What type of lockbox does your agent use and why does it matter?
There are 3 possible types of lockboxes available in our area and which one your agent uses on your home does make an impact. Find out the pros and cons of each and decide which is best for you.
- Combination: The least expensive of the 3, it is available in any home improvement store and not exclusive to Realtors. This lockbox is similar to a school locker or bicycle lock. It is typically opened and secured to your home with one code. This means that every time the box is opened to retrieve the key, it is also susceptible to being removed from the door. Because it is not an electronic device, the box is able to be opened 24 hours a day without the ability to turn off at night for security or during a time when the homeowner cannot be disturbed (migraine, sleeping infant, illness, etc). When this type of access is provided to agents, it cannot be tracked to determine who was in the house and when. Access is also available to anyone with the code and is not restricted to agents only.
- Sentrilock: Sentrilock is an electronic box available only through Northern Virginia Board of Realtors. Most properties east of Leesburg use this type of access device. Sentrilock requires agents to use a key card to gain access to the property along with their personal pin number. This key expires daily and must be updated through a card reader in order to be used. Each time the key card is used to open a box, an email is generated to the listing agent letting them know the details of entry (time, agent, property, contact information). This increases both security for the homeowner and the ability to gather feedback from showings. Access to remove the key and remove the box are NOT the same, so the lockbox can only be removed by the listing agent. Another feature of this lockbox is that it does not allow access at night and allows the homeowner the ability to place a 90 minute Do Not Disturb on the box if their house is not able to be shown at that time.
- Supra: A Supra box is also an electronic lockbox that is available only through the Dulles Area Association of Realtors. Most properties Leesburg and west use this box. It uses a key system that is updated automatically and wirelessly each evening. Access to the box is wireless and requires a pin number. When the box is opened, a message is sent to the listing agent instantly that allows them to know who is in the house. Like the Sentrilock, a Supra box cannot be removed the same way the key is accessed which increases security. Although Supra does not have the Do Not Disturb feature, it is able to be programmed to not allow access at night – another security benefit.
Ask Gina & Company uses both versions of the electronic lockboxes. Working in primarily Fairfax and Loudoun County, we are active in BOTH Realtor associations: Northern Virginia Association of Realtors and Dulles Area Association of Realtors. We maintain keys and lockboxes for both systems and will use the one that is right for your home based on the region. For homes in Ashburn/Leesburg/Purcellville, this means having BOTH the Sentrilock and the Supra box on your home to allow all of the active agents access to your property while still maintaining the highest security possible.
For more information about real estate in Northern Virginia, please give us a call at 703-574-3478 or email firstname.lastname@example.org