Top security tips for house buyers and home movers

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Moving to a new house can be a stressful experience.

There are, after all, dozens of things you need to focus on, from getting the right mortgage in place to making sure all the legal requirements are taken care of, not to mention actually moving all your belongings from your old home to your new one.

With everything else you have to worry about, home security can often sit towards the bottom of your list of priorities.

However, official figures you’re more likely to fall victim to domestic crime if you’ve recently moved into a new property. 

According to the Home Office, your risk of being burgled doubles in the first 12 months of moving to a new house (4.6%) when compared to the average burglary rate of 2.5%.

And new homeowners are three times as likely to suffer a break in than those who have lived in the same property for a decade or more.

So, what can you do to reduce the risk and make sure that your house move is as stress, and crime, free as possible?

Here are a few tips…

Should you change the locks on a new home?

It’s probably an additional expense that you don’t want to think about, but changing the locks on your new property might not be a bad idea.

After all, how can you know for sure how many sets of keys to your home are out there, and who might have one?

If you don’t know, and completely trust, the previous occupants of your new house, it’s a big gamble to take.

It could be an even bigger risk if you’ve moved into a rental property and you don’t know how many tenants have had keys in the past.

Can you really afford to take the risk? 

Around one million residential properties are bought and sold in the UK every year.

About 12 million adults have admitted losing their keys at least six times over the past ten years, without changing their locks. And around six in ten homeowners give a duplicate set of keys to friends, family or neighbours.

So, ask yourself the question, can you be sure how many sets of keys there might be to your new house? Have any been given out to tradesmen? Have the window locks ever been changed?

If you’re unsure, it’s better to be safe than sorry. It might be a pain, but getting replacement locks fitted can help save you a lot of money – and heartache – in the long run.

It’s also worth bearing in mind that if you didn’t change the locks on your new home and were to suffer a break-in, it may affect or invalidate your insurance.

What about my home alarm system?

If you’ve just moved home and have inherited a home alarm system in your new property, the first thing you should do is change the access codes.

Like keys, you need to be 100% sure of the number of people that know how to disarm your system with the right code. If you’re not, then your system is next to useless.

It’s also a good idea to have the system checked over and serviced to make sure it is working OK and doesn’t have anything wrong with it that may cause it to malfunction.

If you’re alarm keeps triggering in the dead of night for no reason, it won’t endear you to your new neighbours, so getting your system checked over is a must.

Check your locks

It’s a good idea to do an audit of your keys and locks when you move into a new home. Do they all work OK? Are there any keys missing? Do you have any keys that you don’t know what they are for?

It will quickly help you to identify any security vulnerabilities at the start, so you can fix them ASAP, for your own peace of mind.

Take a home security audit

While you are checking your locks, it’s also a good idea to check over your new home’s other security measures. Is there any external lighting and does it work properly? What about home CCTV?

You should take time to identify all access points – windows and doors are the obvious ones, but what about conservatories, patios or attached garages?

Do they all work properly. Do they open and close smoothly, with no alignment issues?

Can you bolster the security on weak access points, by installing a deadbolt, for example?

It’s worth taking the time to be thorough because, again, prevention is always better than cure. By investing a small amount on additional security now, it could save you in the long run.

Contact Grays Locksmiths

If you’ve just moved to a new house and are concerned about your new property’s security, Grays Locksmiths Nottingham can help.

As a member of the Master Locksmiths Association, we’re highly regulated and fully accredited.

We don’t have a call-out charge, and there are no hidden costs.

We’re here to give you simple, honest security advice to help you protect your home, your loved ones and your precious possessions.  

Give us a call on 0115 942 2315 to see how we can help.