Life is a progression, and relationships are no exception. Moving from one step to the next is normal, but it’s not always easy to tell exactly when to take that next step.
For couples that feel they’re in a position to move in together, it’s sometimes hard to determine whether you’re truly ready to make that commitment or not. Everyone’s experience is different, and asking friends or family members can sometimes lead to confusing results.
Making the decision that’s right for you as a couple really depends on both of you, not on what other people have to say. Before you call the movers, consider these fundamental talking points and lifestyle preferences, then make a decision based on what’s right for both of you.
1) When You’re Considering Marriage: Though moving in together isn’t necessarily a precursor for marriage, nor does it suggest that you’re absolutely ready to be married, some couples do prefer to live together if they’re considering tying the knot. Learning to live with someone takes some adjusting, and living together as a dating couple can help you to understand your partner’s quirks, habits, lifestyle and schedule. Of course, many couples have been married for years and didn’t live together until saying, “I do,” so it’s not always necessary. If you’re considering marriage and both realize that lifestyle is a big deal, living together is probably the best solution.
2) When You’re Both Financially Stable: Moving in with a boyfriend or girlfriend before you’re financially stable on your own is probably not the best idea. Unless one partner is honestly willing to pull the weight, having your own finances under control can help eliminate a lot of possible arguments. Or, if the relationship doesn’t work out, you don’t want to be out on your own without money to support yourself. Plus, if the time comes to merge your assets, money and bank accounts, you’ll both have something to bring to the table!
3) When You’re Together Most Of The Time Anyways: For couples that spend a lot of time together, getting a place you can both call home will probably be a cheaper, more efficient option. If one of you is spending nearly all your time at your significant other’s apartment or home, it makes much more sense to pay only one rent instead of two. And, while this shouldn’t be the number one reason to cohabitate, it’s a definite perk!
4) When You’ve Been Dating A Long Time: Moving in after you’ve only been dating for a month or two is not the best decision. Living with another person is a huge commitment. It puts a lot of excess strain a relationship, and can make a new relationship difficult to sustain. Once you’ve been together for a while, you’ll know each other better and can make a much more informed decision about what your next steps should be.
5) When You’ve Talked It All Through: There are a lot of little things to think about before making a decision. Even the minutest of details can turn out to be a big deal when you live with someone for the first time. Be sure to discuss details like cleanliness, sleeping patterns, household chores, groceries, bills, laundry and house guest preferences.
Once you’ve talked everything over, big and small, you can make the decision that’s right for you. Take your time and weigh the pros and cons before committing and be honest about what’s best for your relationship.
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