We are all now slightly more security conscious than we used to be, especially here on the Costa del Sol, but here is a question for you.
How many people have a key to your home?
Neighbours, family members, cleaners, pool maintenance staff, management agents etc?
How can you keep track and minimise copies?
Letting a neighbour have a key to your home is a common practise for many of you as it means there is someone locally you can seek help from if you lock yourself out. Yes, it is a great idea but try and limit the number of neighbours you give keys to. It goes without saying that you should only give keys to neighbours you have a high level of trust with and who will in turn, keep the keys in a safe place.
Also, if you have a back door and a front door, just give them one of the keys. They probably don’t need both as either will mean you can gain entry to your home if you lock yourself out.
If you give keys to your cleaner, make sure that they know to keep them safe and don’t have a tag with your address on them. If you end your contract or service with them, make sure you get the keys back.
A common way for property management firms to quickly know what keys are for what house is to have the name and address of the property on a tag on the keys. Please insist they DO NOT do this. Have your name but the address should be stored safely somewhere else so they can look it up. If they were broken into imagine all the homes now at risk if the address was on the keys.
It is possible to give them a set of keys that are not able to be copied. There are 2 ways to achieve this.
1. Some company’s own their own profile of key, which means that you can only get duplicate keys from this company and they can basically charge any amount for duplicate or additional keys.
2. We try safe guard our customers by acquiring duplicate keys direct from the manufacturers, by all means you can order additional or duplicate keys via security of Spain. However, if for any reason something should happen to us as a company, you can go direct to the manufacturers, which means your existing cylinders or master key system does not become obsolete and you will always be able to order additional or duplicate keys.
Keep a log of who you have given keys to and when they have been returned. Over the years it is really easy to lose track.
The most important thing to consider when making copies of your keys is to limit the number given out. The more you give out, the higher the security risk.
Consider having a lockable room in the house where you keep your important documents of valuables. You can utilise a Master Key Solution, which means that you can limit the access of certain people to certain rooms (locks). You can have a master key which ONLY allows you access.
Here is another question for you.
When you took ownership of your home, did you change the locks?
If you didn’t, we highly recommend you consider doing it as soon as possible. You have NO IDEA how many people the previous owners gave keys to. There could be lots of keys out there, which could gain easy entry to your home.
Some insurance firms will not pay out if it is confirmed that the ‘burglar’ gained access with a key.
If you would like to talk to us about the best ways to minimise security risks for your home, please get in touch.