It’s not easy to select a home security system when there are so many available. However, with a little research you can make a wise choice. There are two simple steps to select a home security system. The first step is to find out about the different types of security systems. Then the second step is to determine which system will suit you best.
Types of Security Systems
You can categorize a security system according to the way it interacts with the monitoring centre. You will need to make sure that effective communication takes place from your security system to the monitoring centre in case of an emergency. There are three ways your home security system can communicate with the monitoring centre.
Landline - Your system will use a landline to communicate with the monitoring centre. Your system can be wireless and still communicate with the monitoring system with a landline.
Cellular - Your system will communicate with the monitoring centre by using a cellular uplink. This system is considered to be more reliable than the landline. This is because the system will still communicate even if the telephone wires are taken out.
Broadband - Your home security system will let the monitoring centre know of an emergency by sending a signal through broadband internet connection. It is relatively faster than the landline but it is not as reliable as a cellular system. However, the cost of communication through broadband is less than that through a cellular system.
There can be two types of installation for your home security system. Either you can go for DIY installation or you can ask for a professional to install.
DIY installation means that you will not require a professional to install your system. The equipment will be mailed to you and you will need to follow the instructions to install it. This type of installation allows you to move the system with you if you relocate and it is generally preferred by renters.
A professional installation is typically done by a company representative. The company generally charges a fee for this service. Professional installation could be for both wired and wireless. The company may charge a fee again for professional installation if you are moving to a place.
Home automation is an advanced form of a security system that lets you monitor your home even from a far off location. You can use a mobile phone or a web enabled device to control different functions at your home. Following are some of the home automation features.
Arm or disarm your system from a remote location.
Control lighting, thermostat, and small home appliances.
View live video surveillance and pre-recorded clips of your home.
Each home security system provides different degrees of control. You will first have to decide what you need to monitor when you are away from home. Then you can select the company and package that suits you best.
How to find out which system is right for you?
1-Renter vs. Homeowner
If you are a renter you will need a system that you can install on your own and can take with you. This way, you will not have to pay installation fees again and you will conveniently install your system at your new place.
If you are a homeowner you can install any kind of system you like. It is good to have a landline communication system with a cell uplink back up to provide effective security for any kind of situation.
2-Are you planning to move?
If you are planning to move within the next one to two years, you may want to consider a few things regarding home security systems.
Companies that offer a long term contract will not be suitable for you and they may charge you for ending the contract before time.
Look for a company that caters to your move and can transfer your service and equipment for free or for a reasonable fee.
If you are planning to move within a few years, it is good to own the equipment so you can take it to a new location and don’t have to return the system.
3-Want to monitor your home with a mobile phone?
If you want greater control of your home, you can get mobile access with your home security system. You can use a computer, tablet, or a smart phone to control the following.
Arm and disarm home security system
Adjust thermostats and lights
Get security alerts
Lock and unlock doors
Get live notifications
View the history of your system’s events
Monitor water and flood sensors
Customize notifications to monitor different activities
4-Do you want to have a security camera?
A security camera is not just to videotape an intruder. It could also be used for other purposes. Following are some of its benefits,
When you are at home you can see who is at the front or keep an eye on family members in other rooms.
When you are away from home, you can keep an eye on your kids, babysitters, housekeepers, and pets.
Not all security systems come with a camera. So, you will need to decide whether you need a camera and then check the options offered by different security companies.
There is no ‘one size fits all’ security system. Individuals and families have different home security requirements and they need to get a system accordingly. With knowledge of different types of security systems and your requirements, you can minimize the chances of selecting the wrong home security system and keep yourself and your family safe.