Moving In Together: A Guide for Couples

ApartmentAdvisor Editorial Team

By ApartmentAdvisor Editorial Team

Feb 06, 2022

Updated on Jul 09, 2024

Moving in with your significant other is exciting. It’s also a big decision. How do you know if you and your partner are ready for cohabitation, and what do you need to know before you take that next step?

Based on insights we gathered from our 2022 Moving In Together Survey, here are our top tips for “co-happy-tation” with your partner:

  1. Move in for the right reasons: Be thoughtful about why you are moving in with your partner. Open up to each other about your reasons. Is it about commitment or convenience? Our survey found that the couples that moved in together primarily for practical reasons, such as one person’s lease expiring, were less satisfied than couples who moved in together to take the next exciting step in their relationship.

  2. Don’t rush it: Although some couples move in together after dating only a short time, we found that people who dated their partner for more than a year prior to moving in together were more likely to feel highly satisfied with their relationship. Try to make space for alone time away from your significant other. Take your time to make the right decision – it’s a big step.

  3. Talk about the future: The number one piece of advice offered by people who live with their partners? Discuss your future expectations about your relationship before you move in. That includes discussing what will happen in the unlikely event that you break up.

  4. Know their (bad) habits: Be sure you’ve spent enough time together before moving in to appreciate how your day-to-day living habits might differ. Have a realistic expectation about your partners flaws. Is your partner messy? Do their spending habits align with yours? Do they snore? If it is your first time sharing your space with a significant other, remember that no one is perfect. Acknowledging and talking about the things that might drive you crazy will help you avoid surprises and garner a healthy relationship.

  5. Create a budget: Develop a clear plan for how you will pay for household expenses. What can you expect to pay in additional living expenses? Are you both on board with paying for streaming services or frequent take-out food? Will you split all expenses equally? Agree on a budget before you start racking up bills. Budget how much time each of you plan on spending on household chores.

  6. Split the rent evenly: Our survey indicates that people who split housing costs evenly (or fairly if one person cannot afford as much) are more likely to be satisfied than couples where one person pays all of the rent. Every circumstance is different, but equitable distribution of costs can help both partners feel invested in their home and living situation. For help figuring out what you and your partner can afford, use our rent calculator.

  7. Think big: Sharing a cozy living space in a new home might seem romantic, but too cramped a space can cramp a relationship. If you are looking for a new place together, consider your shared space and storage needs and go as big as your budget allows. Need help finding the right place? Check out the best deals on apartment listings in your area on ApartmentAdvisor.

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