While we all have a fear of locking ourselves out of our homes, how many of us actually do something about it? According to a recent survey of 1,000 homeowners by Eyewitness Surveillance—a home security company based in Hanover, Maryland—18% of American households have a physical key hidden outside of their home. Whether this is for the sake of a forgetful resident or a visiting houseguest remains unclear, however it does suggest that nearly 20 percent of the population is comfortable stashing a spare key somewhere out-of-door. Any guesses where they hide them?
1. Fake Rocks
As cliché as it might sound, over 35 percent of survey takers said they hide their spare keys inside of fake rocks—with secret storage containers—in the grass, shrubs, and landscaping outside of their houses.
Believe it or not, 25 percent of respondents admitted that they simply stash an extra key under the doormat outside of their front door. A startling statistic considering how accessible (and close to your entryway) this hiding spot can be.
Although way less obvious than a doormat, 17 percent of homeowners polled said they hide a spare key somewhere inside their barbeque grills. Not a bad idea if you’re lucky enough to have a backyard.
4. Rain Gutters
As tricky as it may seem, 14 percent of respondents claim they store a spare key on the inside of their home’s rain gutter. No word on how many of those keys get corroded or carried away in heavy rain though.
5. A/C Units
Eight percent of homeowners surveyed said they simply found an inconspicuous spot inside of their outdoor air conditioning unit to stash a spare key. Smart—as long as you don’t drop it under the fan.
Three creative ways to hide your keys
Looking for a smarter place to stash your key?
Thermometer Hide-a-Key at Amazon, $4.99: Not only does this unsuspecting thermometer include enough space to store two keys inside—it also tells the correct temperature.
Sprinkler Head Hide-a-Key at Home Depot, $11: Made from an authentic sprinkler system head, this waterproof sprinkler safe offers enough room to hide keys, cash, or a even a small document.
Flower Pot Safe at Sears, $34.60: This clever flowerpot boasts a sealed, diversion safe container on the inside for concealing your keys.