In years gone by it was considered scandalous for a couple to move in together before tying the knot.
These days it is quite unique to find a couple who haven’t!
In Australia, moving in with a partner is seen as a normal and natural progression for a committed couple. So common, that according to statistics released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, nearly 4 out of every 5 couples (78.6%) who married in 2010 cohabited before becoming husband and wife.
As we all know, just because something is ‘normal’ doesn’t mean that it is the right decision for everyone.
If you find yourself asking whether the time is right to move in with your other half, then perhaps this article is for you!
Like any big decision, make sure to weigh up the pros and cons to make the right choice for you.
Some of the upsides to moving in with your partner include:
To Test Your Relationship
Many couples move in as a way of testing their compatibility before deciding on marriage. It is true that you don’t truly know a person until you live with them – get to know all of their habits, routines and moods. But most of all, get to know how all of their quirks fit with yours. Many people see moving in as a lower risk venture because if it doesn’t work out breaking up is easier than divorce. Truly a ‘Try before you buy’ situation.
Spend More Time Together
Living together means your partner is there when you wake up, get home from work, have dinner and go to bed. Living together saves travel time between your homes which means more time with your loved one.
If you spend more nights together than apart, moving in together means one rent payment and one lot of bills. Financially speaking, moving in together will save you both money so that you can save for your other financial goals. Make sure you sit down and work out who will pay for what and what happens if things don’t work out.
Couples are increasingly having children before getting married, so living together makes sense if you want to raise your child together and live as a family.
Some downsides of living together before marriage include:
Many of the objections to cohabiting have a religious, cultural or moral basis. Some see it as living in sin and even if you don’t view it this way, often pressure from family can impact on a couples’ decision not to move in together. At the end of the day, the decision is up to you and your partner.
More Likely to Divorce
There is a huge amount of research that has gone into this subject and like many topics, there is as much evidence for this as there is against it.
The studies that conclude cohabiting before marriage is not a good idea say that doing so is more likely to lead to poor communication, lower quality relationships and ultimately divorce. On the other hand, there are many studies that find living with your partner has no link to increased divorce rates. In fact a 2003 study by the Australian Institute of Family Studies found that living out of wedlock has “little impact one way or the other” to your marriage surviving. It is ultimately up to you to decide which side of the fence you want to sit on with regards to this one.
Lose the Mystery and Surprise of Getting to Know your Husband
Again it is up to you to decide if you agree with this one, but many argue that if you move in before getting married you are not leaving anything to the imagination. But at the end of the day, shouldn’t you really know what you are getting yourself in for before you get married?
Less Quality Time Together
It is true that living together means that you have more time together but this does not necessarily mean more quality time together. In fact, for some couples it can mean less quality time as it is easy to get caught up in the mundane and the monotony of daily life.
Like with any major life decisions it is worth considering the pros and cons before jumping into anything.
Sitting down and having an honest discussion with your partner about these issues is a must. It is also a good idea to discuss your expectations of each other so that you agree on what moving in together means for your relationship.
Written by Tamara Laing. Tamara is a SAHM to her gorgeous little munchkin, Andrew. In her spare time (what’s that!?) she enjoys reading trashy mags, watching TV and sleeping!