Living costs force couples together

CoupleOne in 25 Britons has moved in with a partner sooner than they had wanted to because of high housing costs, research from a charity has found.

Meanwhile, one in 14 people said that they had been forced to live with an ex after the relationship had ended because they could not afford to be apart, found the survey by Shelter.

The study found that people aged 18-30 were twice as likely as the population generally to have rushed into moving in with someone to save money, although one in 20 aged 31 to 44 also said that they had done this.

Rising rents, food costs and energy bills have all ramped up the pressure on household living costs in recent months as wages have stagnated.

Shelter, which questioned more than 5,000 adults across Britain, quoted a woman named Ewa, who continued to live with her ex-husband for more than six months after their marriage had ended.

The charity said she could not afford to pay the rent on their home and also save up for a deposit to move out.

She said: "My husband and I were still sharing a bed because we couldn't afford to get two singles and there isn't a spare room. It's been extremely stressful."

Shelter chief executive Campbell Robb said: "This research shows the extraordinary impact that the cost of housing is having on people's lives and relationships.

"Moving in with someone is a major life decision, and it's shocking that so many people say they are rushing their relationships because they literally can't afford to live without their other half...

"Just as concerning is the news that so many couples who have split up are unable to make the final break due to the cost of moving out and starting again."

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