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Top Security Tips for University Students in Accommodation

Published 6.9.2018 in the Blog.

It's Back to School month! With the excitement of packing everything for university - whether you're a first or third year - accommodation security can easily slip your mind. Statistics show that one in five students fall victim to crime whilst studying at college or university. The average break-in costs around £900 to repair damage and replace belongings!*

Here are our top tips to ensure you're safe whilst living away from home.

Check your locks

If you're living in halls ask for information about the locking systems and how keys are regulated, recorded and controlled.

If you're privately renting ensure appropriate and quality locks are fitted on the main door, bedroom door and windows. Look out for the BSI Kitemark, a star rating on the cylinder lock and Secured by Design products. Ask your landlord who has keys to the property and make sure all previous tenants returned their keys.

If you come across any broken or damaged locks contact your landlord to sort it as soon as possible. The sooner you sort a security issue out, the safer you and your housemates will be.

Lock your windows and doors

Sounds like a obvious tip but you'd be surprised! There's no use checking your locks if you're not going to lock anything. According to the NUS (National Union of Students) up to 90% of burglaries at university are caused by insecure windows and doors. Make a mental reminder to close and lock your bedroom door, window and main property door when you're going out.

Be careful with your keys

Don't hide a key under your doormat! This is the oldest trick in the book and burglars will check in obvious places. If you misplace your key or would like a copy cut use the free Find a Locksmith app to a vetted locksmith or key cutter close to your location.

Protect your valuables

Be sure to keep your valuables out of sight! Student homes are often full of high value electronic devices such as laptops, televisions and games consoles - making them a gold mine for burglars.

Take photos of your valuables and consider noting down serial numbers of electronic items. You could also consider identity marking them with a UV security pen or security stickers. A lockable cash or security box would be a good investment to store valuables like keys and jewellery in.

If you're heading home for study week or the holidays don't leave your valuables lying about. Either take them home or put them out of view.

Don't advertise that you're out

Be wary about advertising you're out. Don't leave notes on your door saying you're not in and avoid the temptation of checking into locations on social media as this could lead a burglar right to your door. Hold off posting about your library all-nighter or big night out until the next day.

*Statistics from NUS (National Union of Students).