Definition of lock something up (also lock up) in US English:

lock something up (also lock up)

phrasal verb

  • 1Shut and secure a building by fastening its doors with locks.

    ‘the diplomatic personnel locked up their building and walked off’
    ‘you could lock up for me when you leave’
    • ‘Civic centre buildings have been locked up as a result of the strike and are defended by the paramilitary police against protesters.’
    • ‘Iris raced out the door without bothering to lock her room up.’
    • ‘But, just weeks after the company opened a second shop in the district in Shipley town centre, the doors on all the stores have been locked up and there is no answer on any of its telephone lines.’
    • ‘After shutting the door and locking it up, she turned to look at Hope.’
    • ‘Windows and doors were boarded up, shops were locked up and the gates to the castle were wide open.’
    • ‘We had no way of knowing how bad the fire was until we got into the building because obviously it had been locked up since Friday.’
    • ‘In October 2000, tenants say two employees of the company forced them all to move out of the building by using intimidation tactics like threats, dogs, locking the building up and shutting off electricity.’
    • ‘I think the building was locked up for Christmas yesterday, so I'm not sure I know how this was delivered.’
    • ‘I go back to the bar and catch Cody before he locks up.’
    • ‘It took me a minute to remember that today was Sunday and the building was locked up.’
    • ‘‘Shh,’ he put his finger to his lips and closed the door behind him, locking it up again.’
    • ‘I shut the bedroom door, locked the house up and got my bike out of the shed.’
    • ‘But when the Evening Press called at the two-storey Kathryn Avenue building on the Pigeoncote industrial estate, it was locked up and shuttered from view with blinds.’
    1. 1.1 Invest money in something so that it is not easily accessible.
      ‘vast sums of money locked up in pension funds’
      • ‘So those shares will be locked away and will generate some extra dividend income for the family.’
      • ‘And you might get an even better rate if you're prepared to lock the money away for a year or more.’
      • ‘If you do not want to lock your money away, an instant-access variable-rate account is another option - but the rate could fall if base is cut again.’
      • ‘I had quite a bit of money on deposit, but I couldn't lock it away, because I needed to live off it while I was studying.’
      • ‘It is not always possible for investors to lock their money away long term.’
      • ‘So why do some people earn lower interest by locking their money away?’
      • ‘This high level of tax relief makes pension vehicles far more attractive investments than most, but the drawback is that all money in the fund is locked away until retirement.’
      • ‘As members may be locking their money away for several decades, they may be willing to take a bit more risk to get a better return.’
      • ‘The duff bit about it is that you have to lock your money away for a full five years, the minimum investment is £2,000 and you have to reclaim a sizeable proportion of those returns via your tax return during each of those five years.’
      • ‘Fold in the automatic deduction - savings whisked away before I see it - the tax break, and the fact that the money is locked away so that it can't be splurged on a vacation or a new car, and you've got something pain free that makes you feel good.’
      • ‘Perhaps locking the money away in a non-liquid asset such as property is not the best option.’
      • ‘In that case it probably makes sense to reduce the loan now, if you can afford to lock those savings away, as this will save additional interest.’
      • ‘Fixing your rates on savings may make sense, as long as you can afford to lock your money away, because if commentators are correct returns have further to fall.’
      • ‘I don't want to lock his money away, so I tend to ignore notice or fixed-term accounts.’