Houston locksmiths give tips on staying safe and secure
As a locksmith, what are some of the services you provide?
Ken Jennings: "We do residential rekeying and install, repair and service locks such as dead bolts. We're a mobile service."
Lonnie Love: "We rekey locks, move safes and do new installations. We rekey automobiles through the shop. We do the new electronic systems."
Brian Brasuell: "Mostly car services, like making keys, lockouts and ignition repairs and any kind of residential services, like rekeying and installing."
Who we talked to
How do you charge for the job?
Jennings: "For rekeying, it's $60 for up to six keyholes and about $9 for each additional keyhole. There's a trip charge of $40 if it's anything else, like a lockout."
Love: "Basically by the type of job. We don't charge by the time."
Brasuell: "By the type of service and, for cars, the year, make and model of the car."
What's the average fee for customers locked out of their house, their car or their safe?
Jennings: "For home and vehicle lockouts, we charge the trip charge of $40, and that's it. There isn't an additional charge unless it gets complicated. Safes are bid on a case-by-case basis."
Love: "A house would be $85. A car is $45, and we only do them if they're fairly close. The cost for a safe varies, depending on the type of safe. The minimum would be around $200."
Brasuell: "For a house, it's $50 to $65 for the first lock, and if there are any additional locks, it costs a little extra. A car is about $45 or $50. It also depends on the time of day. After hours is the most expensive."
Before you start a job, do you require some type of identification?
Jennings: "Yes, in the case of a lockout. But when we're there to rekey and they're already in the home or the home is unoccupied, we don't ask for identification."
Love: "It depends on the job. We're probably more trusting than most. For lockouts, we do ask for identification."
Brasuell: "It all depends on the type of service. Most of the time, I'll check before I touch a vehicle or the house. It's just judgment. If I feel weird about it, I won't touch it."
What makes you stand out from your competition?
Jennings: "It's our level of service. Unlike other large outfits, we offer competitive rates for superior service."
Love: "Being able to service everything. The word 'locksmith' is taken seriously here."
Brasuell: "If you call me on Monday, I'll be coming on Monday. I'm a same-day-service type of guy. Nine times out of 10, I'm available to come out right away."