Having roommates is a new —and sometimes challenging-— for young adults, both in and out of college. Different personalities and different habits can take some getting used to. But if you have a nosy roommate, those “quirks” can be downright frustrating.
Here are some tips to keep them out of your stuff.
1. Set clear boundaries
There are some things you might not mind sharing, like the cookies you just baked. But there are other things you might not be as willing to let out of your sight, like stuff that's more expensive or which has strong sentimental value. Keep a nosy roommate at bay by setting clear boundaries when you move in. Have a conversation about your expectations, what you're willing to share, and what you’re not willing to share. They may think you’re weird, but both of you are more likely to be happier in the long run.
2. Place valuables out of sight
This can be harder to do if you share a room, but the harder it is for your roommate to access your belongings, the harder it will be for them to be nosy. Just make sure to avoid obvious places like the bottom of your sock drawer.
3. Use a safe
A safe is a great way to keep your stuff, well, safe. Most people living in college or in a first apartment won't need a very big one, but it can help give you some peace of mind, especially if you're sharing a room.
4. Secure the perimeter
Locking your doors and windows is a simple step that will not only keep your valuables safe from a nosy roommate, it'll also keep your stuff safe from would-be intruders, too. While you may not be too eager to put a security camera in a place as private as your bedroom, a wireless security camera turned off and on at your convenience can be an invaluable way to reliably monitor your space.
5. Is their nosiness a pattern?
Does your roommate regularly look through your belongings or take things without asking? Or do they only do it occasionally? This can help put things in perspective when they take your favorite shirt for a night out or drink your wine without asking first. Occasional behavior merits a quick chat; consistent nosiness/intrusions requires a sit-down.