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 Though the idea of being in a relationship and sharing quarters with another romantic duo might seem stifling to some, rising rents are forcing more and more couples to cohabitate with each other – and for the most part, the situation seems to work out just fine.

In fact, living with another couple can be a useful first step in the path toward full cohabitation. Julie and Mike, 25 and 26, have been dating since college, but when they decided to move in together last month, they signed a lease in Brooklyn with another couple. “Mainly for financial reasons,” Julie says, “but also because just the two of us right away getting out own place was a little scary and serious.”

Signing a lease with another couple affords all the benefits of living with a significant other – sharing a home, saving on expenses, taking the next step in the relationship – while still maintaining the same sense of fun and shared responsibility that comes with having multiple roommates. You live with your significant other – but have two other roommates, too. In terms of a relationship, the pressure might not be off -but at least it’s at a low simmer.

“Most of the time it’s lovely to come back home to my friends and we listen to records, play cards, drink beer, and compost which is great. And we’re joining a CSA.”

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