The Battle of the Locksmith

Real Estate Agent with Realty One Group # S.0190863

So, there I was. A condo I needed to get into so that I could get it sold and a seller that had no keys. Thus, I needed to call upon the services of a locksmith. (this is the point where all the people bow their heads and pray for me)

So I called 4 companies. Since I hadn’t even seen the home yet, I based their estimates on replacing 1 lock. My estimates were $125 to $145 for the first 3 companies. The 4th company gave me an estimate of around $65. I chose them.

As I booked the appointment for the next day, they said their locksmith would call me back that night as well as the next day. (this is the point where all the people shake their heads)

That night I got 3 calls from a locksmith. None of them were the company that I booked with. Two of the companies barely spoke English. However, I never got a call from the locksmith that I did book with. 

Thus Endeth Day 1.

The next day came and I arrived at the property at 8:30 (the appointment was at 9).  One the drive over, I called the locksmith company that I did book the appointment with. I was assured I would hear from the locksmith and he would be there on time. (this is the point where all the people gave a knowing look towards each other and they rolled their eyes)

Then the magical time of 9:06 arrived. No call. No show. So, I called the company again.  I was told that the locksmith chose to take a different call instead since it was an emergency call and he could charge more. Thus, the locksmith would now arrive by 11. (this is the point where all the people had their jaws drop in disbelief)

At 10:40, I got a call from someone who barely spoke English and who had a cell signal so bad I think he was calling from Mount Everest. There were 2 such attempts at a conversation. Neither were successful. So, I called the number I had for the locksmith company. I was placed on hold over 5 minutes. Finally someone came on the line to tell me that the locksmith had chosen to take the day off. They offered to book for 9am the next day. While tempted to graphically tell them just which tiny whole they could shove their Sunday appointment in, instead I simply said, “Get lost” cancelled the appointment and hung up. (this is the point where all the people shake their heads yes and affirmatively say “mmm hmmmm!)

I called another company and was told my wait time would be 40 to an hour and 40 minutes. I agreed and left to pick up a small lunch. After just 28 minutes, I got a call. The locksmith was already at the condo. (this is the point where all the people cheer)

I asked him to stay there and I would be back in less that 10 minutes. I arrived in 5 minutes and he was there.  By this time, I had come to realize that I needed at least 3 locks replaced. I asked for his best quote. He told me $425 would cover all 3 locks. He said it would take an hour.

As he started work, we came to find that there were in fact 4 locks that needed replacing. He replaced all 4 locks. He did 4 locks instead of 3 and still only charged me $425. He did all this in less than 30 minutes. (this is where the people all gather and raise the locksmith on their shoulders as they chant his name in victory)

Now inside, I was able to start the task of emptying trash and salvaging any personal items the out of state seller may want. I left late afternoon.

Thus Endeth Day 2.

The next day was Sunday. It was to be a day of peace and contentment. Instead, at 8:50 I got a phone call. Who was it? The locksmith that I had cancelled on the day before. This guy actually thought I would put up with another 24 hours of not being able to get into the home and just wait for him. After I hung up on him, I got another call 5 minutes later from a woman saying she was calling from the locksmiths office about our appointment on Sunday. (this is the point where all the people throw rotten vegetables and fruit and the late locksmiths)


So, in the end I have a great new locksmith that I work with.  I even have his direct cell number so that my next calls will cost even less that this time.

Thus Endeth the Battle of the Locksmith.

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Comments (14)

Ed Silva, 203-206-0754
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

Good lord, that was an odyssey of an attempt to get it done, Fortunately you did not need to make a bloody sacrifice.

Apr 02, 2023 09:41 AM
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

My trusted guy retired about 2 years ago.  I have another for twice the price, they all speak perfect southern and show up when they say they will.  I've only got one guy no longer on the list.  And I'm still waiting for him to do something he was going to do "this afternoon" two years ago, maybe three.  

Apr 02, 2023 10:08 AM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Rocky- oh yes...I was shaking my head at the times you mentioned. I am very patient but cannot handle the non-service you received. 

Apr 02, 2023 11:45 AM
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Rocky it took God less time to create the heavens and the earth, than it did for you to get 4 locks replaced.  ☺️

Apr 02, 2023 11:52 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald
Beam & Branch Realty - Granbury, TX
Granbury, TX 936-203-0279

I'm not sure why finding a locksmith is so challenging but you are right, they are elusive. We finally found a great one that is responsive.

Apr 02, 2023 06:32 PM
Kat Palmiotti
eXp Commercial, Referral Divison - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

Wow, you wasted a lot of time waiting for the first locksmith! I'm glad you were able to find one you trust.

Apr 03, 2023 04:58 AM
Brian England
Ambrose Realty Management LLC - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

Having trustworthy and reliable vendors is important.  It sounds like you called one of those services that match people up with the vendors they need, rather than actually providing the service themselves.  I have always felt like those things are such a scam since the vendors pay to be put on their list and the companies don't truly vet whether the vendors are any good.

Apr 03, 2023 06:27 AM
Kimo Jarrett
Cyber Properties - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

There are certain professionals you want on your team and never pick a professional based soley on price. Better create partnerships than calling for a professional, or exchange cards with your prospects and clients or have a preferred professional list of providers to save your clients money and use every oppoprtunity to increase your brand awareness. 

Apr 03, 2023 07:12 PM
Paddy Deighan MBA JD PhD - Vail, CO
Paddy Deighan J.D. Ph.D

Rocky, I think I have contacted the same locksmith's LOL 

Apr 04, 2023 12:07 AM
Caroline Gerardo
Licensed in 20 states - Newport Beach, CA
C. G. Barbeau the Loan Lady nmls 324982

I have a Rocky Mountain hardware with Baldwin bolt inside front door mortise. The bolt got bent in the wind storms when Realtor held it open. It took me 50 emails, photos and calls to get the parts which AMAZING Rocky Mountain remembered me as I have purchased 5 of these luxury front door locks. Getting the measurements to less than .0001 % error in photos and videos took some back and forth. They so kindly sent the parts for FREE. I tried and watched Youtube videos how to get the old parts out and make it fit, no success. I can easily change out a bolt lock or any door locks, but not this type. Looked up locksmiths on Google reviews NOT THE ADS and found David at M Mobile who helped me in 2018. I emailed three companies including David with all the specifications, the location, the drama... and David called back giving me quote $50 trip charge and $100 - 120 depending on how long to install new lock. He is a one man band in a truck, no office. He gave me a time frame from 11-1 and I said great. I don't live in property so I did some gardening, planed a door warped a little from rain, and chores. David called me and emailed me to confirm in the morning, showed up at 11:15 (got in gated community no problem) fixed the problem which took some chiseling and a hacksaw which I was afraid to do as this is a luxury house... Done perfect in 30 minutes, $160 bill. The next day the two other locksmiths called me to set appointments, kinda like your story. I think the difference with David is he is a one man operation that considers his business his vocation. Once you find a person who has the heart you need, recommend them and support them. 

Apr 04, 2023 09:28 AM
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Goes to show you shouldn't take the cheapest quote!

Apr 04, 2023 11:15 AM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

Wow - now that's patience!  Of course you HAD to be patient, but what a crazy experience.  Had a similar experience with a safe. Calling 2 companies and playing phone tag with one who was completely undependable - sound familiar?  Then the second one had a guy there on time, and while he was there the other company finally called back.  You get the ending of that call! If people only realized how much business they lose with lousy service?!!  Glad you made it inside and have a new vendor!

Apr 04, 2023 03:19 PM
Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089
Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers - Haiku, HI
Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info

Another day, another dollar. These are things we do for  our clients that nobody appreciates. 

Apr 08, 2023 03:28 PM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello Rocky and sorry this was such a mess to get into this property and wish we could charge someone that does not show up when they say they will, poor customer service.


Apr 10, 2023 09:30 AM