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How to prevent being locked out of your home

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Getting locked out of your home can be a frustrating and time-consuming experience. Fortunately, preventing a lockout is straightforward. In order to avoid one, you need to develop a routine that reduces the risk of losing your keys. You can also make a few simple preparations that won't take long but can save you time in the future. 

Establish good key habits

Forgetting your keys is one of the simplest — and therefore most frustrating — ways of getting locked out of your home. To prevent this, you'll need to establish a daily routine that reminds you to take your keys with you when you go out. For instance, you might want to put keys in a dish or on a hook near your front door. However, this location needs to be somewhere that's obvious to you but not to someone outside your house; don't put it near a window that an intruder could use to steal your key. 

Create a spare

If you do forget your key, you'll want to have a spare on hand. Your local locksmith can cut copies of your keys quickly and affordably. If they operate a mobile service, they may even be able to come to you so that you can test your keys then and there. 

Where to keep backups

Once your locksmith hands over your spare keys, you'll need somewhere to put them. This should be a safe place that you have access to but that wouldn't be obvious to a potential intruder. You could leave a spare copy at your workplace, for instance, or give extra keys to trusted friends or neighbours; this last option is also useful if you need someone to feed your pets or look after your home while you're away. If you want to leave a key on your property, invest in a combination-locked key safe and keep it out of public view; traditional hiding places, such as flowerpots and doormats, are easy targets. 

Be prepared 

If you do get locked out and can't get to your backup keys, you need to call in your locksmith. Make sure you have the number saved in your phone. Not only can your locksmith get you back inside, but they can advise you on what you need to do next. If you've simply left a key inside, you should be ready to get back to normal. If you've lost your key or had it stolen, however, you may need to change your locks or make other improvements to your home security. Talk to your locksmith about your next steps.