When you start dating someone new, there are a lot of important “firsts.” There’s the first date, of course, and the first kiss. And then there’s the first time that you show your new flame your apartment. In some ways, feeling butterflies can be a good thing. But if you’re worried about bringing your potential new partner back to your house, there might be good reason for it — especially if you’re notorious for keeping your home messy.
The state of your home can say a lot about you — even if you don’t realize it. If your home is clean, tidy, and on-trend, that can mean you’re organized and care about your physical environment. But while remodeling your bathroom allow for a 70% return on investment, merely cleaning the bathroom could potentially improve the ROI of your relationships. That’s because studies have found that dates actually do care about how well-kept your home is. And if it’s dirty and messy, you might end up alone.
Visiting A New Date’s Home
One Rent.com study from 2014 found that when singles visit a new date’s apartment for the first time, 82% of respondents pay attention to how clean or dirty their place is. What’s more, 78% of renters who participated said that a date with someone who had a dirty apartment would be their biggest turn-off. In addition, 67% of those surveyed said that seeing a clean apartment would actually make them more interested in their potential partner. And a separate survey commissioned by a researcher at UC Berkeley found that 67% of people admit to looking around their date’s apartments to assess how compatible they are; in that survey, 15% of respondents said they’d dump someone simply because their house was messy.
Messy Home Can Be Romance Killer
Dirty surroundings unattractive and gross, meaning that most people won’t exactly be in the mood for romance after seeing a pile of dirty dishes or grime in the bathroom. Studies have found that organic levels tend to be two to five times higher indoors than outdoors and that these organics can result in health problems when inhaled.
No one wants to get snuggly on the couch when they’re surrounded by dust and dirt and who-knows-what. Plus, a date might assume that if your home’s one big mess, your life probably is, too. And while women do care a bit more about the cleanliness of certain areas, men surveyed about messy surroundings sometimes reacted even more strongly to these situations — so no gender or sexuality is off the hook.
Mess Equals Relationship Stress
In the end, being surrounded by mess isn’t healthy for us. Living in a disorganized environment can be a source of stress. And if you’re also worried about your date judging you for the state of your home, it might be beneficial to do something about it. That doesn’t mean you have to keep your apartment looking unrealistically clean, but it does mean you should take action.
Spending 10 or 15 minutes picking up a given space prior to your date’s arrival can work wonders — especially if you concentrate on areas like the bathroom, bedroom, and main living space. Take care of the basics like excessive clutter and trash. And if you’re so used to the disorganized state of your home that you’ve become desensitized to it, enlist the help of a trusted friend to take a look and point out the areas that someone else might judge.
Although it might seem harsh for a date to ghost you based on a messy home, remember that your environment can be a good reflection of who you are and how you operate. Color scheme and personal taste probably isn’t as important as how cluttered or dirty a room is. So before you’re tempted to pursue a home makeover to impress a new man or woman in your life, make a pact to keep your house clean and orderly first.