Research reveals a surprising number of people are still living with their ex-parter – are you?

Are you unable to (physically) move on?

 Would you ever continue living with an ex-partner after splitting up? While it is probably the last thing you'd want to do, new research has revealed a number of us have been stuck living with an ex at some point.

Related: Surprising number of Brits have a break up plan for their homes – do you?

Research by insurer Direct Line has revealed that one in six people have lived with their ex. While one in 25 of respondents said they were still living with an ex-partner.

Living with an ex-partner

The financial pressures of rental contracts and mortgage payments mean that people can't always just get up and leave despite being separated. Plus there is the added difficulty of trying to find a new place to live.

house exterior with brick walls and black door

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Colin Poole)

The research found that on average it took four months before either side could afford to leave or were contractually able to move to a new home.

18 per cent of respondents to the survey said that the main cause for the delay in moving out after the end of the relationship was finding somewhere else to live. 16 per cent said the delay was largely financial because neither could afford to buy the other out and couldn't afford to live alone.

However, 13 per cent of former couples decided to keep living together because they shared children and thought it was best for the family to continue to live together in the family home.

room with antique mirror on white walls and wooden armchair

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Colin Poole)

However, living with an ex doesn't come without its risks. One of the main risks being to personal items lying around the house.

42 per cent of former couples living with an ex said an item was broken after the break-up. IPads and laptops took the brunt of the post-breakup anger. Closely followed by furniture and the classic plates and bowls.

room with white wooden table and chairs

(Image credit: Ti-Media)

Another side-effect of living with an ex seems to be theft. 57 per cent of former couples claimed that a partner had stolen something of theirs post-breakup. While 42 per cent admitted to stealing something from their ex-partner.

'For many, it would be extremely difficult to carry on living with an ex after breaking up,' says Dan Simson, head of home insurance at Direct Line. 'Unfortunately, while people may have good intentions about keeping things amicable at home, it seems it is often not realistic and can result in an uncomfortable living environment.'

Related: THESE are the top 10 things that could go wrong when moving house

Have you ever lived with an ex?

Rebecca Knight
Deputy Editor, Digital

Rebecca Knight has been the Deputy Editor on the Ideal Home Website since 2022. She graduated with a Masters degree in magazine journalism from City, University of London in 2018, before starting her journalism career as a staff writer on women's weekly magazines. She fell into the world of homes and interiors after joining the Ideal Home website team in 2019 as a Digital Writer. In 2020 she moved into position of Homes News Editor working across Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc, Real Homes, Gardeningetc and Ideal Home covering everything from the latest viral cleaning hack to the next big interior trend.