Home decor is one important aspect of every human. While a lot of people love dark tones, many would rather choose bright and colorful spaces. For someone like me, I used to be a colorful home kind of person but as I got older, I realize that colors doesn’t make a home, rather it is a function of how neat your home is and how it defines your personal style. My current home has white walls and brown furniture, and so far it has been the cutest place I have come to adore.
Many couples moving in together for the first time might find they run into unexpected challenges. These challenges can range from deciding who’s going to cook dinner and take out the trash to struggles about decor choices in the new space. Going from “my style” and “your style” to “our style” can be difficult, but here are a few tips for going through this process to help avoid fights and live happily ever after.
#1: Plan your decor
You don’t want to move in and suddenly realize your partner is planning on plastering the space with sports posters, so bring up the topic of decor before moving day. Talk about your decor likes and dislikes and what each of you will be bringing into the space. You might even want to browse a shop together to get an idea of your partner’s style and plan for any purchases you might need to make. Once you’ve got an idea of some styles you both like, try talking to an interior designer who can help with specifics like colors, textiles and more for your new shared space.
#2: Make a Budget Together
Money can be a huge source of arguments for couples, so try and take some steps to avoid that right in the beginning. Sit down with your partner and discuss your spending habits and if they are the right ones. Make a budget together for home expenses, including decor, and make sure you agree on a plan to split or share payments for rent and utilities. Having an agreed upon plan in place before your move will help you hold each other accountable to stay within budget when buying new decor pieces for the space and hopefully avoid fights over spending money in general.
Before you combine all of your possessions, dedicate some time to decluttering your belongings. Get rid of anything you don’t use, things that are broken, clothes that you don’t wear or any general clutter that isn’t serving a purpose. You can even invite your friends over to see if they could make use of any of the items you’re planning on getting rid of. Going into cohabitation with a clean slate will help reduce overwhelming feelings at the task of combining items with your significant other.
#4: Respect Their Space
Even if you don’t particularly like all of your partners decor style choices, it’s important to respect that you are now sharing your home and you want them to feel comfortable in the space. Try and find a space that can be dedicated to their style and resist the urge to add your own decor. This space could be as big as an office or as small as a single wall of a room. Whatever it is, let your partner have complete control over the decor choices for that space and respect their decisions. You never know, their style may start to grow on you over time.
#5: Make it Fair
When trying to combine existing belongings, have each partner pick three non negotiable items to bring into the new home. These could be furniture, art or maybe sentimental pieces from family. Regardless, these items make it into the new space no matter what. After that, everything else is up for negotiation. This allows both partners to keep the pieces that are most important to them and opens up the discussion for the rest of your pieces so you can work together to create a balanced home.
#6: Split Decision Making
If you have to make big decisions about paint color, fixtures or other features of the home try splitting up the process. Have one partner research and present their top three options and then have the other partner pick their favorite of those options. The key here is both parties have to agree beforehand to respect whatever the outcome of the decision is. This can be a fun way to incorporate both peoples input on decor without causing a big fight.
Have you ever moved in with a significant other? Do you have your own tips for combining styles? Leave a comment below and let me know.
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