If you’re a buy to let landlord or in property management, there’s plenty for you to focus on when it comes to getting a flat or house ready for new tenants. Many landlords grapple with various challenges throughout the year, from rent collection to maintaining the structural integrity of their buildings.
Amidst these very real concerns, the crucial aspect of lock maintenance and security checks often takes a back seat. This, however, can lead to significant vulnerabilities, compromising not only the safety of the tenants but also the landlord’s investment.
At Lockout247, we often work with local property owners and landlords to help them maintain their locks, replace those that are broken or change locks when there’s been a change of tenant. It pays to have a number for a service like ours, especially if you run rental properties – you never quite know when you’ll need it.
Why Landlords Should Inspect Property Locks Regularly
As a landlord, undoubtedly one of your responsibilities is to ensure the safety and security of your tenants. Locks, of course, play a pivotal role in this, safeguarding not just the property but also the personal belongings and wellbeing of the individuals living there.
Regular inspection of locks for any property is crucial. Natural wear and tear can degrade their efficacy over time. Failure to keep them in optimal condition can quickly compromise security, leaving the property vulnerable to unlawful entry.
Substandard locks can also result in hefty insurance claims, should an unfortunate event occur. That means you may need to pay higher premiums later on. A property with high-standard, well-maintained locks is more attractive to prospective tenants, thus adding value to your investment.
Types of Door and Window Locks
When it comes to choosing the right kind of locks for rental properties, landlords have a myriad of options to choose from nowadays. Below are some of the most commonly used types in properties of all types across the Essex region:
These are some of the most reliable and widely used types of door locks in the world today. They offer a higher degree of security, especially compared to regular spring-latch locks and are relatively cost-effective.
These locks are set into the door itself and are typically more robust than surface-mounted locks which can be easily and quickly damaged. Mortice locks usually come with a minimum of three locking bolts and are widely considered to be secure.
These are versatile and can be easily replaced without altering the door hardware, which makes them a good choice for rental properties. Cylinder locks are common in apartment buildings and offer reasonable security without the high cost.
Multi-Point Locking Systems
Mainly used for uPVC front and back doors, these locks have multiple points that lock simultaneously with the turn of a key, offering high security. They are the most common entry point locks in the world today and modern varieties are affordable and efficient.
Smart locks represent a significant advancement in property security, offering both convenience and enhanced control to landlords and tenants alike but they do have their disadvantages. These locks tend to use wireless technologies like Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to operate, often through a mobile or fob application. They allow for keyless entry, remote locking and unlocking, and even the ability to monitor access in real time.
These are a combination of a latch and a deadbolt and can be used for internal doors. Sash locks provide both convenience and added security especially if you own a HMO.
For windows, consider installing keyed locks or sash jammers. These can deter burglars from attempting to gain entry via windows.
Things to Consider When Choosing Locks
Choosing the appropriate locks for your rental property involves considering various factors. Here are some key things to think about:
The lock should be robust enough to withstand daily use and potential tampering. Materials like hardened steel and brass are often recommended for their long-lasting characteristics.
Invest in locks that offer high-security features such as anti-drill, anti-pick, and anti-snap functionalities. British Standard locks (BS3621) are widely accepted as secure and can also meet insurance requirements.
While it may be tempting to opt for cheaper locks to cut costs, remember that lower-priced options often compromise on quality and security. It is advisable to view locks as a long-term investment in the safety of your property and the security of your tenants.
Ease of Use
The lock should be simple enough for tenants to operate without difficulty. Complicated locking mechanisms may not only frustrate tenants but also lead to improper use and breakages, undermining security.
The Benefits of Working with a Professional Locksmith
While DIY solutions may seem cost-effective initially, the benefits of working with a professional locksmith far outweigh the savings made by taking shortcuts, especially if you have several properties.
A qualified and experienced locksmith has the expertise to evaluate the security needs of your property and recommend the most suitable locking systems accordingly. They should be proficient in the installation of various types of locks, ensuring that these are set up for maximum security. A professional locksmith can also provide ongoing maintenance, swiftly addressing any issues that may arise, such as jammed locks or lost keys.
Why Choose Lockout247
There are quite a few professional locksmith companies in the Essex area, and many offer excellent services. Lockout247 is a family-owned business that operates across the entire region, offering a range of different services and 24-hour response. We’re used to working with a wide range of properties both commercial and domestic and we’ve built relationships with many landlords and property managers over the years.
The importance of choosing the right locks for your rental property cannot be overstated. By paying attention to important considerations such as durability, security, cost, and ease of use, and by consulting a professional locksmith like Lockout247, landlords can significantly mitigate risks and ensure the well-being of their tenants and property.
If you want a partner you can trust, contact the team at Lockout247 today.