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From furnished apartments and staff accommodation to boarding houses – how smart providers are making key handover flexible, automated and contactless


The demand for temporary housing is steadily increasing. Whereas in the past it was mainly tradespeople and assembly fitters looking for furnished temporary accommodation while working on a construction project, nowadays students and interns aren’t the only groups of people on the hunt for housing. Employees and self-employed individuals who are mobile and change their location for work-related reasons are searching for accommodation too. Tourists, too, are increasingly staying in furnished flats rather than sterile hotel rooms when they’re staying in a particular location for an extended period of time.

One reason behind this development is people’s desire for individuality and cosy, homelike surroundings. What’s more, temporary accommodation is usually more affordable too.

At the same time, guests have high expectations of their temporary home and its furnishings. While furnished temporary accommodation used to be purely functional, people are now expecting modern, high-quality standard furnishings with all the amenities needed to create a feel-good, home-like atmosphere. These aspects clearly set properties apart in the competition for tenants and guests.

Using late check-in to your advantage to appeal to late arrivals

The service offered is another step in this direction. A flexible, straightforward check-in and check-out process is geared towards the needs of modern professionals, giving landlords the opportunity to increase customer satisfaction in the long term and receive positive ratings for doing so.

By using a smart key safe, property owners can welcome tenants at any time of day – as part of a contactless, time-limited process that requires no staff to be present. This eliminates the time-consuming and costly process of handing over keys in-person to guests as well as service providers and cleaning staff. The risk of costly key loss can be significantly reduced.

Who benefits when a key safe with flexible access management and control is used?

  • Landlords of furnished flats designed for temporary living that is aimed at business travellers and at clients who are relocating or are expats
  • Accommodation facilities such as boarding houses, business apartments or serviced apartments
  • Providers of staff accommodation and rooms

Looking at real-world experiences, it is clear to see that Apartmenthaus Oberhouse in Hamburg’s Harvestehude district and the Tiny House Village in Wertheim are already putting their key safes to successful use for key handover purposes.

Oberhouse Apartments in Hamburg: key handover outside of office and business hours


What sets the apartments in Harvestehude apart is their attractive location on the Outer Alster Lake in a prime residential area and the fact that they combine an urban location and access to nature. The furnishings and equipment are all high quality and leave nothing to be desired.

Such accommodation appeals especially to business travellers, specialists and executives – not to mention guests with high expectations and looking for a relaxing, feel-good place to retreat to after a long day.

How does key handover independent of operating hours or for late arrivals work?

The key safe allows tenants who have arrived late or at short notice to access the key to their apartment outside of office hours and without any need for a member of staff to be present. So there is absolutely no need for in-person handover, and check-in and check-out can be made contactless too.

Guests also have somewhere ‘safe’ to store their accommodation key while jogging around Lake Alster.


Cleaners receive a notification once the tenant has checked out, and they also use the key safe on site to gain access to the accommodation.

Tiny House Village in Wertheim: guests can check in and check out independently, without any need for a staff member to be present

The ‘Tiny Houses’ trend has its roots in the philosophy of modern minimalism, and it is inspiring a growing number of people to look into smaller-scale accommodation and sustainability.


In this unique boarding house accommodation in Wertheim – the only housing of its kind to date – both short and long-term tenants can rent one of the 21 residential units. Formerly used for sea freight, the containers were professionally refurbished to ecological standards, creating a fully furnished living space spanning 26 m² in each container and providing all the everyday amenities people have come to expect. Each unit also has its own parking space and a terrace or balcony that guests can relax on.

This type of accommodation on offer is primarily aimed at companies looking to affordably house employees, consultants, fitters or suppliers for a few weeks or months at a time.

However, it is also open to tourists, which is precisely why it is often booked by interested individuals keen to experience this modern form of living that still has the appeal of a holiday home.

How does self-check-in work without any staff present?

The reception is permanently staffed. Not by employees, though. Instead, a weatherproof key safe is mounted outside the entrance to the residential property. This means key is always on site, automating what would otherwise be an be in-person key handover process and saving the costs that would be incurred for this.

Prior to their arrival, tenants are emailed an individual code, which they can use to open the key safe on their Tiny House, giving them easy and contactless access to the key.

Thanks to the online code functionality, access permissions can be granted remotely using the web portal. All it takes is a few quick clicks.

Here you will find suitable key handover solutions..

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