Change your Locks!
Why Change your Locks?
You might not think it’s an immediate must when moving in, but we’re here to tell you otherwise. Changing the locks is vital in keeping yourself and your belongings safe in your new place. Sure the previous homeowners will present you with their sets of keys, but there could be many spares out there that were never retrieved (contractors, dog sitters, neighbors, family members, etc.) Even if you’re a renter, ask your landlord to change the lock in-between tenants to ensure that only the appropriate people have access to your apartment.
Tip –> Don’t forget to change your garage door code too!
How to Find a Locksmith?
Okay, so we’ve convinced you to change your locks but how the heck do you find a reputable locksmith. Great question. First and foremost, ask family and friends for recommendations. They may have someone they know and trust that you can easily call up to visit your new pad. If that doesn’t work, do some research on the internet. Read reviews, check out different locksmith’s websites, or look on sites like Angie’s List. You want to find someone reputable who you can trust, so don’t be afraid to shop around for one that is right for you. Also keep location in mind. You might want to find a locksmith who lives within a 10 mile radius, just in case you ever need to call them in the future if you get locked out.
I recently hired a locksmith to re-key our new condo, and he requested that I send pictures of my current locks via text. This was helpful as he could bring the necessary supplies when coming to change them. So before you call… you might want to snap a few close-up photos so they know what they’re working with.
How much does it cost?
You’ll most likely be able to get an estimate over the phone from your locksmith. Often times they’ll charge you by the lock, and then add on a few more dollars for spare keys. If possible, confirm prices over the phone so you’re not surprised at the price when he arrives. Expect to pay anywhere from $75-$300 to have your home re-keyed.
What should you expect?
Licensed locksmiths should ask for your identification when they visit your home to make sure that you really are the homeowner. Don’t be offended if your locksmith asks… instead rest assured that he knows what he is doing! You can also have your locksmith walk around your home to view any potential “weak spots” where you might want to put in extra security measures.
So what do you say? Are you going to add this to your mile-long moving to-do list? One of the first steps in making your new home your own is having control over who can access your front door. Change your locks and have peace of mind in your new place.
For more fun tips, check out this Reader’s Digest article featuring 13 things your locksmith won’t tell you! <— pretty funny!
And then be sure to organize your home keys with the tips from this post!