15 Top Tips To Help Moving In Together Go Smoothly
The time has come. After spending countless nights having sleepovers at each other’s places, you and your partner and ready to move in together. This is both an exciting and scary time. Learning to live with someone new (especially if you’ve been living alone) exposes you to lots of new challenges.
You will be seeing their face every day when you wake up and have to find an apartment or home with enough space for everything you both own. Then you have to decide who pays for what and who does what chores. Daunting is an understatement.
But it is not all doom and gloom. Moving in with your significant other is also great fun and means you get to spend more time with your loved one. It is a big step in a relationship, but one that shows you are committed and ready to face each day together. To help you with all the issues that could arise when moving in with someone, we have devised 15 tips to help the process run smoothly.
1. Make Sure You Are Doing it for the Right Reasons
Relationships are a funny thing. One minute you are hanging out with someone on a casual basis and the next thing you know you have a new housemate. It is very easy for relationships to develop to a point where one of the duo suddenly finds themselves living at the others without even talking about moving in. Maybe the lease is up for one of you so it is convenient or you both want to save money. While both are valid reasons, neither take your relationship into account.
You need to want to move in together. You should be taking the plunge because you love each other and want to strengthen that bond. Before you put a downpayment on a place, talk with your partner and discuss the pros and cons of living together. Chat about why you think you should live together and how it will benefit your partnership. Being emotionally and financially ready to commit to living together shows you are ready to live together.
2. Hangout as Much as Possible Before You Decide To Move In Together
There is nothing worse than moving in with someone and then finding out you can’t stand living with them. The little quirks you found funny now tick you off big time or their lack of hygiene is making the place smell.
Try and spend as much time together before you pack up all your stuff and find a place together. This way you can learn about your partner’s eccentricities and see how they live.
To further this point, spend a week away together. Nothing brings people closer (or makes them drift apart) like a trip away. You will see how they handle difficult situations and react to things. You’ll also both be able to see if you get on each other’s nerves, which is not ideal if you want to live together. If the relationship thrives and you feel closer, then it is time to move in. If things don’t go to plan, you might need to work on your relationship or consider if it is still worth pursuing.
3. Have a Trail Run
If going away together isn’t feasible, ask your partner to spend a couple of weeks living with you. There is no better way to see if you can put up with each other on a daily basis than by having a trial run. You can get a feel of her daily routine and how long she takes in the bathroom of a morning. If you can make it through a couple of weeks living together without arguing every day then you are probably ready to commit to something longer.
4. Talk About Any Fears You Have About Moving in Together
Another handy tip is to sit down and talk about any worries you might have about living together. It is only human to be a little apprehensive about living with someone you love. Maybe you are worried you will no longer be able to do what you like or are scared things will go badly and you will end up breaking up. Discuss these fears and any others you have with your partner and make plans about how you can overcome them. This will reassure you both that you are doing the right thing and can get past any potential problems that may arise during the initial few weeks of living together.
5. Decide Where To Live
Are you moving into her place? Is she shacking up with you? Or are you both going to find a new joint to kick start your new life as roommates? This is something you need to figure out together. If you both live in share houses then it makes sense to find a brand new rental together, but if one of you already lives alone or owns your own place, it might be easier to move into that. Whatever option you choose, just make sure you both are happy with the outcome.
6. Look for Suitable Homes Together
This might seem obvious, but you would be surprised by the number of guys who are happy to let their partner find their new abode. Then when they finally see the place, they are disappointed or not happy with the layout. To alleviate these problems, you should both be looking together. That way you can find an apartment or house that appeals to you both. Just like your relationship, finding the right place to live requires you to work together to achieve the best outcome.
7. Figure Out What Furniture You Will Contribute
Most places are unfurnished, so you will have to bring your own furnishings to turn the rental into your own. You have both most likely acquired a number of items over the years, from beds and tables to bookshelves and lounges. You will need to work out who brings what. If the place is a one-bedroom unit, you will only need one bed, so that means you have to decide which to bring.
The same goes for couches, dining room tables, and kitchen appliances. Or maybe you both want to start fresh and sell your old furnishings and buy brand new products. Whatever you decide, this is an important part of the moving in process.
8. Start Downsizing
Once you have decided who is bringing what to the new place, it is time to begin getting rid of everything you don’t need. Start downsizing your apartment a few weeks before you move in with your girlfriend. Donate any clothes, kitchen appliances or bedding to your nearest charity shop. Put your couch up for sale. Anything you are not sure about, box it up and put it in storage. This could come in handy if the relationship goes bust.
9. Make It Feel Like Your Own
This is especially important if you are moving into your partner’s place or vice versa. If she is moving in with you, allow her the chance to add her personal touch so it doesn’t feel like she is living in a bachelor pad. We don’t mean let her redecorate the entire pad, but at least allow her the chance to move some things around and incorporate some of her furnishings. It is probably time to get rid of that neon bar sign anyway. Remember, it is her home now too.
The same goes for you moving into her place. Make sure your partner is happy with you setting up your sound system or putting your massive TV in the lounge. Making these small compromises will help you both feel more at home.
10. Give Each Other Space
Just because you live together doesn’t mean you need to spend every waking moment in each other’s company. You both still need to live your own lives and have your own outlets to escape. This is why it is good to have one or two nights a week where you do your own thing.
Maybe it is a night out with the boys or playing basketball once a week. You don’t even have to leave the house. You can be in separate rooms. You can spend the evening playing Call of Duty in the spare room while she reads in the bedroom. Whatever floats your boat, it is important that you both have time to yourself so you don’t feel like you are encroaching on each other’s privacy.
11. …But Don’t Forget To Spend Quality Time Together
Having a night or two a week to yourself is ideal, but don’t forget to spend time with your partner too. And we don’t mean sitting on the couch scrolling through your phones while The Bachelor or some other horrid reality TV series is playing.
Take the time to organize date nights. Head out to a restaurant or catch a movie. Or make the most of your new home and stay in and take part in a fun activity. There are dozens of things you can do and you are sure to find something that perks both of your interests on this list.
12. Set Some Boundaries About People Coming Over
Similar to giving each other some space, you have to have a few boundaries in place so you can both enjoy living together. If you are used to having friends pop over willy nilly, this might need to change as you have to think about your partner. Setting boundaries about who can come over and when will make life much easier.
Having people drop in occasionally is fine, but you don’t want this becoming a habit. Keep an open dialogue about when people can visit and how long they can stay. You certainly don’t want someone overstaying their welcome. Another idea is to plan a bbq together so you can invite all your friends and nobody is left out.
13. Sort Out Who Does What Chores
Nobody likes chores, but they are a part of life and something you will both have to deal with when living together. Whether you are a clean freak or a bit of a slob, cleaning is a must. Even if you manage to put it off for a few weeks, at some point you need to clean up the place so you should discuss who does what chores.
It might sound a bit over the top but having a list of chores and writing down who does what is a great way to keep track and make sure you are both doing your bit. If she cooks, you do the dishes. Take turns cleaning the bathroom every couple of weeks. Make the bed. These are all small things that you can both do to make sure the place doesn’t turn into a bomb site.
14. Talk About Finances
Money often leads to disagreements amongst couples, so sit down and talk about your finances. Decide if you will split the rent and who’s account it will come out of. Or maybe one of you will pay the rent while the other handles the bills and grocery shopping. Then you have to think about extras. What about if you need to buy new furniture or appliances? Who pays for that? These are all things you need to chat about before moving in together.
If you have been in a relationship for a few years before moving in together, maybe it is time you got a shared account? This way all your money is in one place and you both have access to it and can see who is spending what. If sharing your paycheck is not on the cards, open a joint account that is just used for paying rent and bills. Both contribute an equal amount monthly and use that to cover all your costs.
15. Have a Contingency Plan
While you don’t want to think about things ending badly, there is always a chance that moving in together could prove the downfall of the relationship. If this is the case, have a back plan. And by backup plan, we don’t mean another woman waiting in the wings to move in. Put some money aside in case you find yourself out on the street.
It is always good to talk to your partner before moving in about what could happen if things don’t work out. Have a chat about who gets what and how you would deal with things financially.
Obviously do this in a positive way that shines a light on your growth as a couple and how moving in together is a show of your commitment while looking at the reality of what could happen if it doesn’t go the way you both think.
We’ve said it once, we’ve said it a thousand times; communication is the heartbeat of any successful relationship. This is especially relevant when it comes to living with your significant other. While moving in together has lots of upsides (more sex to start with), it can also be difficult adjusting to someone else being in your space 24/7.
You have to let your partner know how you feel about things. If they leave their dirty clothes in a pile on the floor and it is doing your head in, talk to them about it. There are probably small things you do that piss her off also, but as long as you discuss these things and come up with solutions then all is well.
Schedule a weekly catch-up where you can openly chat about anything on your mind. Raise any issues you are having with your partner or the way they go about things. Open dialogue is key to making your living arrangement a blissful one.