The True Cost of Card and Reader Access Systems

Paul Bodell, VIZpin CEO

If you’re over 50 (like me) you may wonder why anyone would want to use their Smartphone for their access credential. While there are many reasons, you may be surprised to learn that one of the top ones is cost.

We have spoken with countless property managers, both residential and commercial. They have told us they are fed up with older card and reader access control systems, and the leading reason is cost.

How Much Do Key Card Access Systems Cost Per Door?

Source: Security Sales & Integration, May 2017

Initially, card and reader access systems can cost $2,500 or more per door to install. BUT, that’s not all!

Add in the fact that property managers get whacked with fees every time they need a software upgrade.

Pile on top of that the cost of fobs ($5 or more each) and managers wallets begin getting pretty thin.

In addition, when someone loses a fob, not only does the property manager have to buy a new one, but someone has to add it to the system, too. (And you know how often this happens – if you don’t, simply search “lost building access card” on Twitter.)

People tweeting about losing their building access card

One property manager estimated he spent 15 minutes per tenant, per year administering the system. For a $20 per hour system administrator at a building with 200 people, there’s another $1,000!

This Got Us Thinking…

As a property owner or manager, you’ve got more important things to work on.

So, why do you have to waste so much of your time managing key cards and fobs? Sure, they’re easier than the traditional lock and key.

What if there was a simpler and more secure way for both people to enter a locked area and for property managers to remotely manage it?

And what if that solution was perfect for commercial use and cheaper than many traditional key card door entry systems?

That’s what we were wondering.

Cheaper Solution: Smartphone is Your Key

Bluetooth Access Control System from VIZpin
Scan your phone and you’re in!

That’s why we developed our commercial-grade smartphone access control system that lets users unlock the door with their phone and can be managed from anywhere you have internet access. Many of our partners are installing the Bluetooth access control reader for less than $1,000 per door.

There’s 2 options:

  1. Smart lock with the reader in the door handle. If the door doesn’t already have a Wiegand door controller, then use the battery-powered commercial smart lock.
  2. Reader next to the door or gate. If the door already has a Wiegand door controller, then you really only need the Bluetooth reader that can connect to it.

The annual service is free for up to 5 smart keys, and there’s a paid PLUS service available with additional features for up to 500 smart keys, including all upgrades, ensuring property managers are always using the latest product.

Commercial Smart Lock
VIZpin’s Commercial Smart Lock

In addition, if a tenant loses a phone, there’s no need to get a system administrator involved. When they get a new phone, they can securely transfer keys from one phone to the next, and it doesn’t cost a thing. Check out our support video below that shows how easy this process is.

And finally, in addition to the fact that tenants think VIZpin is cool and convenient, they don’t share their phones with anyone else, so the system is inherently more secure than access systems with cards or fobs. If you’re like most property managers we’ve spoken to, you’ll agree that that’s priceless.