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The Best Locks And Lock Types for Rental Properties

Security in rented accommodation can be a complicated issue, our handy guide has been researched and produced with the help of the professionals at Locksmith Coventry, to make the process simple. The security of rented accommodation falls on multiple people, including the landlords, the tenants and the agency managing the property on the owner’s behalf.

In this article, we’re going to investigate the best door locks for rental properties, so that you can make a better decision about the locks that you ultimately choose to keep your tenants safe and secure.

1. Why You Need The Right Type Of Security Locks In Rented Property

Owners of rental properties, be they buy-to-let accommodation, vacation rentals or Airbnb holiday lets, have a duty of care to occupants. Part of that duty of care involves ensuring that the property provides adequate security. Regulations and insurance policies mean that properties must attain a minimum security standard.

There are many different security types in rented accommodation, from regular mechanical locks to keypad locks to keypad locks and smart locks powered by handheld devices. To protect your property and its occupants, you need the right kind of lock for the job, something we’re going to investigate in the rest of this article.

2. Budget-Focussed Lock Types

In general, there are four main types of locks (for the budget-focussed) used throughout the UK rented accommodation sector.

  • Cylinder Locks / Euro locks. This is the standard lock type for most UK homes with modern doors (UPVC, composite etc.). It can be locked with a key from both sides and often works with a multi-point locking system.
  • Key-operated Multipoint Locking System. The purpose of multipoint locking systems is to lock the door into place at multiple locations to make forced entry harder. These locking systems are usually found on modern doors.
  • Rim Automatic Deadlatch (with key-locking handle). These locks are typically mounted on the inside of the door. The “automatic” part comes from the fact that the locking mechanism will engage as soon as the door is closed. The door can be unbolted using the key-locking handle or can be locked dead from the inside with a key.
  • Five-lever Mortice lock. The five-lever lock is common on many wooden and back doors. It locks from both sides with a key, sometimes on the inside with a latch. 

2. The Types Of Lock You Should Really Use

The question remains, if money is no object, which are the best locks for the job? One of the problems with all of the cylinder locks that we’ve discussed so far, is that they all rely on the cylinder as the weakest point. UK police say that around a quarter of all burglaries involve simply snapping this cylinder to gain entry to the property.

Anti-snap locks are locks which have been specially designed to prevent snapping. It should be noted that having multiple points of lock/bolt engagement is no defence against snapping, because it still relies on the integrity of the cylinder. Firms, like Ultion, offer snap-resistant locks which contain hidden cylinder bolts that automatically engage when they detect a snapping attempt, to stop easy opening of a snapped lock.

For other types of door, a deadlock conforming BSI standards is the best option. Deadlocks that conform to BS3621 must meet certain standards, they have hardened steel security internals and can only be key operated. Both lock types may help reduce your insurance premiums.

4. Keypad Locks

Keypad locks are a good option for landlords and owners of rented accommodation who need a quick and easily change who has access to enter the property, or for homes of multiple occupancy for the main entrance door. Keypad locks are great for Airbnb security because they allow you to assign a new code to each person using the property, keeping former short term renters out.

5. Smart Security

With the rise of the smart home, smart security is becoming more common. The best smart locks for holiday rentals and summer let properties are those that can be operated remotely, from a mobile device.

Although a more expensive option, these type of smart locks are ideal for landlords who get through a high volume of tenants because it allows them to change the locking codes for each new occupant remotely, by sending them an app and a code, so that previous occupants do not compromise security.

6. Conclusion

The best type of lock and main door security on rental properties largely depends on the door and access type, plus the budget you’re prepared to spend.

In reality, spending a little more on anti-snap locks often stops forced entry, as opportunist burglars can tell by the lock type that it’s easier to move on to a softer target. While smart or keypad door locks can make changing locks redundant and holiday lets much easier to manage, saving significant money in the long run.