More than 20% of people are keeping up the old tradition of leaving a spare key hidden outdoors, a new survey by Keytek® Locksmiths has revealed. The survey asked people across the UK where they keep a spare key, and the results showed that despite years of police and government advice warning against it, many people are still leaving their keys in easily discovered hiding places.
Of those interviewed, 2% said they kept a key under a plant pot, 6% under a mat, 7% elsewhere in the garden, and 6% in the garage or shed. These figures will come as a surprise to many, as having a key in any one of these places is almost certain to invalidate your home insurance, should an intruder find it and use it to gain entry. This is something that the majority of home insurers advertently advise against. The AA insurance website warns homeowners “Don’t hide a spare key outside as burglars know where to look.”
As well as a significant proportion of people with keys hidden in the garden, the survey also showed that 44% of people actually keep a spare key with a neighbour, which offers an interesting new angle on the debate about how familiar modern Britons are with their neighbours.
Eddie Wilkinson, Operations Director at Keytek®, said: “Although Britons on the whole are more security conscious than they used to be, these results show that many people are still taking big risks with the safety of their homes, by leaving keys in obvious hiding places that experienced burglars will be well aware of.”
He continued: “For a relatively small cost you can have a Key Safe fitted to the outside of your home by an experienced locksmith, this secure box can store your spare set of keys safely without you having to rely on a neighbour or family member to look after them.”