Locked Out of House
Locked out of your House? – Tips on what should you do.
Nobody ever plans to get locked out of their house. It can be an incredibly stressful situation, so what can you do?
It feels like an emergency when you are locked out of your house or car, especially if you haven’t given spare keys to any family members or friends. You’ll need an emergency Locksmith that will arrive quickly, you don’t want to be wasting time researching who the best Locksmith in your area is. This is where Keytek® Locksmiths come in. All of our local Locksmiths are fully trained and police checked, meaning you will have the peace of mind that you are using someone credible.
Once you call Keytek® and tell us you have locked yourself out of your house, we will class the situation as ‘emergency’ therefore we will do everything within our power to get a Locksmith to you in 30 minutes*. All you will need to do is give us some details over the phone about how you have locked yourself out, where you are and your door type so we make sure that the Locksmith can be informed of your situation and get you in your home as soon as possible.
Head over to our Locksmith Prices Page for more information about Locksmith charges, or visit our Ultimate Home Security Guide to find some tips to secure your home. Are you locked out of your car or van? Get help from our Auto Locksmiths today!
What To Do If Your Locked Out
- First Ask for Help
- Left Your Keys Inside Your House?
- You’ve Lost Your Keys?
- Have Your Keys Been Stolen?
- Is Your Lock Faulty?
- Has The Key Broken Inside the Lock?
- Locked Out of Rental Property?
- Other Methods of Entry
- What Should You NOT Do?
- Tips To Prevent Further Lock Outs
- Emergency Locksmiths Near My House
The first thing to do is to ask a roommate or a friend or family member with a spare key to come and open your door. Although this may be inconvenient for them, this is the best and cheapest option, and potentially quickest if they aren’t far away from your house, so you can avoid being stranded outside for too long.
If you live in an apartment, try asking your neighbours if they can let you in, or ask the building manager if they have a spare key so you can gain access to your home. Be prepared to provide identification and pay a lock-out fee for this.
If you live in a rented property, try calling your landlord to see if they are close by and able to unlock your door for you.
It’s frustrating, but it happens. Especially if you have a door that locks automatically when shut, such as a night latch on a wooden door or on certain euro cylinder locks on uPVC doors, however this is less common. Locking yourself out this way often happens when you’ve just popped out to take the bins out or get something from the car and you’ve not picked up your keys. Check out our guide on How to Change a uPVC Door Lock Cylinder here!
This is actually one of the best ways to lock yourself out, because in most cases the Locksmith can gain entry non-destructively by picking your lock. This means no damage and no replacement lock needed.
If you frequently lose your keys or lock them inside the house have a look at our smart home security guide where we offer advice on smart locks, so you don’t need keys to unlock your front door. Read our blog on the pros and cons on Smart Locks vs Traditional Lock to get more advice, or find out what the best smart locks in 2022 are.
It may be the case that you have come home only to realise that you’ve lost your keys. If you are 100% sure that your keys have been lost and not stolen, then you need to call a Keytek® emergency Locksmith. If your keys are lost, we would recommend that you replace the locks, as your security could be compromised. The Locksmith would gain entry to your home and then replace your lock for you, all in one job.
If you were to decide not to get your lock changed then the Locksmith should be able to gain entry to your home without damaging your current lock. To find out more about what to do if your keys are lost, take a look at our lost keys blog and find out how to not lose your keys.
Read our blog for advice on what to do if you lose your car keys.
Having your keys stolen can be upsetting and stressful, especially if it leaves you locked out of the house. You will need to inform the police and Neighbourhood Watch if you fear your keys have been stolen, it’s important to describe any features of your key or keyring that could help identify them if found.
You will also need a Locksmith to replace your locks. This is incredibly important to do if your keys have been stolen, as you now don’t know who has access to your home. By not having your locks changed in the event of a theft, you could be invalidating your home insurance.
You may also need to think about what other keys has gone missing with your house keys: car key, work key or maybe a neighbour’s spare key. You will need to inform anyone that will be affected by your keys going missing, as they may need to update their security measures.
Sometimes you may find yourself locked out because the lock itself has failed or is broken. Locks that are on the exterior of a property can be affected by adverse weather conditions, such as very low or very high temperatures. They could also be jammed with dirt, or the small internal components have worn out over time.
If this is the case one of our local Locksmiths will aim to fix the lock without having to replace it. However, if the lock is beyond repair then one of our Locksmith should be able to change the lock for you then and there.
If your key snaps inside your lock, you may think all is lost, however don’t despair! A Keytek® Locksmith may be able to extract the broken key without damaging the lock. The most important thing to remember is that you should not try and extract the key yourself; this could cause further damage and make the lock irreparable. If the Locksmith cannot extract the key without damaging your lock, then they should be able to replace your lock in the same visit.
If you find yourself locked out of your rented property due to a faulty lock, then 9 times out of 10, it’s something your landlord or letting agent needs to take responsibility for.
You should call your landlord and ask for them to arrange a Locksmith that they approve of to come to the property to complete the job. In many cases the landlord will cover the cost of the work. Even if you are unsure of who should take responsibility of hiring a Locksmith and changing the locks, you should always consult with your landlord first, as if you do not you could be in breach of your tenancy agreement.
Who Do I Speak With?
Each agency and landlord will have someone designated to deal with the maintenance and care of all their properties, simply contact your agency and explain your situation and they will be able to help you find the right person to deal with your request. If that person is not in the office or is on annual leave… feel free to push the point that this situation needs dealing with right away.
What Should I Do Out of Hours?
If you find yourself locked out at a time that you cannot get in touch with your landlord then they best thing to do is call your landlords out of hour’s number and if no one answers, leave them a message explaining the situation. Then you need to call an emergency Locksmith such as Keytek® to get someone to you as soon as possible.
It can be difficult to know what to do when you’re renting but reading our Ultimate Guide to Rented Home Security could help you as a tenant protect your home.
Get Enough Key Copies
When you are requesting a Locksmith to arrive at your property, remember to ask them how many keys will come with the replacement lock as you may need to pass one or two copies to your agency or landlord, and if you don’t sort this while the Locksmith is on site dealing with your lock, it will be your responsibility to head out after his visit to find a key cutting service locally.
If your property is rented there is a chance your landlord will have a spare key to your home, depending on their current location, there is chance they will be able to give you entry into your property. If you live in an apartment complex or a block of flats, the owner of the block maybe be able to provide a spare key if you are able to confirm your identity.
Although it may be highly unlikely, it is worth checking to see if you have left any other doors or windows around your property unlocked. We advise against attempting to pick or tamper with your door lock to gain entry, as this could damage the lock and result in you needing a replacement or lock repair job, which will be more costly than a simply gaining entry.
Do Not Call 999
Although police can help if locked out of house, they should ONLY be called in an emergency, for example if there is immediate danger, a small child is locked inside or there is risk of fire. The London fire brigade reported that between 2010-2015 they spent a whopping £9.5 million on ‘locked out’ calls.
It’s been estimated that they receive 16 calls a day that relate to locked in/ locked out situations, however when they arrive on site, they are not considered emergencies. It costs on average £350 for the Fire Brigade to attend one of these calls. The advice from the fire service states;
“If there is a risk of a fire, it’s a real emergency, or you can’t get to a young child inside, then we will come and help. But ringing just because you don’t want to pay for a Locksmith is not good enough.”
Do NOT Try To Fix It Yourself
You should also not try and fix the problem yourself as this could make the situation worse. If you have not damaged the lock, then trying to open the door yourself could cause you to do so. That means having to spend more money getting it fixed!
If you do manage to open the door yourself, the techniques you use to open your door may invalidate your insurance, as you may have compromised the internal mechanisms of the lock or weakened the door itself. It’s always best to engage the services of a professional Locksmith so you can be sure the work is done to a high standard, and you are truly secure.
Find a local Locksmith near you!
Do NOT Put Yourself In Danger
Once you discover you’ve locked yourself out, it’s only natural to want to try and find a way in. It would be very tempting to try to climb to an open window on the first floor of your home or try to squeeze through a dog flap, however you should NOT.
It’s not worth risking your life or risk sustaining an injury to save money on getting a Locksmith. The same goes with smashing a window, not only could it cost you more to get the window fixed, you also risk hurting yourself and others.
When you’ve locked yourself out once, you are unlikely to want to do it again! So here are some tips to stop you from finding yourself in the same situation.
- Give a spare key to trusted family and friends, try to find those who live relatively close, so they don’t mind swinging by to give you a key. A neighbour is best if you have a good relationship with them.
- You may want to consider buying a key safe. You can safely store spare keys, that way if you do need a copy; you just need to know the code. There are several different styles for you to choose from when deciding what key safe you want.
- Get into the habit of making sure you have your keys, even if you are just popping out to the bins. Especially if you have a door that locks automatically behind you. If you find yourself getting locked out frequently because of the door locking automatically, you may want to consider changing your door type.
- Try to keep an eye on your keys when out and about. Do not leave your bag unattended at any point, as your keys could be stolen.
- If you notice your key and lock are getting sticky or hard to work, then you should call a Locksmith, it’s always better to get a head of the problem. It will be less stressful to arrange a time for a Locksmith to come and take look, rather than calling in an emergency when the lock finally does give up.
- Consider keyless security with a Smart Security System so you’ll never forget your keys
Keytek® Locksmiths are experts in the security industry so we can get you back in your home, change your locks to the highest standard and talk you through the different levels of security locks. Our emergency Locksmiths can also look at the locks around your home and give you the best advice and recommendations to put your mind at rest in knowing your home as secure as can be.
How Does a Locksmith Unlock a Locked Door?
Professionally trained Locksmiths will always try to unlock a locked door using non-destructive methods first such as picking or bumping the lock or using specialist tools, depending on whether the keys are in the door, in the house or car, or are lost.
If this fails a Locksmith will then use other methods to gain entry, such as drilling the lock. The Locksmith will always replace the lock if this method has been used and your property should always be left safe and secure.
How Much Does a Locksmith Cost?
The price of a Locksmith can vary depending on the time of day they’re needed, the type of job, the response time and if there’s a call out charge can all change the cost of the job. If it’s a simple lockout the price will just be the labour cost for the engineer, however if parts are required then the cost will be labour plus parts. The average cost of a Locksmith for simply unlocking a locked door, according to Which? is between £90-£130.
Should Landlords Pay for Locksmiths?
Usually, the cost of a Locksmith lands on the person at fault. For example, if the tenant has just forgotten their keys and locked themselves out, if the Landlord isn’t available then a Locksmith will need to be called and the tenants will pay the cost. However, if the lock is broken or damaged then it is the Landlords responsibility to maintain, repair and replace locks.