Q&A / 

Home Security Alarm

I've had a home-security alarm in the past two homes I've owned. The one home-security alarm system is in a house that I build in the mid 1980's, and has magnetic switches on every door and window that's reachable at ground level. The other system is in a house I purchased in New Hampshire. It's very different in that only the doors are switched and the rest of the house is protected by motion detectors in the event that a person enters through an open window, or they force a window to gain entry.

Home security alarm systems do much more than just tell you that a burglar is trying to enter your home. Home security alarms can and do alert you to other dangers. For example, at my home that was built in the 1980's, there are two different types of sensors that tell of dangers other than intruders. One is a standard smoke detector and the other is called a rate-of-rise indicator.

The rate-of-rise indicator is one that can sense a fire danger in certain situations before there is enough smoke to trigger a traditional smoke detector. The indicator senses that the temperature in the room is rising at an abnormal rate thus triggering the alarm system.

Home-security alarms now cover a range of threats including, but not limited to:

  • carbon monoxide
  • flooding
  • sewer backups
  • burglary
  • fire alarms
  • broken glass by humans or storms

This level of monitoring allows you to feel comfortable whether you're at home or when you're away for a period of time. Add to this, the ability of remote monitoring via the Internet, and you can see why a monitored home-security alarm is a highly desired item in both new homes and existing ones.

You may think it's expensive to sign up for home-security alarm monitoring. The cost I was just quoted (2009) was less than one dollar per day. In my opinion, that's a bargain when you think of the cost you might incur if you ever have a problem. Without a home-security alarm, a burglar will get in and have a field day. With an alarm that's blasting, he might run away leaving you simply with a broken window or door. Had he gotten in, you may have tens of thousands of dollars of loss, some of which may be tough to recover from your insurance company, if you don't have documentation that you actually owned the items.

Thirty years ago, my wife and I were victims of a burglary. I can tell you now that I wish I'd had a home burglar alarm security system. When I walked in the door and saw the house had been ransacked, I was scared, angry and felt extremely violated. To avoid all those emotions for less than a dollar a day is a true bargain.

If you think that a home-security door alarm is all you need, you better call in several professionals. I would first call your local police department and see if there is a crime-prevention officer. Often the officer will come to your home at no cost and do a survey telling you where your vulnerable. Not only may your door be susceptible to break ins, but also windows and basement entries.

Once the police officer has given you his opinion, then call in several professional home-security companies to see if they agree with the police. Then see what each company has to offer to equalize the threat of danger.

The bottom line is that a home-security alarm can save you time, emotions, money and offer you priceless peace of mind. I can tell you that every home I'll ever own will have a home-security alarm system.

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