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Rotherham Locksmith Advice

13th October 2019

I think you’d agree that it’s a bit of a weird time at the moment, making it difficult to keep track of what’s what. As governments rise and fall and sea levels rise and…well, rise; as the truth becomes ever harder to uncover, and the future of the country is uncertain, sometimes it’s worth just taking a deep breath, stepping back, and focussing on what really matters….

Which obviously is home security… what else? All too often in this business, we can get caught up in the minutiae of the details surrounding security systems, the intricacies of the latest locks, and any minor changes in trends and methods of break-ins. Once in a while though, it’s important to take that step back and look at the irrefutable pillars of home security, just as a reminder and in case any of them have slipped by the wayside whilst distracted by the little things. Here, I’ll cover four crucial points of which everyone should be aware to best protect their house. 

1 – Get a security assessment done

It seems obvious, but how are you going to know where your security weaknesses are unless a proper assessment is carried out on your property? This can, of course be done by yourself, but I would recommend getting a professional in to cast their eye over the place – given their experience and specialist knowledge, they will doubtless see things that may not have occurred to you. In 2018 there were 669,000 burglaries in England and Wales, and this only counts domestic properties – commercial burglaries would have taken this figure much higher. This shows the importance of ensuring your home is not one that is picked by burglars, and who better to know what to look for than your local locksmith? The MLA (Master Locksmiths Association) strongly recommends every home gets an assessment carried out. In many cases there will be little to no charge, and no obligation to take up the advice of the locksmith should you choose not to (although the recommendations should be strongly considered). Knowledge is power, and it is vital that you know exactly where your home’s weak points are, and how to remedy them.

2 – Get an appropriate lock fitted to your front door

Again, obvious, but you’d be surprised how many homeowners do not take this advice. Locksmiths around the country turn up to the aftermath of burglaries day in day out, only to feel the frustration of knowing that had a proper lock been fitted, the burglary could have been avoided. Many people will go for cheap replica locks from their local discount shop or ebay. I can understand this – everyone wants to save a bit of cash, but you have to weigh this up against the cost saved by not having a break in at your house. In this case, spending a little bit more is a no brainer of an investment. As a rule of thumb, Yale and Chubb are the main reputable manufacturers in this area, and you want to look out for the locks meeting various standards – PAS 24, Secure by Design and ADQ approval, or the BSI Kitemark. Getting a sturdy lock fitted really is the best thing you can do for home security. It’s all very well having great alarm systems and the like, but if there’s no resistance at the main entrance of your house, a burglar can be in and out in a matter of minutes before the alarm has alerted anyone, perhaps making off with car keys and valuables in your hall. On a side note, please don’t leave your car keys/wallet etc in your hall. These take seconds to find, and even if neighbours come running, the burglar will have been in and out before they arrive. 

3 - Ensure you use an approved locksmith

Now, a declaration of interest here, being Police Approved and a member of the Association of Accredited Locksmiths, but please DO  ensure that any locksmith or security expert you invite into your home is properly accredited. Locksmiths are not officially regulated, so anyone can claim to be a locksmith and come into your house to either do shoddy work, or, even worse, to stake out the house for a future break-in. Hence, the accreditations are all important, whether the locksmith be a member of the Association of Accredited Locksmiths, or the Master Locksmiths Association. Look for genuine reviews on trusted websites like Google from a range of different clients. At SF Locksmith Rotherham we have great working relationships with lots of local companies such as Andery Care who can recommend our services. Also beware of those companies who only have a mobile number and no landline base, as it can be difficult to track them down should work need to be remedied. Word of mouth can also be all-important – ask friends or neighbours who has done their work, and that way you can be fairly sure it’s not a tradesman who’s going to do poor work and then be gone. Professional, accredited locksmiths often work out cheaper too, as they know the best fixes – for instance whilst some disreputable tradespeople will remove the whole lock mechanism from a door and charge for a new one, the skills of a professional locksmith often means that repair is possible, leading to a cheaper bill and less upheaval. 

4 – Security is Serious

The final point is to emphasise the importance of taking the subject of home security seriously. Many of us will have spent thousands of pounds on the contents of our houses, yet not a fraction of that on home security to protect those contents. Unfortunately, the first time that people generally realise their mistake is in the aftermath of a break-in, and by then the damage is done. If you take just one thing away from this blog, please give more consideration to your home security, taking some time to see how your behaviour can also affect the security – for example, do you have sensor lights in and around the house for when you’re out? If leaving lights on, it is best to keep one on upstairs. Leaving one on just in the hallway can often just confirm that you’re not in if no movement is seen. There are also TV screen simulators that can be bought for an added effect. Ensure you always lock your door when you go out or are in the back garden, and keep windows closed when unattended. Make sure alarms are fully maintained and operational, and when going on holiday don’t forget to cancel milk and get someone to pop in to pick up your mail. All these small steps will help reduce the chance of you being targeted. Home security is not something to be taken lightly. 

Right, now back to the weirdness of the world. I’ll put on the news and brace myself. For advice on anything lock-related, or to enquire about repairs or replacements, call 01302 378067. 

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