College and Dorm Safety Tips

burglar prevention FloridaFor many students, moving into a dorm or apartment for college is their first major experience with living alone. Living alone in an apartment, or with an unknown roommate, brings up a number of security concerns. What if your new roommate isn’t trustworthy? What if they are, but they aren’t very security-conscious and have bad habits about leaving doors unlocked? What if they’re completely trustworthy, but the friends they invite are not? There’s no way to trust everyone who may have access to your dorm. Before you move in, consider taking these security precautions.

1. Keep Doors Locked

In a dorm environment, it’s easy to leave a door unlocked. Dorm managers and RAs do their best to encourage friendly interaction between students living in the building. Unfortunately, leaving a door unlocked is an easy way to invite theft. It’s fine as long as you’re in the room, but the moment you leave, slide that deadbolt home. All it takes is one person slipping through the front door in a busy crowd to ransack a dorm room. While you’re at it, learn the common items you have that may be targets for burglars, and make sure you hide them or lock them away safely when you leave.

2. Keep Watch on your Laptop

Laptops and tablets are designed to be portable computing devices, making them perfect for the hectic college lifestyle. Unfortunately, that makes them prime targets for theft. In a crowd, most people won’t pay much attention to who owns a given computing device. Leave it at a table and wander off for a snack or a bathroom break, and it only takes a second for a thief to scoop it up and disappear. Burglar prevention in Florida goes beyond securing your home; it involves securing your possessions as well.

3. Insure your Valuables

The average college student isn’t going to have a jewelry box full of diamonds, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have any valuables. Think about the value of the items you bring to school. There’s your computer, tablet or smartphone. There’s your bike, if you bring one. Musical instruments hold a great deal of value. Your car is unlikely to be stolen outright, but you may benefit from additional insurance if you leave it parked while you’re in holiday break. Burglar prevention in Florida — including Jacksonville, Tampa and Orlando — can be assisted by a good insurance policy.

4. Pack for Break Properly

College has breaks, between semesters and around the holidays. These are times when the school is virtually shut down, the students all go home and the number of people on campus dwindles. It’s also a great time for a thief to make off with items left in unlocked rooms, unsecured cars and other such locations. If you’re going for burglar prevention in Florida, don’t forget about it just because you’re not around. Secure your valuables or take them home with you. Make sure your doors and windows — even windows on the second floor — are locked. If you leave anything of value behind, make sure it isn’t in view of the windows.

5. Don’t Forget Fire Hazards

Many dorms are designed with safety in mind. They are made of largely non-flammable materials. That said, every year, there’s always someone who manages to set something on fire. It may be microwaving popcorn too long. It may be overloading a power outlet with too many power strips. It may be leaving hair dryers plugged in when one malfunctions. In any case, practice fire safety. Don’t burn candles, avoid high wattage bulbs and unplug any device that produces heat. Fire safety may not be directly part of burglar prevention in Florida, but it is extremely important nonetheless.

6. Take Care While Moving

Be sure to take steps towards burglar prevention in Florida during move in and move out. These are some of the most confused, chaotic times of the school year. Hundreds of people are stacking possessions on the sidewalk. Doors are propped permanently open, eliminating the security provided by locks. Students, parents, siblings and friends are all present, but no one has built up trust with their fellows. The atmosphere is cordial, and it’s easy to assume a missing item was simply forgotten at home. Make sure your belongings are always either locked away or attended by someone you trust, to avoid any possibility of theft.

You are never going to be completely safe from the possibility of theft. A determined burglar can break into any dorm room or apartment. You simply need to take steps to ensure that your dorm room isn’t worth breaking into. A floor safe, hiding places for valuable items, laptop locks and other precautions are all important for burglar prevention in Florida. It’s better to be safe than to be a victim.