You may be asking yourself, how to choose a home security system? Can I get one without monthly fees? Can I install one myself? Where should I buy one? who are the top security providers? I know it can be overwhelming so, let me help you to answer these questions.
Before diving into how to choose a home security system, let me ask you: Do you know the difference between a burglar alarm system and a home security system?
If your answer is yes, Congratulations! You are on the right path! but, if your answer is no, let me clarify these terms before continuing.
The idea of a burglar alarm system is basically to secure your home from an intruder. It will alert you if an unauthorized person tries to gain access to your property. However, a security system is more comprehensive. It can cover security aspects in a wider range. For instance, you could end up installing an awesome security system with different security devices like fire and CO detectors, security cameras, smart doorbell and door lock.
Now that we know the difference between burglar alarm and a home security system, let’s move on with our main topic.
HOW TO CHOOSE A HOME SECURITY SYSTEM
1. Consider the area of coverage you want to have with the security system
Make a list of the number of windows and doors you want to secure with motion detectors, and take note of the most vulnerable locations you want to protect. Give some thought about adding at least two cameras to your package. One for inside and one for outside your home.
If you have a large property be mindful of the range and distance necessary to link your cameras and sensors that will connect to the central base.
2. Think about adding carbon monoxide and fire detector devices to your home security system
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, in 2016 an estimated 364,300 residences suffered from fire damage. Looking at the above graph, fires can start from multiple sources within your home. These statistics bring relevance to the importance of having a smoke detector added to your home security system.
In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that everyone can be at risk for CO poisoning. Children, the elderly or people with breathing problems are often more susceptible to get sick from CO. In the U.S. each year, more than 400 people die from unintentional CO poisoning not linked to fires, more than 20,000 visits the emergency room, and more than 4,000 are hospitalized. I strongly recommend adding a carbon monoxide detector to your home security system as well.
The smoke and carbon monoxide detector can be found in an all in one device ranging from $60 to $200 with varying degrees of smart technology integration.
3. Top Security Providers
|Installation Type||Customer Support||Smart Home Devices||Door & Windows sensors||Motion detectors||Contract|
|Professional,Partial DIY, Full DIY||24/7||Excellent||3||1||3 years|
|Partial DIY||8 am - 11 pm Mon-Fri; 10 am - 7 pm Sat-Sun||Excellent||4||On demand||3 years|
|Partial DIY||8 am - 12 am Mon-Fri; 10 am - 8 pm Sat-Sun||Good||3||1||3 years|
|Partial DIY||8 am - 11 pm Mon-Fri; 10 am - 7 pm Sat||Excellent||On demand||On demand||3 years|
|Professional & Full DIY||24/7||Good||On demand||On demand||3 years|
|DIY||9 am-12 am Mon-Sun||Fair||3||1||No contract|
4. Be mindful of your budget
Buying from a security provider
The advantage of selecting a professional company is that you wouldn’t need to worry about installation. You can relax and do other things while the technician sets up your equipment. After all, a professional company will guarantee your devices work as expected.
However, for a technician to install your system, you will have to pay around $300 unless the company has a special promotion.
Some security system brands will let you do the monitoring yourself or, for a monthly fee, you could have the security company to do it for you. This monitoring may include sending security to your home, calling the police, the fire department or you directly depending on the emergency.
If you choose a Full DIY system
When you go more budget-friendly and choose a full DIY system, depending on certain brands, you will have the freedom of expanding the system at your convenience. The average DIY Security system will start at less at $200 without monthly fees.
If you live in a condo or apartment you can install one of the popular all-in-one home security camera system. Where with just one device you get a camera and multiple sensors included. The price range of those devices starts at less than $200.
Do you want to monitor your security system? Doing it yourself can be a big commitment because you will want to be mindful of your smartphone so as to not miss an alert from your security system.
5. Buy through an online store
Check different online stores and see the types of systems and models they offer so you can compare prices, different features, and quality. When buying from an online store, you will still receive technical support and troubleshooting help from the maker of the device. In addition, product reviews can point you in the right direction for the best product you can buy.
Buying online gives you the advantage of having more variety of devices to research and you will benefit from easy price comparison.
6. Think on your need and choose between a wireless or wired security system
|1. Choosing a wireless security system will result in an easy installation and flexibility to move devices around.
2. You won’t need to run cables all over your house to connect your cameras and the central hub.
|Electrical Powered||Electrical powered sometimes requires drilling into walls or running the electrical cable through the attic. This makes the installation more challenging to set up but once you run the cable, you are set.|
|Solar Powered||A solar-powered system will cost you more but will save you in energy costs.|
|Battery powered||Battery powered is usually easier to install but it requires you to change batteries periodically.|
|1. Choose a wired security system if you want a more reliable setup.
2. Installing wired security cameras usually requires drilling into walls, it requires a bit more effort but the result is more reliability.
7. Choose to buy the security system instead of renting it
Some companies may offer you leasing the equipment. However, consider an outright purchase of the equipment as this will offer more flexibility down the road. Think about expanding your system later on and the possibility of choosing who performs the monitoring of your security system.
To wrap things up, a security system goes beyond a burglar alarm because it allows you to integrate others smart security devices. Don’t forget that having a professional technician install your system, will make things easier but it can cost you a little bit more. On the other hand, Self-installation will be cheaper, but it might be more challenging for you.
Whether you choose a DIY or Professional-installation, you often will see that your system will come with entry sensors for doors and windows, key fobs for arming and disarming and motion detectors. However, depending on what provider you choose, you will also have the ability to integrate security cameras for indoor or outdoor, fire and CO detector, smart doorbell and smart door lock.
Before I leave you, thank you for giving me the opportunity to share this article with you. I hope its content has helped you and allows you to make a more conscious purchase.
My last thought, getting a security system for your home is a wise decision and will improve your peace of mind. The safety of your family is priceless!
See you next time,