By Dawn Allcot, Guest Blogger
More than 12 million unmarried people in the US have moved in with a significant other, sometimes as a predecessor to marriage—but sometimes not. Either way, combining households presents challenges…on top of all the regular challenges of moving! Follow these tips to make the moving and cohabiting process go more smoothly.
Money Matters When You Move In Together
Couples who talk about money have fewer conflicts, overall. Open discussions about money may prevent messy situations should you decide to break up or end the living arrangement. Here are a few money tips to get you started before you move.
1. Be honest about your finances, including income, expenses, debt and your credit score. If you’re buying a home or leasing an apartment together, this is mandatory. But it can also affect day-to-day living if one partner isn’t honest about their salary and then cannot afford their share of the expenses.
2. Decide how you will split expenses. There are many ways to manage money when you’re moving in with a significant other. 50/50 split, much like roommates? Joint bank account for household expenses? Or something else? If a break-up occurs, what happens to items purchased while you were together? Married couples have legal rights, but when you move in with a significant other, you both get to lay down the law.
2. Know your rights. In some cases, domestic partners are entitled to health insurance. Does your partner have a living will—and do you have the legal right to enforce it? Do you have power-of-attorney if something happens to your partner? It’s important to consider these things before moving in, especially if the relationship is serious.
Yours, Mine, Ours?
Three more tips for moving in with a significant other:
1. Discuss chores. Couples in one study reported that they fought more frequently about taking out the garbage than about money. You may not go as far as creating a chore chart as roommates might, but definitely discuss who will do what around the house.
2. Discuss how to divide personal space. Whether you’re moving in to a new apartment or home, or if one of you is moving in to the significant other’s existing space, decide how that space will be shared. Is it okay if his 800-watt stereo system makes its home in the formal living room? Will there be a man cave? Where will the crafting supplies go? Even in small apartments, you’ll want a space to call your own.
3. Decorate so the space reflects both of you. Having a discussion about the décor—and redecorating, if necessary—can prevent one partner from feeling as if they are a visitor in their own home.
This philosophy of remembering that the space belongs to both of you is the most important key to successfully moving in with a significant other.
This article was provided by MyMove.com, an online resource where you can find the information, products and moving coupons you need to streamline and save during a move.