Did you know two-thirds of the 2.5 million annual burglaries in the U.S. are home break ins? And, according to the National Council for Home Safety and Security, police solve just 13 percent of reported burglaries due to lack of evidence.
Your house is your sanctuary, and you want to make sure it stays that way. You may be considering investing in a home security system or upgrading your current one. After all, home security technology has advanced rapidly in just the last few years. Before installing a home security system, consider these six components.
Security cameras are not new, but their Wi-Fi connectivity and high resolution are. Gone are the clunky video feeds of the past featuring only a pixelated intruder. Homeowners can now check in on their abodes while they’re away using only a mobile device. Well-placed cameras are the foundation of any foolproof security setup, as they’re often your first indicator something is amiss.
In scenario A, a burglar picks your lock and slips in your back door. Sensing no commotion, they’re free to rifle through your possessions. In scenario B, a burglar picks your lock and slips in your back door. After a beat or two of silence, an ear-piercing alarm rings out. Guess which scenario is more likely to deter a thief, vandal or predator. A comprehensive security system should include a high-decibel alarm capable of scaring off intruders and notifying neighbors to potential trouble.
Good news: Some insurance companies offer discounts as high as 20 percent off your annual premium for installing an electronic alarm system. Ramping up security is a good time to get in touch with your agent, or search homeowners insurance quotes online to find a new carrier willing to reward your efforts.
Door and Window Sensors
Unbeknownst to many homeowners, windows are often the easiest point of entry for intruders. They have a few options here: break the windowpane, break the lock or simply slide unlocked windows up and climb inside. It makes sense for a security system to include both window and door sensors for this reason.
Motion sensors sound like a great idea in theory. But how can you ensure they’re not going off every few minutes—especially if you have a four-legged friend who likes to wander around in the early hours of the morning? As the Chicago Tribune reports, some motion sensors are customizable, and can even be set to accommodate family pets by height and weight.
Motion-triggered lights are meant to make intruders freeze, then flee. After all, shining some light on a break-in makes slipping under the radar a lot tougher. Many homeowners choose to install special yard lamps and sync them with a smart security system for extra deterrence.
While some homeowners choose to tackle domestic security themselves, many opt to work through a company. Just be aware, in addition to the cost of the equipment, you’ll also pay a monitoring fee, often between $35 and $75 per month. The benefit is the extra set of eyes and additional peace of mind. It’s also entirely possible to piece together your own home security system and control it wirelessly using a smartphone or tablet. Either way, everyone in the household should know how to disarm and rearm the various components that make up the system, as well as how to identify signs of trouble.
When you’re installing your home security system, consider these six components so you always have eyes, ears and a deterrent ready to go at a moment’s notice if someone tries to break into your house.