Opportunities in Residential Locksmithing

Nov. 2, 2018
Help your customers cross the threshhold of smart locks and home automation

Locksmiths have several opportunities as well as responsibilities to their clients. They typically are not waiting for the customer to come in their store and simply selling over the counter; rather they have the opportunity to visit the site and survey the situation.

Your experience as a locksmith pays off for your client because you bring with you your trained eye and product knowledge. The typical customer rarely thinks about security and safety, and if they do, it is under bad circumstances where they have been victimized or there is crime in the neighborhood.

Your experience as a locksmith pays off for you by enabling you to generate sales and earn a living.

An experienced locksmith can create a safe environment for his or clients rather than force them to rely on the evening news, friends and neighbors and home center salespeople for making very important decisions.

Home automation products are a major growth area in residential locksmithing. Even though they are marketed as Do-It -Yourself products, the truth is that these products are intimidating to the majority of homeowners. The learning curve is too steep for many, and marketing surveys reveal that fear of technology and unsuccessful deployments fuel the reluctance of many to take the first step.

As a locksmith, you will be able to master this equipment quickly. The mechanical aspects should pose no challenge, and you can practice with the hardware and software to learn it before you take the show on the road.

Your lockshop is the perfect setting to showcase these products and win over new converts. When individuals have been exposed to advertising and marketing materials, seeing a counter top display can often stimulate their curiosity or perhaps trigger an impulse purchase.

It is a competitive market but that’s because it is a vigorous market where opportunities abound. Once you have established your relationship with the client it’s up to you to move off the front door and provide products and services throughout their homes and perhaps their businesses as well.

August Home Smart Locks

ASSA ABLOY recently acquired August Home, a leading provider of smart locks for smart home access products and services.

Jason Johnson, CEO of August commented: “This is a great opportunity for us to work with the world’s largest lock and access company. We have always admired the design and quality of Yale locks.”

Locksmith Ledger recently asked August Home a few key questions about their product line. Following are our questions and the company’s answers.

What opportunities for locksmiths does August provide in the home automation business?

August Smart Locks and Doorbell Cam are ideal choices for locksmiths looking to make residences more secure and access more convenient. All of August’s smart locks retrofit to existing single cylinder deadbolts and can be installed in just about ten minutes. The retrofit design allows for locksmiths and residents to continue to use their existing keys and deadbolt. All of August’s smart locks provide secure remote access to consumers via the August app (available on both iOS and Android) and can be controlled by all three voice assistants (Apple’s Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant). The app enables consumers to issue secure virtual keys for their friends, family and trusted others and eliminate the risk of lost or copied keys getting into the wrong hands. The addition of the August Doorbell Cam provides even more security and convenience - the HD video camera and two-way audio make it easy to provide secure access quickly and remotely.

What kind of RMR does August offer locksmiths?

At the moment, August does not have an RMR program for locksmiths. However, we are always looking to add programs and services that benefit our channel users.

August smart locks feature DoorSense™, billed the first intelligent integrated sensor that tells users if their door is open or closed. The line includes three generations of smart door locks and two generations of digital doorbells. August Smart Lock attaches to an existing deadbolt so your customers can use their regular keys. DoorSense is compatible with Apple Homekit™ and Z-wave™ wireless home control technology. The free August Home app is available for Android, iOS and Apple Watch® devices.

August Doorbell Cam Pro provides real-time alerts, HD video and two-way audio, making it easy for your customer to answer the door from anywhere.  HindSight™ constantly monitors the doorway and captures the moments leading up to a motion alert.

With the free, Basic Video Recording subscription, the homeowner can replay any videos from the last 24 hours. Upgrade to Premium Video Recording to access 30 days of stored video recordings.  

The built-in floodlight gives clear, full-color, video at night. Pair August Doorbell Cam Pro with any August Smart Lock to let guests in via phone.    

Installation is simple. It works with existing wiring to replace a mechanical chime doorbell. The included USB dock allows complete setup inside the home prior to installation. 

August Doorbell Cam Pro integrates with your smart home devices including Nest, Amazon Echo Show and Fire TV.  

With the Live HD video feed, the homeowners can see what’s happening at their

Paired with any August Smart Lock, the August Home Smart Keypad enables the homeowner to create and send unique entry codes, change or revoke codes, all from the August Home app. pushing the lock button. Setup and installation is simple. August Smart Keypad pairs with your August Smart Lock via secure Bluetooth technology. It runs on two AAA-batteries with battery level indicated in the August Home app.

More Information: www.august.com

KWIKSET® Convert

Kwikset Convert can turn mechanical locks, even non-Kwikset locks, into smart, electronic locks.

The Conversion Kit replaces the interior half of an existing lock without changing the exterior. Consequently, Kwikset Convert will appeal to design-focused homeowners who want the convenience of keyless entry and home automation that a smart lock brings while maintaining the style of the front door.

Kwikset Convert can also be used for non-main entry doors where remote control/notification is desired.

Featuring a traditional style that complements the décor of most homes, Kwikset Convert also helps bring home automation to consumers who have held off on buying smart home products, while extending it for those who already have them. For novices, Kwikset Convert, in combination with any one of dozens of Z-Wave home automation hubs, provides an easy-to- install, cost-effective entry into the home automation arena. For consumers who already have a home automation hub controlling various systems (e.g., lighting, heating, A/V), Kwikset Convert extends automation capabilities directly to the front door.

An important feature of Kwikset Convert is the incorporation of the Z-Wave™ 500 Series chip. The new chip provides a number of enhancements, including extended wireless range and wireless security features that reduce the vulnerability of the network during enrollment, as well as increased battery life.

Kwikset Convert will appeal to owners of both condominiums and vacation property where homeowners associations require all exterior locks to be uniform in appearance.

As a result, users will be capable of remotely accessing and controlling the lock from anywhere in the world, using a smartphone, tablet or Internet-connected device.

This will allow them to lock a door while traveling for work or vacation, and even remotely provide access to their home to service providers, guests or other family members.

Users can also get information through their smart phone, letting them know whether a door is locked or unlocked.

Currently, Kwikset Convert is designed to work with locks from Kwikset, Baldwin and Weiser (Kwikset sister companies), and Schlage.

Available in Brass, Venetian Bronze, and Satin Nickel, MSRP of the Kwikset Convert Z-Wave Smart Lock Conversion Kit is $129.

More Information: www.kwikset.com

Replacement Hardware Source: STRYBUC INDUSTRIES

If you have a showroom and are involved in repairing residential locks, STRYBUC is an excellent source for products and ideas. Strybuc Industries is the leading wholesale distributor of quality window and door replacement hardware since 1982.

They have over 85,000 SKUs in stock and are the national distributor for many popular OEM window and door parts manufacturers including Truth, Hoppe, Amesbury, Caldwell, Ashland, Roto, Unique, Schlegel, W&F, G-U, Intek, Winkhaus, and a host of others.

As window and door manufacturers change suppliers, it becomes difficult for builders, contractors and homeowners to match their existing hardware. That’s where Strybuc Industries can provide another valuable service.

Window and door parts catalogs are available and Live Support are online at www.strybuc.com. Contact their Sales Department at 800-352-0800 or email [email protected].

The Jamb Stretcher enables you to spread a vinyl jamb pocket in order to replace balances, shoes or other components quickly without the need to cut into the jamb or melt the vinyl with a hot air gun.

I wish I had this tool when I have encountered issues with damaged vinyl doors. This is an excellent tool for field repairs!

For window safety, The SafeGard™ Limit Device is the industry’s first limiting control device offered for casement windows.

You could possibly save a life with these devices. Kids fall out of casement windows often enough that building codes include language that addresses fall prevention.

The SafeGard™ Limit Device was tested & certified to meet ASTM F2090-10 code requirements.

The SafeGard™ Limit Device provides a means that will limit the venting of the window to less than 4 inches.

As required by code, the SafeGard™ Limit Device has a two (2) action operation to fully open the window for egress purposes. This operation can be performed without the use of keys or tools.

Easy to follow opening and release instructions appear on the vent arm.

Note: The device will re-latch or reset automatically when window is in closed position.

The SafeGard™ Limit Device’s track, arm and rivet are made entirely of austenitic stainless steel with Delran cover and tab.

The SafeGard™ Limit Device is reliable, easy to install and easy to operate. This device meets today’s more stringent safety requirements. Please consult local building codes for WOCD and applicable requirements.

About the Author

Tim O'Leary

Tim O'Leary is a security consultant, trainer and technician who has also been writing articles on all areas of locksmithing & physical security for many years.