Should You Change Locks After Buying House?

A few weeks ago we moved to a new house. We stayed in the same geographic location so we didn’t have to adjust to finding new grocery stores, doctor’s offices, etc., but we moved into a new house, or rather, one that is new to us. One thing I realized is how familiar a house becomes. Not just the house becomes familiar, but your neighborhood does as well.

I knew what noises my old house made. As I knew what cars were usually parked on the street and in my neighbor’s driveways at a given time of day. I knew my neighbors, who should be home when. AsI had a routine for leaving home, to check the doors and lights. All of this awareness leads to better security. Routine and familiarity help with home security. People that didn’t belong in the neighborhood stuck out. I had a routine for leaving the house that helped to ensure that I didn’t forget to lock a door or turn on a porch light.

Along came our move. As we moved from a townhouse to a single family house with a lot more doors. We moved into a 40 year old house with hot water pipes and floors that creak and make noise. We moved into an unfamiliar neighborhood where we don’t know the neighbors and don’t know their routines. This unfamiliarity can lead to a sense of vulnerability.

Explore Your Neighborhood

Get to know your new house and your neighborhood as quickly as you can. Pay attention to when people come and go. Go meet your neighbors. Soon your new home and neighborhood will become familiar and you will be on the road to feeling more secure and comfortable with your new home.

We have looked at some of the changes that happen when you move to a new and unfamiliar home. Now let’s take a look at the practical steps that you should take upon moving into your new home to ensure that your home is secure.

  • Check all of your doors and windows to make sure that they close securely and tightly. Make sure all windows lock and all doors latch tightly without any play in the door when closed.
  • Check all door locks to ensure they work properly and add deadbolts to doors that don’t have one.
  • Consider having door locks re-keyed so that somebody with a copy of the key cannot enter your house.
  • Check all exterior lighting to ensure that it works. Replace dead bulbs and any light fixtures that don’t work.
  • Trim bushes and shrubs that obscure views of your house and could potentially hide a prowler or burglar.
  • Change the garage door opener codes.
  • Establish a routine for leaving the house that ensures that you check all doors to make sure they are locked.

Make Your Home Safe And Secure

By taking these simple steps, you can ensure that your home is more secure and safe. These may be things that you took for granted at your old home, however you need to be sure that your new home meets these basic criteria for home security. I hope that you enjoy your new home and all of the great things that come with moving but most of all, I hope that your new home is safe and secure.

Should You Change Locks After Buying House?
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