Try Out HomeSlice, an App for Passive-Aggressive Roommates
They look happy, but they really want to kill one another.
As long as roommates have existed, so has the practice of roommates sending one another passive-aggressive notes. You know the kind: a Post-it that says, “Please put the toilet seat down.” Or the simple but poignant “Clean this” with an arrow pointing down into a dish-filled sink.
Now these disagreements no longer need to be scattered around as unpleasant reminders of your dysfunctional home life. Instead, they can all live in an Android and iPhone app called HomeSlice. The organizational tool allows you and your roommates to chat, to keep track of bills, to alert one another when shared home supplies are low, and to create chore lists. So all of the subtle tension involved in assigning home-cleaning tasks can be concentrated into one digital space.
HomeSlice isn’t exactly a novel concept. Chore wheels and white board shopping lists have existed since the beginning of modern cohabitation. And there are a few modern services that overlap. Apps like Plates and Venmo allow you to share the cost of bills with your friends, My Job Chart is for parents who want to assign chores to their children (and reward them for a job well done). Chorma allows you to share tasks around the house with the rest of your roommates. And you and your roommates could always just email or, you know, talk to one another, like with your mouths.
HomeSlice, however, aims to combine every aspect of a communal living space. Chores are important, but often the most roommate tension arises over easily overlooked things: the toilet paper your roommates never replace, expensive cleaning supplies, or those beers one of them “accidentally” drank.
Yes, it’d be nice if the app’s bill-organizing section actually had a feature that allowed you to transfer funds, or to split a bill among people. But at the very least it’s a good place to record all your shared expenses. It’s annoying to search for those numbers in your email, like I have so many times. Not to mention that it’s always good to know if your utility expenses are increasing over time (so you can have a talk with your roommate about his excessive space heater use).
That being said, the app is still a little glitchy. Testing it, my Yahoo Tech colleague (and fictitious roommate) Daniel’s screen froze momentarily while in the app. He continued to tap until a chore posted. Little did he know that he was sending push notification after push notification to my phone, saying that I needed to clean the cat hair out of the couch. If I hadn’t known better, I’d think he was angry at me. Bugs like that could easily upset the delicate ecosystem of a shared living space.
But if you’re looking for a convenient place to keep everyone you live with in the loop — and everyone you live with has an iPhone or an Android phone — then HomeSlice is as close as you’ll come to ideal. You know, assuming your roommates are all sane, functioning people.
Here’s how it works:
2. Open it.
3. To start from scratch, select New Home.