Should You Change the Locks After a Tenant Moves Out?

Should You Change the Locks After a Tenant Moves Out?

If a tenant has recently moved out, you may be wondering whether or not you need to change the locks before your next tenant moves in. While it can be tempting to just pass the key onto the next tenant and move on, there are some good reasons to consider having a house locksmith replace your current lock with a new one.

1. Legal Requirements

According to Alarms, while most home invasions don’t involve a key and instead occur due to a forced entry via kicking in a door, picking a lock, or breaking a window, there are some instances where changing the lock is a legal safety requirement for landlords. Although responsibilities vary between states, and most states have no rules dictating whether or not a landlord must change the lock, there are exceptions. In cases of domestic violence, some jurisdictions will require the landlords to rekey or replace the locks in a unit. At the very least, you may be required to provide a secure deadbolt and replace any that have been damaged.

2. Preventing Re-Entry

In the event that a tenant leaves with the old key without turning it over, you’ll want to replace the locks to ensure that they can’t come back into the unit. While unlikely, an angry tenant may seek re-entry for vandalism purposes. This is not something that you’ll want to risk, especially if you are in the process of fixing the unit for a new tenant. When in doubt, have a house locksmith replace the locks to prevent any undesired entry.

3. Improving Safety

While there may not be a specific regulation in your state when a tenant moves in, they expect their unit to be safe and secure. Having a new set of locks and a deadbolt on their doors can help provide this. If the locks are old, it can also lower the confidence that a tenant has in the property and make them less likely to rent for a long period of time, if they accept the conditions at all. Overall, replacing the locks is just a small step that can end up being a smart investment when it comes to keeping your units secure and your tenants happy.

When it comes to deciding whether or not to change the locks of your units when tenants move out, consider these points carefully to help decide whether to have a house locksmith replace or rekey the locks on your property. While it may be a small thing, it can go a long way towards improving tenant opinion and safety.