Choosing the right security system for your home might come as a pretty overwhelming task, thanks to the numerous diverse choices. Good buying a Home Security System you have to pay attention to many features and capabilities, as well as how much protection does your house need. In the past, buying a home security system required a skilled professional to come to your house and install it. However, today’s systems are mostly wireless and installing them is much easier. This advancement in the industry did a huge favor for potential buyers because it provided lower prices and wider array of options.
Another good aspect of advanced technology is that many home security systems now double as smart home hubs. That means you can control almost every electrical device in your home with one single application on your smartphone. Also, so a lot of security systems are now DIY, meaning you don’t need anyone to install them. It’s pretty hard to compare security systems, as they’re being sold as starter packs to which you append additional elements. This article will try to analyze the components of security systems and breakdown everything you need to know before you buy one.
Types of Home Security Systems
Do-it-yourself wireless home security systems are usually sold as packaged kits that you assemble yourself. Most of those systems allow you to self-monitor your home safety for free using a smartphone app. There are a few systems that require a monthly payment for expert monitoring. Some systems offer professional monitoring for a limited time period, like when you’re on a vacation. Those systems with selective professional monitoring give you more flexibility and have fewer monthly fees. On the other hand, if you miss one smartphone alert at a decisive moment, and your system will be compromised. Professionally installed systems have a professional operative doing security system installation, and they usually arrive with 24/7 monitoring. It means there are trained dispatchers that check triggered warnings and inform the authorities. There is also a smartphone app that comes with some of the systems, but it is usually charged higher per month. The cost for equipment installation is given upfront, and contracts are usually multi-year, with a recurring cost for monitoring.
Home security systems are pretty complex machinery, consisting of many unique sensors and devices. Those sensors range in size from a pack of gum to a large matchbox. There are additional components, such as keypads and sirens. DIY security systems usually consist of the base station, contact and motion sensors, control panel and key fobs. The brain of a security system is a base station. It is wirelessly connected to individual sensors and components and it acts as a link between the individual components and the internet.
The base station usually incorporates a siren and backup cellular connectivity in case of power and internet outage. Contact sensors are pretty self-explanatory, and they’re attached doors and windows to give warning signals when open or closed. Motion sensors detect the movement, and some of them can be set so pets cannot trigger them. With keypads and touch screens you can enable and disable your system, enter passwords and handle other tools. Key fobs work similarly to the key fob of your car, and some of them contain RF tags. Home stations usually have a few hundred feet range, but for bigger residences, range extenders can be installed.
Additional components may include security cameras, environmental sensors, sirens, glass sensors, garage door tilt sensors, and panic buttons/pendants.
DIY vs Pro
The decision that will greatly affect the cost of your security system is whether will you opt for professional monitoring. If you choose to have it, you will have a team of trained professionals that will observe your system around the clock and alarm the authorities if needed. If you choose self-monitoring you won’t have any monthly fees, but you will have to rely on yourself, which can be quite perilous. One missed a notification on your smartphone that could cost you dearly. There are some DIY security systems where professional monitoring multi-year contract is required, but they are few in number. Other systems offer lower monthly fees in exchange for a multi-year contract.
Be aware of the cost too. The price that you will see in advertisements for security systems is just for basic equipment. It often happens that a potential buyer gets hooked on the price well under 500$, just to spend over 1000$ when factoring all of the additional components they need. The base package usually contains an insufficient number of sensors for most of the homes. So be careful and don’t run headfirst into the best deal without reading the fine print first.
See Also: Is Your Child Technology Addict?
When choosing your home security system you have to ask yourself what kind of protection do you need. Depending on the size of your home, the size of your budget and the manner of installation, you might find the right relation of safety versus price. Thankfully, the development of wireless technology made it so there are many more security options to choose from. Smart home tech is getting better and cheaper every year, so no it’s not a bad idea to begin integrating smart devices, including security, in your home.