Living Together No Longer Jinxes Marriage Also: Half of first marriages end in divorce By Dustin Lushing, Newser Staff Posted Mar 23, 2012 3:35 PM CDT 24 comments Comments It's a lot more common for couples to live together before marriage in 2012 than it was decades ago. (Shutterstock) (Newser) – Living together before getting hitched no longer spells doom for married couples, says a new government study. In the late '60s, a mere 10% of American couples shared a place before marriage, and their divorce rates were higher, writes AP. Now, around 60% of couples move in together before tying the knot, and if they get engaged, their divorce rate is comparable to couples who didn't live together first. "It's becoming so common, it's not surprising it no longer negatively affects marital stability," says an expert at Bowling Green. More stats from the study: Roughly half of first marriages will end in divorce within 20 years. 3% of young women were living with a male partner when a 1982 study was conducted; now it's 11%. Males and females who have bachelor's degrees were more likely to put off marriage but also more likely to ultimately get married and remain married for at least 20 years.