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Getting locked out of your vacation rental can be a drag, not only for you but the owner/agent as well. There are a few things you can do to prevent this from happening, so, expect the best, but prepare for the worst and here’s how.

During the process of getting your contract finalized with the vacation rental owner or agent, make sure you get the following information: If the house is accessed only via a keypad, get the code before you get to the house. Put the code into your cell phone and at least one other person’s in your party. Ask if there is a spare key somewhere on the property. Once you get to the property, find the spare key.

Make sure, absolutely, that you have a way to get in touch with the owner/agent 24/7 on your stay. One phone number doesn’t cut it. Get two or more if you can.

That’s it! Sorry for the brief post, but it’s that easy to solve this problem before it comes up! If I’m overlooking something please post here and let me know!

Make some trails!

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3 Responses to “ When Vacation Rental Lock Boxes Go Bad ”

  1. Heather
    July 31, 2010 at 9:51 am

    We manage 150 properties on behalf of owners, and because they are widely separated and very diverse properties, our owners have many different methods of providing access. Some will meet their guests; others use the lockbox method, and a few will hide a key somewhere on the property and let their guests know where to find it. We ensure all our owners have a spare key put in an easily accessible place but do not pass this information on as there are big security issues in properties that are vacant for long periods of time. We use a 24/7 call centre and if a guest has a problem with access they have the toll free number to call. They will be asked a security question to establish they are the expected guests and will then be provided with the information on the additional key.
    Access issues are common and you are right how important it is to have a back-up plan.

  2. Terry Gronenthal
    August 14, 2010 at 4:52 am

    The 24/7 call centre is a new one on me. That’s absolutely perfect! The only thing I’d emphasize is that you convey the number to the renter as clearly as possible. Maybe send a text message to the renter with the telephone number in it.
    Thanks Heather!

  3. Cathy
    January 24, 2011 at 1:51 am

    One thing you haven’t considered is that guests who enter with a lockbox are completely on their own. If they’re in a house, they may ask the neighbors for help. In a condo, they won’t be sensitive to noise issues. I live in a condo with vacation rentals nearby. Many renters assume we are their staff. I’ve been stopped with questions about restaurants, sight-seeing, how to use the keypad, and more. I always refuse and tell them to call their agency, but it’s very annoying- like being asked for money on the street.

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