Moving In Together With Your Partner? Here's What To Consider
There is a lot more to moving in together than spending more time with each other and saving on rent.
Of course, the fact that you will see each other a lot more often and be significantly saving on how much rent you pay is a huge advantage…but at what price?
Have no disillusions, cohabiting will greatly impact the dynamics of your relationship.
Whether or not it survives the friction depends on just how prepared both of you are to move in together.
That is why, before making the big move, every couple should ask themselves this simple question: “Should we move in together?”
For millennials, this is basically the newest version of getting married. Okay, that may be a bit extreme, but legally entering into a mortgage or lease agreement is a huge commitment.
It says that you are attaching more than just your affection for one another to the relationship; you are also attaching your finances.
Considering all the changes, the ups as well as the downs, here are some things you MUST be clear on before you move in together.
1. Do you have any other reasons for moving in together?
Besides the obvious financial advantages and convenience, do either of you have any other reasons for moving in together?
The thing about financial situations is that they change constantly.
If you decide to move in together just to save on rent and bills, what happens when one of you, or even both of you, become more financially stable… Or less financially stable?
With the convenience and savings reasons gone, will there be any reason to stay together?
Can you handle the pressure of one spouse being unemployed and unable to carry their weight for an extended period of time.
These are all questions you should ask yourselves and each other before signing on the dotted line.
Which brings me to my next point…
2. Do you have an agreement on how the bills will be split?
This is crucial for any cohabitation arrangement to work.
Both of you need to come up with an arrangement on how the bills will be paid every month. This is regardless of whether or not you are moving into one of your current residences or into a brand new one.
Having a solid agreement in place will help streamline your financial relationship at the end of the month and allow both of you to gain from the financial advantages that come with moving in together.
Which also means that you need to discuss what happens if one of you becomes unable to financially support your end of the bargain.
It’s a very unfortunate situation, but it does happen. Make sure you have a contingency plan in place just in case.
3. What about the household chores?
Unless you are going to hire a housekeeper, both of you need to decide on how the household chores will get done.
As simple as it sounds, many couples completely overlook this detail before moving in together.
Overlooking how household chores will be divided creates unnecessary friction as one of the partners often assumes that the other will handle all the chores and that they can be as much of a slob as they want (usually us men are the ones guilty of this lol.)
If the chores are not split between the two of you, or at least, a rule enacted that each of you should be responsible for cleaning up after themselves, the responsibility will fall to one of you and that could lead to unnecessary strife within the relationship.
4. Are you really ready to let someone inside of your personal space?
We all know this to be a fact: There are people who don’t like letting others inside of their “personal space.”
This can be for any number of reasons. Some people have strict sleeping schedules and don’t tolerate any deviations. Others like things done a certain way, others are neat freaks, while some view their homes as their private sanctuaries to escape the world.
Whatever the reason may be, you both need to ask yourselves “Am I comfortable allowing someone inside of my personal space?”
If not, you should work on that in small steps like spending the weekend or weekdays at each other’s places before moving in together .
Look at it as a test run before the real thing.
5. Who’s stuff stays and who’s goes?
Obviously, if you both had your own places before moving in together then you’re going to have to decide on who’s furnishings stays and who’s goes.
One of the best ways to resolve this issue if it becomes a point of contention is to start anew.
Go shopping together and buy beddings and furniture that complement both of your styles.
This way, both of you will be comfortable in the new house.
6. Don’t forget date nights.
When living apart, you both have to make adjustments to your schedule in order to spend time with one another.
You go on dates, you spend most weekends together and you find time to talk on the phone as much as you can.
This all changes once you start living together.
Since you will now see each other at the end of the day, you may feel like there is no longer any need to put in as much effort to spend time together.
Be warned though: This is how relationships become stale and both of you get bored.
Be sure to have date nights. Go on vacations. Be sure to talk on the phone when at work and take some time off to get away for a weekend.
Don’t let moving in together be the death of your romance.
7. Are you ready?
Don’t move in together because of pressure, financial difficulties, or any other reason besides both of you feel like it is the next natural step in your relationship .
There are very few things that will kill the romance in a relationship like one or both of you feeling stifled.
Moving in together is a huge step and an even bigger responsibility.
So before you do, seriously ask yourself, should we move in together?