My boyfriend and I are talking about moving in together. I’ve scrimped and saved to buy an apartment and he has no savings. Should we move into my place or should we go somewhere new to create a life together? It’s more practical and it’ll be cheaper if we stay in my place but would it be better for the relationship if we move to a new place? Kitty
The romantic option, of course, is to say, bugger the risks, we’re in love, let’s just jump in and hope for the best. So, you’d move him into your place, tell him the rent costs X per month and put it in writing. You can always discuss sharing the mortgage down the track if and when things become more serious and with any luck, things will work out and you’ll live happily ever after.
Then there’s the smarter, warier option – protecting yourself and your assets. How do discussions about a long-term future with each other pan out? Do you agree that you’re both in it for the long haul and want the same things? Or do these chats pan out in a vague ‘maybe-someday’ way? If it’s the latter but you’re both still keen to test the waters and live together, find a new place together and rent yours out. I know it’s a hassle, but it’ll allow the relationship to breathe and progress without the pressure of whether he should pay rent, or instantly get dibs on a mortgage that by rights, you probably feel a little territorial about. After all, you worked your butt off for what you have and under Australia’s defacto laws, if you cohabited for two years under your roof then broke up, he’d be entitled to half of it. Of course, this is the last thing you want to be contemplating when you’re madly in love with someone and cocooned in dreamy thoughts about making way for his toothbrush in the bathroom and waking up in the same bed each day. But any hard-nosed lawyer would advise you to consider it.
I’m also going to open this one up to the floor and ask readers to comment with their advice. If you’ve been in this position, what did you do? Let’s help Kitty out, RC readers.
Love, reality chick