Top “Must Do” Chore for New Homeowners

Change Your Locks

Once you get the keys to your new home … one of the most important things to do is to Get Rid of Them!

Seriously, whether buying a new or resale home — top on your list of “must-do” chores BEFORE moving one piece of furniture in is to Change all locks! Even on a new subdivision house.

Here’s why: Who knows how many people have keys to the property?  The former owners, a property management company, builders, workers, cleaning people, the ex boyfriend/girlfriend of three previous owners?

How to do it:  Replace the entire lock — or “rekey” the existing lock.

  1. Most expensive: Replacing the whole lock, whether you do it yourself or hire a locksmith.  Hiring a locksmith may be the easiest, and most efficient way for buyers who don’t have time, interest or basic skills for a Do It Yourself projects. Yet, it is not crazy complicated to replace a lock. I’ve done it. Individual front door locks cost from $15 – $50. Fancy electronic/keypad locks cost more. Package directions and YouTube videos help! DIY replacement of four doors locks (typical for a home): less than $200. Locksmith’s charge for their time and expertise as well.
  2. Cheapest: Rekey the lock instead of replacing it. This job falls into the “it’s possible” to DIY — with help from YouTube, the hardware store expert and package directions. Generally it involves changing the cylinder part of the lock. Cost: Usually less than $50 for materials for four. A locksmith will also charge for time and expertise.

The important tip here: Change the locks! It’s a basic safety/security “must do” activity for any homeowner.Door lock

What’s on your “to do” list?  Leave a comment or email me.

Holly O’Driscoll is a Realtor(R) with Chase International Real Estate in Reno, Nevada

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