Moving in with your significant other is a big step. Not only do you get to experience living with someone, but you have to overcome challenges with space and organisation.
It usually makes sense financially to move in together as a couple, but it isn’t always as easy as you’d think. Combining two people’s things into one smaller space can mean making hard decisions. You need to work together as a couple to make sure you make the most of a single space!
Here are six space efficient tips for couples moving in together for the first time.
Tip 1: Declutter the space
If you’re used to living alone or having your own distinct space, you probably have more than you need. It only makes sense – having extra space means being able to have extra things. The problem is, when you move in together, you need to make room for someone else’s things and can’t seem to find the organisational space. The first step is to declutter. Go through the things you haven’t used in a while and see what you can get rid of.
A good rule of thumb is that if you haven’t used it in a year, you’re probably better off without it. Focus on the areas of your home where space is a premium. This means reviewing the clothes in your closet, clearing out space under your counters, and checking your hallway closets. It’s easy to store things away and think you’ll need them later only to discover you haven’t used your second set of pots and pans in the three years since you bought them!
Remember your partner will likely be bringing many staples into your new combined home, and that means you will need to decide what stays and what goes. You probably don’t need five extra sets of sheets, and that means choosing the best ones and donating the others. The same goes for almost everything. If you don’t have any sentimental value associated with it and it’s just collecting dust, it’s time to let it go.
Tip 2: In with the new
When you’re sharing a space with a partner, you’ll want to find new things that reflect this new start together. This is where most couples run into problems. Sometimes you’re going to love things that your partner will hate and vice versa.
The key here is having a plan for when this happens, and being open to compromise. Be honest with yourself and your partner about what styles you do and don’t like.
Consider creating a registry to create a list of things you both enjoy – and maybe a few compromises.
Tip 3: Create new storage space
One of the most difficult aspects of moving in together is creating more storage space. You’ll need to be creative to make sure you’re both able to use the space effectively in your home.
Invest in storage devices like closet storage areas, under the bed storage bins, or space-saving bags that can add space where there wasn’t any. No space should go to waste when you need to make the most of every square foot.
Tip 4: Find multi-purpose furniture
There are a lot of furniture pieces that can also serve as excellent space savers. Examine the furniture you already have as an individual and as a couple. Does it take up too much space? Is your couch twice as large as it needs to be? Do you find yourself losing items in the back of your dresser? It might be time to find new furniture that saves space.
There are a lot of great multi-purpose furniture ideas. Ottomans which double as both storage and footstools are a great way to add extra seating while hiding storage in plain sight. A futon will allow you to convert space for guests staying with you while also providing more seating.
You can create custom shelving units in unused space like in cabinets and under your stairs. If you’re really tight on space, ask yourself if everything you own has a purpose. When you don’t have extra room to spare, you can’t really afford to have things that aren’t functioning in at least one way.
Tip 5: Utilise every space
When it comes to saving space, you need to make the most of what you have. You might not even realise how much wasted space you have in your home or rental until you have a change of perspective.
You can use pegboards, for instance, to hang documents and photos that were taking space within drawers and on your desk. You can hang photos and artwork to free your counter space and bring more personality in the home.
You might discover you had more space than you thought!
Tip 6: Protect your belongings
Once of the most important steps of sharing a space is protecting your joint belongings. You need to ensure your space is safe for the both of you. That might mean investing in a security system or checking your old rentals are used appropriately if you’ve found new tenants.
By working together, you can create a strong foundation for a life together in your shared space.
Moving in together can strengthen your relationship
Moving in together is a big step for many couples, but it has the potential to really solidify a relationship. If you love your partner, it only makes sense that you want to share your home with them.
Creating a home with the space you need can be a challenge, but one that can be overcome with organisational solutions and space-saving tips. It’s important to be flexible when moving in with your partner. You both need to be open to changes and any challenges.
If you can overcome this, you can get through anything together!