A while ago I penned a post Should I add Burglar to my Business Card after a round of issues with gaining access to a property. This week I discovered that other agents just leave the breaking and entering to their clients.
So here is the scenario. What would you have done?
My clients and I attempted to view a house that was #1 on our must see list. There were keys in the combination lockbox that worked one lock but not the other. Then I spied an electronic lockbox and discovered a different key inside. That key fit the backdoor locks but didn’t open the door. After all three of us tried to open the door with no success I put in a call to the agent (got VM) and we decided to head on to view other properties. When we didn’t get a return call from the agent we decided to call it a day and hopefully be able to see the property the following day.
On a whim, after grabbing a bite to eat my clients drove back by the property and saw someone coming out the front door. They stopped and said they had been by earlier with their agent but couldn’t get in. The agent said they couldn’t get in either with the keys but her client found an unlocked window, crawled in and came around and unlocked the door. The agent then handed my clients the keys and LEFT! Drove away, gone, bye-bye.
My clients called me and said “guess what we are in the house.” When they explained how they had gained entry I told them to leave. We figured out how they could lock the house for us to get back in and arranged to meet back at the property in an hour.
I don’t know if the other agent had tried the electronic lockbox so there might be a record of who it was but I’m shocked that an agent would just casually drop the keys to a property into two stranger’s hands and walk away without any concern whatsoever.
No matter how much my clients want to see a house I’m never going to resort to breaking and entering. I’m will never hand over keys to someone without an agent who just shows up at the door of a house no matter what their story. This agent can count themselves lucky that my clients did the right thing.
Combination lockboxes with the code in the MLS provide no way of tracking who has been in the property. This is eventually going to lead to a serious incident. Hopefully our local boards and the lenders who suggest the use of them will wise up and put a stop to the practice before it does.