Using a Home Alarm System Effectively
According to the Uniform Crime Statistics Association, a burglary takes place in America approximately once every 15 seconds. This makes it easy to see why a family would wish to install an alarm system. No one wants to believe it will happen to them, but based on the aforementioned statistics, one must face that it is a possibility. With these grim facts in mind, many people consider it wise to hope for the best, but plan for the worst, and this begins with the installation of an appropriate alarm system.
When the decision to acquire an alarm system has been agreed upon, care must be taken to ensure the proper selection is made. One should never feel pressure to buy an expensive system which may be beyond their means, or be told they must take advantage of the offer on the spot or the price will go up. These are simply sales tactics, and when the subject is something as emotional as protecting one’s family and valuables, many consumers end up making an on the spot decision they may later regret.
Since each home is different, an important part of selecting the appropriate alarm system is to identify the specific needs of the family, and then acquire the system that meets as many of them as possible. When a couple or family moves into a new home, an excellent place to start would be to ask the owners what type of system, if any, they used during the time they lived in the home. If it is a newly constructed home, one might ask the builders what type of system people commonly use in similar type dwellings.
There are two types of home alarm systems; those that utilize wires, and wire-free systems, and there are pros and cons to both. Security monitoring services usually install wired systems, as this can be a tricky task for someone with no background knowledge on the subject. Wireless systems are comprised of various components linked to satellite signals, and professional installation is not usually required. It is important to check the batteries in these units on a regular basis as these systems generally do not come with service agreements.
The alarm system, whether wireless or wire-free, must provide adequate coverage for each area of the house that needs protection. A sensor mount needs to be in place for each door and window that a burglar has access to, including second or third floor windows. A homeowner should make a list of key areas where coverage is crucial, such as a bedroom where jewelry boxes are kept, or a study or den that may contain a computer. Electronics are a favorite item of many thieves, so one should consider making sure a sensor is placed close to any entertainment centers or video game stations.
The keypad that controls the alarm should be placed in a central location close to the front door so that it can be activated and deactivated easily. However, it should not be in plain sight where it can be spotted by a burglar. This is because many professional thieves learn how to disable alarm systems, and a big part of doing so efficiently, depends on determining what type of system is being used. A closet or utility room by the front door makes a perfect place to tuck the keypad because it easily accessible for the homeowners, but otherwise out of view.
If the alarm system comes as part of an overall security system agreement, monthly fees may be involved and should be considered when mapping out the budget for the alarm system. Alarms that simply make noise but do not transmit directly to an emergency service number are usually cheaper, but one must implement a plan of action should the alarm go off. When traveling away from home, it is a good idea to make close neighbors aware of how the alarm sounds so that they can phone the police if they should hear it while the homeowner is away.