Keeping your valuables safe is a concern wherever you go, but when you’re sharing a dorm room with someone else, it’s important that extra precautions be taken.
Living with someone you don’t know is one thing, but you will both have family and friends coming in and out at various times, which requires safety measures. Here’s how you can keep your valuables safe when living in a dorm room.
Ground rules regarding visitors
You’re going to be living with your roommate for many months, so developing a friendship with them is important. You want to get along but keep each other and your possessions safe.
Have a roommate meeting where you come to an agreement about visitors and where they are allowed and not allowed. This is especially important if your dorm is more than just a single bedroom and includes a living area.
You may agree that the bedroom is off-limits to visitors, and you can, therefore, keep valuables secured there when people are over.
You should agree that neither of you will ever give your keys to anyone who doesn’t live in the dorm room or allow visitors to be in the dorm unattended. Allowing anyone access to your dorm room puts all valuables at risk.
Invest in a dorm room safe
According to Consumer Reports, the National Center for Education Statistics says that in 2019, the number of on-campus burglaries and robberies was 9,800. This is the equivalent of approximately 7 property crimes per 10,000 full-time students.
It never hurts to have an added layer of security to protect your belongings. Investing in a dorm room safe allows you to keep jewelry, credit cards, cash, electronics, and even textbooks safe. With a busy schedule and people coming in and out of your dorm building and your room, a safe will give you peace of mind.
Though you may want to bring a few of your expensive pieces of jewelry, watches, or other valuables with you, you should leave most of them at home.
Consider renter’s insurance
Consider getting renter’s insurance when you’re living in a dorm room because some items are expensive and required, such as your laptop and textbooks. According to Great Valley Lockshop, a renter’s policy can also cover items that are stolen from your vehicle.
At just $10-15/month for insurance, you’ll be saving a lot of money it would take to replace items in the event that anything is stolen from your dorm room or car.
Keep doors and windows locked
Keeping doors and windows closed and locked, especially when you’re not in the dorm, is imperative to keeping your valuables safe.
You can also invest in inexpensive battery-operated alarms that stick to doors and windows with adhesives and will alert you (and your neighbors) if anyone attempts to enter your dorm. This protects you and your valuables.
If you and your roommate are particularly concerned about theft, you may consider having a security camera installed in your dorm room. Note: this requires consent from all parties residing in the residence and permission from the school to perform the installation.
Use tracking tags
Another option for keeping valuables safe is to attach tracking tags to your valuable items, such as your laptop. In the event that someone swipes your tagged item, the Bluetooth connection from your phone will enable the tag to emit a noise that can be heard from a distance. You can also use GPS tracking to locate your stolen items.
Protecting your valuables while living in a dorm is something every student needs to be mindful of. By following the tips above, you can reduce the chances of having valuable items taken.