Even if you are a newly-minted freshmen student, a hired employee to your dream company, or a simple human being looking for independence away from home, it is essential to have a sanctuary that you can call your personal space. Renting a condo unit can be one of the ways to do this, and it’s a good one since you split the bill between other renters. But there are problems with renting, especially if you’re the newbie. Certain problems may arise from the likes of unpaid bills or problematic roommates. However, what would you do if your new acquaintance, also known as your roommate, has the habit of taking your things? Here are seven tips for a classy way of dealing with your sneaky roommates without losing your poise.

1. Know and double-check your things.

This is the best time to practice your OC abilities. If you think that you lost something that you certainly put in your area, try to at least find it in areas where you might have left it. Remember that being certain is the best protection to your claims.

2. Keep calm and be observant.

There are a lot of students and even professionals who lose their emotional stability when faced with constraints, especially if they already have a suspect in stealing their things. If it allegedly happens to be your roommate, keep your nerves down and be the investigator of the crime through observing his or her actions.

3. Know your enemy and leave a trap.

If you are living in a condo with one companion, lady luck is on your side because you only have one suspect. Nonetheless, it will take more time to dissect which of your two or more companions have been stealing your things. Leave a trap: may it be the most high-tech mode of gathering evidences or through a conversation that will spill his or her intentions to your things. Also, it is recommended to intentionally fix your things in a manner that you will easily detect if something is gone.

4. Support your claims with evidence.

Stealing is a crime, but never get into a court without factual or tangible evidences. May the lost item be a sentimental candy wrapper or your 1-day old iPhone 5s, produce evidence that will increase your chance in winning a claimed negotiation.

5. Talk to the right people.

It is never wrong to share your experience and problems with other people, but make sure you get the right words to the right people. It is better to talk to your BFF or siblings who would help you ease what you are feeling and would not make the situation worse.

6. Confrontation is still the best solution.

If you already have your claims and evidences altogether, the next step is to confront your roommate on the best time, at the right place, in your best mood. It is also fair for the both of you to listen to each other’s side as you make the conversation.

7. Conclude a deal with compromise and negotiation.

Make a pact with each other through compromise and negotiation (learn from Sheldon and Leonard from the Big Bang Theory). Never settle for something unclear to not repeat the same mistake again. Know each other’s boundaries when it comes to personal things. There is no need for a third party for a first offence. Let it serve as the warning and take further actions and consequences if it happens again. Let moving away be your last resort if breaching of compromise happen.

You might be familiar with the ABCs of condo renting, but living in a shared condo unit and spaces will still leave your forehead wrinkled. Definitely, splitting rent saves you money but a roommate can jeopardize your belongings. The best thing to do is to remain calm and have these sneaky courses of action in mind.