Arriving home after a busy day should be a comfortable and relaxing experience. Whether you are returning from a hard day’s work or a night on the tiles, your arrival at the front door should be a moment of relief. If you find out instead that you have lost your keys, then it is a completely different story. Panic sets in as you frantically search your bag and your pockets, worried you will have to spend the next couple of hours outside your home.

Thankfully, locksmiths can help. Regardless of whether you have lost your keys or the door lock is jammed, a good locksmith will have you safely at home in no time. But how much will they charge and how do they know who you are?

Locksmith price guide: how much locksmith services cost?

The specific cost of a locksmithing job will differ on a job-by-job basis. Factors such as the type of lock (or even number of locks), type of door, and time of day could all have an impact on a locksmith’s pricing decision. Unfortunately, as in any trade profession, there are some cowboy locksmiths who take advantage of this uncertainty, and the vulnerability of those who are locked out, to charge extortionate amounts and rip off customers.

You should be wary of these cowboys, but don’t let them put you off using any locksmiths at all. Instead, make sure you get a quote before they start the work, and that the quote doesn’t include any hidden charges. A fair price for a locksmith should rarely exceed £300, and will almost definitely be lower. Our locksmiths have a base rate of £90 for a standard lockout job, with any exceptional service charges coming on top of that.

If the price you are being quoted seems too high, it’s best to cancel the job and find another locksmith elsewhere.

How do locksmiths know it’s your house?

Once a locksmith arrives at your home, the first thing they have to do is find out who you are. If they did not undertake the necessary precautions to ensure your identity, daring burglars could take advantage of this and simply walk up to any front door and call a locksmith to get them inside. Unfortunately, there is no uniform rule for what documents locksmiths need to check before they open a locked door, but each locksmithing firm will have its own guidelines. Locksmiths from Bridger Security will ask for ID before opening any door as a minimum.

In emergency cases when clients have clearly stepped outside the door for a moment, and the door has slammed behind them, the ID—along with recognition from the neighbours—will be enough. If the client has been out all day only to realise they’ve left their keys in the house or lost them along the way, a locksmith will require more, such as proof of ownership and an ID.