3 Questions to ask when it comes to hiring locksmiths

When it comes to hiring a locksmith in Melbourne, a good number of us find ourselves panicking when we have accidentally locked ourselves out of our homes, and calling the first person we can find. While this is understandable, it is not always the wisest move. If you don’t already have a reliable locksmith that you can call upon whenever you need them, here are a few questions you need to ask before hiring one:

1. What can a locksmith do?
Locksmiths are more than just the people you call when you get locked out of your house. Besides picking a lock, the services that your locksmith is able to offer you might include:

Supplying and installing locks: Not only will a locksmith be able to install a lock in your home, an experienced locksmith will also be able to advise you on the different types of locks and which ones will suit your needs best.

Key cutting: A locksmith will be able to assist you when you need keys cut for whatever reason.

Master keys: A master key system is one in which each lock has its own key, with a master key that can unlock all the locks. This is usually required in commercial premises.

Safes: A locksmith is also able to help you with safes, which are used to store sensitive documents and other valuables.

Electronic locks: A rising trend, electronic and biometric locks dispense with the need for keys and instead require codes or fingerprints for access to a property, making them ultra convenient. No more carrying (and losing) keys!

Automotive locks: Specialist locksmiths can even provide spare car keys, replace lost or stolen keys, or change the entire lock on your vehicle.

2. What are the locksmith’s credentials and warranty policy?
Besides making sure that your locksmith is licensed (this is of course very important!), you should also try to find a locksmith who is knowledgeable and experienced enough to handle whatever situation you are in.

Checking the number of years in the business and reading customer testimonials (if available) are a great way of doing this, or you might even want to ask a potential locksmith about their credentials and experience.

Another thing you should always find out is the warranty period on any work carried out. A reputable locksmith should offer a minimum warranty period of 30 days to cover any installation or hardware issues, so if your potential locksmith doesn’t offer at least that, call someone else.

3. How much will it cost me?
When hiring a locksmith, always ask for a quote over the phone. The locksmith trade is usually quite standard and prices will not vary too much, however it is still important that you get this information up front.

Some locksmiths might charge an hourly rate with a standard minimum time, regardless of how quickly a job is completed, while others might charge in 15-minute or 30-minute increments. Some might charge a trip fee, so be sure to ask for the charge to your location, while others might charge a piecework rate. Make sure you are clear on all costs involved before hiring a locksmith – you don’t want to be surprised by any unexpected costs when it is time to pay!