So, you’ve decided to take the next big step in your relationship – you and your bae are moving in together (which is the only way anyone can afford property in Sydney anyway).
We often think that living together is just like all of those picture-perfect moments we see on Instagram, full of couch cuddles and trips to IKEA – but that’s not always the case. Living with someone can be hard, especially when you haven’t considered all the possible outcomes yet.
It’s an extremely exciting new phase of your lives together but without proper planning and communication this situation could potentially end in financial disaster or even heartbreak.
So, don’t learn the hard way! We’ve devised a full proof list of 7 things all couples should consider before moving in together.
1) Where To Live
We suggest finding a place all of your own when it comes to moving in together. Even though you may have your own house or apartment already, his moving into your space is far different than browsing real estate.
You may possibly find yourself harbouring some resentment when your beautifully furnished kingdom doesn’t match his messy man cave. So, carefully considered the right place to live, furnished to both your tastes, in an area you both love.
2) Where Your Relationship Is Going
We know most people dread this talk, but it is absolutely crucial. Most people consider living together the next step before marriage – a time to determine if you are compatible in all aspects of life.
Making sure you are both on the same page with your relationship is important and if you have conflicting perspectives about this issue, it may lead to disaster and extreme heartbreak. Avoid this at all costs and talk about where you see your relationship going in the future – you may be pleasantly surprised with the outcome.
India Earl Photography
Talking about money can be awkward and extremely hard but completely necessary. This chat needs to be open and honest or else you will get nowhere. How is the rent going to be divided? Who is paying what bill? What if someone makes more money? Will everything be 50/50?
Not all couples need to have the same plans when it comes to finances, so it is important to make sure your financial plan is suited to your relationship. Every couple is different, so take the time to talk it out and find the best solution.
4) Household Chores
Who takes out the rubbish? Who cleans the toilets? Who vacuums the floors? Although these may seem like mundane tasks that mean nothing, neglecting these responsibilities can lead to intense fights. When one person does all the housework, it may cause tension or even resentment.
The best way to move past these issues is the divvy up the housework. Set up a loose inventory of all the things that need to be done in order to keep your household running and keep to your responsibilities!
5) A Breakup Plan
Although it may sound like you are dooming your relationship, this is far from the case. Considering the worst outcome is the best way to protect yourself financially and emotionally.
Cohabiting couples do not have legal protection, but, a cohabitation agreement can effectively outline the equitable division of the assets in the event of a breakup. This is essential in determining which assets hold special meaning or value to each of you so, if things go sour, you can take back what’s yours without added drama. It is also crucial to consider which items you may want to have shared ownership over, or even who gets the apartment after the breakup.
6) Are You Moving In For The Right Reasons?
A lot of couples have used the line, “It makes sense financially.” But just because something makes sense from a financial perspective doesn’t mean it’s right. It is important to ask yourself if this the right decision for your relationship. Are you both ready to make this move? Were there ultimatums involved?
Wherever you land in your decision to move in together, you should feel comfortable knowing you are in it for the right reasons.
7) Is There Enough Closet Space?
This is a big one. How do two lives join together to create one big closet? If you thought this wasn’t a big task, you would be wrong. Determining where your clothes go is a very important aspect in life and in moving together.
Make sure that there is enough space for the both of you to effortlessly store not just your clothes, but all necessary items. Sharing a closet is a very different experience than having one to yourself, so give yourself time to adjust to this transition.
Written by Ellen Kirkness