Why you should change the locks when you move home

Why you should change the locks if you’re moving to a new house

Moving to a new house is a stressful experience for anyone and, with so much to remember and do – cleaning, finding the kettle, that sort of thing – it is easy to overlook things, especially something that could be considered minor, such as changing the locks. But not doing this could land you in a whole heap of trouble.

Mortgage broker Ocean Finance undertook a survey that found that 58% of people who move into a new home don’t bother to change the locks, and only 30% changed the locks on all the doors and windows. The remaining 12% changed at least one lock – usually the main front entrance.

But why should you change the locks on your new house? Bluntly – security. If you are moving all your worldly possessions into a new house, why would you risk someone else having access to the property? If you don’t know how many sets of keys are in circulation you cannot be sure they were all handed over before you moved in. For instance, has the property ever been rented out? Have tradesmen been given keys in the past? How many previous occupants has the property had?

If you are moving into rented accommodation it is also worth looking into, as 90% of landlords don’t change the locks when new tenants move in, according to research by insurance company Direct Line. Given that the turnover of occupants in rented accommodation is often higher than private homes is it perhaps even more important that the locks are changed.

This is something that should be discussed with the landlord before anything is done. Some landlords will cover the costs of changing the locks, but others may not – check your contract to see.

Even if one key is missing from a door or window, then you cannot be sure that someone cannot gain access to your property with it and commit a burglary.

Insurance problems

While suffering a burglary would be traumatic enough, not changing the locks could invalidate your insurance. Insurers take a dim view of claims for a burglary where there is no evidence of forced entry – and, of course, if someone uses an old key to get in, that isn’t a forced entry – and are much less likely to pay out as a result.

Another consideration is whether the locks conform to British Standard 3621:2004, which is something that many insurance companies look for these days. However, this should only be a concern if you are moving into an older property that perhaps has had its locks updated in some years. 

So, if you do decide to change the locks, while you can do it yourself it is best to call a professional locksmith out to do the work and provide you with new keys. Getting experienced and qualified professionals in for this job – which doesn’t take long to complete – will ensure that the locks are as secure and well-fitted as possible.

Inta-lock Locksmiths offer services to fit new locks for people who have just moved home – and even offer discounts to those who have – across the Leicestershire area. We are available 24 hours a day 365 days per year and provide a speedy service when customers contact us. 

The locksmiths at Inta-lock can fit a wide range of locks – including ones that give higher security protection with features designed to thwart burglars.

Is it worth taking the risk of a burglary for just saving a few pounds? No. The security and peace of mind that you get from knowing that you have the only keys for the property shouldn’t be underestimated. Then you can get on with more important things, like making that cup of tea with the kettle you’ve just found and unpacked