Choosing a home security system can be a challenging task, but when you take the time to do the research to find the right system to meet your needs, you can protect your loved ones and save money on your Alberta house insurance at the same time. Carefully consider your needs, talk to your friends and family members about the companies they use, and most importantly, make calls to several companies before settling on one.
Selecting the right system
Unlike the dramatic TV ads that begin with a shattered window, most burglars prefer to come through a door where they are out of sight, so make sure to select a system with a sensor for each outside door. You should also have motion sensors that cover larger areas of your home and window sensors on any windows at the back your house or areas that are easily accessible. Find a location for your keypad where it is convenient for you to arm but also difficult for potential intruders to observe through windows.
Wired or wireless?
In spite of backup strategies like polling that allow wired systems to detect when a broadband Internet connection has been cut, the best systems today are completely wireless. Be sure to ask specifically if the company offers cellular monitoring. Many services will claim to provide wireless systems while only referring to a wireless link between your sensors and control panel. To truly protect your home from a burglar cutting a line and disabling your system, you need a wireless connection between your control panel and the monitoring center. Wireless alarm system monitoring is safest and most reliable, but it is also more expensive to install and maintain.
Advancements in technology
As an experienced Alberta house insurance provider, we know that burglars have gotten more savvy. Home security systems have been around for many years, and burglars have learned ways around them. Choose a system with “crash and smash” protection, so someone can’t break into your home, destroy the control panel and deactivate your system. Additionally, security systems that allow you to monitor activity in your home from an internet-connected computer, tablet, or smartphone provide an added layer of security. Some even allow you to choose friends or family members to be notified when your alarm is triggered.
A call to customer service can tell you a lot about the company itself. When you make that first call to learn more, do you get a salesperson looking to upsell you for a bigger commission or a helpful representative who is familiar with the system and able to answer all your questions? Do they seem like someone you would trust in an emergency?
As with any product, you get what you pay for, so price should not be the deciding factor, but transparency is important. Expect clear answers to these questions:
- What do they charge for installation and equipment?
- Can you install the system yourself?
- What does monthly monitoring cost?
- Are there cancellation fees if you move?
- Do they offer a lifetime warranty on equipment?
- Is there a money-back free trial period (with no restocking fees)?
At the end of the day, there is no way to put a price on the peace of mind that comes from knowing you have taken the time to select an alarm system to keep your family safe. A discount on your Alberta house insurance is just an added bonus.
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