Cohabitations is the biggest step you’ll take before saying “I do.” It’s a great way to determine if you’ll make it as a couple in the long run. However, you shouldn’t do it unless you’re sure you’re ready. Check out this article for a list of signs that you might be.
There a lot of firsts in a relationship. Your first kiss, first night together, first vacation you take, just the two of you. Once these firsts are behind you, you might feel the urge to take things even further. Moving in may seem like the next logical step. However, you should make sure you’re ready for it; otherwise things can go sour rather quickly.
This decision shouldn’t be taken lightly. Think about the fact that you’ll spend all day, every day together. You won’t be able to go back to “your place” when you have an argument or need to spend some time by yourself. You’ll find out everything you ever wanted and didn’t want to know about your significant other, and some of those discoveries may not be pretty.
We’re not trying to discourage you from taking your relationship to the next level – we’re just saying that you should carefully consider what moving in really entails before making a decision. If you still believe that it’s a good idea, here are a few signs that you’re ready to take this leap together.
You already spend a lot of time together
If you’re spending a ton of time together already, moving in may work for you two. Weekends and nights at his place, especially after you’ve been together for a while, can help you determine if living under the same roof would work. If you don’t even remember what it’s like to shower or turn on the TV over at your place, your partner might as well start to charge you for electricity and cable.
For most couples who merge their living spaces successfully, the foundation was laid way before the big move. When you have a toothbrush, drawer, and some clothes at your significant other’s house, you’ve already established a strong level of intimacy. Taking things one step further will only cause your relationship to grow stronger.
You want the same things
Talking about your future before moving in together is crucial if you want the relationship to work in the long run. Do you plan on getting married one day? Do you both want children? Are you both career-oriented individuals looking to succeed professionally before settling down? Talk openly about your ambitions and plans for the future. After all, you wouldn’t want to find out two years later that your significant other doesn’t believe in marriage, while you’ve been dreaming of the perfect wedding since you were 8.
Discussing your future also allows you two to set some expectations for what’s about to come. Sure, unpredictable things happen all the time, but knowing approximately what to expect will prevent you from disappointment and tears down the line.
You’re familiar with each other’s quirks
Everybody has their own habits, quirks, and routines. Maybe your partner likes to play video games for hours at a time, chugging down copious amounts of energy drinks. Maybe you like to unwind after a rough day with a bubble bath and one of your favorite paranormal romance books. As long as you’re both familiar and comfortable with the other’s preferences and habits, you have a better shot at not driving each other crazy once you live under the same roof.
On the same note, some annoying habits may only surface after you’ve already made the move, so be prepared for a few surprises. Maybe your significant other likes to leave their clothes all around the house, but they were making an effort to clean up before, knowing you were coming over. Or maybe they enjoyed cooking for you when you were a visitor, but won’t like to do it all the time once you live together. You’ll both need some time to adjust to your new living arrangements, so take some time to do so and don’t lash out at every small behavioral change you notice in your better half.
You know how to fight
Fighting is unavoidable when you live in small quarters. You can’t expect to agree about everything, all the time. And since misunderstandings are likely to show their ugly head, it’s important to know how to fight healthily, resolve your arguments, and move on. Accusations, threats, cursing, name-calling – all these should be out of the question, since they can seriously damage your relationship.
A few basic rules of healthy fighting? Listen respectfully to your partner’s point of view, talk softly, stick to only sharing thoughts on the issue at hand instead of going after each other about everything that’s ever bothered you. And remember that small concessions can often lead to a compromise.
You’ve talked logistics
No matter how awkward talking about finances can be, you need to address the subject before you decide to move in. Are you going to share rent and utilities? Who’s going to shop for groceries? Who’s going to pay when you go out together? It’s important to understand what each person can afford and contribute to the household.
Talk about chores. Cleaning, laundry, cooking – how are you going to share these responsibilities? You need to come up with an efficient system when it comes to household duties before making the big move.
If the points above apply to you and your significant other, there’s a good chance you’re going to build a successful life together under the same roof. However, remember that moving in is very different from living together part-time. Figure out if you are ready to give up your personal space and privacy before making a decision. You’ll be glad you did.