Inspection Training

Lockbox and Key Handling Procedure

There are about 5 different types of Lockboxes, all with their unique characteristics. You can go to Home Depot and practice on some. (Except for electronic ones.)A regular dial-type lockbox is Left, Right, Left (TOY) fully passed on the second one.

In the winter, you may need to tap the lockbox. Or in extreme situation, pour hot coffee on it to break ice.

Even when you get there early, and no one is there, you should verify that you have the correct Lockbox Code. So, knock; ring the doorbell, and call out loudly “Hello, Home Inspector” upon entering the property.

If you don’t have the lockbox code, call the office immediately. Get started on inspecting the outside of the home.

We want to make sure we have access, so we are not working on the outside for the next 30 to 45 minutes and then we find out we don’t have key access. If the Lockbox didn’t work, we could call the office and they could be calling while we are inspecting the outside.

Some push button lock boxes reset after opening it. So it is a good idea to punch in the code again right then and there, and lay the lockbox to the side. Then, you don’t need to look up code at the end of inspection to lock up.

Before opening the door, knock and ring the doorbell TWICE each. Give them time inside to answer if they are home. If no one answers, walk in and yell “Hello, Home Inspector! Here to do the inspection!”

There should either be a lock box code in your scheduler, or explanation of how you will gain access to the property.

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HANDLING THE KEY:

1. Take the key out of the lockbox.
2. Unlock the door. (Do not drop and lose the key in deep snow.)

3. Put the key back in the lockbox.
4. Close the lockbox.

Be aware of self-closing and locking storm or security doors. Especially if the lockbox might get locked between a regular door and storm door.
Be aware of pets that may run out the door upon opening.

When leaving, make sure all doors are in the same position that you found them. For example, that you do not leave a closet door open.

Be sure to lock the doors completely. If there are two locks on the door, make sure the knob and deadbolt are both locked.
Lock all doors. Back doors, side doors, garage entry doors, patio doors.
When leaving, make sure the lockbox is locked closed, and is attached to something tightly.

 

Locking Up Upon Leaving:

The Inspector Is The Person Responsible For Securing The Property –

If you were the one who unlocked the home using the lockbox code/key, you are responsible for securing the home when you are done.

DO NOT Give Clients or Anyone Else The Lockbox/Key Information.

 

When you are ready to leave…

A. IF AN AGENT IS PRESENT –

> Turn on your recorder to protect yourself against any issues.

> Inspector makes sure that all exterior doors, and windows are closed and locked. Talk to the recorder on what you are doing.

> Tell the people remaining that you are leaving. Be sure your recorder is on.

> Tell the agent they are responsible for locking up the home now, and for locking all windows and doors.

> Tell the agent you are placing the key in the lockbox, with the cover next to it. Be sure your recorder is on.

> Tell the agent they must lock the house.

> Tell the agent they must secure the key in the lockbox, and make sure the box is attached to something tightly.

> Take a picture of the key you put inside the lockbox, with the cover next to it.

>Take a picture showing people are still in the house.

When you are ready to leave…

B. IF AGENT IS NOT PRESENT, BUT THE CLIENT IS, & WANTS TO STAY-

Remember: The Inspector Is the Person Responsible For Securing The Property

We do not want to leave the client or anyone else in the home without an Agent present.

> Turn on your recorder to protect yourself against any issues.

> DO NOT Give Clients or Anyone The Lockbox/Key Information.
> If clients, or other non-Agents insist on staying in the home when you are ready to leave, call the office.

> Have the office call the Buyer’s Agent to tell them what is going on at the property.

> The Buyer’s Agent then needs to take responsibility for securing the home if the client or other people do not want to leave the home.

> Inspector – DO NOT LEAVE THE PROPERTY until securing the home has been resolved and documented, and the office has said OK to leave.


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