Parents need to make a big decision about the age to hand over a set of house keys to their child. They may feel afraid to do this because it requires trust and respect. You don’t want to give it to your child too young and risk them losing the keys or them giving access to the home to the wrong person.
Usually, at A1 Locksmith Philadelphia, we see parents hand over a set of house keys to their child at the age of 10 to 12 years old. How old depends on the child because some will be ready sooner than others. Think of doing this at the age where you might leave your child home alone for short periods. You don’t have a one-size-fits-all answer to this question because it heavily depends on the child.
Some people may also find that they need to do this for their child in fourth grade because of work circumstances, or they might do it in sixth grade. It depends on how well-behaved the child acts. Some will be ready sooner than others. Some kids may have a house key at the age of nine and do fine with the responsibility.
You can’t expect perfection from any child when it comes to house keys, and they may forget them from time to time, but they should be able to handle it well on the whole. Even adults forget their keys from time to time. The key is that it doesn’t happen constantly. You may want to wait if you have a child prone to losing things. Handing over the house keys is a definite act of responsibility, and you want to see that your child can handle it.
Even as locksmith experts, we want to emphasize that your local locksmith can’t tell you when to give your child a house key. It depends on your child, but we can give you a general rule. In addition, sometimes necessity plays a role because your child will need to be home alone for an hour while you keep working. If you decide that it’s time to give your child a key, Google, “Locksmith near me,” and you will find a local locksmith who can make an extra key for you.
If your child is old enough to get home by himself, then he’s old enough to have a house key, and he will need it to get in. You also need to consider why your child would need the house key. Does it make sense?
As a parent, you must decide when to give the house keys to your child with your whole heart. Don’t give your child the keys to the house and decide to go back on it the next day because this can leave your child feeling crushed. You must decide on it with resolution when you give it. As big of a decision as it is for you, it is an equally great new freedom for your child, and they will bristle with pride.
Your home security depends on your child not losing his keys. If he loses the keys to the home, you may want to Google, “Locksmith near me,” to have the locks rekeyed. Some people risk it, but we wouldn’t call it worth it because somewhere a spare set of keys to your home exists.
Technology nowadays has made the need for a key optional because you can now choose an electronic lock. As locksmith experts, we see many parents who choose this route. You have numerous benefits to an electronic lock for a child. For example, your child will never get locked out of the home because you can remotely unlock it for him if he forgets the combo. You can also tell him the combo to have him unlock it. Another benefit of the electronic locks for families is that you don’t need to issue a bunch of keys that someone might lose. If you believe security has been compromised, you can simply change the PIN.
Teach him the PIN code to the home. A lot of parents like this system better because they don’t have to worry that their child would forget the keys.
With an electronic locks, you can also schedule a time for when the lock on your home will unlock to let your child inside.
Check Local Laws
Please take extra precautions about leaving your child home alone because some municipalities have laws that dictate when children can be left alone. You can call your local police department to get information about this. In some cases, parents may face prosecution for child abandonment if they left their child home alone. Usually, they consider it an offense if you leave the child home alone, and it places them at risk.
In some places, leaving a child under the age of 12 home alone may be considered a prosecutable offense.
What age you give an extra set of house keys to your child will depend on the child. At A1 Locksmith Philadelphia, we also firmly believe in doing this when the need for it arises. We don’t think you should do this for the sake of doing it, at least not at too early of an age. Wait until the child reaches an age where it makes sense to give him a spare set of house keys, and if you feel uncomfortable with it, you can always install the electronic lock instead.