I have some good news. Home burglaries have gone down significantly since 2008 according to FBI statistics. Unfortunately, I also have some bad news. As of their most recent report, there were still around 1.4 million reported burglaries that occurred in 2017.
With burglaries happening in neighborhoods all across America, you may have found yourself looking into the benefits to home security systems and whether they will be beneficial to you.
While I’m obviously a bit biased, I believe they can benefit just about any person in any neighborhood if utilized and set up correctly. The home security industry has evolved by leaps and bounds over the past decade with the addition of home automation.
They are no longer the old-school, hardwired, rubber button systems you often see in movies and local businesses. Those are essentially the “flip phones” of the industry and are quickly being phased out with newer technology. Today’s systems are more akin to tablets that not only protect your home but simultaneously make them smarter.
We will discuss the full spectrum of benefits provided by modern day security systems to assist you in your decision-making process.
Home and Family Safety
We can’t start the discussion about the benefits to home security systems without first looking into the main function of these systems – protecting your home and family.
There are numerous options available depending on the protection that best suits your needs. Here is a quick overview of the potential components you could choose from:
- Door and window sensors
- Motion detection
- Glass break detection
- Smoke, heat, and freeze sensors
- Carbon monoxide sensors
- Flood sensors
- Medical pendants
- Panic buttons
- Extreme weather alerts from the control panel
Each device has a unique benefit that can suit almost any family situation in any geographical area. Things happen, right? Sometimes they are our fault, other times they are out of our control.
Either way with a security system set up with a combination of these sensors, you will always know exactly what is going on at home whether you are there or on the other side of the globe.
If you happen to be gone when the alarm notifies you of a problem, you can rest assured a professional will have your back assisting you in keeping your home and family safe.
24/7 Professional Monitoring
No matter day or night, weekend or holiday, if there is an emergency situation going on at home your monitoring company will be notified and a professional will immediately reach out to you, and if necessary, the proper authorities.
As much as we love to be in control and have a sense of security in knowing that our neighborhoods are safe and rarely have any problems we can’t always assume what was will continue to be.
Things change whether we like it or not, and it is nice having the knowledge that if an emergency arises and we are unable to respond that somebody will be there to assist.
With a central monitoring station, that is their only goal. They are staffed every second of every day with no breaks or days off. The best monitoring companies will have several stations throughout the country to ensure if a natural disaster takes one out, the calls can be rerouted to another so there is no lapse in service.
Some companies will often over staff their monitoring centers in case this happens and they need assistance handling the extra call volume.
If your control panel is equipped with two-way voice they can easily listen into the home for sounds of distress and alert all your emergency contacts of the alarm. When either they verify signs of distress, or you do yourself, the correct authorities are immediately dispatched to your home.
Occasionally, however, you may not need authorities dispatched to your home and would just like an easier way of helping you keep track of your kids. These systems have you covered here as well.
Nearly every alarm panel has a built-in chime feature. When a door or window is opened the panel will chime which usually consists of three beeps. You can even add a voice to the chime which will let you know exactly which door or window was opened.
In the industry, we call this “mommy mode”. Although it is not meant to segregate, as it could also be called “daddy mode”. It is simply a way to help you keep track of your home and understand when a sensored door or window is opened.
If you aren’t expecting anyone to be walking inside or out, this either means there is an intrusion or an escape happening. This feature works even when the alarm system is disarmed.
In addition to this, there are three other ways to help you understand what is going on at your home or when people may be showing up or leaving unannounced.
1) Timestamps. In most panels and apps this will show up under event history. It will keep a log of each time a registered event takes place within the system (e.g. when the system is either armed or disarmed).
2) Alerts. You can set up notifications for each time the system registers an action such as when it is disarmed. You will receive an email or a text message letting you know something is taking place at your home.
3) Pictures. This is dependent on the control panel you chose, however, the newer models are built with an internal camera. Whenever the system is disarmed from the panel it will take a picture allowing you not only keep track of when the system is armed or disarmed but who was doing the action.
Considering at this point you may already have surveillance and automation set up with your security system, there is no need for going out and buying a separate monitor for keeping an eye on your newborn.
If you already have an indoor camera, then you can easily re-purpose it as a baby monitor when the occasion suits you.
By simply placing the camera in view of your babies crib you can keep an eye on them from anywhere in your home. You can set up motion detection for the camera also, which will notify you when your baby moves.
Since the majority of indoor cameras utilize two-way voice you can also listen in and speak with them over the camera.
Stay Connected with Your Home and Make Life Easier
As we now know we can keep an eye on our homes from anywhere with the event history log and notifications.
In addition to this, at any given moment you can take a look at your property or inside your home to make sure things are as they should be. With the assistance of indoor and outdoor cameras, you can have alerts for any movement inside or outside your home and check it out remotely.
If an alarm is tripped, this helps immensely when the monitoring company calls to help alleviate false alarms from occurring.
They even help keep your neighborhood as a whole safer as they will often inevitably watch part of your neighbors home as well and can be used to help catch a thief stealing from them.
Other than the fact that you can keep an eye on your property while away from home, security systems can make life a lot easier.
I can’t recall how many times I’ve left my home and wondered if I’ve locked my doors or turned off the lights, I’m sure similar thoughts have crossed your mind as well? If so, by adding home automation to your system they can become thoughts of the past.
Rather than worrying throughout the day, or turning back and heading home, you can open your app and verify from anywhere. If you happened to forget to do something, you can control the aspect directly from your phone wherever you happen to be at the moment.
Everyone loves discounts, right?
By installing a home security system in your home you will most likely receive a discount from your home insurance company as they deem your home safer against burglaries and fires.
Since your home is at less risk, they will usually provide a discount anywhere between 5%-25% off your policy. This will differ depending on your level of coverage and the company providing your home insurance. While it’s not going to pay your monthly bill, it’s nice to know you are rewarded for adding another layer of security to your home.
This next method for saving money with a security system isn’t necessarily a discount, but it will still put money back into your pocket.
You can add an energy saving thermostat to your package and enjoy savings on your energy bill. Typical savings will differ with how energy efficient your home currently is and how effectively you use your thermostat but the average savings is between 10%-15% of your average bill.
Overall Peace of Mind
This benefit is often the most overlooked when purchasing a home security system. However, it the one that I hear the most when following up with clients days or weeks after the installation took place.
It is interesting because most people don’t believe their home is located in an unsafe neighborhood or that there is especially vulnerable to a burglary or fire.
Even so, after having a system installed it is like having somebody look after your home and family in the moments you are unable to. It is a feeling that is hard for people to describe and didn’t realize they were living without.
More often than not, it is the reason that they would never live without a system again. It’s a serenity of sorts that reassures them that while life may be chaotic, everything at home will be fine.
While this isn’t designed to be a comprehensive guide of all the benefits to home security systems, it is designed to provide many of the major benefits as well as some less thought about ones.
Security systems can be utilized in many ways to fulfill your specific needs. In some cases, they will take care of your concerns right out of the box, while in other cases it may take a little creative thinking in order to achieve your goals.
Start by thinking of the potential vulnerabilities to your home and some of your major concerns. Then piece by piece you can fulfill those needs and customize your system in a way to accomplish and tackle your concerns.
As time goes on and your concerns change, you can always add-on to your system or change the way a specific device is utilized to best suit your needs.