Love & Relationship Advice: Is it a Good Idea to Live Together?

Should You Take Your Relationship to the Next Level and Live Together?

Living together. Is it a prelude to marriage or a slippery slope into unhealthy commitment? That depends. In my experience, living together with a significant other didn’t always make our relationship better. Unfortunately, I often didn’t see that right away. The advice I am about to share with you comes from my experience, surveys and research from the last few decades.

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Before we can discuss living together, we need to know why men and women do it. For men, living together is often a test to see if they can get along with their girlfriends while living under the same roof. For women, living together is often a prelude to getting engaged and eventually married.

More Divorces

Research suggests that living together leads to more divorces after marriage. The same research also links living together with a lower quality of marriage, less happiness and poor communication between couples. One reason for this could be that one partner has had “one foot out the door” (not being fully committed) since the beginning. They could be less willing to compromise. This is especially the case with people who habitually live with others. If you are considering moving in with a partner who has lived with many partners before you, you may want to think about it first. For some, living together is like an extended sleepover.

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Happily Unmarried and Living Together

While many couples who live together report having a worse relationship than those who waited until they got married, other cohabiting, unmarried couples report having wonderful relationships. But, how is that possible? Cohabiting can work if both people in the relationship are strongly committed to each other. It begins with a clear understanding of each person’s expectations. It doesn’t pay to be vague or ambiguous when considering whether or not to live together.

Once you’ve each set your expectations, it’s a good idea to regularly check in with one anther to see how things are going. Living together works if both partners are dedicated to making it work. You just have to watch out for an unhealthy commitment.

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Safer Than Getting Married

Some people think living together is “safer” than getting married, but that simply isn’t true. Living together can be just as messy if you share things with your partner. Whether it’s mortgage or lease payments, bills, furniture, pets and children, if you go your separate ways, you’re going to have to split everything up whether you’re married or not.

Avoiding the Slippery Slope

Don’t move in with anyone unless you know for sure what you are getting out of the deal (expectations, commitment, etc.) You should be committed to each other, but not necessarily committed to sharing objects that have to be split up if things don’t work out down the road. And remember, the more time you invest in someone, the harder it’s going to be to let them go.

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Living together can be an amazing experience if you and your partner are smart about it.

10 thoughts on “Love & Relationship Advice: Is it a Good Idea to Live Together?


    Thanks Sonja, for your article. But, it really does not matter wither your married or single
    these days. I myself do not need a marriage certificate to love a person (commit), it only ties you financially. I think living together is a good idea, because you get to know the person and his and hers habits etc. and decide wither you want to stay with that person or not. Now a days he or she can leave you regardless of a piece of paper. I will live with a person and commit communication is very important too.

  2. Francie

    What if he moves in with me and he is going to pay me a set amount for him and his 11 yr. old son. I will pay all the bills except for half of the food cost. He has a lot of debt and cutting down on his living expenses will allow him to pay of his debt earlier. I have my own home. After a time, if we split, will he be entitled to half my assets? Is a cohabitation agreement in order here?

  3. Bob Sender

    What research are you referring to, because it doesn’t sound like you have any idea what you are talking about?

  4. lorraine

    If you are a person who is set in your ways it is probably better that you live alone.
    However this is a topic that could be long debated. I think it is a better choice later
    in life if you were already once married and are alone rather then when you are still
    young enough to start a life and family with some one .



  6. TERRY

    Let’s face facts ladies, if you want a relationship to work the most important thing is not to be manipulated by friends and family. This is where a lot of arguments come from. Money is next, the days of a woman staying home and looking after the house are gone. Friends and family will be jealous of the time spent with your partner. But where are your friends family when you’re hurting and feeling lonely ? Remember everyone has different experience’s , so friction is going to occur, and comprises made so both of you will be happy.

  7. Hazel


    This REALLY is a situation my girlfriend Went/ Is Going Through………………….

    I have a question. What do you say if you allow someone to Move in w/you (who had no job or vehicle) & you give them access you all your space (drives your car also) & 2 months later they tell you they’re Still in live w/ their ex. ARGUMENT. You let them Stay. Then later, they have a problem w/you giving them the “back door key” instead of the “front door” key. ARGUMENT. You let them Stay. Then, they tell you their 19 yr old son HAS to move in because it’s a “Package Deal” or they’ll move back home(w/ their Mom). DISAGREEMENT. You let them Leave while Still maintaining a strained relationship. Later, you get into a disagreement w/ a sports
    teammate of theirs who Literally Curses you out in front if their teammates & afterwards your significant other goes to hug them, in your view; when you express the disrespect you feel behind THAT, AFTER this person has Cursed you out says, Loud enough for the team to hear, “This is my friend, I can hug him if I want”. ALL THIS IN 3 1/2 months. There’s more but that’s enough for now.


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