Are you wondering if it’s time to change your home’s door locks?
Some people change their home’s door locks every few years just to be on the safe side. If you haven’t changed your locks recently, it might be worth considering a change.
But some situations call for a more immediate change in the locks. Any incident that makes the security of your home vulnerable should be a good enough reason to get new locks installed.
Getting new home door locks is a relatively easy and cost-effective process, especially if your home is at risk of security threats. You’re protecting not only your belongings but also the safety and well-being of everyone who lives in your home.
A residential locksmith company can help you change your locks when any of the following 10 situations happen.
1. Moving Into a New Home
Changing all of the locks should be one of the first things you do when you take possession of a new home.
Even though the previous owner hands over the keys when you close, there’s no guarantee you have all copies of the keys.
Homeowners often make multiple copies of keys. They might hand them out to friends, extended family, service providers, contractors, and neighbors.
Even if they try to collect them all, there could be more keys still floating around.
When the home is on the market, there is usually a lockbox with a key for real estate agents. That once again puts the key at risk of being stolen or copied.
It’ll give you peace of mind to have new locks installed before you officially move into your home. This gives you a fresh start and gives you total control over all copies of the keys that get distributed.
You can also use this as a chance to upgrade the door locks. If the old locks or door handles aren’t really your style, you can replace them with something updated that fits your style.
Think of it as your first home renovation project that not only makes you home more appealing when people approach but also makes it a lot more secure once you start moving things into your new home.
2. Lost Keys
Have you lost your keys lately? Or maybe your kids lost their keys. It could even be your neighbors, relatives, or other people who have copies.
Lost keys happen, but it also puts your home at risk.
If you notice keys missing, whether you know you lost them or suspect they were stolen, it’s a good idea to have your locks changed.
That doesn’t mean you should run out and get new locks every time you misplace your keys. Sets of keys often get temporarily misplaced and are quickly found again.
But if your keys are truly lost and can’t be found, replacing the locks may be necessary.
No one might ever find them or connect them to your house, but it’s better to be safe just in case. Call a locksmith to have the locks replaced so you don’t have to worry about the missing keys.
Then, take steps to make sure you don’t lose your keys again. Use key trackers to help find keys inside the home.
Talk to your kids about the importance of keeping their keys safe. You might get them a special key ring that clips inside their backpack if they take their keys to school.
These little steps can prevent future lost or stolen keys, which can prevent the need to replace your locks again anytime soon.
3. Break-In or Attempted Break-In
An estimated 1,401,840 burglaries happened in 2017. It’s something every homeowner fears and hopes they never have to encounter. But with so many burglaries happening, it’s possible that you’ll face it at some point.
If you experience a break-in or attempted break-in, consider emergency locksmith services to fix the damage and change the locks immediately.
You’ll feel much more secure in your home once you get new locks installed.
When someone tries to break into your home, they might damage the locking mechanism. Even if it still operates somewhat, you’ll want a new lock to ensure it’s secure.
You could also fear that someone has a copy of your key. If you have a spare key in your home, the burglar could take it. They can then come back to your home at any time.
You’ll have a lot to handle after a break-in, but adding a new lock to your list is one of the first things you should do. It keeps your home more secure and reduces the risk of a recurrent break-in.
Having a new lock and potentially installing a new security system could the things that make you and your family once again feel comfortable in your own home.
4. Change in Living Situation
When anything changes with your living situation, it’s a good idea to use a professional lock service provider to change things.
This often happens in a roommate situation. You might rent out one of your rooms to a friend or stranger. It could even be a temporary situation where you let someone crash at your place for a short time.
When that person moves out, it’s a good idea to change the locks. Even if they turn in the keys, it’ll make you feel better to have new locks put in place.
This is also important in a rental property if you’re the landlord. It’s a good idea to change the locks each time a tenant moves out. This ensures they don’t have access to your property, and it gives the new tenants peace of mind knowing they have new locks with no spare keys floating around.
5. Poor Quality Locks
Some locks are simply inferior in quality. Not all deadbolts are strong and resistant to break-ins.
Maybe you chose the inferior locks yourself not realizing that the strength of the locks matter. Perhaps you inherited inferior locks when you bought your house.
Whatever the reason, investing in higher-quality locks is a good idea. It increases the overall security of your home. It can also increase the value of your home and make it more appealing if you plan to sell anytime soon.
6. Old, Worn Locks
Even the best built locks will eventually break down and show signs of wear. That wear can happen faster if you aren’t careful with your locks. Jamming keys into the locks or being rough with the locks, in general, might speed up the wear.
You might notice the locks are getting worn when the key isn’t as easy to turn. Stiffness can also be a sign of wear as can rust or tarnish on the lock.
When the locks start to wear down, they might not be as reliable. This could make your home more of a target for burglars. The older locks are much easier to pick, which means someone could gain access to your house very quickly.
An older lock can also be an annoyance to you. It might be more difficult to get the lock to operate smoothly.
Older locks might also make your front door look less attractive. It’s a minor thing, but swapping it out gives your front door an improved look and increases your home’s curb appeal.
Replacing old and worn locks gives you greater security for your family. It also makes it easier to open your doors quickly and smoothly.
It also gives you the chance to upgrade to newer lock technology, such as smart locks that integrate into your overall smart home system.
7. Break-Up or Divorce
Going through a divorce partially falls under a change in your living situation. Your spouse might move out of the home while you stay there.
Even if the divorce starts out amicable, it’s a good idea to change your locks and prohibit access to your home once your spouse moves out. This prevents any potential problems.
It’s especially important if your spouse is aggressive, abusive, or vindictive. Your spouse could access your home and cause damage, violate your privacy, or become a threat to you.
You also don’t know who your spouse might give the key to after moving out. There are too many unknowns in the equation to leave the locks the same.
If you break up with someone who doesn’t live with you, it’s still a good idea to change the locks if that person has a copy of your key.
Again, the breakup could seem amicable at first, but you never know what the other person might do with your key.
Don’t forget to change your garage door code at the same time to prohibit access that way.
8. Disability Accommodations
It’s not always a security threat that forces you to change your locks. It could be a change in the health or physical condition of a family member.
Traditional locks aren’t always easy for people with disabilities to operate. It might not even be a severe disability that causes difficulties. A change in mobility, such as limited grip strength, could make your current locks difficult to operate.
It can be difficult to insert a key into the lock if you have difficulty gripping or controlling your hand movements. Sometimes it’s turning the knob or turning a deadbolt lock inside the home to unlock the door from the inside.
Smart locks are often a good solution in those situations. They allow entry through a smartphone app or by entering a passcode.
9. Ended Business Agreement
Sometimes homeowners give out keys to contractors or service providers. They trust them to have access to the home via the key while providing the service.
For example, you might be renovating your home and give your general contractor for the renovations a copy of the key. Or you might give other contractors a key.
If you have several contractors entering your home, you might lose track of who has a copy of your key. This makes it difficult to get all copies back when the work is complete.
This is fine while the renovations happen, but you don’t want them to have access to your home once the work is complete. That’s true even when you choose a trusted contractor.
The same could be true when you use a cleaning service or other recurring service providers who need access to your home.
You shouldn’t have to worry about those business providers being trustworthy, but it’s always better to be cautious.
Putting in new locks once that business arrangement is over eliminates the possibility of anyone having access to your home.
10. Gave Out Keys to Others
It’s common to give out keys to other people. You might give your neighbor a copy of the key in case you get locked out or someone needs access while you’re out of town for emergencies.
You might give a friend or family member a key.
But circumstances can change over time. You might have a falling out with a friend. You might no longer want your neighbor to have access to your home.
It’s also possible to lose track of the keys you’ve passed out. You might have given a key to a friend years ago that you forgot about and no longer talk to.
In those situations, getting a new lock on your door makes all of those distributed keys irrelevant. You no longer have to worry about anyone having a key if they’re no longer a trusted part of your life.
Replace Your Home’s Door Locks
There are many situations in which you should consider changing your home’s door locks. Anytime there’s a potential weakness in your home locks, it’s a good idea to switch them out for new locks. It makes you feel better and increases your family’s safety.
If you’re facing any of the above situations, request service now to get your locks changed and to restore your peace of mind.