Southern Maryland Best Buys


The House is Vacant, Why Can't You Just Give Me The Lockbox Code?

This post highlights some good points. The Listing Agent has a Fiduciary Relationship to the Seller. It is not ok to let everyone go through unattended. Theft, safety, and professionalism are just of few of the reasons Agents say NO. 

Doug Rogers Bayou Properties Realty

 With a foreclosure specialist on staff, my company gets daily calls from would-be buyers. Thanks to our internet advertising, many of these prospects will call from the front yard wanting to get inside. Let's examine why I can't give you the lock box code over the phone...

1) You may not really be a buyer-- Like a front porch light, foreclosures attract all sorts of critters. Some are legitimate buyers, others are looking for plunder. With only a cell phone call I can't determine which category you belong.

2) There may be safety concerns-- Think about it, if the owner is not paying the mortgage do you think they are keeping the property in top condition? I have seen holes in the floor, falling ceiling tiles, and mold just to name a few. Sure there is a property preservation company to address the big problems, but sometimes they miss things. Ever had a rusty nail dug out of your foot?

3) My Seller expects me to be there-- My goal is to sell the property. As such, I want to observe your reaction to the property. "It's not for me", mentioned during a cell phone call the next day doesn't give me any useful information.

4) We are better than the  lazy agents-- Yes, Lazy Daisy over at ABC Realty gives you the combo codes. In fact, she tells you about properties BEFORE they hit the market. But beware, an agent that will cut ethical corners with her seller will do likewise with her buyer...

 Looking for a full service agent to help you navigate the foreclosure process? Call Doug Rogers with Bayou Properties Realty today at (318) 613-1994. Search Local homes for sale in Alexandria Louisiana at

Doug Rogers Bayou Properties Realty

Doug Rogers


Bayou Properties Realty



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Comment balloon 6 commentsCheryl Ritchie • April 27 2012 03:33AM


I totally agree * allowing entry to a VACANT or OCCUPIED property without proper screening and care is a failure in our duties to clients

Posted by Wallace S. Gibson, CPM, LandlordWhisperer (Gibson Management Group, Ltd.) over 7 years ago

Cheryl, This is a good post to reblog. I prefer to use my electronic box. This way I will know if agents go in without an appointment.

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) over 7 years ago
Great blog and great job. Keep up the good work and good luck to you this year. Thanks
Posted by JOSH EVANS *JoshEvansHomes 516-655-5000 (Village Properties of Mineola, LLC) over 7 years ago

I agree. I just got a call a few days ago about a vacant foreclosure with front door sitting open. My card was the only one on the counter, so the guy that was serving a Warrant in Debt to previous owners called me to see what he should do. I knew previous owners, so I told him i would stop by and check the house, then report to the listing agent as a professional courtesy. This house is at end of gravel road and secluded. When I got there, I found that the side door with the lockbox had been kicked in, and the wooden door jamb destroyed. I walked thru,didn't notice anything obvious had been stolen or see any copper pipes stripped out. I found a hammer and nails in the shop and repaired the door frome and locked that door and also the front door that had been left open. The listing agent is from Alexandria( about 2 hours away), so I doubt he even shows or visits the property. I can see how this scenario would make a listing agent give out a combo instead of driving 4 hours to do a showing from a sign call. But, I see this happen frequently these days, and many times the damage to the houses is pretty bad. It is too risky to give out combos over the phone. If the seller authorizes it, then ok, but still risky.

Posted by Jeff Pearl, Full Service Full Time Realtor (RE/MAX Distinctive / LIC in VA) over 7 years ago

Good morning Cheryl,

Excellent reblog - Doug brings up the reasons we don't ever use combo boxes for showings - only Supra that require the Realtor key for access.  We do, for our Seller's convenience, post combo boxes for repair access.  But, that code is only given out to their authorized users.

Posted by Lisa Von Domek, ....Experience Isn't Expensive.... It's Priceless! (Lisa Von Domek Team) over 7 years ago

Thanks for the re-blog!

Posted by Doug Rogers, Your Alexandria Louisiana Agent (Bayou Properties) over 7 years ago