When you go off to college, for many young people, this is might be the first time you are living on your own. Most of us don’t realize how much we are used to being taken care of by our parents. So, when you are all by yourself in your dorm room for the first time, it can be a little scary.
Regardless of whether you are living on campus or in an apartment near your college, it is absolutely essential you learn how to keep your belongings and valuables safe. Since you don’t have the luxury of a home security system or your parents keep an eye out for you, it is time for you to take responsibility over your belongings. In this case, here are some useful safety tips that will help you keep your valuables safe in your dorm room.
What are Common Items Stolen from Dorm Rooms?
If you want to keep your valuables safe, then first you need to understand what kind of valuables you own. Since your dorm room environment is going to be slightly different from your home environment, you might own the same kind of valuables. For instances, in your dorm room, you might not have many appliances or savings hidden in a safe. In this case, you need to understand what items are commonly stolen from students living in dorm rooms.
Electronics are the most stolen items in dorm rooms. This applies especially for laptops and smartphones since these are devices almost every college student will have in their possession. Campus police reveal that devices such as these can go missing in a matter of minutes if they are unattended.
So, you must make sure that you do not leave your phone or your laptop unattended. If you need to leave, you must ask a trusted friend to keep an eye on your belongings. In addition, make sure all your electronic devices are password protected. So, even if they get stolen, you can at least ensure your personal information will not be stolen as well.
Other than this, records also show that textbooks and assignments are also stolen in dorm rooms. Now even though these might not be technically considered as valuables by most people, college students know that assignments hold a lot of value. Similarly, textbooks – especially latest editions – can be extremely expensive. In this case, you have to make sure that you keep your textbooks and assignments locked safely in a cupboard or locker – especially during exam season.
In addition, some other types of belongings that are stolen from dorm room include jewellery, clothing and accessories. These are usually not stolen for personal reasons but are rather stolen so they can be sold for money. So, if you own any such items that are either branded and expensive or hold great sentimental value to you, then you must ensure to lock then safely too.
How Do I Keep My Belongings Safe?
The first and most obvious strategy is to keep your dorm room locked at all times. Many college students who live in dorm rooms have a tendency to wander off the halls without locking their rooms. Even if you are just going to have a quick chat with your friend across the hall or making a trip to the vending machine on your floor, it is still necessary for you to lock your door if you are leaving your room.
Keep in mind that those who steal from your dorm could easily be your friends or peers. So, don’t think you don’t have to lock up because there are people out there. That’s why you need to do it in the first place.
Secondly, you need to keep your valuables in a personal safe. This is absolutely important – especially if you are sharing the dorm with lots of other people. Even if you trust the people who live with you, remember that you don’t really have control over who visits your dorm with your friends. In this case, keeping your valuables in a personal safe is a sensible idea. Since safes in small spaces are of a limited, you will not be able to put all your valuables in there.
So, you need to decide what is most important to you. In general, it is best to prioritize items such as electronics, cash, jewellery and credit cards since they are more likely to be stolen than clothes or stationery. When you get a safe for your dorm room, make sure to pick a password that cannot be easily guessed by other people. You should also never share the password to your safe with other people.
What Else Can I Do?
If you want to keep your valuables safe, then it is important to be prepared. Sometimes when you are robbed, you don’t even realize it. This is likely to happen when you have an untidy dorm room where things are all over the place. So, make sure your dorm room is clean and organized at all times. This way, if something goes missing, you will notice its absence immediately. The quicker you realize it and make a complaint, the more likely the campus police will be to recover your belongings.
You should also keep a detailed inventory of all your valuables. This means you need to write down the list of valuable belongings you own with a detailed description of each item. For example, instead of just writing ‘laptop’ on your list, you need to write the brand, the colour, the model and any unique characteristics. This will make it so much easier for the campus police to recover your items.
The key to protecting your valuables in your dorm room is to be sensible. It is about being prepared and showing good judgment. So, you should consider opting for a room on a higher floor in your campus accommodation since they are less likely to be robbed. It is also sensible not to post about your valuables on your social media platforms since it will make you a target among thieves in your environment.