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Should I Have an Outdoor Key Safe?

When it comes to home security, you need to take the necessary steps to ensure that your property and all those inside it stay safe and secure.

The doors to your house are the main points of entry and the first thing that an intruder does is check to see if they are easy to bypass, which is why it is essential that you keep them secure.

To make it difficult for them to gain access to your home, you need to reinforce your doors and windows and keep them secure using good quality locks.

The effectiveness of a lock depends on two things: the quality with which it is built and the number of people who have access to it through its keys, which is why it is particularly important to be careful about who you share your home keys with.

Traditionally, many people have the habit of leaving their house keys under a doormat or a flower pot which, although is very convenient for them, is a highly unsafe practice that leaves your house vulnerable to opportunistic thieves.

Homeowners make spare keys for several reasons – particularly for preventing lockout situations and to let other authorised individuals in – and either hide them in such unsafe spots or share them with their family members or friends.

Both situations are not very safe or reliable and can turn problematic if the keys fall in the wrong hands, which is highly likely.

To deal with this issue, you must invest in outdoor key safes that are ideal for keeping your keys secure and letting people inside safely and securely.

Read on to find out what outdoor key safes are, their pros and cons, how safe they are, and how to choose the best ones for your home:

WHAT ARE OUTDOOR KEY SAFES?

Outdoor key safes can be a valuable addition to your home security since they:

  • Prevent unauthorised individuals from getting their hands on your poorly hidden keys,
  • Eliminate the need to carry a set with you at all times, and
  • Eliminate the need to give spare keys to your neighbours, friends, or family members for emergencies.

They are basically lockable storage devices used to store your keys for when you need to use them and are installed directly onto the external walls of your house.

They allow you to share access with your family members, friends, and trusted service providers to let them inside in a safe manner without you having to be there.

Additionally, you can use them for storing your spare keys for lockout situations, and also for safely leaving your keys at home so you don’t have to carry them around everywhere.

We all know how easy it is to lose your keys, which is why having the ability to keep them safe at home in a key safe is truly a blessing.

If you rent out your home to guests, such as on Airbnb, instead of having to meet your guests to hand out the keys, you can simply share the access code to the key safe so that they can let themselves in.

ARE KEY SAFES A GOOD INVESTMENT?

Should you install a key safe outside your house? Are they a good investment? Yes, they are, 100%.

Depending on the type of key safe you get for your house, you can expect to pay anywhere between £40 to £100+ for a good quality one. Considering the level of security that they provide in keeping your keys safe from the wrong people, this is a pretty good deal!

Regardless, one thing is for sure that storing your keys under your mat or handing out spare ones to random people is a huge risk and akin to you asking for trouble. You might as well send an invitation to burglars in your area to come and target your home.

In addition to being highly unsafe, leaving your keys in such hiding places will also most certainly invalidate your home insurance. In short, it is not worth the risk.

Installing a key safe outside your home is a sensible idea and the most cost-effective way to share your home’s access, safely and securely, with the people you trust. These people could be your family, friends, or service providers such as cleaners and dog walkers.

Outdoor key safes are great for personal use as well, not only in cases of emergencies such as lockouts but also if you wish to go “keyless” and leave them at home.

They are especially useful when you prefer to go on walks or jogs and do not want to be bothered about taking care of your possessions, especially something as important as your house keys.

Quite obviously, not all key safes are built the same. While some provide guaranteed safety and protection, others are merely there for putting your keys in.

Therefore, it is very important that you invest in a key safe that is strong, sturdy, made of high quality, and that won’t let you down. Consult with a reliable security company for the best product recommendations for your needs.

PROS AND CONS OF OUTDOOR KEY SAFES

Outdoor key safes are an essential part of home security, especially if you struggle with keeping your keys safe and allowing trusted people into your home in your absence.

There are several benefits of outdoor key safes, and unless the product you are using is faulty or made with substandard quality, there are no such drawbacks to using them.

The benefits of using outdoor key safes include:

Security

Hiding your key in random places such as under the mat or a flower pot is never a good idea, regardless of how common a practice it is.

The fact that it is so common and that all criminals know to check these places for spare keys makes it even more dangerous.

This little habit not only makes your property vulnerable to break-ins and crime but may even invalidate your home insurance.

Therefore, to ensure that you have control over who has access to your keys and that they stay safe and away from the wrong hands, you must invest in a secure outdoor key safe that is certified by the police and other relevant authorities.

Convenience

Nothing is worse than scheduling your day and work around other people. Imagine that you had to go somewhere but couldn’t because you had to stay home to open the door for someone. Annoying, isn’t it?

With outdoor key safes, you can live your life to the fullest without having to worry about such issues. They offer the ultimate convenience and peace of mind since your guests can easily let themselves in without you having to be there.

No more worrying about running late or stressing about making others wait. You no longer have to rush back home or delay going out because you need to let the cleaner or pet sitter in.

Best for family members and friends, key safes are also the best solution for when you do not wish to take your keys out with you everywhere.

On your way out, you can simply put them in your outdoor key safe, where they will remain safe and protected, and take them out to open the door once you are back.

Letting in trusted individuals

In addition to letting your family members and friends inside, outdoor key safes can also be used to let in trusted service providers.

They are the perfect solution for individuals with mobility issues and who require care and assistance at home.

The ability to let caregivers in without having to walk to the door allows people with health issues to easily live their lives in the comfort of their own homes.

Many people install key safes in their elderly relatives’ homes to give them the assurance that their loved ones can easily access their property in case of an emergency.

Key safes are also an easy way to share access with handymen and other service providers if you are undergoing renovations. Instead of giving them each a spare key, which is not the best idea, you can simply share the key safe code with them so that they can let themselves in.

The best thing about these key safes is that, after giving someone temporary access, you can very easily change the access code to the key safe so that they are no longer able to access its contents unless you share the new code with them.

Peace of mind

Lockouts can be stressful. Anyone who has experienced them knows what we’re talking about.

Installing an outdoor key safe is a great way to make sure you or your family members never get locked out of your house. They are a great backup method to access your property in case of such incidents.

Also, they eliminate the need to make unnecessary copies of your keys and give you better control of how your key is used and stored. Making spare keys and issuing them to people comes with its own risks of being misused or misplaced.

Emergency access

Most people don’t give it much thought, but it is very important to be able to access your home in case of an emergency – such as being locked out by a small child with them still being inside the house or a water or gas leak while you are away on vacation.

These are extremely stressful experiences where every minute counts, making it necessary to gain urgent access.

Not having access to a key and the urgency of the matter may require breaking down the doors or windows, both of which may lead to injuries and subsequent expensive repairs.

With outdoor key safes, you will always have peace of mind that, no matter what, you will able be able to access your property, or give others access to it if you are away.

Cost savings

One of the benefits of installing a good quality police verified outdoor key safe is that you won’t need to cut multiple copies of your keys every time you wish to grant a new person access to your home.

Not only is using an outdoor key safe a safer way to share access to trusted individuals but it is also much cheaper and hassle-free.

You won’t have to worry about the spare keys getting lost or misplaced, which would force you to replace or rekey your locks or cut a new set of keys, depending on the circumstances.

Temporary access

Not only are key safes extremely convenient and safe for homeowners but also for Airbnb hosts and other rental property owners.

Outdoor key safes installed near the front door provide an easy and convenient way for the guests to access the keys, allowing them to settle in without you having to be there.

This is especially beneficial if you manage multiple Airbnb properties or holiday rentals since you can’t be everywhere every time.

In addition to letting your guests in by themselves, you can also grant access to service providers and maintenance persons, all from the comfort of your home.

Once your guests leave, you can change the code to the key safe before your next guests arrive to ensure no one other than your current guests have access to the key safe and the keys inside it.

HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST OUTDOOR KEY SAFE?

With so many options out there, it can be easy to get tricked into buying a substandard key safe and risk your home security in the process.

To make sure you invest in the best key safe that is impossible to tamper with and that keeps your keys away from the wrong hands, you need to keep a few things in mind.

Here’s what you need to look for in a good outdoor key safe:

Quality

Quality is everything. A secure key safe must be sturdy, robust, and of good manufacturing quality.

Do not opt for ones made with cheap plastic that are easy to tamper with and bypass. Look for ones made with high quality, durable material with a track record of being reliable.

Price

Everything comes at a price. However, if you consider the benefits that key safes provide, you would realise that it is in fact an investment.

Key safes can range from extremely cheap £20 models to over £100 for high-quality smart ones. While the amount of money you pay for something doesn’t always necessarily guarantee good quality, in this case, the higher the price, the more advanced the device would be.

Size and location

Key safes come in different sizes and capacities. Therefore, you should get one depending on where you wish to install it and the number of keys you want to securely store in it.

Before buying an outdoor key safe, make sure you have a specific place in mind for it so that you can get one that easily fits.

Certifications

Did you know that you could get key safes with a seal of approval from the authorities? Knowing that the key safe you are using is accredited by the police shows that it has been tested to a high standard and is the most reliable.

In the UK, there are three independent assessment standards for the physical security of key safes. They are: Secured By Design (SBD), Loss Prevention Standards, and Sold Secure scheme.

As a rule of thumb, if a key safe does not have any of these badges of approval, they are not considered to be of high physical attack standard.

Therefore, if you are looking for a key safe that you can rely on and use with peace of mind, choose one that has at least one of these approvals.

CONTACT CALDER SECURITY

We are members of the Master Locksmith Association (MLA) since 1976 and can work with a wide range of safes and locking mechanisms.

In addition to installation services, our professional locksmiths also offer repair services for when your key safes become damaged or develop faults.

We can access locks that have become jammed and can respond to your calls quickly, which can be very useful if you’ve locked yourself out.

We offer expert key cutting services from our Lock and Safe Shop in Wakefield where you can get your keys cut while you wait.

Using our state-of-the-art digital equipment, we can cut virtually any key including cylinder keys, mortice keys, dimple keys, Mul-T-Lock keys, padlock keys, locker keys, and safe keys to a high degree of accuracy without having to send them away to be cut.

Our other security solutions include:

Contact us here or call us on 0800 612 9799 to talk to our professionals right away!

Photo by Silas Köhler on Unsplash