The lock box could become a thing of the past if technology tested by some agents in the Youngstown, Ohio, area takes off.

For as long as any of us can remember, to show a house, agents need a key to get in, which is kept in a lock box.

Steve Ferrebee, with Northwood Realty, noted that Youngstown area real estate agents are taking off old lock boxes and putting on new ones.

“Primarily because the boxes we had before were six to seven years old and they were running out of battery life. So most of them were below 30 percent battery life.”

The old boxes required a fob and app at the same time just to open it to get the keys. Ferrebee pointed out that the new boxes are easier to use and free up a hand for the agents, which they’re enjoying.

“So far so good. The main thing is changes that agents need to know about. The new boxes have Bluetooth installed internally so there’s less devices that they need now.”

Clients still have the same level of security but Ferrebee agents can show a property as soon as they get permission from the homeowner.

“We can track whoever goes into the house. You have to be a realtor to have an access code to open that box. So [the homeowners] don’t have to worry about somebody getting a key inadvertently.”

There’s no deadline to get the lock boxes switched but there is the risk that the old boxes’ batteries could run out, making them extremely difficult to get off.


One example of a smart device is Master Lock’s Bluetooth Lock Box – an advanced lock box that allows users to grant access to their property at anytime from anywhere through the use of their smartphone device.

The Master Lock Bluetooth Lock Box reimagines the mechanical lock box by updating it with today’s connected and advanced Bluetooth technology to offer security for users who need to grant access to homes, businesses and vacation properties.

Traditionally meant for accessing stored keys, keycards and key fobs, the new Bluetooth Lock Box now gives users the same security features of mechanical lock boxes while also providing advanced features via the Master Lock Vault eLocks app.

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