With the Christmas holidays soon upon us, many students will be leaving their student housing and returning home for a period of time within the near future. It is no secret that student houses are one of the biggest targets for burglars, therefore it is important to take steps to keep your house safe this period.

As a student who has previously had their house broken into, I can tell you first hand that it is not a pleasant experience at all. Here is a list of simple and easy tips you can do to keep your student house safe from crime this Christmas.

  • Lock up

This sounds simple, but it is definitely overlooked. As many of your housemates may be leaving for home on the same day, some confusion may arise around who is actually the last to leave. Make sure the last person to leaves knows that they are the last. Don’t forget about windows too, and lock bedroom doors if they have locks fitted.

  • Tell your landlord

Drop your landlord a quick email or call to let them know that the property will be empty over the holiday season. This means that they can check up on the property over the time you are all away and this activity will be a big deterrence to any possible intruders. It would also be a good idea to inform your neighbours and leave them with both your own and your landlord’s numbers as they can keep an eye out for any mysterious activity for you.

  • Light timers

These are a small investment that acts as a huge deterrent to any criminal. Available as cheap as £13.99 for a pack of three from Argos, you can use these to turn on and off lights across your house while you are away, making it appear as if somebody is in the house. Although they may cost a bit on the electricity bill you were hoping to avoid over Christmas, they are definitely worth the small price they cost to ensure the safety of your possessions.

  • Hide valuable items

Bigger items such as televisions, instruments, desktop computers or games consoles that will not be taken with you are worth hiding or locking up whilst you are away. Definitely move these items out of the view of windows, and store them more secure, hidden places such as chests, storage cupboards or a loft. These are the objects that burglars will target the most.

  • Curtains

Possibly one of the most confusing things about leaving your house unattended for a long period of time – what to do with the curtains. The truth is that there is no correct answer to this, the best thing to do is to just leave them as you normally would for each room. It may be worth having the landlord change the position of these at intervals throughout your absence.

  • Social Media

In an age where everybody shares the things they do and their whereabouts, often without even realising, it is worth being cautious of what you post on your social media pages. Whilst this may seem unimportant as many social media followers from university wito you ll also be returning home for Christmas, it is important to remain aware that you do not know always know who is seeing your posts. It may help to turn off locations on your posts and not directly post about going away, or how long you will be away for.

Have a safe Christmas!

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