10 Essential Things to Know Before Moving in With Your Girlfriend
You’re in a long-term relationship, and you’re thinking about moving in with your girlfriend? That’s a perfectly rational decision and the logical next step in your romance. But before you rent a place together or move your stuff in with her, there are certain issues you should address and come to terms with.
It all depends on what kind of person you are, but some situations can happen to anyone. To help you prepare for this significant milestone in life, we’ve gathered the ten essential things to keep in mind.
1. You Have to Know Your Relationship Well Enough
Have you ever lived with a partner or a roommate before? If you have, then you know how much patience and tolerance it takes to share the same space with another person. Roommates are a slightly different thing, but the principle is the same: You are not alone, and you have to take into consideration what the other person needs or wants. Living with a girlfriend is a level up in this game because you care much more about her feelings, and you’ll try harder to avoid and prevent any possible problems.
If you’ve never lived with anyone besides your family before, have a little conversation with yourself first: Are you truly ready to see the same face every day, to share every moment, every meal, and all the chores with that person? Are you ready to do something that you might not want now just to make that person happy? Can you change your habits for your partner? Are you ready to forget the advantages of moving alone? Can you accept that your privacy will be limited? Are you OK with the fact that she might not be in her best mood sometimes, and she’ll require a shoulder to cry on and an ear to talk to? Do you care about her and your bond enough to go through a lot of possible trouble together and work it out? Do you think that she’s ready to do it, too?
If the answer to all these questions is yes, then go and find a spot for you two and enjoy! Even if you’re organizing a last-minute move, there will be no problems if you’re sure about your decision.
2. Do It Because It Will Make You Happier
The biggest mistake that could happen is to move in with your partner just because you think it will be fun or because you’re already spending a lot of time together, so why not? The only reason why you should start living with a girl you’re dating is that that it’s what both of you want. Not because of some urgency or an experiment.
Many people think they should live with someone because they’re in a long term commitment or they are over some certain age, so it’s considered obligatory. Moving in with your girlfriend for the wrong reasons could end up in a lot of fights and a break up in the end. Everything in life is about timing, so choose yours wisely. Losing someone you love and care about because you’re not ready yet to share the same space would be a shame, don’t you think?
Figure out What Works Best for You
Talking to your significant other about anything that might concern you is always the best possible way of getting through any dilemma and anxiety about moving. Be sure that she knows how you feel about something before making a decision. Maybe she thinks and feels the same as you do about moving together, but she’s afraid of something. Overthinking never helped anyone, and in the end, that is the girl you chose, so feel free to share your thoughts and emotions with her.
3. Check Your Financial Situation Before Renting a Place
Your budget will not be your own anymore once you start sharing the expenses of living together. Before you pack your stuff and pick an apartment just because it looks nice and it’s close to your work, double-check if you can afford it for more than a couple of months. Don’t rush and make an unthinking decision, because in that case, you’ll have to move out at some point, or you’ll even get into bad situations with your girlfriend if you start arguing about money. Moving into a smaller home is a much safer option, to begin with.
An easy way to avoid that is to use some of the online calculators and determine how much you can set aside for the rent, bills, food, and every other cost. Professional packing and moving are also an expense if you decide to use them, and you should count them in, too, or prepare a separate moving budget for those expenses. If you’re getting auto transport services as well, make sure that you understand how car shipping works. Consider relocating during the cheapest time of the year if you’re leaving the state you’re in right now.
Talk About Your Finances
Both of you will have to be open and honest if you want to create a bond that’s going to last. If one of you is being quiet about something regarding the way you spend the money you make together, then the situation is not good. If both of you have your paychecks every month, then you’ll need to figure out a way to spend them. It would be best if everyone paid for their part of rent and bills, so you can keep a clean slate.
4. Try to Make a Deal for Everything
Communicating is crucial in every relationship, so just talk. Try to create a plan for everything, no matter how small it might be or might seem. You‘ll find out that even if you’ve known each other for years, there will be some aspects that are new to you. For example, she doesn’t like it when the shoes aren’t in the shoe closet or that she needs to open all the windows in the morning. Maybe you won’t like some of her habits or some of her traits, and she might not approve of some of yours. But instead of fighting or being passive-aggressive, talk about it and work it out.
5. A Clean House Is a Mutual Responsibility
Your habits of cleaning the place you live in will quite possibly change once you start sharing the same space with your girlfriend. Leaving the toilet seat up, leaving dirty dishes or clothes everywhere will have to change. We’re not saying that you’re untidy, but if you clean after yourself, your life with someone will be much better. You can agree on chores and delegate the tasks you don’t like to do, but in the end, the apartment really needs to be clean, and both of you are there to make it so. If you didn’t by now, you’d develop a habit of keeping your stuff in order soon after you move in together.
Chores Can Be Fun
Vacuuming, doing dishes, and dusting can be fun if you want it to be. Agree on what day would be a “cleaning day,” turn on some loud music and organize a mini-concert for the two of you. Cleaning could be the choreography while dancing and singing!
6. You Should Keep the Spark Between You
It often happens that when you move in with your girlfriend, you turn into house hermits, eating snacks, and watching movies all the time. Cozy and lazy night-in is nice, but if you do that all the time, you’ll soon get tired of each other. Keep her interested in you, do something fun together, surprise her sometimes, and she’ll surely do that for you, too.
Every relationship that lasts long carries the risk of getting too comfortable around your partner, and no one wants that. Taking someone for granted ruins everything, so try to avoid it. Everyone can be boring from time to time. Bear with those moments and understand them, they’re entirely normal. There are many ways to keep the fire burning even after decades of being together. It’s only up to you and your partner.
7. Don’t Get Into Unnecessary Fights
Having a bad day and going straight home? Great, you know that the loving face you’ll see will comfort you and calm you down. But what if she also had a bad day? You can’t expect anyone to read your mind, and she can’t know that something bad happened to you today if you haven’t told her. When you’re both jumpy, you can get in an unnecessary fight over literally anything. Try to avoid arguing over something that will pass you by in half an hour. Many couples who live together have that problem, so don’t be one of them. Communicate your way out of misunderstandings.
Little Things Matter
Something might sound trivial to you that she notices or wants from you, and the same applies the other way around. You might not understand why it is so important to take out the trash in the morning, but remember that you have those little things that annoy you, too, even if you can’t explain why. Living together will amplify those little issues and they might turn into arguments with no point at all. Both of you are in a relationship to feel better, so don’t turn this into a mutual nightmare if it doesn’t have to be.
Don’t Take it Too Seriously If It Happens
We can’t be in a good mood all the time, and living with someone requires a lot of tolerance and patience when it comes to bad days. It can happen to anyone, and it’s nothing scary, so level up your patience and figure out how to calm yourself down. And a bit of friendly advice: Don’t pick up fights on the stuff that happened in the past, work only on the ones that are happening right now. The person you love will appreciate what you’re doing for your relationship.
8. Don’t Lose Yourself in the Relationship
Being in a relationship and living with someone you’re dating sometimes leads to becoming the person you’re with. Like identical twins, now both of you love and dislike the same TV shows, suddenly you find yourself acting like her in some situations, or hear her sounding like you when getting into a traffic jam. As cute as it might look, that’s not too cute to your friends who now don’t see you without each other. Remember who you are and nourish that.
9. Being Alone Is a Must Sometimes
Don’t forget about yourself! Even if you two share the same space and spend the whole day together, that’s not the reason to stop doing the things you love, it will help you avoid relocation depression. Sure, there will be some adaptations, but your friends, hobbies, and stuff you enjoy must stay where they are.
What About Partying?
Nights out shouldn’t stop happening because you don’t live by yourself anymore. You can throw a party together or go out with your partner, but that doesn’t exclude that you should go out by yourself. Your privacy must still exist, or both of you might get sick and tired of having no time to be alone and just chill if nothing else. Respect her private space, and she will respect yours. Occasional solitude is very healthy for your mind, and under no circumstances should it be compromised.
10. Realize That Moving in Together is a Big Step
Don’t move in with a girlfriend just because your best friend did it, too. It’s not marriage, but it’s a huge change in your life that will also change you, the way you think and the way you act. Adjusting for the better is amazing, and you should share the place you live in with someone who makes you a better person. You’ll become more tolerant and learn a lot about yourself while having another person around you most of your time, but don’t change the good sides of you. Living together as a couple is an ongoing mission, and any problem you face should be a mutual one that you’ll overcome jointly. If you’ve chosen to share a life, calculate your costs, don’t forget about your friends, and enjoy your new life.