20 Gallon Tank Reduce smell, cycle tank, new roomates

yoboyjuice

I orinally put this in the Mano tank section but realized this may be a better spot

Hello I am new to the saltwater community though I have been in freshwater for 5~ years keeping planted 240, 60, and 10 gallon aquariums. I’ve moved out of my parents house 6 months ago for university and just renewed my lease at my place and thought it would be a good time to get back into the aquarium hobby this time giving salt water a try. I got 5 brand new roommates this week including one I share a small bedroom with. I wanted to wait a week or so to get to know him before proposing the idea of a fish tank but I saw someone local sell the perfect used aquarium at an awesome price so I’m eager to pick it up before it’s sold. Today I Proposed the idea to my roommate of an aquarium and he said something like “I mean I guess, as long as it doesn’t smell bad.” I said it wouldn’t, that I thought of that and I’ll buy a lid carbon air freshener etc and it wont be a problem. I then said something like “okay so this is your chance to say no, are you okay if I set up an aquarium?” and he said okay, but I could tell he still wasn’t thrilled. I personally have a horrible sense of smell abd have my whole life so I called my parents and friend who kept aquariums and asked if smell was ever a concern and they said they never noticed. I plan to double check with him in the morning and then go pick up the aquarium. The seller has emptied it except for some sand and water as he’s upgrading to a larger tank.
that’s the background now here are my questions/concerns
My biggest concern is the smell and cost. I don’t want to Invest 500-1000+ on a 20 gallon tank only to upset a roomate whom I’ll live with for at least a year or have to sell/lose lots of money on a tank.
how can I ensure that smell and humidity is not an issue? I plan to use a lid, lots of carbon and make an effort to keep the tank clean in general. I also plan to buy a plug in the wall air freshener
What other precautions can I take? Are there certain filters foods fish or corals that are smellier than others?
Another big concern is the cycling process I hear of using shrimp or scallops and letting them decay. No matter what method there will be a large (I assume smellier than usual) ammonia spike. What cycling method would be ideal because this will be the first impression he has of the tank. I may be able to get cycled media or sand from the seller, would that be preferable to food or bottled ammonia or bottled bacteria?
Also will humidity be a affected significantly? What can I do about that?

overall he said okay and I’m going to give him another chance to say no, but if he says yes, I will move forward, as this is something I’m very passionate about. As a last resort I could put it in the small common room where it would be more open but this would require getting the blessing of 5 others instead of 1.
Any advice would be great. If I find time I’ll do a new tank build thread discussing equipment specs etc. Thanks,
Austin

Tldr how can I make the tank not smell for my new roomate especially while cycling it?
 

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