Making the decision to move in with your significant other can be a big deal. Not only are you giving up your personal space, but you are going to have to get used to another person’s routines, habits and even their level of cleanliness. You may have spent countless hours, days, or nights with your partner, but all that you think you know about this person can change when you are living under the same roof 24/7.
Don’t let this scare you off from the idea though, just make sure that you are on the same page about everything. We have put together a quick checklist to help make the transition a smooth one.
Have the “talk”
Having the talk does not need to be an intimidating thing. It will help ensure that you are both on the same page and that you are moving in together for all the right reasons. Some questions to think about including in your conversation are:
- How will we split the bills?
- Who is bringing what?
- Are you moving into their place or looking for something new?
- Whose name is going to be on the lease?
- Are you splitting the grocery bill?
- What is their daily routine?
- What is the overall goal of moving in together?
Remember, if you don’t agree on all of these questions it’s okay. This process is not easy and most likely means you should talk it out a bit more before making the move.
Are you getting a new place? Read the lease…Period.
What are the lease clauses in case one of you needs to move out? What if cohabitation doesn’t suit you and one of you needs to move out but cannot afford it? Make sure you know what to do in this particular situation.
Discuss credit scores
If your partner has a less-than-great credit score and you’re leasing a place together this could have a direct impact on your credit. If one of you moves out and the other falls behind on the rent, this will have negative consequences for you and your credit score.
Before actually moving in
Take a look at all your stuff. Do an inventory of both your places and see what you can sell, donate, or what you want to keep.
Set up an agreement
It might not sound like the most romantic thing to have a legal agreement but can be an outline to a successful partnership. Having an agreement clarifies how you and your partner own and use the property in your relationship. It’s never a bad idea to have in writing who is going to be responsible for what. If you are unsure where you can find a document, have no fear Rocket Lawyer can help you with our Cohabitation Agreement.
Once you have moved in together, you should set boundaries to keep peace and resolve issues in a productive way. Here are some things to keep in mind.
- Clean up after yourself.
- Don’t hog all the space – that includes the bathroom counter.
- Combine your decorating ideas
- Be considerate – there are two of you so make sure to save some of the hot water for them
- Make sure to communicate – even the tough things like finances, chores, personal things etc.
- Be willing to compromise
What if it doesn’t work?
Moving in together makes things a little more complicated when it comes to breaking up. Hopefully, you will not encounter the dreaded breakup but if you do, you need to protect yourself in the case of a split. Having an agreement in place where everything is in writing can help, especially when it comes down to dividing the assets you have acquired together. You also may consider speaking with your landlord on what the consequence are for breaking your lease, or if you have the option to sublet it if you are no longer able to make the living arrangements work.