Yesterday I learned an embarrassingly expensive but important and valuable lesson—
Changing your own door lock is incredibly simple. All you need to do is replace the cylindrical lock chamber, which requires only a screwdriver. They’ve been designed to be effortless to change which has the effect of enhancing your security, as I found out.
Earlier in the year during the letting agent and landlord abuse and harassment, a friend recommended changing the lock. I then learned about tenant rights and realised that’s legally not a big deal at all. I looked up the cost and saw it would be around £100 to get a locksmith to change it. Over the next 2 months the letting agent and landlord were in and out of the house all the time whilst tenants moved out, so there was no opportunity to get a locksmith to come without the danger of being interrupted. Then I had an unexpected and unnecessary expense and decided to stick with my security cameras alone, especially since the abuse had stopped immediately with the help of the Salvation Army team (no help from the police who tried to gaslight me).
With the latest situation and me having to stay in the house past the eviction date, I have no confidence that whatever the council or Salvation Army say to the letting agent/landlord that they won’t try to break into my room again. So…I got the lock changed. And it took 2 minutes. 20 minutes in total from the point of phoning the service. And cost me £124.
I’m at peace with the cost because the knowledge I gained was invaluable. I’m just sharing it to help others to avoid the same cost whilst learning the same lesson!
My particular lock was a standard one to comply with fire safety regulations, so in itself was more expensive and costs around £60. £59 was spent on the ‘man hours’ to change the lock. In fact all I had to do was order one online and replace it myself, in a matter of 5 minutes in the middle of the night. And I could’ve done it immediately back in March with less worry about the cost. Using a lock-changing service is more useful for the scenario where you’re locked out (thus the labour/disaster cost). Otherwise the labour is negligible.
As well as the lesson I do also have the old lock chamber. So if I ever needed to replace the same kind of lock…I’m already equipped! And now I’m totally secure from the potential intrusions and it feels amazing and vindicating. It’s probably even a good idea to make a habit of changing the front door lock whenever you move into a new place.
So…never hesitate to replace locks if you’ve been compromised!! Keep the psychopaths and the sociopaths out!!