Moving in With Your Boyfriend? Here’s 30 Questions to Answer First

So, you’re seriously considering moving in with your boyfriend. But how do you know if you, your relationship, and (most importantly) your finances are ready? Moving in together can have significant financial benefits, but there are drawbacks since you and your relationship aren’t financially protected by the legalities of marriage or a domestic partnership.

While seeing your boyfriend more and building a life together is a dream come true (seriously, I’m excited for you!), you’ll want to make sure you’re just as ready for the downs as you are for the ups. This is why I recommend the following sample of questions you and your partner should answer before the moving truck swings by for your furniture.

I’m recently married, but in my own experience of pre-martial cohabitation (two that worked out, one that did), things go much smoother if you get the awkward money conversations over with beforehand.

30+ Questions to Answer to Before Moving In Together

Financial Questions to Ask Your Boyfriend

You know that awkward feeling you get when you’re out to dinner with someone and the bill comes and you both look at each other, not knowing who will pay for what?Report this ad

Now imagine that feeling, but with everything you need to live.

Sample questions to ask include:

  • Will you split rent and utilities 50/50?
  • Who will be responsible for paying the bills and managing finances?
  • Will you have a joint account, or will different bills come out of your accounts separately?
  • Who gets to keep the living space in the event of a breakup?
  • Will the other partner be expected to help subsidize moving costs in the event of a break up?
  • Will you both start contributing equally to other expenses like furniture, home repairs, and maintenance, or cleaning services?
  • Do I have a separate savings account or “f*ck off fund” in the event I need to move out?

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Finances are one of the big reasons couples (both married and otherwise) break up, so tackling it before it becomes a problem can help you both save major headaches down the road.Every woman needs her own, separate, savings account to keep for those “just in case” life moments. Get $25 cash back when you open up a CIT Savings account with my link.

Questions About How You’ll Communicate

No matter how well you and your boyfriend get along, problems will come up.Report this ad

Even if your relationship is picture perfect, emergencies will happen in your life (or his) that can be stressful on the both of you.

Your pipes freeze, or his baby sister keeps asking for money. There’s no way to tell what potential problems will arise.

Having a problem-solving method or at least a conversation about how each like to solve problems will you both a lot of stress (and potential nights spent on the couch).

Sample questions to ask include:

  • How do you prefer to resolve conflict?
  • How should we handle when the other gets angry?
  • Can we agree to not “fight dirty” when we argue?
  • What is very triggering for you in an argument?
  • How can I avoid doing this?

“Discussing the Future” Questions (a.k.a. the “DTR”)

When considering the possibility of moving in with your boyfriend, you’ll want to have a good, long think about why.Report this ad

Are you just looking to save money by living together?

If that’s the case, it might be better for you to find a roommate than live with someone you are romantically involved with.

But if you find you’re already spending most of your nights together and you’re both thinking about marriage down the road, then moving in together could be a great next step.Report this ad

Sample questions to ask include: 

  • Have we talked about the future enough that I feel comfortable moving forward?
  • What is our shared timeline for future events like marriage, children, and buying a home?
  • How long will we stay in our first shared home and if not, where will we move after?
  • Will the way we manage our finances change if/when we get married?
  • If/when we get married, will need a prenup?

Again, you don’t have to have concrete answers to these questions – but they’re meant to give you both a general idea about where you and your partner are at emotionally.Report this ad

Managing Money When You Move In Together

Moving in together (whether pre-marriage or as part of getting hitched) is a big step in any relationship. Once you’re sharing the same space, it seems like you’re sharing everything – from food to soap and even clothes. But does merging your spaces mean that it’s time to merge your finances?Report this ad

Quite possibly, so below are our best tips on how to manage money when living together. (P.S. These tips also work for married couples, non-married long term partners, or anyone who wants to manage money better with the person you share your life with.)

Have the “Awkward Money Chat”

Before you ever move in together, you should first have a discussion about where you both are (and where you want to go) financially.Report this ad

This is the time to be completely honest with each other. Financial expert Erin Lowry famously calls this “getting financially naked.”

And we’re talking about the nitty-gritty here.

Sample questions to ask include:

Tell your partner before you move forward. You shouldn’t wait until your rental application gets denied to have that talk.

This is going to be your foundation if you guys end up discussing marriage and a lifelong partnership. It’s not a must to manage money together and have a joint checking account when you’re “just living together”.

But, at minimum, it’s important you know where your partner is financially since moving in together is, ultimately, a highly-financial endeavor.

Make a New Budget Together

New living arrangements mean new expenses.

For example, you’ll go through all of those things (like toilet paper) that used to last for months in half of the time.

So, if both of you are open to it, your first course of action should be to create a new budget. If you’re merging finances, calculate your new spending amounts out of the checking account you share.

Just make sure to track your new expenses and adjust your spending as needed! Even if you’re keeping your finances separate, or calculating up who-owes-what based on a percentage of income model, a new budget is a good idea. Need a starting point for your budget? Score the Financial Best Life Starter Set with budgeting templates and spreadsheet files for you and bae for just $10. Get $5 off with code BUDGET at checkout.

Stay Organized

Moving in and living together can be a chaotic process. Make it easier on yourself (and your partner) by coming up with some sort of system for organizing your finances. 

Sample questions to ask include:

  • Who handles paying which bills?
  • How do you each expect reimbursement?
  • Via check or via app?
  • Where will we keep our financial paperwork?

Figure out what works for both of you so that you are both engaged and aware of your finances.Zeta is a free money app built for couples so you can manage your finances – together. Click here to sign up for free.

Separate Savings

(I know I mentioned this before, earlier in the article. Still, it bears repeating.)

Having a savings account just for yourself doesn’t mean you don’t believe in your relationship or that it won’t work out. (We’re married now and I still keep a separate savings account. I call it my “flee the country” account….you know, in case anything happens Liam Neeson style that I need to be ready for.)

Seriously, though, women need to be smart in today’s economy.

I also can’t think of anything worse than breaking up with your live-in boyfriend and being unable to move because of your finances.

Even if it’s just a small amount in a “Rainy Day Fund” inside of an app like Qapital, or if you’re automating savings into a high-yield savings account, it’s important to have a little tucked away – just for you– in case you need it.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in July 2017. It has been updated in February 2019. Melody Van de Graaf also contributed to this article.

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