Moving in together – Tips for living with your girlfriend or boyfriend

There are several stages in a relationship where the commitment level is stepped up a notch and a melee of new tests arise. Moving in with your partner is one of those.

Heidi and I have been living together for a while now and although we are still just as happy in our relationship as we have always been, there are several new lessons we have learnt from being in each other’s company all the time.

This article will discuss some of those insights and share some tips about how to adapt your relationship accordingly once you are living together…

Little things that might annoy you:

Your partner is not an extension of you and they are likely to have had a very different upbringing to your own. As such, they will inevitably do certain things around the house differently to what you are used to. Prior to living together, these seemingly trivial habits go largely unnoticed or ignored. When living together, you have to accept that every little thing you do affects your partner in one way or another.

Rather than have one of you dictate how certain things should be done around the house, discover a new, joint way to do things, combining the best tricks and traits from your individual lifestyles. Embrace the changes and make sure you are both contributing equally to a happy home, regardless of who pays the bills or who does most of the chores.

Avoid becoming dependent on your partner:

One of the most important things to ensure when living with your girlfriend or boyfriend is that you still have your own lives and you continue to be the person you want to be.

You will be sharing a lot more of your time together but it is still healthy for the relationship if you maintain some of your own passions, core social circles and activities. Not only do these keep the relationship in perspective and make sure you remain attractive and engaging but most importantly, they prevent you becoming needy or dependent on your partner.

Being independent also applies around the house. Make sure you are both contributing equally towards a happy household. This includes sharing chores and being considerate towards each other’s schedules.

Make an extra effort to ensure that your partner always feels appreciated. For example, if your partner is always cooking dinner, surprise them by taking over the role and letting them relax whenever you can.

Keep the spark:

One of the biggest threats to a relationship when you move in together is monotony and routine.

Some common areas where a routine can easily set in are evening activities, daily conversation and perhaps the biggest one, your sex-life!

One of the primary goals that Heidi and I have is to make living together incredibly enjoyable. We will always try to find fun and productive activities to do together rather than relying on any uninspiring, default activities to fill our time.

Watching television is a common default activity for couples to do when they live together and is one of the biggest killers of excitement and connection in a relationship.

Heidi and I watch TV perhaps once a week – and even then it is something we have specifically chosen to watch ahead of time – because we find so much other fun stuff to do together instead. It is all about making the effort to get creative, connect with each other and continually enrich the relationship, rather than letting it stagnate.

Remember the foundations of your relationship:

Another aspect of the relationship that is easy to lose sight of is the attraction and romance side. Never forget the foundations of your relationship! It may sound rather excessive but attracting your partner and fulfilling their emotional and physical desires should be a daily mission.

The little things count even more now you are in each other’s company so frequently. Romantic gestures and thoughtful gifts are more important now than ever before as they will ensure that your partner never feels taken for granted.

Be grateful and acknowledge what your partner does for you and the household. It may sound like an overkill to be outwardly grateful and complimentary all the time but this sort of behaviour is hard to overdo.

Share chores and show appreciation for everything your partner does towards a pleasant household. Every time they do the dishes for example, thank them and show your appreciation. Better yet, do something nice in return (a massage perhaps).

Learn to make up quickly:

If you want to have a happy and peaceful abode, you must learn to make up quickly, or better yet, prevent arguments and other negative occurrences from happening in the first place. An article that discusses this topic can be found at the following link: How to prevent arguments in a relationship.

Two of my favourite tips from the above article are…

  • Make sure that the first few minutes when you see your partner each day are exceedingly positive. Even if you have had a rough day, making an effort to be enthusiastic, happy and loving during this time sets a positive mood for the rest of your time together.
  • Emotions can be changed in an instant and negative emotions can be flipped long before they escalate into full-blown arguments or resentment. Make it a priority to try and positively change your partner’s mood when you sense that they need it, in an attempt to avoid any negativity.

Depending on the setup of your relationship prior to moving in together and how long you have been a couple, you are likely to see a side to your partner that you haven’t seen before. In fact, you will now witness their whole range of emotions and it is down to you to accept and adapt to those changes, while continuing to make the relationship as fulfilling as possible. 🙂

Much love,


14 replies
  1. Emma
    Emma says:

    Hi Sam. I felt inspired to comment as me and my boyfriend of a year have just passed 6 months living together. All our friends thought it was too soon to move in as we had only been in a relationship for 6 months before that although we had known each other longer.

    I think the fact we were spending all our time together already made it less of a shock. I can relate to what you have written about though especially seeing them at their worst and dealing with the lows as well as the highs.

    Your final paragraph is my favorite of the whole piece and really sums up how I’ve felt over these last few months. It does feel like you must make extra effort not to snap or take things out on your partner for being human but if you are really meant to be together then that extra effort is worth it. tc Emma

    • Samuel McCrohan
      Samuel McCrohan says:

      Hi Emma,

      Thanks for sharing your story. The first six months living together are by far the most significant. If you reach that milestone and are still deeply fulfilled by your relationship then everything is set up perfectly.

      I agree that spending considerable time together prior to cohabiting makes the transition smoother. I have worked with couples in the past that went from a long distance relationship to suddenly living together and that definitely takes a lot of adjusting.

      I assume by now you have established a lot of the roles within the household and have an understanding of the dynamics of living together, so now is the time to really focus your attention towards keeping the relationship consistently fun, attractive and passionate. 🙂

      I like your point about making that extra effort to be understanding and empathetic. It is useful to remember that your partner might not always be in such a positive mindset as yourself and you have the opportunity to bring them up to your level in such instances, rather than drop down to theirs!

      Thanks for commenting, 🙂


  2. Ben
    Ben says:

    Well I’ve been living with my girlfriend for 2 years now but we’re only renting and have had lodgers over that time so a slightly different setup to other people.

    Your article is great and I agree with the idea of being creative and fun together all the time. The only problem is I get home from work really late most days (often when it’s dark) and all I want to do is crash in front of the TV and do nothing. My gf is amazing and doesn’t complain but she does get offended if I’m not giving her enough attention and I find it hard to explain just how drained I am without starting an argument. Chores and stuff we pretty much have sorted as I do my share at the weekends and we rarely fall out over anything like that.

    The part that sticks with me is keeping your independence and not having to do everything together. Also not getting jealous if she goes out with other friends. I’ll definately try and use some of the advice you’ve written so thanks a lot.

    • Samuel McCrohan
      Samuel McCrohan says:

      Hey Ben,

      I actually like the idea of renting a place together initially (almost like a trial although by no means less significant) and I can imagine a friendly lodger being a good peacekeeper within the house at times.

      Although Heidi and I are both self-employed and set our own working hours, I do know what you mean about sometimes wanting to relax and have your own space when you’ve had a busy day. This is one of those things that is best to discuss whilst both in a positive mood.

      If you wanted to, I am certain you could find a whole host of activities to do together that are not stressful or tiring, yet are still enjoyable and bonding for you both. Whilst edging beyond the scope of this website, creating a lifestyle and career that you are each individually passionate about, will help you be passionate about those same aspects together. 🙂

      Your last point has got me thinking about certain aspects of jealousy. One thing that has always surprised me is how jealousy can seem to affect couples living together more than if they were not cohabiting. Living with a partner usually means that you always know their schedule and what they are up to. The problem there is that if their plans change or they don’t return home when you expect them to, this can sometimes cause suspicions.

      Ultimately, the way to deal with this sort of jealousy and trust is no different to the other forms that I discuss throughout the website. As the above article states, remember that it is healthy for your girlfriend to have uninterrupted time apart from you occasionally. That time can then be used as an opportunity to miss each other (a great tool for keeping attraction alive) rather than something that creates jealousy.

      Thanks for commenting, 🙂


  3. Nick C
    Nick C says:

    Hello Sam. I found your website earlier today and have been reading through all your articles. I have had so many lightening moments reading through them.

    The reason I am writing here is because me and my girlfriend of 1 year have decided to move in together. We have been in a serious relationship for a year and are both needing to move out of our current places so it makes sense. The problem is I am terrified that she might not like the real me. I know that sounds silly but it is a fear I cannot get rid of.

    Obviously when you first start dating you make the effort to only show your good side but can that really be kept up at all times if you live in the same house?

    I guess we’ll see how it goes but I don’t like the idea of always being on guard or having everything I do around the house questioned or disliked more than it would living with anyone else.

    Thankyou for all your advice.

    • Samuel McCrohan
      Samuel McCrohan says:

      Hey Nick,

      Thanks for checking out the website and I’m glad you like the articles. 🙂

      It is common to experience some of the feelings you describe when first moving in with a partner; moving in together signifies a big change and a high level of commitment in the relationship. The key is to make the transition as smooth as possible, embrace the changes and keep the positive aspects of the relationship at the forefront.

      If you have been together for a year then you should know each other’s personalities and traits to a fairly deep level. It is actually very easy to avoid tension and conflict in a household if you always remain perceptive and considerate.

      As the article suggests, keep on doing the things that seem natural to the relationship when you first move in together and slowly find a mutual way to happily cohabit. As long as you avoid making any drastic changes that might create arguments, everything should be fine. 🙂

      It is interesting when you talk about only showing your good side when starting a new relationship. Whilst this may be true for a lot of people, the ultimate goal is to do things because they are part of the person you want to be, not just for the sake of impressing a new partner. People adopt an outward persona because it is the sort of person they want to be. Becoming that person on a deeper level is usually just a case of refining a couple of habits and beliefs.

      To relate this to the topic in hand, start by adopting some of the changes you are thinking about, using this new chapter in your relationship as inspiration. You will get a lot faster and better feedback on what is and what isn’t working when you are living together.

      All the best and let me know how everything is going once you are living together,


  4. andi
    andi says:

    hey I’m Andi, me and my boyfriend went through a few months where we lived in two different states and even though it was hard we got through it, so we thought we could handle anything. i moved back about three weeks ago and we have an entire new set of problems. He gets annoyed at the littlest things, and i get butt hurt over the littlest things. i try to make him happy by not doing the things that irk him but it seems like everything i do is wrong. i just want to make this work… I am also a very jealous person, and he doesn’t know how bad it is and how bad him ignoring me sometimes makes me feel. I’m not completely sure on what to do at this point. i love him with all of my heart. and he loves me too. how do we get past this rocky stage?

    • Samuel McCrohan
      Samuel McCrohan says:

      Hey Andi,

      When “little things” become a recurring issue in a relationship, it is normally a symptom of more general feelings of frustration. It can also be a built-up result of not communicating those feelings as they first started to arise. You might have found out already that even if you cater for those little things that seemingly cause frustration within your partner, there will always be new ones to replace them!

      If these are mutual feelings that the two of you are experiencing then you do want to discuss the situation together. Talk about what you can do for each other to make living together enjoyable once more. This is an ongoing process and the main thing to both make an effort towards is taking the time on a personal level to solve whatever is causing annoyance, rather than nitpicking and creating negative vibes. As discussed throughout this website, if you must bring up something that is causing frustration, there are ways to do so without conveying blame or contempt.

      Aside from this, concentrate on the more prominent aspects of the relationship, ensuring that your time together is as enjoyable as possible and that you make time to do fun things together. You should find that the more positive and content you both are in general, the less the little things will bother either of you.

      Thanks for commenting,


  5. Melanie
    Melanie says:


    My name is Melanie. I have lived with my boyfriend for 3 years now. He has been in the cooking industry for 6 years now. I however have a harder time finding a job. I worked at a grocery store for a year in a half then we moved so i couldn’t transfer but he could. Now i’m jobless. It was like this for the first 2 years when we started to move in together and he has always supported me. He says he doesn’t mind me not having a job but I feel like I have to do all the housework and make sure the bills are paid and do all this stuff just to equal to him having a job. I feel like a bum and i feel lazy. Do you think he really means that he doesn’t care i dont have a job? (also i have the car and he doesnt have a licence so i take him to work and pick him up everyday) he is 23 and i am 21.


    • Samuel McCrohan
      Samuel McCrohan says:

      Hi Melanie,

      There are different roles in every relationship; the important thing is that you are both contributing in whatever way you can towards a happy life together and striving towards how you ultimately want the relationship to be.

      It is equally important that you feel good about yourself. Although it is beyond the focus of this website, having goals and ambitions, as well as discovering your passion in life, will always have a positive effect on your relationship.

      At 21 it is normal to not have all of those life details completely figured out yet and that is probably what your boyfriend is empathising with.

      It sounds like you are contributing in lots of other ways (the housework and driving for example) so as long as you are both open and honest with each other about all of these topics, your boyfriend would have no reason to be insincere about his thoughts and feelings.

      Thanks for writing,


  6. Dawn
    Dawn says:

    Hi Sam,

    Thanks for the article. I have been living with my boyfriend for4-5 months now and all we do is bicker and then he pretends like nothing is wrong. We argue mostly about housework and splitting it equally. I made up a wall chart and set the rules when we first moved in together (He does cooking and dishes and mostly kitchen related duties and I do everything else) Though the kitchen is always a mess and he actually thinks he does more than enough to keep the place running smoothly – he doesn’t realise what I do. I have been recently very ill and didn’t get any help from him. Our relationship is falling apart and I worry this moving in together will break us apart 🙁 the spark has totally gone and I am losing hope. Is there anything I can do so he makes some effort in our relationship? I feel like I am the one doing everything 🙁


    • Samuel McCrohan
      Samuel McCrohan says:

      Hi Dawn,

      Feeling like there is an equal split in housework and individual effort is one of the first noticeable barriers to overcome when you move in with a romantic partner.

      Delegating chores seems like an effective method but it can have the opposite effect if the other person feels forced, nagged or judged for their contribution.

      As the article mentions, two people are likely to have a different view on what constitutes a well run house and a thorough completion of housework. You have to find a compromise between those two ideals, and that means you embracing his way of living as much as him embracing yours. The relationship should always take priority over things such as lifestyle choices and you should be striving to find a way of living that suits both of you, not one of you.

      The only way to actually make him change his ways is to positively influence his opinion, without him feeling chastised in any way. If you can make him see the benefit in embracing your method more then he will feel that he is personally choosing to change his ways, rather than feeling forced to. Once again, try not to see this as either of you being right or wrong; see it as two people having differing but equally valid opinions.

      Before any of this transition occurs, it is important to focus on the relationship once more and forget about the housework or any related issues for the time being. If you can get the two of you embracing the relationship once more, having fun and being happy together then the other issues will be a lot easier to discuss and compromise on.

      All the best and thanks for reading the website,


  7. som
    som says:

    Hi Sam,

    Thank you for your advice^^, me and my bf we both working from home so mostly we see each other everyday. Now we move in together about 5 month and everything seem fine.
    but i’m scare when we both working from home we can get bored of each other and i’m scare we’ll lose the attraction, we try to make new friend and do many activity but i still scare that we might get bored.

    • Samuel McCrohan
      Samuel McCrohan says:


      My girlfriend and I also both predominantly work from home. What we found helped the most was to have a distinct separation between “work time” and “relationship time”. Of course it’s great that you can easily take an active interest in each other’s work throughout the day, but there should still be a distinct difference between how you are together during those two times.

      It’s great that you are determined to keep the relationship fresh and fun, and it is actually easy to do if you treat the relationship day by day, rather than worrying about how your lifestyles might be affected in the future.

      If everything is going well at the moment, simply keep doing what you are doing. If you sense that things are becoming boring, put your mind towards doing more fun things together and connecting intimately. If you sense that you are getting overwhelmed with each other’s presence, give each other some emotional space for a short while.

      Thanks for commenting,


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