sex & relationships

Mutual cohabitation: Tips on moving in together

Written by Nigel Simpkins

After weeks or months of planning, you’re finally ready to move in with your partner. You will save yourself a lot of stress and time by discussing every little detail that you know will affect your life together.

You’re moving into a shared living space, and you’ll have to learn to live with your partner’s quirks. It’s a big step, and here are things that might help make that transition:

Do you get a new house or not? 

If you were both living in your own place, would you move into a new house, their place or yours? Ideally, if one of you has a bigger house, you can move in together. However, you have to consider more than just space.

For example, is the area close to your workplace, is the neighbourhood conducive for kids, is the house pet friendly, is the area safe? If you intend to have kids, do you want to raise them in that area?

A better alternative is to search for a house together. Get a house that fits the needs of you as a couple. In addition, moving into a new place together is a great way to start your new chapter. Sit down, discuss all the locations that would suit your needs and allocate time for house hunting.

Moving into a new place means that you get to start anew and get to decide every little detail that goes into the house together.

Decorate together

If you’ve agreed to move to a new place, the next challenge is turning the new place into a home. You obviously love each other, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that you love the same things. You’ll have to agree to work together, compromise and set some ground rules.

Another option is to have one partner handle all the decoration. This option isn’t as fun, emotional and shifts all the burden to one partner. Therefore, you need to decorate your new home as a couple.

Before you start decorating, figure out which belongings from your previous life, you’re both bringing to your life together. Some things you can sell and upgrade to bigger versions like a bigger couch, family car, etc.

Once that’s settled, start with decorating the walls as they serve as the backdrop for anything you add to the rooms. You’ll need to choose a colour palette. It could be a trendy colour, neutral colour, masculine or even feminine colour.

If you don’t like blank walls, get wall art or wallpapers which you can buy from If you choose to get wallpapers, ensure that you both agree on the kind of wallpaper you buy. Keep in mind that you’ll be staring at this wallpaper for a few years before you need to change it.

Discuss finances 

Relationships breakdown due to money problems thus before you set foot into a new house discuss your finances. Know how much you’re earning, loans, monthly expenses, cost of moving, rent, utilities, etc.

Be sure to breakdown your budget and note down the things you’ll need to sacrifice when moving in together. Don’t hide anything about your finances, especially the debts. It would be embarrassing to find out months into your new home that you’re struggling to pay rent due to debt accrued by your partner.

Figure out how you’ll split the bills, pay off loans, debt and save.

Discuss the distribution of chores

With all the excitement of moving in together, chores are probably the last thing on your minds. However, you’ll soon realize that house doesn’t clean itself and you’ll have the dreaded chores conversation.

Instead of saving it for last, you might want to have this conversation before you move in. Chores aren’t romantic, but they’re necessary, and you need to figure out your areas of compromise.

Ask your partner which chores they enjoy, and you can list the ones you like. This would be a great way to start the conversation. And remember that times have changed and chores aren’t necessarily assigned according to gender. Communication is vital at this stage, especially if you both want to avoid arguments.

Wrapping up 

Don’t ignore anything, especially the little things about your partner’s life that annoy you. These little things build up over time and could be the reason for your cohabitation problems. Talk about everything before you move to see if you’re both willing to make the compromises.