It doesn’t carry the same weight as the almighty marriage proposal, but there may be another question you’ll want to pop this Valentine’s Day: “Will you move in with me?”
That’s because in some of the country’s biggest cities, taking your relationship to the next level could actually save you a lot of money.
An analysis of nationwide rental data by real estate website Trulia found that cohabiting couples can save an average of 35% of their monthly rent if they swap their one-bedroom apartments for one two-bedroom. If they want a third bedroom, however, their savings shrink to about 12%. (The research compared apartments in the same building to get the most accurate comparison possible, so it probably goes without saying that the rent is cut in half for couples who choose to move into a one-bedroom together.)
That 35% savings for a bigger place isn’t set in stone, either. According to the analysis, the savings from trading up may range from 28% to 40%. (Here’s looking at you, Sacramento). The markets that offer the best savings for couples who cohabitate in a two-bedroom include:
- Sacramento, Calif. (40%)
- Riverside-San Bernardino, Calif. (39%)
- Las Vegas, Nev. (39%)
- Baltimore, Md. (38%)
- San Diego, Calif. (38%)
Any New Yorker or San Franciscan won’t be surprised to learn that their cities, along with Houston, Dallas and Chicago, are at the very bottom of the savings list.
Of course, rent shouldn’t be the sole reason you move in together, but if you’re already considering sharing an apartment—even one that’s bigger than your current pads—you can add “savings” to your list of pros.