Things are going well between you and your sweetheart. You don’t argue a lot, you enjoy each other’s company, and things are great in the intimacy department. You’ve been hanging out for a while, and you feel it’s time to take the next step. But you’re afraid to bring it up. Is it too soon to move in together?
If you make the choice to go forward, you won’t be alone. The 2010 U.S. Census reported more than 7.5 million unmarried couples that lived together. So, you’re not the only guy thinking about it. But all those other couples aside, it’s difficult to know if that move is right for you. Before you pop the question (not that question), think about the following points.
Sharing the Same Space
How many nights are you two spending together? Great dates are one thing. Cohabitation is whole other animal. She might stay in the bathroom a little too long in the morning and throw off your routine. You might not store food in the fridge the way she likes. These might sound like frivolous issues. However, it’s these tiny disagreements that add up to something bigger. Over time, they can cause serious tension. Before you think about moving in together, make sure you’ve spent adequate time sharing the same space.
Money conversations aren’t fun. When you aren’t married to someone, it feels nice to keep your debt and your paystubs to yourself. But if you’re going to share a home with someone, you can’t keep your other half in the dark about your finances. Moving in together means splitting rent or a mortgage as well as other household expenses. Will you two split costs evenly? Or will one of you pick up the lion’s share of the bills? Think about your approach before you bring up the topic.
Just because things are going well doesn’t mean there’s a future. Have you talked about your expectations? Your plans for education or work? Do you both want to live in the same area? Do you share the same timetable? When you move in together, you’re not only making a commitment to your relationship but also your personal future. A 1- or 2-year lease means you’re stuck in whatever city you’re living in. And now, you’ve got another person to consult if you want to change something. Make sure you’re both on the same page.
When it comes to moving in together, there isn’t a set period of time you should adhere to. Some couples take this step after 6 months. Others wait several years. It’s not about a guideline. It’s about the progression of your relationship. If you feel you’ve had those important discussions, and you’ve cohabitated successfully for shorter periods, it could be time to take that step. Do the work ahead of time so you have no regrets.