Crime Prevention Blotter

House Alarms - Considerations for interested buyers

July 22, 2014 1:08 AM

Have you thought about getting an alarm at your home?  It is a personal choice that certainly does not come without additional expenses.  As an alarm owner for the past 17 years at three different properties, here are a few tips and ideas I can share for you to consider if you have decided to purchase an alarm for your home:

• Look for a system that will be compatible with another alarm service company after your contract expires (so you don't have to pay for another installation if you switch vendors)
• You will want at least one control panel with a backup battery
• Sensors on every door and window or window break sensors (at least for the first floor)
• Consider motion detectors and sirens, and ask for as many yard signs and stickers that they will provide.
• Examine the equipment warranty (Is there a repair cost if the equipment fails?)
• Try to obtain several written estimates, including the cost/availability of:
   o Installation and how many sensors are included
   o Cellular back-up devices (in the event phone lines are cut or the phone lines are down in the area)
   o Additional window, door, or motion sensors
   o Remote monitoring from a Smartphone or mobile device (which can allow you to arm or disarm your system)
   o Video monitoring
   o 24-hour monitoring by the alarm company (this is a must)
   o Early termination (penalty fee or not)

Hopefully these ideas help.  You should also consider asking your insurance agent, friends and neighbors for recommendations.  Stay safe!

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