Cohabiting is a personal decision that should be given deep thought; it can be a great way to join two lives or a disaster waiting to happen.
Consider the following 10 factors before jumping in the bandwagon:
1. Consider Finances
Some say that money is the root of all evil, but you can avoid any monetary mishaps by ensuring that both you and your partner are on the same page regarding your financial arrangements. Will you divide your rent and living expense payments according to how much you each earn? Is it worth setting up a joint account to cover bills and household costs?
2. Do A Test Run
Going on a vacation together (as opposed to simply having date nights and weekend sleepovers) is a good way for couples to get to know each other better. Travel is a great way to understand how your partner copes with uncomfortable situations.
3. How Do You Fight?
Sometimes your mushy feelings for one another can turn into white-hot rage, which explains why even the happiest of couples are destined to experience some of those fingernails-on-the-chalkboard-of-life moments. When you’re living under the same roof you literally have nowhere to hide. Being able to crack the conflict code is a must for a cohabiting couple.
4. Compatible Lifestyles
A night owl is not likely to mix well with an early bird. While you may prefer to spend a quiet evening in, your partner may desire to be surrounded by friends. Work schedules, friends, partying into the wee hours and bedtimes are all factors that can wreak havoc on your relationship if not discovered and discussed early on.
5. Keeping The Romance Alive
While dating, couples often make that extra effort to go for a walk after dinner, to snuggle on the couch and to add that extra va-va-voom in the bedroom. When living together, however, it is easier to neglect quality time. You may find yourselves slipping into your sweats the moment you get home from work and sitting on opposite sides of the couch.
6. Is Marriage Your Ultimate Goal?
If marriage is what you ultimately want, make sure to have this discussion so expectations are clear before you decide to live together. Also, create a time frame for which you will like to be moving toward marriage so the living together does not put a delay on the goal.
7. Your Problems are Wed-locked
Live-in couples have to deal with many of the same issues spouses do. One of the thorniest is keeping the relationship fresh. Because you’re no longer dating, it’s crucial that you maintain the relationship’s fun factor. For starters, don’t become too reliant on one another.
8. There May Be Territory Issues
In a perfect world, you would get a new place altogether, as opposed to moving into on a partner’s place. We realize that isn’t always possible, but if it is, it will help to quell any territorial issues. In the event that one of you is a homeowner or your existing leases don’t line up, it’s important for the current owner to realize they are moving into a shared sphere.
9. Think Of How Other People Will Be Affected
This won’t just be a change for you and your partner, a lot of people you may not have considered will factor in. Maybe you and your best friend still do sleepovers, or your parents pop by every single Sunday. This may not fly once you’re sharing space, and you are certain to get a lot of mixed reviews on your move.
10. Consider Privacy Rights
When people are in a relationship but not living together, they know they can always retreat to their own place if they want privacy. When you live together, you eliminate that option. Think about that long and hard, but also keep an open mind. All the things you do alone in your home, you’ll probably now have to do in the presence of another person.