A locksmith told me this true story. A family moved to a new house and managed to lock themselves out fairly soon after moving in. A neighbour – who they have never met before – saw they were having problems and came across the road carrying a biscuit tin full of various keys which he said were keys to virtually every house in the street. Unable to find the right key, he then let himself into another neighbour’s empty house to find their collection of keys and found one that let the family into their home.

When you move to a new home, you don’t know to whom previous occupants have provided keys or access codes. Whilst it can be useful for a friend or relative to have access to your home in an emergency, you really don’t want strangers letting themselves in.

The moral of the story is: have all locks changed as soon as you move.

In a similar vein, don’t leave keys under flowerpots, garden gnomes or anywhere else that a cursory search will reveal. My mother used to leave a key on a bit of string inside the letterbox until I persuaded her not to.

Please don’t make things too easy for the light-fingered.