One of the biggest relationship steps that a couple can make is moving in together. It’s an exciting time and one that can be fraught with all sorts of emotions from outright glee to muddled concern. But if you go into it with a plan, chances are good that it will be a success.
The key is talking about everything. Don’t leave anything to chance. The small details might seem silly. But when an issue comes up (and issues always do), a plan can help you stay together instead of breaking up over something as silly as a recliner or as serious as a terrible credit score.
Here are a few tips to help you get it right.
Assess Your Belongings Critically
If you think this is the perfect time to convince him (or her) to ditch that awful collection of concert posters and black lights, think again. Your stuff and your partner’s stuff is equally important. It’s more important for you to consider your own stuff fairly than to think about what you can eliminate elsewhere.
Moving in together shouldn’t come with any sort of agenda. If you love your partner, you might have to live with belongings that aren’t exactly to your taste.
Chances are, you own a few questionable items as well. Purge what you don’t need and you’ll merge households a lot more comfortably. Get a moving quote for what you have left after the purge.
Talk About Money Matters
If money isn’t at the top of the couple’s argument list, it certainly ranks high. Avoiding the discussion won’t help matters. It’s much better to put all of your cards on the table and begin this new life with total honesty and an agreement on how you’ll budget and manage finances.
As a starting point, Kiplinger urges unmarried couples to manage their own money independently and keep purchases separate.
How will you split the rent? Or will you split it at all? Every couple has their own financial style. Some divide expenses based on income and some prefer a 50/50 split. The important part isn’t how you agree on money. What matters is that you agree and stick with it.
Divvy up Household Responsibilities
Maybe you love to do laundry. And maybe your significant other finds relaxation in mowing the lawn. Household responsibilities come with every living arrangement.
Just be sure that the load doesn’t rest more heavily on one person than the other. If one person carries the heavier household chore load, it won’t be long before there’s a grudge.
If you haven’t seen The Break-Up, now might be the perfect time to rent it. It’s easy to fall into a pattern that’s advantageous for one partner while the other feels taken advantage of.
Get Both Names on the Lease
Buying a house together requires both names on the mortgage. But if you’re renting, you’ll want both names on the lease. That way, both parties are equally responsible, and share equally in the rental benefits.
When one person moves into a partner’s place, there might be an imbalance. It can be successfully done, however, as long as both parties can agree that there isn’t any ownership hierarchy.
If that’s not possible, starting fresh together in a new place might be the best approach. That way, both partners feel an equal ownership and responsibility.
Moving in together is one of the biggest decisions that any couple can make. So you owe it to yourself and each other to think the details through.
Maybe you don’t care about who pays for the orange juice or who vacuums every Saturday. If you have a plan, the details won’t become sticking points that build up and ruin a good thing. When you’re ready to pack up and make it a reality, get a free moving quote from Mover Junction.