For most of us, moving home is one of the most challenging and stressful things we are ever likely to experience. With so much to organise and remember, it’s easy for important jobs to get overlooked and forgotten.
Chief among these overlooked tasks is getting your locks changed when you move into your new property. A recent survey conducted by Keytek Locksmiths found that 74% of homeowners do not change their locks after moving home, potentially leaving themselves vulnerable to break-ins by other key-holders.
The study interviewed people from right across the UK, asking them ‘Did you get your locks changed within 2 weeks the last time you moved into a new home?’. The results showed that people in the South of England were most the most likely to change their locks (35% answered ‘yes’ to the survey, compared with 20% of people in the North and Scotland).
The age group most likely to get their locks changed was those aged between 35-54, while the over-55s were found to be least likely to do so.
Changing the locks on a new home is a basic security measure that has long been recommended by leading insurance companies. Many home insurance policies will not pay out if an intruder lets themself in with a key, as generally there must be clear signs of breaking and entering in order for a claim to be valid.
And it’s not just the insurance implications that are worth thinking about – there’s also the fact that you could be putting yourself and your family in danger if you don’t know for sure who else has a key to your property. Even if you completely trust the former owners, there’s no telling how many sets of keys they’ve given to relatives or lost over the years and forgotten about.
According to the ONS, the number of recorded burglaries has been gradually falling year on year for the last decade. Nonetheless it is still one of the most commonly recorded crimes, and can’t be taken lightly, whichever part of the country you live in.
There are so many expenses and arrangements to think about in any house move, and what this survey indicates is that home security is not always prioritised to the extent it perhaps should be. What do you think? Did you get the locks changed after your last move? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
This blog post was a guest post by Keytek Locksmiths, the UK’s largest national network of mobile and emergency locksmiths.