Post On Jul 19, 2019
You know how it always seems you can’t get a hold of your keys? Somehow they just find their way out of your pocket or your wallet or you just can’t recall where you left them. If they were smart or connected to your phone in any way, it’d be easy to have it beep or track it to somewhere in your house or outside where the garbage can is. However, your keys are still just items that need tending to else you’d be locked out of your house on a Friday night by 2 am because you just returned from the club and can’t seem to recall anything amidst the hype. So if you ever lose your keys, all hope isn’t lost, at least not yet. You’d be frustrated for a bit but there are ways to get around it and we’re about to find out.
First of all, losing your house keys isn’t something anyone wants. Usually, it is better to prevent some ills rather than look for reactive measures once something happens so here are ways to make sure you are never locked out of your house.
• Make a spare and keep them either at home or at your office. You can never be too safe. If you’re prone or given to losing keys, it is advisable to make as many possible spare keys as possible. You know all the flower pots and thick lawns you have outside your house? Use them. Better still put a spare key in your mailbox outside your home. This way you’d never get locked out.
• You could give a spare to your spouse or your neighbor. Some people are usually skeptical about this because they don’t really trust their neighbors. You’d have to make sure though that they are not the type to go snooping around your house when you’re not in just because they have a key.
• You could move past the age of the key and get a combination lock so you’d not have to worry about keeping keys safe. This could come in handy where you have a nick for misplacing keys. This is probably the safest bet considering you wouldn’t have to worry about keys. You could also resort to smart locks where you could use your phone to open your house, this is way cooler and also helps you to ditch keys.
• Use smart trackers. These usually look like a Keychain and can be connected with your smartphone. This will tell you when your keyset is far away from you and will give you GPS as to its location. This is for the people who seem to have a tough time keeping keys together
• Insurance. You could include lost keys in your insurance policy for your house so you don’t get to pay a locksmith to change your locks or have them rekeyed when you lose your keys. This will take the monetary burden off you
These are all preventive measures but where all of these do not come into play and you have lost the only keys to your house, here are some options that may be available to you.
When you’re in front of your house in the middle of the night and can’t seem to find your keys, the first point of call is to find alternate means to enter your house. Yes, it will probably seem like you’re snooping around and you’ll look like you want to break into someone’s home but you need to find alternatives. If you can’t seem to locate another means into the house and all the doors and windows are locked as they should be, then you probably should look for spare keys. Usually, people leave outlets for spare keys in places like under the flower pot in front of the house or under a slab. If you still can’t find a way in, then you’d resort to calling in the cavalry and this means the locksmiths.
Sometimes replacing your locks can be very expensive when you lose your keys especially for some kind of locks that would require a signature before installation. If you have an insurance cover on the house, you could call up your insurance company and have them cover for the replacements. This would take the burden off you. Where you don’t have such insurance cover, try exploring other means.
Sometimes it's better new right? Some broken things are better off replaced than repaired. So you could have the lock picked and opened by a locksmith but if you’re feeling that it would grant them undue access to your home, you could just have the lock replaced. Usually, locksmiths who have emergency services work around the clock and can show up under the specified time so you would not have to wait so long. Like every other art, the locksmiths would explain to you if you need to change the locks completely or just tweak the cylinders so another set of keys could open it. You’d have a range of options from lock repairs to lock installations to replacements or tweaking the cylinders which are also known as rekeying. All these will be properly explained so you’d choose which best suits you. Sometimes a very skilled locksmith can even make you a fresh set of keys without a sample as some of them have perfected the art of cutting keys by hand and not necessarily waiting for samples. All they’d need are their tools as some keys that are easily replaceable while some others need way more than a locksmith.
• Where they are cylinder locks either for the front door or the back, those are easily replaceable. These usually seem very frequent hence it’s much easier to bypass.
• Whether it is the patio lock or the garage lock that has missing keys, they are relatively easy to replace.
• Where the keys lost are for a safe lock or one that is restricted, it would need an expert cutter.
When replacing locks, you’d need to upgrade them so they’re different from the ones you’re replacing and you’d also need to check the new ones with your insurance company to be sure it meets up with the requirements. Something to note would be to try to make the keys identical so one key could open most or all of the locks.
Changing the locks in your house should depend on some factors. Seeing how easy it was to lose your keys, a lock replacement would depend on the reasons and mode of losing the previous set of keys. You’d need to ask yourself some questions.
• How did the previous set of keys get lost?
Your decision to change your locks should depend on how your previous keys were lost. If they were stolen, you probably need to change the locks as your safety should be your priority but if you misplaced them, then there are very slim chances that someone will see your lost keys and somehow trace it to your home unless of course, you have an identifier on them. Where there is an identifier maybe like a tag with your name and address, you would need to change the locks and replace them with new and different ones.
• Did you lose the master key to your home?
Losing the master key to your home could be a major determinant of changing or replacing your locks. Usually, master keys aren’t exactly one size fits all but they can be modified to open all the locks in your home. Every lock would have its key which is peculiar to that lock but a master key opens them all. Losing your master key would mean that you need to change all the locks in your home or all the locks that can be opened by the master key. You cannot, however, ignore this option because anyone who has access to your master key invariably has access to your home.
• How much would it cost to replace the locks?
This is a major factor to consider when deciding whether to replace the locks or just rekey the cylinders. Where you are restricted by a budget, it is advisable to rekey the locks but where you are not, you should take the time out to change and upgrade the locks. The cost of completely changing the locks would, of course, be more expensive than rekeying the cylinders. Where your locks already need an upgrade, it is better to change the locks completely. The cost of replacing locks could also depend on the location of your house, the time of the day that you need the locks changed and the type of lock that needs to be changed. If you’re stuck in the middle of the night outside your home, be rest assured you’d be charged for the time it took them to come to you. Where the locks are kind of more sophisticated say like safe keys, you’d be charged higher according to the amount of work to be done to the locks.
• What kind of locks are currently installed in your home?
Where you need to change locks in your home if the ones already installed are high-security locks and can afford you the maximum levels of security needed, it is advisable you keep it and have it rekeyed so the keys you lost cannot open them. Where there aren’t, you could use the opportunity to upgrade your locks and keep up your security uptight. This would help you to kill two birds with one stone.
• Have you misplaced your house keys before?
Where there seems to be a pattern in losing your house keys, it is advisable to change the locks completely. This would mean you have a knack for losing things especially keys. It would also mean that you should explore other options when it comes to locks. So if you constantly have the problem of a lost key, try installing smart locks that do not need keys for entry. This would save you the struggle with keeping keys safe and is also more reliable. Where you want to change to smart locks, have a locksmith walk you through the process and requirements needed for a smart lock. On the other hand, if you are ultimately careless with keys, you could have a lot of spare keys made and kept with most of the people you know, your friends, parents, lovers or spouses.
• Do you have spare keys?
Losing your house keys could be easier when you have spare keys with your neighbor or spouse as the keys would help you gain access into your home. However, the problem with using spare keys is the fact that they cannot guarantee your safety. Yes, you now have access to your home but you can’t live with the thought of not knowing what exactly happened to the missing ones. So when deciding whether to change your locks, you’d need to consider if using your spare keys is good enough or if you need to change them. Be sure to pick the option that makes you sleep well at night.
From the above factors already listed out, it is safe to say that it isn’t a one-way trip. Changing your locks solely depends on the circumstances with which you find yourself. You would need to consider a lot of things and weigh their importance before making a decision.
You could say that the chances of having a burglar in your home as a result of your lost keys are minute but it is better to be safe and have your locks changed than be sorry you didn’t. Sometimes losing your keys could be a blessing in disguise and at other times it could just be plain frustrating. Either way, be sure to put your safety and security first amidst other factors.
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