Simplify Lockouts by Ditching Keys, Keycards and Fobs
Lockouts happen and they present sereral challenges for both proeprty managers and tenants when they do. It’s typically late at night or on weekends, a resident comes home and realizes they forgot their key or perhaps they lost it. Some properties require the resident to call a locksmith and wait hours for them to arrive and switch out the lock – costing the resident quite a bit and may not always be replaced with the same quality lock. Other times they call a staff member or property manager for help. Then that property manager must come to the property to unlock their door. But before doing this, they must verify the resident’s identity, likely by looking them up in a residential record and ensuring their identity matches with the door they’re locked out of. Once verified, the property manager unlocks the door for the resident. It’s all time consuming during the fact, and can be costly after the fact, too. In some cases, they need to replace the resident’s key if it’s lost, and potentially hire a locksmith to change the door lock entirely. Not to mention the cost of the manager and locksmith’s extra work at an inconvenient time.
Though lockouts are unavoidable, it’s important to handle the process as efficiently as possible. With a traditional access control system, the process as described is inconvenient, time-consuming, and costly. It’s been estimated that up to 20% of homeowners in the US have experienced a lockout, so imagine how many of your renters will experience it too. The cost of the manager’s time and possibly a key or lock replacement (which can range from $75 to $200) can add up.
When Your Phone is Your Key
Upgrading your access control system to a keyless solution can greatly improve lockouts for all parties involved. A major benefit of a cloud-based smartphone access control system is it eliminates the inconvenience of using keys, keycards, and fobs. Instead of using these credentials to get in, the system uses a smartphone’s Bluetooth signal to connect to a smart lock or reader on a door or gate to unlock it. While you’d have to replace a keycard or fob if lost, lost smartphones are not your responsibility as they are considered a personal item of residents. There’s also an added convenience being able to manage access virtually anytime, anywhere.
The lockout process significantly improves with this kind of cloud-based system, as the property manager can grant and revoke access remotely. Plus, all user information, including what doors they have access to can easily be checked online. This can be used to streamline identity verification. The property manager simply searches the user’s name to see the specific bedroom the user has authorized access to. They can also make changes to user access and unlock doors from home –the process is simple.
An Improved Process
Managing a lockout with smartphone access control simplifies the process. Whether the resident’s phone is at home, has a dead battery, or is lost, they will find a phone to call someone. Property managers can use video verification over the phone to verify the resident’s identity virtually. Then the manager can unlock the respective door or gate from wherever they are. Instead of a lockout taking an hour of their time, it can take less than 5 minutes.
And, there’s no cost to replace keys or change door locks. When a resident loses a key, keycard, or fob, they have to get it replaced. This takes time out of their busy day to go pick it up and adds additional work for management who have to order or make new copies and be there to distribute it. When their phone is their key, the likelihood of losing it lowers. On the rare occasion a resident does lose their phone, it’s on them to replace it. And when they do, they can login to their app on their new phone and the credentials will be there – while immediately deactivating them on the old device. Now you can charge a lockout fee that’s both reasonable and covers the cost. Improving efficiency in a process as common as this one can make a big difference in your spending and lessen some of that dread, improving your residents’ experience.
Fore more information or to get a quote for your property, contact us today.