I have to admit, I’m a little biased in this area. Joe and I have been living together for most of our relationship, and so far its great. So I’m on the yes side of this argument, at least for me and Joe. Other people, not so much. I think a few ground rules should be set, but first you have to figure out what kind of arrangement you’ll be having. Are you living together as a couple, or as roommates? Today, we’re going to focus on living together as a couple:
1. First, you need to make sure you are emotionally ready for that kind of a commitment. Living together takes work, and a lot of times people don’t think about that before they make the decision to live together. Are you ready to share tooth paste with him? If not, then I suggest you evaluate whether or not your ready to live together, because things are about to get a million times more personal than before you started living together.
2. Second, you need to make sure you are financially ready to make that kind of commitment. Are both of you working? If not, is the person who is working making enough money to pay your day-to-day expenses, as well as save up for emergencies? Are you going to have a joint account or separate accounts? Who is going to be in charge of paying the bills? These are all questions you NEED to consider BEFORE moving in together. Finances can be a huge source of conflict in ANY relationship, but especially if you live together.
3. Third, you need to make sure your mature enough to live together. This breaks off into a million different facets, but the biggest area you’ll notice this in is in chore distribution. It sounds weird, trivial, whatever, but trust me it makes a huge difference. If one of you feels like you are getting the short end of the stick, you’re going to feel like your being taken advantage of, and that will just lead to hostility in the relationship. And keep in mind that what you consider chores may not be what they consider chores, so as with one and two above, make sure you talk about it BEFORE you live together.
4. Be willing to compromise. If your finding a new place together, realize that there are certain things the other person is going to want out of where they live, such as distance from work, school, family, etc. Just keep in mind what you can afford and what are deal breakers for you, then go into the discussion with an open mind, and realize that your probably not going to get everything you want.
5. And finally, throughout the WHOLE process, make sure you are TALKING WITH, not AT your partner about everything that is going on. Making the decision to live together is a HUGE step, and not communicating is not going to help your situation.