Sharing a studio apartment with your significant other can be a great option if you’re looking to downsize, save up cash for a down payment on your dream home, or try out a new city.
But, studio apartments come with their own unique set of considerations. In addition to typically being smaller in size, a studio apartment typically doesn’t have a dedicated bedroom. Instead, you’ll likely have to create a bedroom in your studio apartment, with the bathroom being your only true “separate” room.
Is sharing a studio with your S/O a good option for you? Here are seven things to consider before taking the plunge.
1. What’s Your Partner’s Schedule Like?
When cohabitating with anyone, even a romantic partner, it’s important to consider how your schedules fit together. And when sharing a small space — and likely one without any walls and doors to shut out light and sound — it’s best if you and your partner share similar schedules or are willing to make accommodations.
Investing in a room divider and a pair of noise-canceling headphones can work wonders, but a studio may not be for you if:
- One of you is a night owl and the other is an early riser. Maybe it’s in your nature — or perhaps one of you works the night shift! Unless you’re walking on eggshells (or sleeping with an eye mask and earplugs in) it’s very difficult to go unnoticed in a studio apartment. One or both of you would likely suffer from sleep disturbances.
- One or both of you work from home. Without walls, you and your partner could wind up in meetings at the same time, or simply get distracted by one another.
If you do have vastly different schedules or need to work from home, a one-bedroom apartment will provide more peace and quiet.
2. Do You Have Good Boundaries and Ground Rules?
Boundaries are the key to successful relationships — romantic or not. Before you two decide to move into a studio (or anywhere else), establish firm boundaries that address:
- Pet peeves
- How to split up cleaning responsibilities
- Division of rent and bills
- Bedtimes / lights out times
- Bathroom time
- Guest policies
Additionally, you’ll want to be considerate of your partner’s tastes in music, TV shows, and movies. Find things you can both enjoy together so that you’re not both constantly plugged into separate devices.
3. How Will You Find Alone Time?
No matter how much you love your significant other you’ll both need alone time! Try to find time in your schedule where you can be free to relax, unwind, and do your own thing.
It may mean that you and your partner take your hobbies outside of the home! Perhaps your loved one enjoys rock climbing which allows you to relax at home on Wednesday nights, and he’s able to unwind while you’re at Tuesday night yoga.
Still, even if you can’t get physical space, you can both carve out time to yourself. Sitting in silence with someone you love is an art form! So don’t be afraid to sit side by side or across the room enjoying your respective books, tv shows, or hobbies.
4. Are You Ready to Practice Patience?
Living in a small apartment with a partner can test your patience: you’re bound to bump into one another in a small kitchen or need to share the bathroom while you get ready for the day. So, patience is a must for couples living in studio apartments. Not to mention, you won’t be able to shut yourself off in another room to cool down in the event of an argument, so you’ll want to do your best to avoid unnecessary flare-ups.
Having patience will get you far with your partner, whether you’re living in a 400 square foot apartment or a 4,000 square foot home. When things get heated with your partner, remember you’re on the same team. Try taking deep breaths or revisiting a topic once you’ve both cooled off.
5. How Will Responsibilities Be Split?
If one or both of you aren’t pulling your weight in terms of responsibilities, it will be noticeable in a studio apartment. Even if you’ve had roommates before, living with a romantic partner is a little bit different — you’ll have to take extra care to split responsibilities and set boundaries without killing the spark. As you navigate splitting up responsibilities, you’ll have to take care not to step on each other’s toes. Thankfully, when living with a partner — or a roommate — there are ways to ensure you can split the bills while keeping the peace.
So, before you move into a studio with your partner, agree with your partner on how you’ll split up these costs and responsibilities:
- Paying rent, utilities, and bills. Finances can be a tricky subject in general, but particularly with a romantic partner. Discuss how you’ll both pay your share of living expenses. Will you split down the middle or decide to pay a proportional amount relative to your respective incomes?
- Grocery shopping. Will you go together? Take turns paying? Or perhaps pay for your groceries separately?
- Chores. Think laundry, dishes, organizing, getting the mail, etc.
- Pet Care. Walking the dog, feeding times, dispensing medications, cleaning the litter box or cage liners.
Consider using a chart, shared calendar, or app to keep track of the things you’ll need to do frequently. This can help keep you both organized and prevent any “nagging” or micromanaging.
6. Are You Prepared to Get Rid of Excess?
Studios are typically small spaces by design, and even expansive loft-style studios aren’t equipped with much “hidden” storage for you to tuck things away into.
Before you move into a studio apartment, cut down on the excess and ask your partner to do the same.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Go through books, knick-knacks, and decor
- Donate clothes you don’t wear or that no longer fit
- Cut back on paperwork, and opt to go digital wherever possible
- Reduce your collections
- Get rid of products you no longer need or use
Are you still low on space after thinning down to the essentials? Consider splitting a storage unit with your partner. A storage unit can serve as additional space for seasonal items — like Christmas decor — and allow you to rotate your wardrobes seasonally to conserve closet and storage space.
7. How Will You Design Your Space as a Team?
Whether it’s your first apartment together or your fifth, it’s important that your space is comfortable and decorated to suit both of your tastes. Work with your partner to determine your furniture budget, needs, and style preferences. Don’t be afraid to mix and match styles to create a space that is uniquely yours.
Whether you and your partner opt for a studio apartment or choose to settle in somewhere a little larger, furniture rental can help ensure a smooth transition. CORT’s Move-In-Ready packages make it easy to furnish your home or apartment — and ensure you don’t have to sink tons of cash into big-ticket items. Browse Move-In-Ready packages online or visit your local CORT showroom today!