Your safety is our top priority. We have compiled a list of resources and useful tips to ensure that your off-campus living experience is both safe and successful.
- Always keep your doors and windows locked.
- Never leave your door or any entrance to your residence open and unattended.
- Keep your keys in a safe location. Do not lend your keys to anyone. Inform your landlord immediately if your keys are lost or stolen.
- Do not allow any maintenance worker to enter your apartment without permission from your landlord. Your landlord will give you notice if repairs are being done in your apartment.
- Do not leave valuables in plain sight of windows
- Report any suspicious activities to the Pitt Police.
Fire & Carbon Monoxide Tips
- Ensure your apartment is equipped with working smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) detectors, as well as a fire extinguisher that is up to date.
- Ask your landlord to install carbon monoxide detectors in your home or purchase them and install them yourself.
- Regularly test fuel-burning appliances for carbon monoxide emissions
- Use charcoal or gas grills outdoors only, never use them inside, including in garages or enclosed spaces.
- Be aware of carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, confusion, and flu-like symptoms.
- Refer to the Environmental Health and Safety Off-Campus Apartment Fire Safety page for a helpful checklist and additional resources.
Things to Keep Handy
- Make sure you always have fresh batteries for your carbon monoxide (CO) and Smoke Detectors.
- Purchase a first aid kit to treat minor injuries.
- Keep a tool kit handy for small repairs.
- A flashlight can be useful in the event of power outages.
Leaving for breaks
- Notify your landlord and a trusted neighbor if possible
- Lock all doors and windows
- Move any valuable items away from the windows or take them with you
- Close all blinds
- Keep a visible light on – use an outlet timer to schedule lights to turn on and off
- Request a hold on mail and deliveries for the time you will be gone
- Unplug any electronics
- Arrange for someone to check on your home if possible
- Don’t leave any spare keys outside
- Don’t turn your heat below 64 degrees to avoid freezing your pipes
Portable Air Conditioning Units
- Check that window units are installed securely and stably
- Clean air filters regularly during heavy usage periods
- Keep vents and registers clear: make sure that no furniture, curtains, or other objects are blocking the unit
- Watch for water leaks – if you notice water leaking from the AC unit, turn off the system immediately and contact your maintenance providers
- Avoid sudden temperature changes – gradual adjustments to the temperature are more efficient and can prevent excess wear on the AC unit.
- If you have AC units installed in ground-level windows, ensure that they are screwed into the window and the window is securely shut to avoid an easy method of entry into your home.