Safest Way to Hide a Key Outside Your House

Written by jessica kolifrath
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Safest Way to Hide a Key Outside Your House
Keep your house secure while allowing emergency access with a hidden key. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

When you become locked out of your home or car, you will wish you had hidden a key outside for emergency access. However, a poorly hidden key gives burglars and other intruders easy access. Choose one of the safest ways for hiding a house key to ensure your home's security.

Multiple Keys

If you must choose an obvious location for hiding a spare house key like a lawn ornament or fake rock, take the time to hide a number of similar but incorrect keys. Hide most of them in the most obvious spots, and save the real key for the hardest to find spot says Home Security Advice. A burglar will find the first or a few of them, but finding and trying multiple keys leads to frustration. Searching for and trying multiple keys also raises suspicion as the burglar stays at your door longer than usual.

Trusted Neighbor

One of the safest places to leave a spare key is with a trusted neighbour. The key stays in a safe location inside their home where no one has access to it except for you and them. This method won't work if you don't trust any neighbours, but doing so is much safer than hiding a key in your yard. Burglars are well aware of the hidden key under the doormat or the lawn gnome trick.


Landscaped beds or walkways made from mulch or gravel provide a safe hiding place for a second key, as long as you can remember where exactly you hid it. Stick the key below a full layer of the material in a plastic bag to protect it from weathering, recommends the Practical Hacks website. Use a small plastic bag that fits the key's size to prevent plastic from sticking up from the mulch. If your home receives heavy snowfall, choose a location you already shovel daily to prevent the key from being trapped in ice.

In Your Car

While an obvious risk develops if someone takes the car with your spare home key in it, a secure car location otherwise makes a very safe choice. Hide the key in a corner of the trunk or a magnetic lockbox, says Practical Hacks, but don't label it. When you sell the car, you must remember to remove the key before relinquishing it, or the new owner can access your home if he discovers it.

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