The One Reason You Shouldn't Move In Together, Even If You're In Love, Experts Say
Moving in with a partner is a big step, but sometimes that’s easy to forget. It’s pretty common for folks to make the move simply because it seems like they should, based on timing, convenience, for financial reasons, or even just on a whim. Hey, no judgment, I’ve totally been there myself, so I know personally how easy it is to make that choice without really thinking about. Maybe you're considering cohabitation because it seems like there is no reason you shouldn’t move in together. After all, you two are committed to the relationship and your lease is up. Isn’t that enough to take the leap?
While ultimately it's up to you to know when the time is right to live together, it can still be a little more complicated than that. With this in mind, I reached out to several experts to find out how to know if you're really ready to move in with your partner, and how to talk with them about it. What I learned surprised me. There are actually plenty of reasons to hold off on making the move, even when you’re in love. It basically boils down to this: If your decision to move in with your SO is based on anything besides love and wanting to create a home together, it's time to hit the pause button and consider your choice more thoughtfully. Here are some reasons experts say you should hold off on moving in together.
1. The reason you are moving in together is transactional.
Life is expensive, so it's only natural to want to have someone to split the bills with, but that alone is not enough of a reason to move house, as NYC relationship expert and love coach Susan Winter tells Elite Daily. “Our reasons should be beyond transactional, such as, 'We're saving money.' Both of you should be cognizant of the fact that moving in together is taking the next step forward in your relationship. Ideally, you should be moving in together to bring you closer to each other,” she explains.
2. You hope living together will help resolve relationship issues.
Does moving in together seem like it will clear the slate and help address your unresolved relationship or trust issues? If so, Winter warns the the opposite is actually true. “Some partners hope that moving in together will eliminate issues of mistrust, or feeling like a non-priority. Your reason for living together shouldn't be contingent upon micromanaging your partner's time or whereabouts. Nagging issues don't disappear just because you've moved in together. If anything, they're magnified,” says Winter. "So, make sure it's not an excuse to lock your partner down. This will lead to one of you having to find a new place to live, all over again.”
3. You haven't sorted out the financial side of living together.
Talking about money, even with the person you love, can be a bit tricky and awkward. If you haven't actually sat down and discussed who pays for what — or feel like you can’t — Winter explains this is not the right time to live together. “Are you both going 50-50? Is one of you in a position to take on the lion's share? Make sure you're both on the same page as to financial responsibilities. Avoiding this conversation because it's uncomfortable isn't the answer as it will come back to bite you at later time,” Winter explains.
How to get on the same page before you move in together.
Part of being ready to move in with your partner is knowing exactly why you are making that choice, but the other half is getting on the same page about what you want from the arrangement. Starting that kind of serious conversation can feel a bit tricky, but Erica Gordon, millennial dating expert, founder of The Babe Report, and author of Aren't You Glad You Read This?, tells Elite Daily that it can help to spend some time considering what questions your partner may ask, so that you can anticipate them and have your answers figured out in advance. “They might ask you how you would want to split household expenses, whether you'd want them to bring their furniture over or sell it, and what the expectations would be in terms of housework and house rules,” Gordon says.
If during the course of the conversation you both want to move forward but still have concerns, Gordon suggests having a trial period. “One person would simply have to sublet their apartment and move in for a trial period," she says. "If the trial period goes well, the commitment will be easier to make.”
The most important takeaway here is that, while living together can be fun and convenient, you vastly improve your chances of it succeeding by being honest with both yourself and your partner about the “why” of it all. If the answer at its core is not that you really both want to make a life together, it's well worth considering slowing things down until you get to that place. When the time is truly right, you will know it. Trust your gut.