I want to make sure you understand that I’m in no way saying it’s right or wrong to live together before marriage. That’s not for me to judge anyways.
I’m simply pointing out 10 things you’ll discover about him that are good to know before you take the marriage plunge or buy a home together (if you haven’t already).
Sure, a lease is a commitment, but marriage and a mortgage are steps above that so the last thing you want to do is buy a house AND marry a guy that doesn’t have his crap together.
I wrote this post because a lot of people ask me what I think about them moving in with their boyfriend.
Some of these are things I put together from my own experiences or from the experiences of people close to me.
1.How (or if) he pays the bills.
When you live together you get an up close look at how someone handles due dates for rent and bills. Will you have to remind him every month when one’s due or does he track that on his own like a big boy? Does he have a hard time coming up with the money or does he budget each month so he can pay each bill? This is a side you don’t often see when you live separately, because it’s kind of each person’s “own business” and you generally do it on your own time.
2.His Spending Habits.
This is the perfect opportunity for you to see firsthand how your guy manages and spends his moola. Does he buy every single new gadget and DVD out there? Does he even buy groceries? Does he carelessly waste electricity and water or crank the AC up 24 hours a day? Remember, when you live together you usually have to split the bills so you don’t want to be paying more than necessary just because he’s frivolously throwing money out the window.
When you don’t live with a guy, he has the opportunity to make sure his place is tidy and anything BUT a health hazard when he knows you’re coming over. But, when you finally live together, he can’t hide it for long. If you find yourself coming home to a Dorito crumb covered couch with papers scattered on the coffee table and an overflowing trash can, that could be a red flag. Does he wash his clothes and clean up after himself in the bathroom? If you notice you need a breathing mask just to come home from work, it’s time to talk to him about what needs to change, and if he “can’t change” his ways, then start looking for your own place!
4. His independence, or lack thereof
Living together will certainly prove how dependent he is on you if he can’t remember anything on his own. This can apply to grocery list items, bill amounts, due dates, trash nights, and more! Can he take care of himself or are you playing mom? Well, you’re about to find out!
5. His Grumpy Side
Everyone gets grumpy from time to time and it’s pretty much “normal” to a point. When it starts to make your home miserable to be around, then it’s getting out of control. If you’re guy is miserable every single morning to the point where he’s snapping at you, it’s time to look at the big picture… it’s not just a case of the grumpies but maybe a bad attitude and poor communication skills. You of course need to respect each other’s space even when living together but you also need to make sure you aren’t taking things out on each other because it’s not fair to the other person. As Jeff Foxworthy would say… Here’s Your Sign!!!!
You may think you know your guy, but it’s not until you spend every waking moment at home with him that you notice the majority of his quirks. Maybe you can’t stand the way he arranges dishes in the dishwasher, or that he always leaves the toilet seat up. This is a great chance for you to see little things that you can address so they don’t become bigger problems down the road. Some things however, you will have to accept and change YOUR thinking about so you can tolerate them; things like how he hums in the shower, the goofy socks he wears to bed, or the fact that he puts ketchup on everything he eats. If you can’t compromise to resolve or accept these quirks, then you guys are already heading down the wrong path!
7.The freeloaders he calls friends
This is where you’ll discover which of his friends are freeloaders and which are true homies. Freeloaders may stay on the couch the majority of the weekend or until you kick them out. You need to be able to have alone time AND to keep up with housework, so friends can’t be dropping by unexpected when the two of you are living together. This is where you’ll have to agree on terms, like telling each other when you expect someone, and making sure the guests know the “house rules”. And if you stay on the couch more than 2 nights a week, you better start paying rent! This is the point where you’ll learn how to deal with these types of people or if you can even deal with them at all.
8.How overbearing his family is
Does his mom come over every other day to bring a home cooked meal? That’s sweet and all but it can certainly get to be a bit much if you live there with him. Say goodbye to any private time if that’s going to be a regular occurrence. Also, if he can’t make any décor decision or maintenance fix without asking the opinion (not just assistance) of his family, you’ll certainly notice how attached he still is.
9.How helpful he is
If you’re sick, does he run the errands, and clean the place, or is it still left for you to take care of? If something breaks, does he fix it or do you have to ask him 5 times? This is a great way to see how much he can pitch in with daily duties as well as how handy he can be when it comes to using a screwdriver or hammer.
10.How lazy he is OR isn’t
It’s okay to lounge around on rainy days, but if he’s sleeping till noon every day, leaving messes and clutter EVERYWHERE, and doesn’t take care of the home or himself… it will become clear as day once you live together. If he can take initiative to get shit done, GREAT, but if not, you better address that now because a full size house is way more work for just one person (you) than the apartment you share now.