Did you remember to handle the most basic safety precaution for your new home?
When people buy homes — in Chicago or wherever — , there’s a tendency to think “Big Picture” on home improvements. Flooring, painting and furniture are common “just-moved-in” purchases, as are cable television and utilities packages.
The most important move-in purchase, though, may also be the least expensive — deadbolts for your doors.
Every home has at least one — and sometimes up to dozen — keyed points of entry. And until you change those locks, there’s no telling just how many people may have access to your home.
For example, your home’s prior owners may have shared house keys with any/all of the following people :
- Real estate agents
- Neighbors and friends
- Parents, brothers and sisters
- Home cleaning service
- Dog walkers and pet sitters
Those keys will still gain entry into your home until you change the locks. This is why your first act homeowner should be to replace all your home’s keyed entries with new locks and/or deadbolts.
Locks and deadbolts come in a variety of designs and finises, with varying price points. A basic single-cylinder, keyed deadbolt costs less than $15, and a powerful digital-entry, keyless system sells for $200-plus. There are a bevy of models at prices in between, too.
Regardless of which lock system you choose, don’t procrastinate on installation. Ideally, your locks should be changed on the same day of purchase, as close to closing’s completion as possible.
Hardware stores carry most deadbolt varieties and many can be installed with just a screwdriver. For complicated installations, talk to a locksmith.