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Having a Good Work / Life Balance as a Locksmith

Our locksmith training courses are a fast-track route to becoming a accredited locksmith, providing you with the necessary accreditations to successfully run your own business. Many of our students go on to work for themselves, turning their skills into a lucrative venture.

Working as a locksmith means being your own boss and managing your own hours. Quite often, this line of work is ideal for those with other commitments, giving you the freedom to work the hours that suit you. However, as 24hr callouts are a common service offered by locksmith companies, it’s important to have a smart approach to managing your time.

Here are 5 ways you can maintain a healthy work / life balance while still maximising sales:

1) Stay organised

The number one rule for a good work / life balance in locksmithing is having great organisational skills. Time management is key, and having routines can help, even when you don’t know where you’re going to be from one day to the next. 24 hour locksmiths have to be ready to leave at a moment’s notice, so keep your van fully stocked, frequently check and update inventory, and book vehicle MOT and servicing in advance.

2) Get on top of your paperwork

Keeping your books in order is one of the most important aspects of running a business and staying productive. Paperwork can be time-consuming and if you don’t do it as you go, it can quickly become unmanageable.

Have a system for customer invoicing and upgrade to a digital solution if you find yourself getting bogged down with too many documents. Digital apps for invoices can speed up the process through automation, giving you more time to get on with the job at hand.

3) Consider bringing on admin support

If you’re finding it hard to answer calls and do your own admin, it could be time to bring on a bit of support. For some locksmiths, getting help from family members can be the most convenient solution, and many locksmith businesses are family run. Alternatively, it could be worth hiring a virtual PA or call assistant.

4) Share the workload

Being a one man band has its advantages, such as only having to organise yourself, and not having to manage a team or go through the process of hiring. However, if your workload is increasing and you are finding yourself having to turn down jobs, bringing on a team member could be the answer.

A team member can also help you with 24 hour callout rotation, meaning you can enjoy some nights off to spend with the family. Everyone needs a break to recharge, and rotas with fair allocation of hours can give you a much better work / life balance than taking all callouts by yourself.

5) Invest in the best locksmith training

Running your business successfully starts from having the right mentors. At MPL, our locksmith courses are designed to prepare you for a self-employed career in locksmithing. The training not only covers all the practical skills and advanced lock picking skills, but it gives you insight into what it takes to be a business owner.

Our locksmith training courses touch on marketing skills, how to manage finances, how to handle paperwork, and other aspects such as insurance or creating business processes.

We also continue to provide support once you graduate, with a 24/7 helpline to guide you on your first jobs as a newly accredited locksmith!

For full details on our locksmith courses, contact our team and request a free prospectus.

Is There a Shortcut to Becoming a Locksmith?

One of the best things about becoming a locksmith is the short intensive training. Compared to other careers where a three year stint at university may be required, locksmith training courses make it possible to start earning much faster.

However, to become an expert in your field, it’s important to have real on-the-job experience. Honing your craft can take many years, as well as an investment in continued professional development. Here’s everything you need to know about the quickest way to becoming a locksmith, the sort of training you’ll need, and how to be hugely successful as your own boss.

Take our 5 day course

Training to be a locksmith is a great way to kick start a lucrative career, without the need for any prior qualifications. Our locksmith training is highly accessible, and is open to people of all backgrounds and education levels.

A locksmith course is also a fraction of the cost of going to university, which means you won’t be swamped in debt after you graduate. Most of our students who go onto work for themselves are able to make back the cost of the training in a matter of months. And in terms of time investment, you can get started after less than a week of training.

After just 5 days on our Specialist Locksmith Training Course, you could have the knowledge and skills to start your own locksmith business! A beginner locksmith course is the fastest way of becoming a locksmith – but there are certainly no ‘shortcuts’ as such, as locksmithing is all about continuous learning and improvement.

The importance of on-the-job training

While some students choose to go into trainee locksmith roles after their locksmith training course, most decide to work for themselves. You don’t need a lot of overheads to get started, so setting up your own locksmith business is a popular route for our students.

By launching yourself straight into work and taking on clients, you will be able to gain experience with small jobs, eventually working your way up to larger projects. There is no better training than the hands-on training you’ll get from working in the industry, so take on as many different jobs as possible to diversify your skills. There are so many lock makes and models out there, and the longer you’ve been in the business, the more of these you’ll gain experience with. For most new locksmiths, it can take up to three years before you become truly expert.

If you have some previous work experience in the same or similar roles, you may progress a little faster. For instance, students who have previously worked as a carpenter, a joiner, or any line of work where good dexterity or mechanical skills are required, may find the locksmith training course to be easier. They may also find it easier to grow their business at speed due to their experience in trade.

Continued professional development

After your initial locksmith course, it’s important to continue to invest in your training. At MPL, we offer a range of courses that help existing professionals advance their skills. These include autosmith training, boarding up training, uPVC repair, tilt and turn, and others.

Many students who train with us as beginners return while running their own business to gain skills in these areas. By developing their knowledge further, they are able to offer a wider range of services, taking on more jobs and high value contracts.

If you’re worried about paying for locksmith training, we offer finance options to help you cover the cost of the course, with flexible terms and lending that matches your situation. Do you want to find out more? For full details on our locksmith courses, contact our team and request a free prospectus.

Still Not Applied to University? Train to Be a Locksmith!

If you’re a school or sixth form college leaver who doesn’t want to follow the traditional route of going into higher education, a career in locksmithing could be a fantastic alternative.

University isn’t for everyone, and there are many training opportunities for those who prefer to work with their hands, or those who would rather start their own business than rack up university debt.

Here’s everything you need to know about choosing the locksmith career path and finding locksmith training courses after your GCSEs and A Levels.

Why train to be a locksmith?

Training to be a locksmith is a great way to kick start a lucrative career. Here are some of the reasons why it’s such a brilliant career choice:

  • You don’t need any prior qualifications to apply for a locksmith course
  • You can complete a locksmith training course in a few days
  • You can start your own company and be your own boss
  • You can enjoy a better work/life balance working for yourself
  • You can future-proof your career – locksmiths are always in demand
  • You’ll have recession-proof earnings – your services are needed regardless of the state of the economy

Furthermore, a locksmith course is a fraction of the cost of going to university, which means you won’t be riddled with debt after you graduate. And because there are opportunities to set up a business as soon as you complete your training, you can make back any upfront costs quickly.

Route to becoming a locksmith

There are trainee locksmith jobs or locksmith apprenticeship programmes with nationwide companies, but the best route to becoming a qualified and highly skilled locksmith is with a dedicated locksmith training, like our City & Guilds Accredited 5 Day Specialist Locksmith Course.

By investing in a training programme, you can take control of your career path and boost your earning potential. While there’s no shortcut to becoming successful, our locksmith training course will arm you with all the skills and knowledge you need to start and run your own locksmith business.

Things to consider before a locksmith course

You don’t need any prior qualifications to train as a locksmith, making this career path accessible to people of all backgrounds and education levels. But there are some things you will need to think about before applying for a training course.

You will need the following:

  • A full UK driving licence – working as a locksmith means being able to get to customers quickly, so being able to drive is essential.
  • Access to a van – a work vehicle is recommended so you can carry tools and essential parts to/from locations.
  • Funds to help you setup – as well as being able to pay for the course, you will also need money to pay for locksmith tools, stock, a vehicle and other business setup costs (such as insurance or marketing/advertising).

At MPL, we offer finance options to help you pay for your course, with flexible terms and lending that matches your situation. All course attendees receive a free Locksmith Bible with drill points and data of hundreds of locks (worth £100). And on completion of the course, you’ll get an exclusive discount on all tools and locksmith products from our sister companies.

Do you want to find out more? For full details on our locksmith training courses, contact our team and request a free prospectus.

Locksmith Training: Working for a Company vs. Being Self-Employed

Locksmith training is one of the best career decisions you can make, with a fast return on investment after you complete your course. Our locksmith training courses are highly inclusive, making it possible for people of all backgrounds and education levels to enjoy a lucrative career.

But what are your options after your training is done? Should you apply to work at a local or national company, or is it best to go self-employed? Many of our students come to us because they want a way to make good money, with flexibility to choose their own hours. Our training arms you with all the skills and knowledge needed to launch your own business venture, and this is the best way to maximise your earnings.

Interested in studying a locksmith course? Here are some of the reasons why being a self-employed locksmith is a fantastic option:

You get to be your own boss

When you choose to go self-employed, you get to manage your own hours and make business decisions that fit in with your lifestyle and personal commitments. For instance, if you need to juggle work with childcare, you can build a business that works for you and your family. You can employ others to take on the hours you can’t commit to, or team up with a business partner to ensure all business hours are covered.

Create a company you believe in

Running your own locksmith business means doing something you’re passionate about, without the frustrations of red tape or corporate politics. Decide what values make your company stand out. Is it integrity? Fair pricing? Customer-centricity? What matters most to you as a business owner?

Our locksmith course teaches you everything you need to know about building a reputable business – and our mentors will impart their knowledge about important values to uphold. And if you’ve seen things done badly in the past, your business is your opportunity to do things better.

You can expand your business

One of the main benefits of working for yourself is being able to grow your business in any direction. At MPL, we offer continued development through our advanced locksmith training courses, such as our Advanced Lock Picking Course, our Specialist Auto Locksmith Course, or our uPVC Repair / Tilt & Turn Course. These programmes are suitable for professionals who want to increase their skills to get more work.

It’s also possible to expand your customer base by launching services in other towns and cities, or you can ramp up earnings through commercial and local council/government contracts.

Higher starting salary

The average starting salary for employed trainee locksmiths is around £16,000 (or £20,000-£25,000 for the more experienced). But many of our students earn a lot more when they decide to work for themselves!

So it’s possible to make back what you’ve invested into your training very quickly. One of our former students, Mehmet, had a turnover of £60,000 in his first year. He paid for his locksmith course with a credit card, and was able to pay his debt off within the first two weeks of working on the road! Watch his testimonial here.

Start-up costs are relatively low

While working for a company can mean no initial output, locksmith start-up costs are relatively low compared to other business ventures. And high earning potential will mean being able to make back any investments in a short amount of time.

Initial costs to consider include:

  • Locksmith training
  • Tools and stock
  • Transport (such as a van)
  • Marketing (website, online advertising etc.)

To find out more about our locksmith courses, get in touch and request a free prospectus. Or head over to our locksmith training FAQs page for more details.

Locksmith Salary: How Much Can I Earn?

The locksmith salary is one of the most attractive benefits of becoming a locksmith. Because it allows you to earn a decent wage without prior qualifications. But this doesn’t mean locksmithing is a get rich quick scheme. Becoming a locksmith requires professional training, continued learning on the job, and a thirst and passion for keeping your skills up to date.

If you’re serious about taking a locksmith course, there will be so many opportunities available to you once you graduate – including a chance to launch your own business and be your own boss.

What to expect from a locksmith salary

Locksmiths can choose to work for a local or national company, or they can choose the work for themselves. The latter is the most popular, and this is what most of our students choose to do after taking our locksmith course.

Starting your own business means you have scope to earn a lot more. This is because going self-employed means you will get to earn more per hour, and you’ll also be able to have full control of the hours you work. And because our training courses are affordable, it’s a fantastic investment that will have you making the money back very soon.

One of our past students, Mehmet, had a turnover of over £60,000 in his first year!
Watch our video of Mehmet talking about how he paid for the locksmith course, and how he made his impressive locksmith salary as a self-employed tradesperson after his training.

Is there potential to grow my business?

There are many ways you can increase a basic locksmith salary when you first start out. When you run your own business, you can take the business in any direction you want. In addition to domestic locksmith services, there’s also the commercial market to consider, as well as working for the emergency services such as the police. These are areas where you may be able to get contract work that pays very well.

When it comes to growing your business or expanding your territory, taking on new employees will help you take on more work and across a bigger catchment zone.

On our training programme, we’ll help you develop specialist skills such as uPVC door lock replacements and high security lock upgrades. These are great areas to go into, as home security becomes more sought after and the uPVC door market becomes increasingly complex.

Training with MPL

At MPL Locksmith Training, we have over two decades of experience in locksmith training, including specialising in uPVC. We offer a range of courses for new and existing locksmiths, which all take place in our locksmith training centre. Our courses are a great way to start working for yourself or for an established locksmith, with many people choosing to start their own lucrative business!

Our training makes being a business owner accessible, no matter your background or previous qualifications.

If you want to start your own business like Mehmet, take a look at the locksmith courses at MPL. Our 3 or 5 day training programmes have seen students go on to form very successful locksmithing companies. To find out more, get in touch and request a free prospectus.

5 Reasons to Retrain as a Locksmith

Locksmithing is a fantastic career for anyone who likes to work with their hands, and their brain. Not only is this a practical job – so you’re not tied to a desk – but you’ll get to exercise skills such as problem-solving and creative thinking.

Our students also enjoy the inclusive nature of locksmith training, because it’s available to everyone, no matter their education level. And with the right training and support, locksmith jobs can be extremely rewarding.

Here are the reasons to retrain on a locksmith course at MPL:

1. Locksmiths are always in demand!

The locksmith career path is a reliable one, because home and business security is always in high demand.

Furthermore, with security being an important aspect for both domestic and business markets, it means there will always be room for growth. Developing new skills and understanding the latest technology is essential to keeping your CV up to date, and locksmiths get to enjoy continued learning and professional development.

2. The earnings are attractive

Salaries can vary depending on where you work, who you work for, and what hours you put in. But most of our students go self-employed, which is the best way to boost your earnings. And many people achieve their goals in a matter of years, or less.

One of our past students, Mehmet, had a turnover of over £60,000 in his first year! Watch our locksmith training testimonial video where Mehmet talks about his impressive business.

There are also many areas you can expand into, including opportunities for commercial contracts or the emergency services, giving you plenty of ways to increase earnings.

3. You can grow a business fast

A locksmith training course can also be the perfect platform for launching your own business. Being self-employed gives you the freedom to choose your own hours, and also means you can take your work in any desired direction.

This means you can enjoy a better work/life balance by fitting your work around other commitments. At the same time, ambitious entrepreneurs have the ability to expand their enterprise, taking on big clients and hiring teams to cover projects nationwide.

4. No two days are ever the same

If working in a corporate office environment isn’t for you, locksmithing could be a great way to get out and about. No two days are the same, and you won’t know where you’ll be from one day to the next.

It’s a good way to meet people, see new places and enjoy life on the road. Admin is still vital to your role though, so be prepared to do a little desk-based paperwork from time to time.

5. Locksmith training courses are for everyone

No prior qualifications are needed to join a locksmith course. Anyone can enrol for locksmith training, and there are locksmith jobs to suit all circumstances. Whether you want to work weekends or keep to sociable hours, there are many options!

With no set entry requirements, locksmith training courses allow for maximum inclusivity, drawing people from all abilities and backgrounds, and providing everyone with a chance to be successful.

No prior qualifications are needed to join a locksmith course. Anyone can enrol for locksmith training, and there are locksmith jobs to suit all circumstances. Whether you want to work weekends or keep to sociable hours, there are many options!

Does a locksmith career sound like the right fit for you? Check out what our previous students have to say about MPL training.

Our 3 or 5 day training programmes have seen students go on to form very successful locksmithing companies. To find out more, get in touch and request a free prospectus.

Home Security Tips For Moving Homes

Moving into a new home can be an exciting and extremely busy time in a person’s life. You have so many things to arrange such as paperwork, removal men, packing as well as possibly a new neighbourhood. In this article we will give you some of the best home security tips when you move to a new home, some are completely free and quick to complete – most of these tips can be completed on the first day.

Changing your locks and alarm codes

Whilst this may seem like a costly and delayable task for some people, you do not know who has lived there previously or has keys to your property. We would always suggest changing your locks, if you are in a rental property most landlords would understand, and as long as they are provided with a set of new keys usually won’t object.

If you are lucky enough to have a garage or shed with locks, these should also be replaced. People often store very high-value items within their garages such as cars, motorbikes, pushbikes, and garden tools – all of which can be stolen. If you have a ladder it may also be a good idea to either chain this securely to the roof of your garage or inside so that it doesn’t benefit any potential burglars.

Similarly to your locks, if there is an alarm fitted to your home it would also be a sensible idea to change the code. Usually, the previous tenant or owner can leave the code with solicitors or estate agents for the new residents.

Visual Checks

A quick and fairly easy way to check the security of your new home is to walk around the property from the outside as if you wanted to break in. Look for any broken or damaged doors, loose locks on gates and if you have large windows do you have high-value items on display? Anything that you find which could be an issue can be repaired or replaced.

If you have a dark pathway or would often be returning home late from work then installing an outdoor light can be helpful as well as deterring potential burglars who may hide in the darkness.

Are you doors upvc or composite?

Lock snapping is a technique that burglars are using to easily break into a property. This method is only successful on properties that don’t have snap safe locks installed. UPVC and composite doors are usually the target as the locks that they come installed with generally are not snap safe locks.
This method of breaking into a property is the most effective and common way of breaking into someone’s home. By applying a bit of force a burglar can snap the cylinder in half, they are then able to expose the locking mechanism by removing the outside of a lock, this then allows the door to be unlocked manually or by using a tool such as a screwdriver. It only takes less than ten seconds for an experienced burglar to get into a home using this method.

In order to protect your home from lock snapping you need to ensure that you have snap safe locks fitted. You can purchase a Diamond grade cylinder lock or a Level 3* TS007 lock from most hardware stores, however, if you doubt your DIY skills, you can call in your local locksmith to come and upgrade your locks and they will be able to supply and fit them for you. If you upgrade your locks it will enhance your home security no end.

Our Home Security Tips

When you take part in any of our locksmith training courses, you’ll learn about the different types of locks available to homes throughout the United Kingdom. Locks are a sound defence mechanism and are usually a suitable deterrent. In fact, they’re so important that, in some cases, insurance providers will only offer cover where British Standard locks are being used, such is their reliability.

However, as much as we love talking about locks (and training you to enter, utilise, and repair them), they’re not the only line of defence when it comes to security. Turns out, there are quite a few other simple methods that you can be using around your home to reduce the likelihood of any burglary or theft.

Here are just a few of our favourites – share them with customers with you’re on site (or, if you have no ambition to become a locksmith anytime soon, then make sure that you’re implementing as many of these tips as you can!).

Maintain Door and Window Security

Of course it begins with doors and windows! But we’re not just talking about the locks that you keep on them (although these should be regularly inspected and kept in top condition as well).

Instead, we’re looking at everything else – the materials, alignment, fitting, and quality of the doors and windows in your home. Even the smallest defect or sign of damage could present an opportunity to a burglar. Be sure to maintain the condition of every entry door and window in your property and you’ll greatly reduce the risk of anything happening.

Your home insurance provider will also be interested in the condition of doors and windows on your property.

Patio Door Security

Next up, make sure and spend some time checking the security of any patio doors or french doors on your property – burglars are particularly interested in using these as an entry and exit point inside your home.

First of all, ensure that the cylinders and handles are approved to the appropriate Sold Secure (SS) standards. Even if they are, then why not considering adding a Patlock? This simple mechanism is Neighbourhood Watch recommended and ensures that, even if the lock is damaged, the external handles won’t operate.

There are no keys and codes and it’s fitted within seconds – it doesn’t get any simpler than this.

Security Lights

The next handy tip focuses on the exterior of your home in the form of security lights. These lights are growing in popularity – and it’s easy to see why. Motion-sensor lights are very reasonable and offer great value-for-money.

If any burglar decides to have a sneak peek around your property, they’ll be quick to flee the scene when motion-activated lights shine a bright light straight down on them. You’ll know exactly when the lights go off – and so will your neighbours.

Indoors, timers and other remote-control devices can switch lights on and off to provide the illusion of somebody being home.

Additional Door Security

There’s more to your door than the locking mechanism, and our next home security tip illustrates that perfectly.

Adding something as straightforward as a chain can provide another level of security to your front door. At the very least, it will frustrate any burglar and delay something they want to perform quickly. Ideally, it adds enough security to prevent a theft altogether.

Another idea is to add a letterbox guard. Again, this is something which is relatively cheap to install, and it could prevent burglars from using any ‘fishing’ style approaches where they can manipulate your lock (or even steal keys left inside the door).

Visible Burglar Alarms

Our final home security tip is one that everybody should have already considered by now –installing a home security system. It’s important that your alarm system is configured correctly. Trust us when we tell you that you don’t want the dog starting the alarm at 3AM.

Get a high-quality and dependable home security system installed. It’s especially important that the alarm is visible from the outside of your home. If a burglar can see it, then there’s a very good chance that they won’t attempt to steal anything from your property – it simply isn’t worth it.

CCTV is another option that can be tied into your home alarm system and provides an additional level of security and evidence.

To find out more about home security tips and advice from the experts, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team.

Alternatively, if you’re a young locksmith new to the industry and you’re looking to add to your skillset with our uPVC door or auto locksmithing courses, then why not get in touch with our team?

Which Type Of Safe Is Best For Me?

Deposit Safe

A Deposit Safe is usually an individual metal container that is typically stored within a bank. Many years ago you would request your branch manager to store valuable items such as watches or family keepsakes within your deposit safe. Unfortunately, you often didn’t get to see your items physically put into these, and record-keeping wasn’t always accurate- resulting in lost items. Their popularity has been increasing in recent years within the UK although some banks such as Barclays will only allow existing deposit safe customers this option.

The cost of having a deposit safe will vary on the size you require as well as the individual bank you wish to use. Prices can range from around £20 a month up to £70 in banks such as Metro and you are required to have insurance on the box and contents. Each bank will also have rules around what you can or can’t store within your deposit safe, for example, most banks will not allow you to store: cash, food, or weapons. You will also need to provide identification to enter the vault or security box meaning it is unlikely anyone else could have access to your deposit safe.

Security Safe

A security safe often has a lock and key or a number secured box which you can store within your home. There is often an override security key and anyone who has this key or the code could get into your safe. A bonus of a security safe is that they are often fire-resistant so if the worst should happen, your items inside would be protected. These are often a good option to store birth certificates, marriage licenses, and items of jewellery within your own home.

You can often find security safes to match most budgets, meaning this could be a cost-effective option for you. Unless your safe is bolted to your floor it does mean that potential burglars could remove the entire safe. You may wish to consider bolting the security safe to the floor and you will also need to have insurance for the contents of the security safe.

Floor Safe

A floor safe is a type of safe which is usually put into your homes concrete foundations. Installing a floor safe can often be difficult and cause a lot of dust and dirt however they are a very secure option against burglars and fires. Due to the nature of these floor safes being underground they are more likely to be damaged if there is a flood or a fire that is extinguished by fire hoses. You may wish to get additional water-tight protection for documentation stored within.

If you wish to have regular access to items within your safe then a floor safe may not be a practical option for you to choose. You may also require a professional locksmith and safe manufacturers when installing this type of safe.

Home Safe

With burglaries, particularly home burglaries increasing, it is important to protect your valuable possessions. Hiding your valuables in drawers or a cupboard is usually one of the first places a burglar would choose to look. With the market for home safes growing in popularity you have a huge choice of home safes. You can choose a home safe that is concealable, can be hidden in your wardrobes, or bolted to the floor to go undetected by a burglar. As most home safes are extremely heavy you may need assistance to install them or if you moved house. Most home insurance companies will need you to store valuable items within your home safe or on your person such as engagement rings or watches to cover your insurance policy.