My significant other and I will be moving into a Jacksonville apartment. What should we know ahead of time about living together?

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Before moving into Creekwood with your SO, you have some big topics to discuss.

Congratulations to both of you! Moving in together is a major step in any relationship. You'll find new things you love about one another and get to know each other on a deeper level. However, there are definitely challenges that come with sharing your space for the first time, so kudos to you for thinking ahead. Before you both settle into your Jacksonville apartment, make sure that you two have had a chance to talk about...

  • Your finances. This is so, so important. You don't want to be spending all your money on one of the luxury apartments in Jacksonville when your shared budget is more aligned with cheap apartments. Take a close look at both of your finances, looking not only into what sort of income you both expect to bring in while living together, but also looking at your outstanding debts and credit scores; these can impact which apartments are available and how much your security deposit is. Decide how you'll be sharing your housing-related expenses, since it may not make the most sense for you to split them down the middle. These sorts of discussions can be difficult or feel strained, but you definitely want to have them before moving in together.
  • Your must-haves and nice-to-haves. When you've got your budget all figured out, you two will be in a good spot to determine your must-haves and nice-to-haves. As great as it might be to have an office and a guest room in a spacious three-bedroom apartment, you want to prioritize the qualities that are most important to both of you, like where your apartment is in relation to where you both work, or whether or not it's one of the Jacksonville apartments that allows cats so Fluffy can stay with you. When you are confident that you've met all your must-haves, you can start layering in some of those nice-to-have qualities, like a washer and dryer in your unit or an extra bedroom (or two). 
  • Your furnishings. You probably have more stuff between the two of you than you think you do. Evaluate what furniture you both have, looking for duplicates and missing items. Be sure you're accounting for the space you have to work with; you'll need fewer items if you're in one of the studio apartments in Jacksonville than if you have more space, and you certainly won't need both of your beds. Decide what makes the most sense for the furniture you can't fit in your space, from putting it in storage to selling it online through options like Facebook Marketplace. Once that's taken care of, purchase your missing pieces! Just make sure you have a plan for the purchases you make together in the event one of you moves out. 

There is a lot to talk about before moving in together, but this should get you started. I also recommend going through the discussion points in this Forbes article with your SO, so you both feel totally comfortable with the situation. Moving can be a huge stress, but if you two work together on this, you'll be able to take on just about anything. Good luck to both of you!

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