Flatting 101: Keeping your stuff safer


There are a lot of great things about living in a flat, but your flatties ‘borrowing’ things from your room without your permission is not one of them. With people coming and going constantly, and some flatties’ relaxed approach to personal belongings, consider these easy hacks to look after your things.

Set ground rules about borrowing stuff

If you don’t mind your flattie borrowing a t-shirt every now and then, but draw the line at your tablet or laptop, it’s a good idea to set up some basic rules so everyone knows where they stand. Let your roomies know when and why it’s OK to enter your room if you aren’t there, and what they are allowed to take, so there aren’t any misunderstandings. Using a self installed video monitoring system means you can be alerted to any unexpected movements and check the situation on your phone.

Lock your room

An easy way to ensure your things are secure while you are out, as well as stopping your flatmate from using your deodorant (again!), is to install a lock on your door. You’ll need to check with your landlord first, and chat to your flatties too, but it will give you peace of mind when you’re away from the house, or if there is a gathering that sees lots of strangers roaming the hallways and having a nosy into the bedrooms. 

Let flatmates know where you are

If you’re planning to be away for the night, or have taken off on an impromptu beach weekend, let your flatmates know so they can keep an eye on your room and your stuff while you are away. If the house is regularly left empty, it might be worth considering a simple video monitoring system that can be accessed from your phones so you and your flatmates can check in and make sure everything is as it should be.

Make an emergency contact list

Write up a quick list with your housemates that covers emergency contacts – trusted neighbours who can check the back door is locked when you are all out for the day, partners/friends who can be called if something happens at the house and you can’t be reached, a reputable locksmith, and your landlord or property manager’s mobile number. 

Choose security-conscious flatties

When you’re choosing a flat, or vetting new flatmates, have a quick chat about their approach to security to make sure you are on the same page. Are they the kind of person who loses their keys a lot? Do they make a habit of checking doors and windows before they leave the house? Would they be willing to chip in for a video monitoring system so you all can keep an eye on things at the flat from your phones? It’s best to discuss these things up front so you know their values around security, rather than finding out once you/they have moved in.


Morepork Video is the new way for New Zealanders to keep an eye the things they love. Via a Morepork Camera and a Wi-Fi connection Kiwis can keep an eye on their homes, offices or loved ones whenever they like via a smartphone app. The Morepork Video Camera Pack is an exciting addition to the connected home and the unit starts at $299.95 plus a monthly subscription of $9.95 with the first six months free (on a 12 month plan). For more info check out moreporkvideo.nz

Offer ends 28 February 2018. Morepork terms, conditions and early exit fees apply.

Spark Zealand Trading Limited, the subsidiary Digilife New Zealand Limited who provide Morepork products and services, and any of the related companies accept no responsibility for decisions made by readers as result of using or relying on any information contained in this article. It is provided to assist readers on security issues for which they should seek legal or law enforcement advice. Please consult a law enforcement professional for advice specific to your situation.

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