When you’re picking locks (and we mean choosing a lock, not breaking into homes!), there are a few essential factors you should consider. Read on for my top five.
If you’re moving to a completely new city, get to know your area ahead of time. Local crime rates may be a determining factor when deciding how secure you’d like your home to be. You should obviously have a secure lock for your front door, but if you’re in a safer neighborhood, a deadbolt may not be a necessity.
Knowing the difference between the most common types of locks will make your decision much easier. Spring latch locks provide minimal security, but they’re the cheapest and easiest to install. Be warned, though: a forceful intruder would be able to smash the door knob and lock with a hammer or wrench, so we recommend having an extra line of security in place.
Deadbolt locks are much more secure — you can choose between a standard deadbolt or a vertical/double cylinder deadbolt. The vertical deadbolt interlocks with a set of cast metal rings in the frame of the door, making this lock practically indestructible. However, some buildings don’t allow deadbolts due to fire and safety hazards, so make sure you ask your superintendent or landlord before buying one.
Renters are 85% more likely to experience intruders than those who own homes, so installing some sort of wireless security system may give you some peace of mind. Some companies won’t sell to renters, but many will — FrontPoint Security, LifeShield Security, and SimpliSafe Home Security Systems among them.
This is an easy step to forget, but you never know to whom the previous tenant may have given a spare set of keys. If you’re moving into a new apartment, consider changing the locks. Again, your building may have a rule against this, so make sure you check with your landlord before making any big changes — and while you’re there, check that the previous renter returned their keys.
If you’re unable to change the locks, you can always purchase additional locks. A deadbolt or a bar guard can give you an extra line of security.
No matter which option you go with, safely securing your apartment can help you sleep a little bit better at night.