Moving in together can be a scary prospect, especially if your only experience with living with people other than your parents is by yourself, with platonic roommates, or maybe a pet. With a SO, you’re sharing more than a house or apartment – you’re sharing a bed! (Plus a lot of other stuff.) How do you know if you’re ready?
Well, it’s really different for everyone, depending on your relationship, your age, the point you both are at in your lives, your financial situations, and your values. Are you the kind of person who needs to be married or engaged before moving in with a partner, or is a committed relationship enough for you?
Dudes often get a bad rap for being commitment-phobes, but they can be just as emotionally invested in your relationship and future together as anyone! In fact, your man may have decided that he wants to live with you long before it even crossed your mind! While he might not have gotten the courage to actually broach the subject just yet, we’ve figured out 20 signs that will help you learn where his head is at – and if shacking up is what he has on his mind!
A man who isn’t interested in playing games likely wants your relationship to move forward, at whatever pace that may be.
He may not have thought about all the nitty-gritty of moving in together, but if he’s committed to you (i.e. you’re in a serious relationship without the mind games that characterizes unstable unions), he’s probably considered it, at least in passing.
If he’s committed to you and has made that clear, it’s very possible that he may want to shack up – especially if you’re at the age when many of your friends are doing the same and you’ve been together for an extended period of time.
Maybe he’s joked about staying over a few more nights than usual, or teased you about having him around to open the tougher jars in the kitchen, but either way, if he’s hinting about moving in together, it could be because, duh, he actually wants to!
Dipping a toe into the waters of cohabitation – in word or in deed – is his way of gauging your interest and openness to such an arrangement. If you joked back with him about how he’d be useful to have around, he’ll take that as a point in his favor. If, however you freaked out at the prospect, he might never broach the subject again.
It started out as one night a week, when he would have to get up early the next morning and maybe your apartment is closer to his work, but then, slowly, it became more and more frequent so that you can’t even remember the last time you had a bed all to yourself!
Most single dudes (or guys who just aren’t or haven’t ever lived with a woman) are prone to keeping sad twin beds, which isn’t exactly conducive to sleepovers.
Your double- or queen-sized bed, on the other hand, fits you both perfectly, which is just part of the reason he’s been crashing for days (or weeks) on end.
A man doesn’t have to be messy to have his stuff slowly start laying around your casa, but if he’s been at your place quite a lot, it might start looking like his clothes, books, and the random flotsam of his life have found a home in yours!
What began as a toothbrush or an emergency stash of clothes after an impromptu night over has grown to half of his wardrobe and his shaving kit. He may not have verbally said that he wants to shack up, but all of his belongings are certainly saying it for him!
Unless you’re lucky enough to live in a place with cheap rent rates or your guy is a baller who can afford to live the bachelor life, he probably has roommates – even if they’re called Mom and Dad.
While it might have been a sweet setup for him at first, he’s gradually gotten more annoyed by their antics and is seriously feeling the need for privacy, especially on the rare occasions when you come over.
Telling you that so-and-so is driving him crazy or that his head hurts from splitting the Internet bill six ways every month is his way of letting you know that he’d much rather pare things down to just the two of you.
From sleeping over on the weekends to spending most nights there, your guy basically lives at your place, now he’s there all the time! He visits on his way “home” from work, but ends up staying for dinner and, inevitably, the night. Even his time off from work is usually spent at your place! (Hey, most of his stuff is already there now, so who can blame him?)
In fact, come to think of it, you can’t remember the last time you went to his place or when you were by yourself, which is a definite sign that your guy would rather be in your company than without it.
Maybe you needed his help to lug a new TV up your stairs, and so he’s started calling it “ours”.
Or maybe you adopted a cat and, since he helped you pick it up, the furry feline has also earned the distinction of being both yours and his.
It might not be a conscious thing, but referring to something that was once solely yours as belonging to him, too, is a way for him to link your lives together – and hopefully planting the seed that you want to make it official by signing a lease together!
If you’re living in a pad that’s meant for the single girl – in other words, couldn’t possibly hold all of his stuff – your man might have mentioned that your lease is coming up and asked, quite innocently, what you were thinking. This works the other way around, too! He could have casually mentioned in conversation that his lease with his boys was ending and asked your opinion. Obviously, he wants you to offer him a place to stay, but if you fail to see the sign (or avoid it outright), he might take that as an indication that you’re not interested.
You have good, clean, plush towels and he has a ratty old beach towel he uses to shower with (and wipe his hands on). You always have the good snacks but he can’t seem to keep any food in the house. Your place always smells nice and gets lots of sunshine, whereas his crib reeks of sweat, socks, and has an unpleasant dampness.
No wonder he prefers your space to his!
Gushing about your place and how great it is in comparison is his not-so-subtle way of letting you know he enjoys your space more than his – and wants you to invite him over for something a little more long-term.
When your guy was single, or even when you were casually dating, he may have opted to go out with his guy friends more often than not. Hitting up the bar with the boys held the promise of meeting – and maybe hooking up with – someone, but, now that he’s settled down with you, he doesn’t feel the need to do that as much.
This isn’t to say your man has no sense of fun, it’s that his idea of fun has shifted. Rather than pay a bunch of money for beer in a noisy club, he can drink it at home with you and do something fun together. (Besides, this was where he hoped most of his nights would end up anyway, right?)
That leak in your kitchen sink? He fixed it without you asking. He noticed that you were out of toilet paper (because he used the last of it) and so picked some up on his way over.
Dishes that were once left in the sink are now washed and put away, clothes are folded, and spills are wiped up.
A man who acts more domesticated around you isn’t just showing common courtesy and respect for your space; he’s also trying to prove how good of a roommate he is in the hopes that you might invite him to be one! Being on his best behavior is just one way of getting you to think of shacking up.
Like tidying up around the house or picking up after himself, going out of his way to grab groceries – necessities and frivolous items included – is another way for him to turn your space into your shared space. He’s familiarized himself with the contents of your fridge and cupboards and so knows what you’re missing. He knows enough about your appetites, likes, and dislikes to choose items you’ll be hankering for. This act of service is another way for him to prove his domestic merit and hopefully get you thinking that it can be like this all the time if he moves in!
Your place is so much closer to his office. That restaurant the you both love is just around the corner. You get so much natural light in your place. Your landlord is reputable and not sketchy.
If your guy is talking like a realtor and enumerating all the great things about your place (or, on the flip side, all the great things about his place and the awful things about yours in an effort to get you out of your apartment and into his), it may be because he’s dropping hints that he wants to snag some of it for himself!
Who wouldn’t want an upgrade when they’re moving?
A man who doesn’t want to live with you is unlikely to mention the future since, in our modern society, cohabitation tends to happen before marriage and children. (Plus, with marriage and kids, there’s a lot more money and time involved than just shacking up.)
If your man is serious about you, he’s going to talk about serious things. Do you both want children? Do you see yourselves as having a big wedding or something more intimate or low-key? Do you want to stay in the same city forever or travel? Lobbing these questions at you lets you know that he has your future as a couple on his mind.
When your guy values you as a person and his partner in life, he’s going to ask for your advice and input on major life decisions. Should he go back to school to pursue something he’s passionate about or stick to the daily grind of his office job because it pays the bills?
When he sees a future with you, he wants you to know that he understands how his decisions affect your life.
Asking if he should take that promotion that makes him move to another city could be his way of feeling things out, and how your potential living situation is viewed in your eyes.
It’s never a good idea to move in with someone you care about if your sole reason is finances. That being said, a man who happens to drop how you could save money by living together, or even brings up the idea of a shared bank account (in addition to your independent ones, naturally), it’s because he’s got cohabitation on his mind. Wanting to live with your out of financial necessity isn’t a good or secure reason enough to move in with someone and is likely to cause a lot of problems but as an added bonus? Not bad!
Like our last entry, a man who is ready and able to move in with you for the right reasons won’t be doing it because he only has a few cents to his name.
Sure, there’s something to be said for splitting rent down the middle or saving on gas by having an apartment in a more central area, but practicality is not the name of the game here.
You don’t want to become a sugar mama to your deadbeat boyfriend, and a man who’s serious about you and moving in together won’t put you in that position. Saving a little extra cash by splitting expenses is just an added perk.
Your dude is over so much, he may as well have a key! Far too many times, you’ve been running late from work and he’s had to wait outside until you arrived and so it kind of seems like it just makes sense for him to have his own key.
If you’re renting from a landlord who never gave you a spare, ask if you can have one made (you might get into trouble if you do it on the D/L). Your guy might not treat this like a big deal, but the ability to come and go as he pleases is just one step below fully shacking up.
Maybe you’re busy or you’re just not the handiest person in the world, but it doesn’t matter, because your guy is happy to fix things around your house! Leaky faucets, clogged drains, squeaky door hinges, stuck drawers – your man does it all.
Sure, he might give you a good-natured hard time about it, but he truly enjoys being made to feel useful – and prove his worth as a roommate and a partner.
Making your place a little more his is a way for him to show you exactly how convenient it would be to have him around!
The sign of all signs: a man who wants to live with you will simply ask! He might “um” and “ah” over it before working up the courage to see if you want to shack up together, but he’ll squeeze it out!
He may enumerate all the benefits of living together, rationalize that what you’re currently doing is almost the same thing, and tell you how much he cares for and loves you before finally asking if he can. Then, it’s logistics! If possible, getting a new place together is the way to go, that way it’s your shared space, rather than one where one person becomes the interloper.