While having a place of your own with your significant other can be liberating and exciting, there are still a few things you need to consider before you two finally take the plunge. And even if your relationship was great when you were living apart, staying under one roof is a whole lot different. Here are some things you need to think about before you start packing your things:
1. You'll have to feed yourselves constantly.
Unlike living with your parents where it's almost automatic for someone to cook all your meals, you'll have to think of your own nourishment daily. This means having to balance healthy meals with instant ones and making time to cook and clean up after yourselves. The upside is that these are all handy skills to have. You wouldn’t want to spend all your money on takeout, right?
2. Both of you have to work.
…and by work, we mean chores. Before moving in, discuss the responsibilities that need to be done at home. Who will clean the dishes? Who’s in charge of the trash? Simple issues like these have to be settled if you want to maintain a happy relationship. Tina B. Tessina, Ph.D., author of the book, Money, Sex, and Kids says that fighting over the little things such as chores can “steal the energy couples could be using to enjoy each other’s company.”
3. The romance will start to fade.
If it's the constant fighting and drama that keeps your relationship exciting, don't move in together. Moving in together is about building a life with someone that includes chores like paying the bills, managing the household and maintenance. When you're not working, you laze around at home, get comfortable, and before you know it, you've fallen into a routine. Remember to add spontaneity to your relationship by going out on dates and surprising each other–don’t settle for 'netflix and chill' when you can have a great night out.
4. Money might become an issue.
If you and your partner have not talked about money ever, now is the time to do so. It’ll be better to sit down and have a serious and open talk as soon as possible regarding your moving in process, rather than realizing later on that you can't afford to do so. There’s no harm in making sure you're both on the same page when it comes to your finances.
Relationship expert Andrea Syrtash says that it’s essential to talk about money before moving in. “Money issues are common in a relationship, but if things are delineated and agreed to in advance, you can avoid common money arguments. Decide if you’ll set up a joint account for household expenses and/or who is responsible for what.”
She also adds that, “It’s not unusual for one person in a couple to be a spender and the other to be a saver. It’s okay if you don’t agree on all aspects of how you’d like to spend your money. Just remember that being in a partnership means you’ll meet in the middle on issues so neither of you feel uncomfortable.”
5. You have to deal with his habits.
…good or bad. This is the ultimate test of love. If you can’t be patient with each other, then you probably have to think twice before moving in together. Little things such as snoring, nagging, or messiness can lead to fights–and possibly (but hopefully not) a breakup.