Is Your Home Putting Your Relationship at Risk?
Why tossing out those old college posters may just save your marriage.
Living with someone isn’t easy. There are so many things to get used to, dirty dishes in the sink that you didn’t put there, the challenges of sharing a bathroom, or the great wrestling of the remote when your favorite TV show is on.
These problems can put stress on a relationship, and couples need to work out the issues quickly, or possibly risk splitting up.
A recent survey commissioned by UGallery asked 1,000 women about the challenges of moving in together. A full 83 percent admitted that moving in together with a romantic partner is a “real challenge,” and here are the reasons why:
How you merge all of your stuff and your style can be tough. While there is plenty of advice out there to help couples navigate the first three couples issues on the list, not much is offered about how to merge your design styles to create a happy home. Until now.
Let’s take a look at what all of the complaining is about.
“Moving in together is tough, in general,” says Stephen Tanenbaum, President and Co-Founder of UGallery. “But managing different home décor tastes – whether it’s blending existing pieces or decorating your walls – has become a big challenge for couples today.”
Incorporating existing household items with your partners tops the list of moving in concerns. People can get very attached to things. Chances are that your coffee maker is no better than your partner’s, but darn if you are willing to give it up.
Then, there is the conflict about items that one partner thinks are just, well, not right for the space. According to the women in the survey, an overwhelming number wished their partner would toss out old college posters, video games, a favorite chair, sports memorabilia and childhood toys, in that order.
Avoid challenging your partner to get rid of something, if he just won’t. Instead, consider storage for any items that are sentimental but don’t fit the shared decor. This way, the owner doesn’t feel as though he has to give up his stuff, and you may still find a unique way to incorporate the best pieces into your home.
Leslie Brouillette, who recently moved in with her fiancé has another strategy for incorporating her partner’s style. “He's a great photographer, so we really just wanted to showcase that in our home decor,” she says. “It adds a personal touch and saves a lot of money.”
Brouillette’s advice also solves another problem that was revealed by the survey: decorating walls. “Those endless empty blank white walls,” she says, laughing. “A blank canvas can be nice, but also very overwhelming.”
Agreeing and choosing colors for the home and picking out furniture that you can both live with completed the top challenges survey responders shared. Since many homeowners and renters aren’t sure what their style is, browsing online can certainly help, especially when you do it together.
“Moving in can be an exciting opportunity to develop tastes together,” says Tanenbaum.
Here at Home and Garden Design Ideas, couples can sign up for a free account, where they can easily create, share and review albums of ideas for everything from paint colors to furniture, as well as take a look at how professional designers create rooms.