Our house was purchased by "Al" in the 80's, and he had been renting it out since the early 90's, so for the last 20 + years, people have been in and out of our house, and who knows who still had keys or access to it. We considered calling a locksmith and having the whole house re-keyed, but after a few estimates and some time spent weighing our options, we decided to just install new door handles and locks. The existing door knobs were shiny gold and none of them matched, and there were different keys needed for the front and back doors. In order to play it safe, we just splurged and bought all new door handles and locks for the 3 exterior doors in our house. We spent the extra money and bought the Schlage re-keyable door handles (from Lowes) so that all the doors could be matched to the same key, and if we ever need to re-key the house, it's super easy to re-do ourselves, without having to call a locksmith, which would cost anywhere from $80-$150.
I have to say, neither Brian nor I have any experience installing a new door knob, and he was able to do this first one in a little over an hour. The directions were pretty straightforward and everything matched up, which made things easy.
I was busy doing other things while Brian was installing the locks, but from my understanding, I'm pretty sure you unscrew and separate the old handle, and then put all the new parts in place and then screw the new handle together. Easy as that. Except for that the other 2 handles didn't match up perfectly. We just got lucky on the first one. Mr. H had to come over and help drill and screw some things into place in order to get the other 2 locks to work, but everything worked out in the end and we no longer have to worry about who has a key to our house! And the best part? We just have 1 key for the whole house!!
I know it's not the most exciting post but it's essential to a new homeowner, so that's why I'm sharing. However, living room paint pictures are coming soon, and that IS exciting, so be sure to check back!