Answering this question is tricky as there are so many services that a locksmith can provide.
For example, if you took a standard house key to a locksmith store and asked them to cut a copy, it may cost you a few dollars.
However, if you ask a locksmith to come out in the middle of the night to unlock your locked door you may need hundreds of dollars.
The cost can run even higher if you need to replace all the locks on your doors and windows, plus install a home security system with CCTV surveillance. Now your bill could be well into the thousands of dollars.
To put it simply, the best way to find out how much a locksmith will cost, is to get a few quotes and compare prices.
As locksmiths can handle a wide range of services, the cost of hiring them varies greatly. Essentially their price will depend on:
- Location of the job.
- Specific locksmith service you need.
- Complexity or difficulty of the task.
- Size or scope of the job.
- Quality of the materials used.
- Time of day or night that you request the work.
As you can imagine, as a locksmith has to travel further, use more advanced equipment and requires more time on the job, the price of the service will naturally increase.
Also, be mindful that work completed outside of standard business hours will always carry a higher cost.
Locksmith Pricing Models
When it comes to locksmith costs there will always be two separate costs involved:
- Costs of hardware (Locks, keys, etc.)
- Labour costs.
Also, there are typically two different pricing models that locksmiths may use:
- Fixed price per job; Or
- Callout fee + hourly rate, with the itemised cost of hardware added on top.
With the fixed pricing model, you as the customer have the benefit of knowing the full cost upfront. However, you typically won't get an itemised receipt at the end of the job. Just the total price as quoted and agreed upon.
As locksmith prices can vary, it is always best to ask the locksmith for a quote and understand how they charge before you hire them. Understanding their pricing model will help you compare costs between different companies.
If they use a callout fee + hourly rate pricing model, ask them how long they think the job will take. This should give you an estimate of your final bill.
What Services Can a Locksmith Offer?
Locksmiths can offer various services depending on their skillset and the type of locksmith business they operate.
Here are some of the most common services that residential and commercial locksmiths offer:
- Installing new locks.
- Changing and repairing old locks.
- Making duplicate keys.
- Unlocking doors during lockouts.
- Auditing your current security system.
- Rekeying locks.
- Creating a master key system.
There are also specialised locksmiths that focus on specific tasks such as auto locksmiths and safecrackers.
DIY Vs Professional Locksmiths
Some DIYers may feel that hiring a professional locksmith is unnecessary so will consider DIY to save money. And while they may be able to install or replace a simple lock without hiring a locksmith, it is often not worth the risk.
You are much better off hiring an experienced professional to do the job properly. This is to ensure that your locks are installed correctly and provide you with the best security for your home.
If locks are installed incorrectly, they can easily be bypassed through brute force or other deceptive tactics.
Other situations, like resolving lockouts should always involve a professional locksmith.
Even with the correct lock picking tools, trying to pick a lock without the proper skill and knowledge can cause irreversible damage to the lock resulting in a costly replacement.
Benefits of Hiring A Locksmith
Locksmiths are highly trained in their field for years and must undergo an apprenticeship before they earn their locksmith licence.
In addition, they are also often trained and certified by the lock manufacturers they offer to ensure they have the proper know-how when installing these industry-leading locks.
This is important because some locks may require specialised installation methods which is why it is best to leave it to a certified locksmith.
Here are some more benefits of hiring a locksmith:
- Proper tools and equipment - Locksmiths have all the specialised tools and equipment needed to do their job correctly. This ensures that they can do the job quickly and efficiently without causing any damage.
- Necessary knowledge and experience - Locksmiths are highly trained and have years of experience in the field. This means that they know exactly what they're doing and can resolve any unexpected issues without guesswork.
- Expert advice - Locksmiths can give you expert advice on the best type of lock to install for your home or business. They can also recommend other security measures to further improve the security of your property.
- Licensed, insured & guaranteed - Locksmiths are required to have a valid licence in order to operate. This means they are qualified to do the job and are you are guaranteed in case of any accidents.