Housewarming GiftThe Idiot Box
Housewarming GiftThe Idiot Box

Housewarming Gift: The Idiot Box

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Housewarming GiftThe Idiot Box

[Photo – CC Attribution – mmarchin]

I decided to write this post because I once again was in need of what I call “the idiot box” on the weekend.ย  I live in a condo building where we have swipe cards for keys.ย  A few things can happen as a result.ย  #1 – You put your key right next to your cell phone and *bam*…. you demagnitize the silly thing.ย  #2, the one that actually happens, is I set my card down and don’t put it back in my wallet.

Having key cards instead of regular keys is just my excuse for why I use an idiot box more frequently than others.ย  Even if you have a regular key, there are likely going to be times that you manage to lock yourself out.ย  If you don’t have one of those fancy keypad garage doors, or if you do but still lock the door to your garage, you could consider getting one of these as a housewarming present.ย  It would also make a good birthday present for the more forgetful person in your life.

Other reasons I love idiot boxes:

  • Your friend is coming to visit from out of town and will arrive while you’re at work?ย  No problem – give them the combo so they can let themselves in!
  • You receive a text message that a friend needs to borrow something while you’re out of town.ย  You can let them in!
  • You receive an extra-unhappy message that there’s something wrong at your house that needs to be dealt with ASAP – you have a way to let someone in.

You can get a few different versions of these things, including fake rocks and whatnot.ย  I recommend getting one that has some safe-like characteristics, so that it would be difficult for someone with improper motivations to break it and get the keys.

Here are a few from Amazon that I like:ย  (PS: The actual term is “key lock box”or “key safe” not “idiot box.”)
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Another good housewarming gift idea?ย  Themed keys!ย  They are quite affordable, but most people don’t get them for themselves.ย  For around $5, you can pick up someone’s favourite sports team, Disney princess or guitar.
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PS: The key I didn’t have on the weekend?ย  Turns out it was in my back pocket.ย  Oops.


Do you have a fun house key?ย  Or, do you use an idiot box?ย  Would you like one as a housewarming gift?

12 thoughts on “Housewarming Gift: The Idiot Box”

  1. Oooooh, I love this idea! I've never had a problem forgetting my keys but often I would forget my security pass for work and *that* was always hell to deal with. I've never seen the drill-themed key but that is AWESOME.

    1. Anne - Unique Gifter

      Yes, I love that key! My only concern is that not everywhere would be able to cut it. Wherever we move next, I am TOTALLY getting myself another idiot box.

  2. FrugalRules

    This is a great idea, especially as a housewarming gift! We always go in through our garage, though we would be in major trouble if we lost the remote.

  3. TimelessFinance

    Most people don't have proper organizational habits. That includes: never take your keys, security badge, etc. out of your pocket unless you're at home, and then always put it in the same place (along with all the other "must carry" stuff). I've never been locked out since I started carrying my own keys. I did have a security badge literally break off its clip because of poor quality and in the building we had to display it at all times (no pocket option) so it fell off when it broke. I immediately reported it missing which, because of the lack of clip quality, was nothing out of the ordinary and it was replaced same day.

    1. Anne - Unique Gifter

      Glad you\’ve found a system that works for you. I usually run into problems when doing things around the building, as all of the doors auto lock, so you have to have a key with you, even if you don\’t have a jacket.

  4. My biggest problem are the days I take the bus/train to work. I keep my work pass clipped to my laptop bag, not on my keychain. So on days I'm not driving, I often forget to grab my keys off the hook as I walk out the door. I can't count the number of times I've sat on the back patio waiting for my housemate to get home to let me in! :)

    I also love the idea of the "idiot box" for days the cleaning service comes. I don't have to plan to stay home from work on those mornings if I can give them a code and they can let themselves in.
    My recent post refinishing the white dresser – part 1

    1. Anne - Unique Gifter

      Yes – we live by the Greyhound, but between it and town, so it is SO HELPFUL when friends have come to visit. I once saw an awesome digital key system on TV that time limited entry, for things like housekeepers, relatives, etc, but it was too pricey at the time.

  5. This is such a great idea! I think we will buy one for our house pretty soon here. I don't know why I hadn't thought of it yet. We actually had our housewarming party on Saturday and we mainly got bottles of wine, gift cards, and candles. Also a board game and some decorative pieces for the walls.
    My recent post 5 Challenges of Living Abroad

    1. Anne - Unique Gifter

      I find it so very helpful. Which board game did you get?? I have a post on them very soon!

  6. Canadianbudgetbinder

    haha we have one of those and they are great!!! Only cost about $35 at Home Depot and we leave a house key inside. My wife is forever misplacing her key so it's perfect. It's great if family pops around they can come in because they know the code or like you said if someone needs something from inside they can easily get in. It's a perfect house warming gift if I say so myself. Long live the idiot box!!! Cheers
    My recent post Growing A Garden In A Small Space

    1. Anne - Unique Gifter

      :-) Now, I hope that you haven't gone and started calling your spouse an idiot as a result! ;-)

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