My boyfriend is okay with us moving in together but I am really scared (Photo: Courtesy)

Hi Chris,

My boyfriend and I have been dating forever, and we have been keeping toothbrushes and clothes at both our places for quite a while.

From time to time I wonder what it would be like to be living together. But somehow the whole idea still seems scary, even though it also feels fun and romantic.

I have mentioned it to my boyfriend, a bit jokingly, and he seems to think it is just the natural next step in our relationship. But I am still scared and I cannot seem to get my mind round it all. What do you think?

Moving in Together

Chris says,

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Hi Moving in Together!

It is really all about whether you are both on the same page and committed to the long-term. So go for it if you are. But not if you are just feeling romantic.

Many couples move in almost by accident, as dating gradually becomes one long sleep over, without any discussion about your future together.

But what if one of you sees living together as a step toward marriage, while the other is secretly afraid of commitment?

So check that your expectations really are the same. Do not make assumptions, have the conversation. And if that is uncomfortable, you are not ready.

Because moving in is not as easy as it sounds. Do you really trust one another? Is he always there for you? Do you feel valued and respected? Can you talk about anything?

Do either of you have a quick temper? Have you ever had a really big fight? You need to have learned how to handle conflict before you are together 24/7.

You also need to be completely open about money. And to have figured out how you will split the rent, bills and food. And the chores. Especially if you have different habits when it comes to being tidy.

Divide up the domestic roles, and be prepared for a few compromises. Women often get controlling about the housework, and if you do he will soon stop helping.

Living together also means putting up with each other’s dirty clothes, bathroom stuff and cooking abilities.

Are you really ready for all that? It helps if you are already spending most nights together. But if you ever find yourself looking forward to sleeping alone, do not move in.

You will want to retain your independence once you start living together, but you will also have someone to consider as you make your plans. Learn how to balance each other’s needs before moving in.

And even if the time is exactly right, you will still need time to adjust, because there is just so much more to discover about each other.

Like it is only when you are sleeping together every night that you realise that your sex drives do not match. So be prepared to fix things like that. But once you do? Living together can be bliss.

All the best,

Chris