New Home Security Help
Better Security For Your New Home
Whether your home is brand new or simply new to you, buying a home is one of the most exciting moments in life. It’s a huge investment, and represents a new chapter in your life. Embrace the excitement and use that to fuel you through all of the furniture hauling and box unpacking. But, before you dive into settling in and making your new house a home, there’s one big step you need to take: schedule an appointment with your local locksmith.
You received the keys to your house at closing, and the locks all turn well enough. There’s nothing more to worry about, right? Maybe you consider installing a security system, but locks are locks, and it doesn’t matter as long as they turn — right? Wrong! Not all locks are created equal. Not only that, but there are a range of other concerns to take into account any time you move into a new home. Whether you’ve already closed and moved in, or you’re still waiting for closing day to come, here’s what you need to know about boosting your new home’s security, and what you can do about it.
Understanding Home Security Concerns
When it comes to home security, the biggest concern most homeowners have is burglary. Concerns like house fires, burst pipes, and other more “natural” home disasters can largely be prevented through consistent care and attention to your home. When it comes to burglary, however, the only thing you can really do to prevent it is to shore up your home’s security. Burglary studies have shown that the majority of burglars look for homes that they can get into quickly, and that offer hiding spots while they scope out a house. The more you can do to make your home difficult to get into, the less likely a burglary becomes.
There are a few surprisingly simple things you can do to make your home less of a target for burglars. Those steps include:
- Replacing or rekeying all exterior locks when you move into a new home.
- Trimming back hedges or other potential hiding spots.
- Checking window locks and window housings.
- Install a security system — especially with visible sensors at windows and doors.
- Use exterior lighting to minimize hiding spots at night
Of course, it gets a bit more complicated than that. Making sure your locks are secure is one of the single most valuable steps you can take to protect your home, so you can bet that it’s a bit more complex than, “Install locks. Move on.” This is why it’s valuable to trust your lock servicing — and other home security steps — to a local locksmith.
Why Locks Matter So Much
Having a home security system is a valuable part of keeping your home safe and secure. But what good is a system that notifies the police when a burglar can get in, find your jewelry or valuables, and be out before help has time to arrive?
Burglars deal a lot in speed. So much so that a majority of burglars can be in and out of a home in only a handful of minutes — and still make off with a great many valuables. If you rely on a security system as your home’s primary level of protection, you’re doing your family and your home a disservice. A burglar can force the door, grab valuables, and be out again in as little as 2–3 minutes. While a security system may deter some burglars, studies have shown that roughly 40% of burglars will still make an attempt despite noting the presence of sensors or cameras. Don’t get us wrong, having an active home security system is absolutely helpful. It’s just important to not rely solely on the high-tech answer to keep your new home safe.
So what can you do? It sounds so simple, but make sure your locks are sturdy enough to make breaking and entering a hardship. It’s a surprisingly low-tech answer, but a properly installed deadbolt lock can go a long way toward stopping burglars and protecting your home.
Better Locks for Better Home Security
The reason a deadbolt works so well is that it provides a physical barrier that is impressively difficult to force. With time and effort, a burglar can eventually force open a door secured by a deadbolt, but it’ll take longer than most burglars want to spend — and leave them in clear view to any passersby while they work. Sturdy, well-installed deadbolts are an inexpensive but effective way of securing your home.
Please note that the emphasis here is on properly installed deadbolt locks. When a deadbolt isn’t installed well, it doesn’t do much to protect your home. Properly installed means:
- The deadbolt “throw” extends more than an inch into the door frame.
- The strike plate in the door and door frame are both installed with at least 3-inch long screws.
- The deadbolt sits firmly in the door frame when engaged — no wiggling allowed.
- The lock mechanism sits far enough back in the door frame that the door won’t splinter when the door is forced — consider adding a metal door guard for extra security.
- Ensure the door is hanging well, sits snugly (but not too tightly) in the frame, and that the hinges are in good condition.
An experienced locksmith knows how to make sure your exterior deadbolts are installed properly and check that each door is hanging properly. Bonus! Not only will well-fitted doors be more secure, but they’ll also be more energy efficient.
Steps To Protect Your New Home
Checking the deadbolts shouldn’t be the only step you take to protect your new home. Any time you move into a new house, condo, loft, duplex, or other abode, there are a few things you can do to boost security quickly and easily. These aren’t like those home improvement projects that you think will take hours, but actually take days! They’re actually easy enough that you can schedule many of these services for the day you get your keys or just after the moving truck leaves. Any time you move into a new home, make sure you:
Re-key Exterior Locks
Re-keying is an amazingly simple way to make your home more secure. Re-keying changes the pins inside a lock’s tumbler, which makes sure that no old keys will work anymore — which is great because you never know how many key copies the previous owners made. It’s a pretty quick, simple process and works with your existing door hardware. This is a great option in particular for historic homes because you don’t have to worry about finding new locks that match the look of your home. We will also provide new keys to go with your re-keyed locks, and we can cut more keys on site depending on how many you want.
Even if your home was just built, you should re-key the locks. Builders and countless contractors get a copy of the keys so they can all do the work necessary to finish your home. Unfortunately, they’re less conscientious about collecting all of those keys when the work is done. Rekeying is a great way to ensure that unknown contractors or workers can’t easily access your home.
Repair or Replace Broken Locks
In older homes, especially historic homes, the door locks will have seen a lot of use over the years. When a lock sticks and is hard to turn, that’s a pretty clear sign that something is going wrong. A loose, wobbly lock is even more problematic as it could easily be forced open — or maybe even wiggled open! A locksmith may be able to repair your lock and get it working properly again, but it might need replacing. Your local locksmith can figure out what’s going on with your locks and ensure your new lock installation is performed properly if it’s necessary.
Here at Job Done Locksmith, we specialize in lock repair and replacement for older homes in particular. We know there are plenty of beautiful historic homes around Denver. Don’t let the aesthetics get in the way of good home security! We can help you with the right locks to match the look of your home and provide better security at the same time!
Check Window Security
If a burglar can’t easily get in through the door, a window is the next spot they’ll scope out. Windows with broken locks or loose casings make it all the easier for a burglar to bust in. Have your local locksmith check your windows while they’re rekeying your locks. If there are potential concerns, we can show you the issue and give you an idea of how to fix it. A security system with sensors on every window can be a further deterrent for would-be burglars, especially if your windows are large and hidden enough that they’d make a good point of entry.
Set Up A Master Key System
If you know you’ll have a nanny, housekeeper, or pet sitter coming and going often, that’s a potential security concern. Your local locksmith can set up a master key system so that your house keys work on all exterior locks, with a separate set that only works on the doorknob locks. When your housekeeper is coming, only lock the doorknob so they can get in, but won’t be able to access your home when the deadbolts are engaged.
A keyless entry system is a good high-tech alternative to a master key system — though it will look more out of place if you have a historic home. A keyless entry system is great because you can program it with multiple codes. Get a WiFi-connected version, and you can get emails or text message updates each time the lock is opened, and see which code was used. This can make it easier to catch someone coming in when they shouldn’t be. And, if your nanny quits or you hire a new pet sitter, you can easily delete the old code and create a new one for added security.
Trim Bushes and Assess Landscaping
So, depending on the time of year you move in, you may not want to do this immediately after moving in. But, if your new home has an abundance of vegetation near the house, you’ll want to tackle that as soon as you can. Bushes are a great place for burglars to hide while they case your home, so trim them down and make it hard for someone to hide behind. If your landscaping is looking sparse, this can be a great asset! But, if you do decide your yard needs more greenery, consider thorny bushes that will deter would-be burglars. A security assessment can help you determine what elements of your landscaping might be a draw for would-be burglars.
Get A Security Assessment
Whether you want to install a home security system or not, a security assessment can be immensely valuable. An experienced locksmith knows what burglars look for, and knows how to spot potential security weaknesses. Ask about getting a security assessment when you’re having your locks rekeyed or replaced. That way, you’ll get a better understanding of where burglars might target and how to protect against break-ins. If you need to repair locks or anything immediate, your local locksmith can help. It will also give you time to consider a security system or other high-tech security solutions.
Protecting Your Historic Home
When it comes to home security, historic homes can be more difficult to secure than more recently built homes. Locks will eventually wear down and break after years of use. Likewise, door hinges can get knocked off-kilter and affect how well your doors fit within the frame — thus affecting how well your locks will stand up against break-in attempts. If you want to keep the integrity of your historic home intact without compromising on security, it’s important to work with a local locksmith who knows about the structure and style of local historic homes.
At Job Done Locksmith, we have experience working with all of the beautiful old homes that are abundant in the neighborhoods around the downtown Denver area. We have experience rekeying and servicing older locks to make sure they’re in great working order. If your home’s old locks are beyond repair, we can offer guidance on replacement locks that will keep your home secure without compromising the historic integrity of the home. We’re also happy to provide a security assessment, check the locks and casements on your windows, and more. Connect with us to learn more about how we can help you protect your historic Denver home.
Call Job Done Locksmith Today!
Moving into a new home should be an exciting adventure. Let the Job Done Locksmith team help you enjoy the peace of mind to really enjoy this new stage of life. Connect with us for everything from simple re-keying to high-tech keyless lock installation, and more! We offer our 24-hour locksmith services around Denver, plus up and down the Front Range. From Cherry Creek to Wash Park, Boulder to Castle Rock, and so much more — let us provide the personalized security help you need to make sure your new home is as secure as it can be. Connect with the Job Done Locksmith today to learn more about the services we provide, and then schedule service. We’re happy to come out the day of closing to start your new home ownership adventure with a more secure foundation, so give us a call to get started!