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Are couples who move in before marriage...doomed?

After our deep dive into the ins and outs of moving in together, let's chat about a topic that's on a lot of couples' minds: deciding to share a home before popping the question or walking down the aisle. It's a controversial topic, believe it or not! We're going to sift through the stats and research to give you the lowdown on this trend. Our goal? To help you and your partner make a choice that's right for you, armed with more than just gut feelings.


More and more couples are choosing to live together before saying 'I do' or even getting engaged. It's a big step that's becoming a part of many love stories, but it also brings up a lot of questions and different opinions. Let's dive into some real talk with key stats that help us get a real-world sense of what this trend means for couples today.

  • Prevalence of Cohabitation: According to Pew Research Center, 59% of adults ages 18 to 44 have lived with an unmarried partner at some point in their lives, compared to 50% who have ever been married, indicating a significant shift in relationship trends.

  • Cohabitation and Marital Success: A NICHD study found that 43% of participants who moved in together before getting engaged reported lower marital satisfaction, dedication, and confidence, as well as a greater chance of divorce.

  • The Role of Communication: Research in relationship psychology emphasizes the importance of communication in cohabiting relationships. Couples who openly discuss their reasons for cohabiting and future plans tend to have stronger relationships.

1. Communicating Expectations:

  • Future Plans: It's essential to discuss long-term goals and expectations. Do you both see living together as a step towards marriage, or are you testing compatibility? Clear communication can prevent misunderstandings.

  • Maia's Role: Maia can assist in guiding these conversations, ensuring a balanced and open dialogue.

2. Evaluating Your Relationship:

  • Compatibility Test: Living together can be a practical way to assess compatibility in daily life. Pay attention to how you both manage responsibilities and resolve conflicts.

  • Maintaining Individuality: Balance growing together with maintaining your personal identities. Regular check-ins can help ensure both partners feel fulfilled and respected.

3. Handling External Opinions:

  • Navigating Social Pressure: Be prepared to encounter varying opinions from family and friends. Remember, the decision should be based on what's best for your relationship, not external expectations.

  • Seeking Unbiased Advice: If needed, consult Maia for some objective advice about this big step. Are the two of you ready for it? Or is it purely motivated by a confounding factor?

4. Legal and Financial Considerations:

  • Legal Implications: If you're consider a home purchase in conjunction with moving in together, be aware of any legal implications, such as common-law marriage statutes in your area.

  • Continued Financial Planning: Check out our other article around financial considerations around this big move. Keep building on the financial plans you've established, ensuring both of you are comfortable and secure.

5. The Importance of Intentionality:

  • Deliberate Decision-Making: Make sure that moving in together is a conscious choice, not JUST a matter of convenience to pay less rent or save on utility bills.

  • Readiness for Next Steps: Regularly assess your readiness for further commitment, whether that's marriage, engagement, or enjoying your current status.


Deciding to cohabit before marriage or engagement is significant and should be approached with careful thought and open communication. Understanding the statistics and research can help couples make choices that are right for their unique relationship. With tools like Maia, navigating these discussions becomes more manageable and insightful.

Every couple's journey is different, and what works for one may not work for another. The key is to choose a path that aligns with your shared values and goals, strengthening your partnership regardless of marital status. Whether you're stepping into cohabitation as a prelude to marriage, as part of your engagement, or as a milestone in your dating journey, it's an opportunity to grow and build a future together, informed by both heart and mind.

If you're navigating this exciting yet complex decision, Maia is here to help. Think of Maia as your friend, offering personalized suggestions, facilitating meaningful conversations, and providing insights based on your unique relationship dynamics. With Maia, you're not just making decisions; you're building a stronger, more connected partnership. Ready to explore deeper with Maia? She's just a chat away, ready to guide you and your partner towards a happier, more fulfilling relationship journey.

What are your biggest relationship pain points?

  • Communication

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  • Physical intimacy

  • Trust

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