Moving in with a partner is a big step. It’s not only a big deal in a relationship, but you have the added pressure of moving house being one of the most stressful things you can do in your life. While moving in together is an exciting adventure, the next step in your relationship, it can either make or break a relationship. This is the same with many relationships though – imagine living with your best friend or your sister, it would never be a smooth ride. However, you want living with your partner to last but to do that; you need to go in with an open mind and not expect everything to be a bed of roses. Here are a few tips on what to do if you’re moving in with your partner:
Decide Where To Live
Kind of an important thing, you need to decide if you will you move into their place, stay in yours or find a new home together? It might be an easy decision if you both live in studio apartments, and what you need is a two-bedroom. Or one of you might already live in a two-bedroom. However, you’ll still need to take into consideration other factors like commutes to work, accommodations for any pets, local amenities, shopping, and safety. You are likely to have spent a lot of time over at one another’s places before you decide to move in, so you’ll have a good idea about each one and the pros and cons to you both living there. Some people want a fresh start together, to buy somewhere and achieve a shared sense of ownership together or to make somewhere your own together that’s new to both of you.
Take A Good Look At All Of Your Stuff
A lot of the effort and the discussion that goes into moving is about how much stuff we have and what we have. Most likely, you’ll find things that are duplicates between your two apartments – two toasters, two coffee tables – or things that you don’t want anymore. Then there’s the big stuff, like dressers and sofas that may not fit in the new place. Now’s the time to look at the things in both of your apartments and figure out what you have, what you’re keeping, and what you’re selling, donating or tossing before the move.
If you feel tempted to put this off until after you move or skip it altogether – don’t as this could be a costly mistake. Remember that everything you keep adds to the cost of the move either financially or it merely takes up your time moving it. Don’t forget that everything needs to fit into the new place as well and if you can imagine what it’s going to be like when all the boxes are there, you need to think about whether there is room to put them away until you can sort through everything? Will keeping everything mean that you have to rent a bigger apartment than you can really afford? If you are getting a new place, before you even begin looking at apartments, get a realistic idea of how much space you need by figuring out how much stuff you’ll have after you’ve decided what you’ll keep and what you’ll sell, what you’ll throw away or donate. Then, take an inventory of both apartments, measure everything that’s left and decide how much square footage you need.
Talk about storage beforehand
It might seem like a small thing, but when you spend a lot of time with someone, you can find yourselves arguing about the simplest things. According to a survey by Sparefoot, approximately 30 per cent of all couples who live together argue about clutter and, of these couples, more than 50 per cent say it’s because of their partner’s clothes.
If you end up getting a small place for the two of you, or one of you moves into the other’s, then you’ll need to discuss practical solutions to make the most of your storage space before moving in. Will you need to rent extra storage? Are you going to divide the closet and dresser drawers equally? Are they going to be okay with you having a load of products in the bathroom? The more problems you can solve before the move, the smoother your transition will be.
Plan The Move
When it comes to the moving day, you’ll need to decide if you’re moving yourself or hiring professionals. Do you have friends or family to call to come and help? Do you have access to a van? Can you find some free boxes? If you’re moving long distance or you don’t have any of those things, then it might be easier to hire professional packers and movers. Think realistically about how much stuff you’re moving, do you have access to a driveway and wide streets or in the city with loading and unloading time restrictions and narrow streets. Do you have any large, fragile items such as a glass table top may need special packing materials and expert handling to ensure it arrives in one piece?
Work out the finances
Finances are often a massive reason that couples move in together and also a huge reason why people break up, so make sure you’ve got it all covered before you take the leap. Sort out a budget beforehand and make sure you have the discussion and ask those awkward questions, so you both know what’s going on and what’s expected of you. Will you split rent and utilities 50/50? Who will be responsible for paying the bills and managing finances? Will you be getting a joint account, or will different bills come out of your separate account? Will you both start contributing equally to other expenses like furniture, home repairs, and maintenance, or cleaning services? Do you have a separate savings account or a running away fund just incase?
Have An Open Mind
Before you move in with someone, you are in your own little bubble, you do things your way, and you don’t even realise that there is another way. Even if you don’t consider yourself to be anal about how the toilet paper sits in the dispenser, you might realise that you are once someone does it “wrong”. The older you get and the more time you spend living independently, the more set in your ways you will become without even realising it. Make sure that when you move in with your partner, when you see these things that don’t fit your way of doing things, that you take a step back and breathe before saying anything. Is the thing that they’ve done differently wrong, or is it just different? Be open-minded to their way of doing things, talk about things, and if there are things that bug you and be prepared for them to say the same about things you do. You’re coming together, and hopefully, you’ll both bring good ways of doing things so, in the end, you’ll have the best way to do everything and maybe new ways you do things together.
Have A Space To Call Your Own
You both need this. Just because you live together doesn’t mean you should spend every moment together. This wouldn’t be healthy and you need to maintain some personal space, freedom, and identity if living together is going to work. If your apartment is too small for each of you to have a space of your own, make sure that you’re getting out of the apartment to do activities on your own. Relationships are hard work and while living together might make things like travel, sleeping arrangements and finances easier, it doesn’t mean everything else is going to come just as easily. Keep an open mind when it comes to compromising and adjusting to your new living situation.
You never know what it’s going to be like until you live with someone and quite often people find the new living arrangement tricky because of themselves not because of the person they are living with. You both need to have the willingness to compromise to get through it. You’re not just thinking of yourself and what you like anymore, so whether it’s about the colour of the new sofa for the living room or what to eat for lunch, make sure to try to accommodate each other’s preferences and needs as much as possible.
Remember how lovely it is to come home to them each night
If you’re used to spending most of your time with your partner before moving in together, it might seem like actually sharing an address won’t be that much different, and in a way, it isn’t. Still, it’s a comforting thought to know that when you come in from a rough day at work or you just want to cuddle and watch TV, your significant other will be there to oblige. It’s easy to take this for granted so try and remember it and be grateful for it every night…even when they do irritating things.