sleeping patterns can also be disrupted when living with a number of people, so it is therefore important to choose housemates wisely.


See also

External Links

flatting in Danish: Kollektiv
flatting in German: Wohngemeinschaft
flatting in French: Colocation
flatting in Korean: 룸메이트
flatting in Japanese: ルームシェア
flatting in Portuguese: Colega de quarto
flatting in Kölsch: Wunn Jemäjnschaff
flatting in Swedish: Kollektiv
flatting in Chinese: 室友
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