Discussing when you should use which type of lockbox when selling. 

When selling a home, the safety and security of both the home’s contents and its owners should always be at the forefront of an agent’s mind. So, when providing access to potential homebuyers, which lockbox is the right fit?

You can watch our full explanation in the video above, or you can skip to each segment using the timestamps provided:

1:28 — What is a combination lockbox and when might it be the right choice?

A combination lockbox is a good choice prior to the home being actively available on the market. Sometimes contractors, estate liquidators, or move managers need access to the house, but you may not want to give them a key to carry with them. A combination lockbox provides one secure location to keep a key so that these providers can enter the home on an as-needed basis.

1:50 — How do real estate agents and homebuyers gain access to the home?

Once a home is ready to be made available for showings, the combination lockbox is replaced by a more secure device. There are different brands in different regions, but in the Oklahoma City area, you will hear them referred to as “Supra” boxes. These lockboxes allow your agent to track who comes and goes from the property. Only authorized persons (members of the local Association of REALTORS® and multiple listing service – MLS) have the ability to open the Supra boxes. The box can also be programmed rendering it inaccessible during certain hours.

3:05 — How do I know who has been inside my home?

We really like the Supra boxes because when someone accesses it, a notification is sent to us (as the agent who owns the box). This way, we know if an agent did or did not show up for a scheduled appointment. Conversely, we also know if the property was accessed without a prior appointment.

3:43 — Why agents might choose a combo over a Supra box?

If the real estate agent is not a member of the local Association of REALTORS and/or multiple listing service, they will not have access to the more secure boxes. The Supra boxes are also more costly, therefore some agents elect to use the less expensive and less secure boxes. Lastly, some agents, particularly in rural or remote areas (usually outside their normal service area) prefer to use a combination lockbox because not all agents in that area will have the ability to access a Supra box. If a non-member agent wants to show the home, the listing agent would need to open the box. This can be very inconvenient for all parties.

4:55 — How do I know which box will be used on my property?

Your circumstances, as well as the policies and marketing philosophy of your agent, will determine which box is placed on your home and when. Ask any agents you are interviewing what their showing policies are and which box they intend to utilize. You have a choice! If you are not comfortable with a combination box, let your agent know. Conversely, if you want a combination box, say so!

5:20 — Does the lockbox change how I access my home?

Placement of a lockbox on your home should not change the access for you as the homeowner. You will still use your own key and/or garage entry.


If you have any questions about lockboxes or other safety and security related issues when selling a home, please call us at 405.708.7010 or email us. We’d love to help!