We live in a time where decent rentals are rare, and where few people can afford to rent an entire space on their own. However, if you live with a roommate (or you’re about to have a new roommate move in), security can be the first concern for both of you. It’s important to keep things safe, especially valuables or personal information. This is usually a two-sided concern that both roommates have. This makes security an important discussion that all roommates should have early in the agreement. It’s just as important to make sure that your roommate follows the same security protocols as you do (for example, by checking home safety measures like doors and windows).
Home Security Tips for Living with a Roommate
Here’s how to handle home security when living with a roommate.
The Security Checklist
The first thing that should be set up is a simple security checklist. What all do you need to check before you can call it a job well done? Some homes have security or camera systems, while some might just have windows that should be shut before nighttime.
Write these things down and stick the list in an obvious place. The list should be the most general security protocols for home safety that you can both agree on. This way, there’s never an excuse to forget a door unlocked or any other vulnerable point in the house.
1. Lock Your Phone
Some of the most personal information we keep around about ourselves is usually on the device closest to us – a smartphone. If you are going to be sharing your home with someone, always make sure that you place a lock on your phone. Smartphones can usually lock with a PIN, a fingerprint, or a face ID – or all three at once. Even if you trust your roommate, a phone lock makes sure that private information stays private.
2. Turn Bluetooth Off
If you have a roommate, switch your Bluetooth off, and only turn it on when you intend to use it. Bluetooth is much easier to exploit than the average wi-fi connection, and if you keep Bluetooth on permanently, you are both more vulnerable to a hack. Decide which devices you will link to, and make sure that your roommate knows to do the same.
3. Shared Connection Safety
A shared internet connection always comes with some privacy concerns. Decide who uses the wi-fi and when, and make sure that both of you know who will be splitting the costs for it.
Basic safety measures such as passwords can help you and your roommate to keep a shared internet connection as safe as possible. Anywhere there is a shared connection, make sure that you and your roommate are taking the same level of precaution when you go online. It doesn’t help to use a VPN if your roommate on the same connection doesn’t.
4. The Safer Safe
Almost everyone has keepsakes or high-value items that are considered off-limits to anyone else. For these individual items, it’s best to invest in a small, personal safe. While this might seem over the top for basic house-sharing security, you will only think that until the first time something in the house disappears.
If both you and your roommate have a designated safe with its own security measures (like a key or code), this can be reassuring for both sides.
5. High-Security Padlocks
If you are intending to share a room or home with someone, invest in high-security padlocks. Never buy cheaper locks and imagine they’re going to keep anything safe. Some locks can be popped with a screwdriver in under a minute.
High-security padlocks are almost impossible to cut, can’t be popped by regular means, and guarantee that contents, whatever they are, are safe.
Same Place, Same Page
If you want to share your place with someone, make sure that you are on the same page as far as the level of security you need to feel safe.
If you are on the same page, you are much closer to living in harmony with your roommate.
Additional Information: 5 Tips to Pick a Roommate Who Won’t Compromise Your Safety and Security
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