As the end of the semester creeps closer, many students are in the process of planning their living arrangements for the upcoming year. With this opportunity to move to a new place with new people, some students are looking to their significant other as a potential roommate.
A study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that Americans are choosing to live with their significant other before marriage more than ever before. Additionally, according to the Pew Research Center, the number of cohabiting adults age 18 to 34 rose by 24 percent between 2007 and 2016.
Cohabiting can serve as a major financial benefit for college students. Nonetheless, when geology junior Audra Williams relocated with her partner to Austin, Veazey said being financially dependent on him was one of her concerns.
“He’s the one that has the car and the job,” Veazey said. “I didn’t want to be a burden on him, but I also didn’t want to depend on him for everything because ... that’s not who I am.”
Along with her concern over finances, Veazey said she also had to let go of her vision of living alone in Austin after she met her boyfriend.
“I thought, ‘I’m finally going to live on my own and be independent,’ and then we met and fell in love,” Veazey said. “It was like taking this whole dream (of living alone) that I had been looking forward to for years, and it completely changed. That was hard for me to let that go.”
Advertising senior Andrea Velgis doesn’t currently live with her significant other, but the couple plans on moving in together after relocating to New York for the summer.
“Crazy enough, two weeks into dating each other, we knew this was it,” said Velgis. “But we just don’t want to live together before I graduate because, you know, parents. It was a no-brainer that we were just going to live together eventually, and it was more about timing.”
While Velgis’ confidence in her relationship hasn’t impacted her decision to not live with her significant other, a lack of certainty is a major factor for many people in college relationships who are thinking of taking the next step. Jacob Yarvis, a social work and Jewish studies sophomore, said this uncertainty is keeping him from moving in with his partner.
“We never really wanted to live together because if we broke up and we were living together, that would definitely pose problems,” Yarvis said. “I think when people start living together they’re usually thinking about getting married or something.”
According to another study conducted by the Pew Research Center in 2011, 64 percent of Americans who have previously lived with unmarried partners said they consider it a step towards marriage.
While Veazey said that she is happy living with her boyfriend, she advises couples thinking of taking the next step in their relationship to make sure their motivations focus on their mutual love.
“Move in with somebody because you know you love them,” Veazey said. “I wouldn’t do it for financial reasons, and make sure that you guys sit down beforehand and talk about things that can go wrong, go through all of those what-ifs.”