Important Changes to SentriLock Integration with Showing Appointment Services
Dear SentriLock customer,
We first want to thank you, as always, for being a great part of the SentriLock Family. As you know, when we make changes at SentriLock, we work hard to ensure that it is always with the Realtor®, their clients, and Association support staff in mind.
Today, Realtors® across the nation rely on showing scheduling services to manage their day, and traditionally we have made it easy for these third-party connections to generate and distribute One Day Codes to buyer’s agents on behalf of the listing agent. We are now nearing completion of our SentriConnect® integration for third-party showing service vendors and will begin requiring that these services use this integration instead.
Beginning this Fall, listing agents will still be able to create the same unique access codes to allow property access themselves using our SentriKey Real Estate mobile app. These codes can then be texted or emailed to a buyer’s agent, affiliates, or any other authorized and confirmed user who requires access.
Listing agents who are still seeking a more automated method, will still be able to utilize their current preferred showing service to create access via our free SentriConnect® app. The buyer's agent will still create the appointment as usual, however instead of receiving a one-time code, their email, which is tied to SentriConnect®, will receive the mobile access permission.
It's important to remember that agents in your market who have access to the normal SentriKey Real Estate app should be using that mobile app instead of codes and SentriConnect®. Please encourage buyer's agents in your market and MLS with approved access to use their app instead of seeking codes from you. These other methods are intended mostly for out of area agents and affiliates.
The SentriConnect® app is free for anyone to download, and we encourage you to begin utilizing it to generate a much more secure and easy-to-use method for out of area agents and others to securely access the property via their smart phone device.
The changes required of any third-party service are minimal and they should be able to be accomplished quickly. We will be working with these companies to ensure the transition is smooth and timely.
If you are interested in learning more about what this means and how it might affect your agents, please review the below.
We want to ensure the best possible security and convenience for REALTORS®. This change provides listing agents with even greater control, security, and a holistic view of all activity during the property’s sale. It also ensures immediate time stamp and access logs around access, which was not always possible when using codes. Utilizing this robust interface with third-party services is long overdue and will be a positive benefit moving forward.
As Realtors® it is incredibly important to demonstrate the highest commitment to professionalism and doing the “right thing” for the homeowner. These changes will do just that.
Who is Affected?
Any association or MLS utilizing third-party showing appointment services in conjunction with the SentriLock lockbox solution.
What is Changing?
On September 1, 2023, SentriLock will no longer provide integrations to third-party products that utilize SentriLock’s One Day Code API. This will affect any vendor that relies on this API to provide One Day Code-based access to properties using SentriLock’s lockboxes.
All future access facilitated by third parties will now require the person accessing a SentriLock lockbox to use SentriLock’s SentriConnect® or SentriKey® RE product to enable access to the property.
Also, all providers of secondary access through SentriLock’s API’s must deliver fully reciprocal data and functions in real-time, allowing the agent to select the best method for managing access to the property. This change ensures the ability to access a lockbox only around the pre-approved appointment time.
Why is the Change Being Made?
There are multiple business and legal reasons for this change. Here are the primary driving factors:
- These changes provide a better experience for agents by more tightly tying the appointment scheduling functions with property access. SentriLock believes this will benefit all parties, including those third-party vendors who integrate with SentriLock.
- We continue to identify some third-party providers that are issuing codes to individuals who are either not licensed (such as prospective buyers) or worse – criminals who have figured out a way to trick service providers call center staff to provide access, resulting in theft from the property. When these events occur, SentriLock ends up having to defend itself, as the blame is often placed on SentriLock for the access, when in fact our lockbox has worked as designed and the third-party is responsible for insufficient security policies and controls.
- In the past, some showing services used their call center to validate agents accessing the lockbox were licensed to conduct business. That is often no longer the case. Some showing services are sending codes to anyone upon a showing request. SentriLock’s commitment to securing the property is highly compromised by this.
- When codes are used, there is no way for the agent to end property access when the property status changes, a homeowner no longer wants to allow access, or the agent determines the person who has been granted access should not be allowed. Through the SentriConnect® App – access can be revoked up until the last few minutes before access is scheduled.
- We are adding the requirement for all appointment based showing data to be sent to SentriLock in real-time to enable full utilization of “Access by Appointment” features in the SentriLock platform. This approach significantly curtails agents not conforming to the showing policies and ensures homeowners can trust that property access is only occurring during approved appointments.
- When codes are used, vital diagnostic and event data from the lockbox is not being provided back to the SentriLock management platform, thus devaluing it to members using the system and increasing SentriLock’s support costs.
- When devices need to have a software update installed, that activity requires a Bluetooth® connection to the lockbox. Someone using codes does not facilitate the opportunity for SentriLock to ensure the best possible customer experience and product reliability.
- On non-FlexCode® capable lockboxes, people can return and reuse the One Day Code after the showing for a period of time. SentriConnect® accesses can only occur once.
- SentriConnect® accesses report the showing event data back to the lockbox platform, providing the listing agent valuable data on the activity occurring in the home.
- SentriConnect® provides a more traceable access event to the user. Codes can be shared but SentriConnect® would require someone to give their phone to someone.
- SentriLock will be enhancing the traceability of people utilizing temporary access in the future as part of our goal to ensure the highest level of security and safety. The transition to SentriConnect® is part of this initiative.
- SentriLock will be required to maintain greater records on property accesses to ensure it can demonstrate compliance with any Federally mandated access requirements provided to non-Realtors®. This compliance data supports the entire Realtor® family.
SentriLock will be communicating these changes and implementing new service API’s in relation to enhancing security. Vendors using our interfaces will be advised of the change and the cessation of older code-based services.
We will keep you apprised of these developments on a regular basis. In the meantime, if you have any questions about how this will affect you or your agents, please contact your Customer Success Manager.