Moving in with a significant other is a big step in a relationship. Many view it as a strong indicator of a long-term commitment, however this may not be as true as we think.
Research was conducted by RAND Corporation on this subject. The leaders of the project were sociologists Michael Pollard and Kathleen Mullan Harris. The research showed that a number of people that were living with their significant others were not confident in the longevity of the relationship.
Data from the Wave III of the Add Health survey was used for this research. They studied 15,197 men and women that ranged in ages from 18-26 years old. Among the couples that lived with their partner, 39% of the women and 52% of the men said that they were not certain that the relationship was permanent. Married couples dropped to 19% for both men and women.
This study indicates that over half of men that move in with their partner do not believe that it means that the relationship is permanent. In fact, 41% of men said they were not completely committed to their partner, while only 26% of women said the same.
Even though these numbers may seem high, it certainly has not stopped the numbers of couples moving in together. A report put out by the CDC in April of 2013 showed that more and more couples were living together and that the relationships were lasting longer. The report used data from the National Survey of Family Growth. Telephone interviews were conducted on 12,000 women between 2006 and 2010. Of these women, 48% were living unmarried with a partner and 40% of those became marriages within the first three years. This tells us that living together does not necessarily mean that they are headed for marriage.