Last week in the forums, a 35-year-old woman and mother of four boys (bless her) wrote that she met her 45-year-old boyfriend last August and he moved in with her and her kids four months later. She says that they “never did make a plan as to how the bills would be split up.” She brought it up once and he “kind of avoided the topic and said ‘it’ll all work out.’” (Oh, honey, no). Clearly, this woman did not read “15 Things Couples Should Do Before Moving in Together,” since not only did they ignore number 3, they definitely ignored number 8, and I’m gonna guess every other thing on that list. With four kids involved!
But, listen, even if you ignore everything on that damn list, you can save yourself some heartache if you watch out for these 15 signs that you should NOT move in together (at least, not yet).
1. When you broach the topic of finances and how you’ll split the bills, he or she just shrugs and says, “It’ll all work out.”
2. He says he’ll move in with you only after you make him 300 sandwiches.
3. You haven’t met her kids yet (and they live with her).
4. You’d like to get married one day while he says he’s not a “marriage person.”
5. Five cats between you. No.
6. You know you aren’t quite ready, but your lease is up in a month and you don’t want to have to wait a whole year longer to shack up.
7. You can’t agree on where to live.
8. He wants kids one day but you don’t.
9. Your main reason for moving in together is to save money.
10. You’re hoping this will put a brake on all the marriage talk all the time.
11. You have no idea what his or her finances and spending habits are like (income, debt, bills, savings, etc.).
12. You haven’t spent more than three consecutive nights and days together.
13. You’re currently long distance and have never lived in the same town as each other.*
14. You haven’t discussed or agreed on a three-year plan.
15. You have no savings and no idea what you’d do if you broke up and you suddenly had to find a new place to live.
* Now, Drew and I went from an LDR to moving in together, but there was a caveat. My plan was to stay with Drew long enough to “find my own place.” In all honesty, I hoped that I wouldn’t have to find my own place, but I knew that, if we both believed I was for real moving in with him after never living in the same town together, it would put too much pressure on our relationship. So, I put my belongings in storage and gave myself and Drew a few months to test-drive living together while keeping the option open to move into my own place at any time. (Luckily, the test drive went well and I moved my belongings from storage into Drew’s apartment five months after I moved in).