Are you getting ready to move in with your partner or getting married soon, and thus will be combining two households? If so, while there is much to look forward to in joining forces like this, there can also be plenty of stressors.
One of the big ones for many couples is how to take two lots of household goods and pare things back to fit into the one home. Check out a few handy tips to help you enjoy a smoother transition so you can better enjoy your time together over the coming year.
Plan and Think Together Before the Time of Your Move
Start by planning and thinking with your partner in the lead-up to your move-in date. Determine who will provide what in the home and if there are certain items, especially appliances or furnishings, that neither of you owns yet. Chat about whether you need office space and whether this will be shared or separated. Discuss, too, where to put children if one or both of you have kids and therefore require bedrooms to set them up in.
Take Photos and Measurements of the Property You’re Moving Into
It’s helpful, too, to take photos and measurements of the place you’re moving in to together so when you’re not there (especially if you’re waiting for a contract to settle for a couple of months or more), you have some way of remembering sizes and layouts of the rooms. Relying on pictures and sizings, you can better understand what possessions you own will fit nicely in the home and which things may have to be said goodbye to due to being too large, hard to get inside, or otherwise unsuitable.
Doing this work in advance will help you plan where to put all the large pieces on moving day and reduce fights, stress, headaches, and the cost of removalists as you can quickly direct them where to put the larger goods.
Discuss What’s Most Essential to Each of You
Another tip is to discuss with your partner which items you own that are incredibly important to you. This might include sentimental belongings, things you spent a lot of money on and value as a result, or goods you treasure for other reasons. Chat through your individual needs so you know upfront some things that you need to accept the other person will be bringing.
Declutter Your Possessions
However, both of you will still probably need to spend time decluttering your possessions as, unless you’re going into a huge house, you’ll likely have too much between you to fit everything in. Have a big clear out of your stuff to minimize what you’re bringing to the new home and, in particular, see what you will have duplicates of.
For instance, you probably both have an ironing board and iron but will only need one of each. You might like to throw a garage sale before you move or list things on online secondhand sale websites to get rid of things and make a little money for your trouble. Also, use this decluttering time to get rid of anything you might be embarrassed about the other person seeing once you’re living together!
Try to Find Common Matches of Goods or Themes Between Them
On move-in day and in the days and weeks afterward, try to find some common matches of the goods you’re each bringing to the new property or themes between items. Styling a home when you each have different goods and probably different décor tastes and styles can be tricky, so you need to be a little broad in your thinking to find ways to identify common threads to design your home around.
You might have possessions that work together well due to their similar colors, materials, scale, style, etc., or stuff that works because of how or where it’s used or the themes behind the gear (e.g., goods picked up during travels around the globe). Picking up on patterns will help you better make your pieces work together and make your home look more balanced and inviting.
Buy Some New Pieces Together for Your Shared Abode
Lastly, spend some money on new pieces purchased together for your shared abode. This shopping can not only help to cover any gaps in belongings that you need to fill and bring everything together better but will also give you a chance to acquire items that are yours as a couple, rather than as individuals.
For example, you might like to outfit each bedroom with a tasteful small ceiling fan and some pretty rugs, add some stunning light fixtures and drapes to the living spaces, and pick out some new glassware and dinnerware to use together at mealtimes.
While moving in together can bring its own set of challenges, combining two households doesn’t need to lead to lots of conflict. Keep the lines of communication open, yet be diplomatic and willing to compromise, and you’re sure to settle in together much faster.