Which Type of Home Security System Is Right for You?
No one can be home to guard their house 24/7. Furthermore, it can be draining to be overly preoccupied with a property's security. The best way to find peace of mind and around-the-clock protection is to discover security tools to keep your home safe.
Many home security companies offer an array of products and services. They have different installation methods, contract requirements, security levels, and costs. Finding the right security system for you just takes a little research. Keep reading to learn about the most common types of security systems on the market today.
Local Alarm: Simple & Cost-Effective
An unmonitored alarm is the simplest and least expensive home intrusion deterrent. When the alarm is triggered, it sets off an ear-piercing siren that alerts everyone within earshot. The system might be set off by motion detectors or door and window sensors. Frequently, it's enough to force intruders away.
They often sell for less than $100, and they're easy to install. There are no ongoing fees. They usually run on batteries and don't require power, phone lines, or wifi.
However, their effectiveness is limited. They don't call the police. They don't inform residents who are away from home. If the intruder isn't scared off, they aren't hard to disable. To the neighbors, they may sound like a car alarm, which most people ignore.
Monitored Security Systems: Contacts Authorities For You
This type of system informs somebody when there's an intrusion. There may also be an audible alarm. Like unmonitored alarms, they detect a breach with motion detectors and sensors and may also use cameras. There's a control panel where the occupant uses a passcode to set and disarm the alarm. The significant distinctions are who does the monitoring and whether the system is hard-wired into the home.
Self-Monitored vs. Professionally Monitored
With professional security monitoring, a call center is informed whenever there's an event. They can immediately call the police. Usually, they call the resident first to ask if the alarm was accidentally triggered.
With DIY monitoring, the alarm comes to the resident's smartphone. Most commonly, it will use the home's wifi, although it might use cellular service. If the occupant is away, they'll have to call 911 or have a neighbor look in.
Self-monitored systems are DIY-installed, and the others are professionally installed, but this doesn't have to be the case.
Advantages of self-monitored systems are:
- Lower cost. There are no monthly fees.
- Since these are usually self-installed, it's easier to move detectors and cameras.
- Less chance of false alarms. The resident who knows why the alarm is triggered can ignore it. If a monitoring company calls the police, there may be an incorrect alarm fee.
Advantages of professional monitoring include:
- More reliable monitoring. If the self-monitoring occupant is away from their phone or beyond cellular service, or if there's a power/wifi outage, they won't get the alarm. The pro monitor always responds.
- Because systems are usually professionally installed, the pros can offer advice on placing sensors and cameras. Typically home coverage is more thorough.
Wired vs. Wireless Security
It's the 21st century, and smart technology is in demand. This trend applies to wireless security systems for the following reasons.
- Wireless systems are inexpensive and straightforward to install. There are no holes to drill and no need for an electrician. Most people do it themselves.
- They're more ready to integrate with smart home devices such as Alexa and Google Assistant.
- It's easy to move components around or upgrade the setup.
- They can't be disabled by cutting wires.
- They're easy to monitor and control remotely through smartphones, fobs, and other devices. They can be armed and disarmed from anywhere.
- The resident can take the system with them if they move.
Still, wired systems have some critical pluses:
- They can't be hacked because they aren't controlled remotely. They can't be electronically jammed or affected by interference.
- They generally run on home electricity with battery backup. There isn't the hassle of replacing lots of batteries.
- They aren't affected by wifi outages or lack of cell service.
- In general, wired systems are more secure, consistent, and reliable.
What's the Best Security System for You?
Ultimately, finding the best home security system is up to you and your needs. A local alarm is a stopgap system at best. A wired, professionally monitored system is secure and reliable, but wireless and self-monitored systems have advantages that many residents will want. When it comes to protecting your home, finding the right security system can help you do so without sacrificing peace of mind.