There are many factors to consider when deciding to live together with someone, Do you know what they are? Read this contributed post to find out more.
The title of this article sounds judgemental, but it’s really not. Asking yourself this question is absolutely a necessity no matter how in love or well supported you are with your lover. Of course, there are some circumstances where moving in together with your boyfriend or girlfriend might be a no-brainer, depending on your current situation. For example, you might decide that since you have a child on the way, it’s best to set up that personal family home in a secure, stable manner, and really try to make a go of things. Many people have done this, and many people have succeeded in crafting a beautiful family home, even though it perhaps wasn’t as planned as it could have been.
But of course, this is a highly specific circumstance, and it may or may not apply to you. If you can, it’s always best to consider deeply when the potential of moving in together comes up. If you manage to simply take the time to consider your position, you can either move forward with your plans enjoying greater confidence or potentially avoid a mistake until you once again consider it.
Consider our simple list of advice to try and decide whether or not this is a good personal decision to make:
What is the financial history and handling like within your relationship? How has this been in the past? Perhaps a stumble here or there isn’t too worrying as we all experience problems from time to time. However, if your other half has been evicted at any time in the last five to ten years, or if they regularly overspend or miss their rental payments, there is no way that tying your financial history to this person is worthwhile.
If you are the person without this sense of financial reliability, it might be that you’re going to struggle to do so in a relationship. Couples often spend MORE when together, not less, and it’s often easy for bad habits to become twice as echoed if you both share them. It might even be that you only have a middling lack of financial handling in the recent past, but if your other half hasn’t challenged you on this (especially if you’re close enough to consider moving in together,) it might be that they aren’t quite the fundamental rock you expect them to be to help you manage your spending issues, nor should you expect them to be.
Financial untying yourself from someone else and vice-versa, especially when two names are on a lease or two contracts become one can become messy if the agreement dissolves. If you’ve ever seen Judge Judy, you’ll know that lawsuits between jaded ex-lovers who moved in together two quickly and shared each and every asset they owned is perhaps 90% of the lawsuits brought to the Judges panel.
It’s neither smart, romantic or clever to throw away your potential financial security to proceed with moving in. You can live semi-permanently with someone without having to tie yourselves together on one lease, or moving together in an apartment signed by both of you.
Of course, if you both have good credit, a history of on-time and well planned financial decisions, and you trust the other person, you can progress with greater confidence. We’d recommend knowing the person and their financial behaviours for at least two years before moving in, although more is often better. Once taking the decision to move forward, take another six months to verify everything financially, assessing and reassessing your eligibility for this life situation. Just like the waiting period after deciding on a tattoo design, time can often bring a refreshed sense of clarity in the long-term if we give ourselves enough time.
Of course, financial stability is one thing, but it’s nothing without the emotional glue that holds a relationship together. Young couples often think that love will last forever, but often it’s maturity that tempers the fires of love and helps retain that sense of rationality at the end of the day, even through tumultuous times. If your relationship often falls into an on-off form of connectivity, then perhaps fusing yourselves together with the financial responsibility of a home is not quite the best idea, even if focusing on a humble apartment at this stage.
It does seem to be somewhat of a cultural attitude that most couples fight and go through long, down periods, but that’s not true at all. Small grievances and annoyances are normal, but they must be talked through. If yourself and your partner have large blowouts, even one a year, it’s a sign that the relationship might not deal with the strain of maintaining and sustaining the funding of a household, no matter how humble.
It’s easy to see that having a child to ‘fix’ a relationship is an absurdly stupid move for most people, but moving in together can be nearly as toxic for both involved. If you haven’t had an argument or large disagreement in your relationship you haven’t worked through immediately, and you trust each other even in the harder times, it might be that you are suitable to consider this step more appropriately.
Emotions vs. Cold Hard Logic
While young love or even mature love can feel like a river of emotions you love to become swept in, this is never the right time to make life decisions that can impact you both. This isn’t to say you need to feel completely detached and mechanical in your decisions for the future, but you do need to temper the positives of your relationships with the worries of the future if you hope to make a good decision. It also cannot be done out of a sense of hurried pacing.
A good analogy is to imagine what you’re like when taking care of your weekly grocery purchases. If you head to the store while hungry, it’s likely you’ll purchase much more than you need. There are clinical studies performed that prove this resoundingly well, but the common sense of this situation is hard to argue in the first place. Consider how this might apply to your current situation, and you’ll have a good idea of what we mean.
Considering the appropriate plan can be worthwhile for now. HDB flats for couples are often the best starting, stepping stone on your path to joining the property market together. It’s best to stay humble. If you can both stay aware of your responsibilities and can temper your expectations to begin with, it might be that drawing up a long-term plan could be very appropriate to do.
Start small. Appreciate what you have. Focus on working together to better your career and financial situations instead of spending on the highest and most comforting residence you can right now. When pooling an income you may be able to achieve something nicer than you would have solo in the first place. Of course, a couple will only need one bed, so it might be that someone moving into the other’s apartment could be a better and cheaper alternative than to simply find a new place together.
Consider compromise. How might both you working commutes be affected? Did you want to live abroad for a certain amount of years? Where are both of your families? Do you have anyone else aside from the relationship participants to turn to for help if you’re struggling a little? Drawing up a set of rough plans of what life will be like on a daily, practical level can help you understand that which you’re getting involved in, giving you the red, amber or green lights to either stop, stay cautious and patient, or proceed with your decision. When contextualized like this, it’s often easy for couples to retain a sense of rationality about their potential timeline of moving, and that’s only ever a good thing.
With these tips, you’re sure to enjoy a more informed decision, no matter your final analysis.
Dr. Laurie Betito Quotes