Everyone leaves their home at some point, whether it’s to go to work, run errands, or go on holiday. The vast majority of people have a spare set of keys to their homes, but what most of them don’t realise is that hiding your spare key where anyone might find it is one of the most dangerous things you can do as a homeowner.
Craig Austen, CEO of Secure Rite reminds us that: “While it’s true that there are some excellent ways to hide your spare keys, you have to remember one thing: the internet exists. Any tip or trick you might have learned concerning hiding places for your spare keys have been recorded for the world to find at the click of a button”. So, what can we do to ensure that our home remains safe? We can leave a spare set of keys in the possession of people you trust.
There are a variety of reasons why spare keys are a benefit. These range from saving money to saving you the time and hassle to get into your home if you’ve misplaced your keys. Many people who make use of keys fear that spare keys make their homes, cars and offices more vulnerable. This is simply because it increases the chance of someone gaining access to your keys because there is now more than one key. At Secure Rite, we know that this is a valid fear to have, but it is important that we keep our spare keys safe and in trustworthy hands at all times. Here are some of the examples of trustworthy keyholders to consider:
1. A Trusted Neighbour
Giving a spare house key to someone a little closer to home would be beneficial to any homeowner. That way if you ever forget your keys or get locked out, all you have to do is walk next door or across the road. Make sure, however, that the neighbour you choose to leave your key with is someone whom you know, trust and communicate with regularly.
2. A Close Friend
For those who already assign their spare keys to others, the first choice is usually a best friend. After all, next to family, who could you possibly trust more? Giving your spare key to a close friend–both close to you and your neighbourhood –may be more appealing to some than giving the key to a neighbour, especially if you aren’t on a familiar basis. An added benefit is that friends are usually very familiar with and comfortable in our homes, making them an especially good candidate for house or pet-sitting.
Families are trusted with so many things; feelings, secrets, memories, so why not a spare key to your home? If your family member is local and able to come running in the event of an emergency, then they should be granted a spare key for safe keeping.
Additional Tips About Spare Keys
- Do not advertise that you have spare keys available unless it is to the people who will also be using said spare key.
- Do not label spare keys with your home address in case these keys are found by the wrong hands…
- Leave your spare keys in locations that are easily accessible to you but where they will not be accessible to unwanted guests or intruders. These could be physical locations, or you could also decide to leave them with people (trusted friends, relatives that live close by etc.)
- Make sure that you keep a list of all the spare keys you have made and know who has access to each of these spare keys. This makes it easier to track down in case anything goes wrong or if you want to get rid of a spare key.
Making use of a spare key is one of the best ways to minimise wasting time and money. Spare keys provide their owners with overall peace of mind, added convenience, and the realisation that they will not be stuck in a lockout for long if they ever find themselves in one. There are many people who will not see the use of having a spare key until it is too late. Do not be one of those folks.
Lastly, remember to update your ‘keyholder’ information with your security company before you go on holiday. Imagine a scenario where your alarm is activated, you are away and not contactable. Your armed response team arrives at your property and encounters a new, unidentified individual in your home. The individual claims that he is your brother and that he is housesitting, but if your security company has no record or declaration of this fact from you, they must act in view of your safety and the possibility that the individual on your property is trespassing.
As an active, trusted Security Partner in the Helderberg Basin, we encourage our clients to avoid any unnecessary stress for all involved, Therefore, please inform us:
- If and when you will be away
- Who has authorised access to their home at that time?
This will help us keep you, your home and your house sitter safe.
Be key smart!
Remember, we do security, you do life!