Lose Your Keys Often? Here's How to Prevent Lockouts

by Team eLocal
A hidden front door key under a pebble in the garden with a bike in the background

There's nothing quite like the sinking feeling of rummaging in your bag and discovering you've forgotten your house key. If you're always misplacing your keys, it might do you well to plan ahead. Here’s how to prevent lockouts.

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5 Ways to Prevent Lockouts

There are several easy and effective ways to stop yourself from getting locked out. Using more than one method means that you have a backup plan if the worst happens.

1. Hide a Spare

A hidden front door key under a pebble in the garden with a bike in the background

Hiding a key somewhere outside your home is the most obvious way to stop yourself from getting locked out. However, you risk making your home accessible to intruders, so concealing the key somewhere undetectable is a must.

You can purchase key hiders that have storage spaces hidden inside unexpected objects, like fake sprinkler heads or rocks. However, some of these products don't look exactly like the real thing, which could make your key's location obvious to would-be burglars. Using a magnetic key holder to hide your key inside a metal drainpipe or on your vehicle could make your key harder to find.

2. Install a Key Lockbox

Hiding a key is a risky strategy for dealing with lockouts because seasoned intruders are likely to be familiar with common hiding places. Installing a key lockbox could be a safer alternative.

Key lockboxes attach to an exterior wall and have spaces inside to store keys. They feature combination locks that provide access to anyone with the code. However, some lockboxes aren't burglar-proof, so it's worth doing your research to find the most secure model possible.

3. Buy a Phone Case Key Holder

These phone cases have an integrated compartment to store a spare door key. Alternatively, you could purchase a slimline key pouch to fit between your phone and your existing case.

You can purchase these cases relatively inexpensively online, and they can be helpful for people who keep their phones close at hand. However, they won't be any use if you accidentally leave your phone and your keys behind, so it's worth combining this tip with another anti-lockout measure to ensure you're never left out in the cold.

4. Leave a Key With a Friend

Getting a spare key cut and leaving it with a trusted friend, family member or neighbor is one of the simplest ways to prevent lockouts. However, it's essential to pick someone who you trust completely, as you'll be allowing them potential access to your home. This tip may also not be the best solution if you tend to lock yourself out late at night because your friend is unlikely to welcome a call in the small hours.

If you're a renter, it's wise to find out whether your landlord agency holds a spare key to your property. Your agent or landlord may be willing to come to your rescue in an emergency.

5. Invest in a Keyless Lock

Digital smart door lock security system with the password, close up on numbers on the screen.

Keyless lock systems let you gain access to your home using a code or smartphone app. Therefore, you'll never need to worry about lockouts again as long as you keep your phone with you and don't forget the code.

Another potential advantage of keyless locks is that some models let you check if your door is locked from your smartphone. You may also be able to set your door to unlock briefly at preset times, which could be handy if you have teenagers who keep forgetting their keys.

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