You have gone on more than a few dates with them, you have slept over at their house and they slept at yours. You have made it past the infatuation stage and are thinking you might have found the one you’re wanting to build a life with. You may have extra clothes or even your toothbrush at their house, and you both may spend more free time together than apart, so maybe it’s time to start thinking about moving in together.
Before taking that potentially exciting but potentially anxiety inducing plunge, what are the major things you need to think about? It may feel natural, and it is the natural next step but it shouldn’t be taken lightly. While you’re living separate, you’re only seeing sides that they want you to see and you have more control over what side of you they see. When you combine households, you won’t have that complete ability to hide anything (and IF there is something you want to hide, that could be a red flag that you’re not comfortable enough with them to let them see those aspects you’re hiding, which could show they aren’t right for you).
Here are some things to consider before taking the next big step in your relationship:
- Whose house are you moving into? Which house are you keeping and what are you doing with the other house? You also need to make sure you have a backup in case your relationship ends up heading south. If you’re moving into your partner’s house, do you have a back up plan to make sure you won’t end up homeless if your relationship ends? If you get married, will you be the one giving up your career if you have kids? If that’s the case,
Speaking of kids…
- Have you had that talk? It’s important when taking a relationship to a more serious level to have discussions about the big things- are you both renters who are wanting to buy a house one day? What area? (suburbs, city or country), what town? What type of house? All those are things to take into consideration because if one of you wants to remain a renter and the other wants to buy, that could create conflict- unless one is willing to compromise. Other important discussions to have are about the future- do you want kids one day? If you do, does your partner? What if your birth control/condoms fail and you get pregnant earlier than planned? All of these are important because they can easily be deal breakers. If you both are serious about each other, want to get married one day and are discussing moving in, those need to be brought up before breaking your lease or selling your house because they could end up showing you’re not compatible in the long term.
- How comfortable are you with them knowing your personal hygiene habits? Are you
comfortable with them coming in the bathroom while you’re on the toilet? Do you have excess hair growth and dont mind them seeing you shave or use other methods of hair removal? Believe it or not, that can be an important thing to consider. It can be embarrassing to be seen with a “moustache” and working on getting rid of it, but most men don’t really seem to care and I’m sure women don’t either.
- Are you truly ready to see your partner’s totally open, true self? Are you ready for the good, the bad and the ugly? If you’re not ready to let your partner see every aspect of your life as well as see every aspect of their life, you’re not ready to move in. Point blank.
- Have you met the family and close friends? Do you get along with their family and friends, that can end up being a deal breaker.
The main thing to takeaway from these questions is that moving in together is the most serious decision to make outside of marriage. If you wouldn’t consider marrying or building a life with the person, it may be best to delay moving in. It’s an exciting time but also serious, moving in together will be the ultimate test before marriage. If you have any reason to feel that it’s not a good idea, it’s best to listen to your intuition, especially before doing anything drastic and selling your house or breaking a lease and always make sure you have a plan B in case things don’t work.