Keeping your home and family safe with the right smart security system
Thinking about a security system for your home?
There is a lot to think about as you research what home security brand could be right for you. Today’s security systems are outfitted with many features; window sensors, doorbell cameras, high-definition footage, auto sirens, smart locks, thermostat control, and smart lights just to name a few.
Home security system considerations
To begin with, you should consider your prowess with self-installation capabilities. Next, decide if you are comfortable with monitoring your home yourself, or would you prefer a staffed team of security professionals to be at the helm?
Do you need a monitored system?
When an alarm company gets an alert, they call 911 on your behalf. If you opt for an unmonitored system, the homeowner makes the 911 call. Both you and an alarm company can relay information such as the progression of an intruder through your home (911 insider tip – documenting progression can make a police response faster/at a higher priority than when progression information isn’t available).
While professional monitoring may be more costly, the comfort of their monitoring presence might be worth it to you. There are some instances where you could be unable to transfer emergency information to law enforcement, like a home invasion, or if stuck in a long meeting.
Home security features explained
Here is an explanation of home protection features to consider for the popular systems in the security market.
Infrared technology is important because it can detect the difference between movements. Is it a tree? A person? A pet? Infrared detectors help discern whether a motion is friend or foe. Fortunately, infrared technology has been around for a while, and it is more economical.
Right off the bat, having a camera fastened to your exterior is a great deterrent for potential intruders. Yet if the presence of the camera didn’t do the trick in prevention; the high resolution is critical in helping law enforcement forensically analyze what happened, identify the perpetrator, and return your items.
There are insurance benefits, as well! Insurance companies require reports when paying out for an unfortunate incident like theft. It can be difficult emotionally to replace items lost, but at least you can document and validate your insurance claim with ease. Plus, many insurance providers discount your policy by up to 20% for having cameras.
HD cameras can make your family feel more secure when being confronted by random trespassers while at home. Cameras can also provide peace of mind when you are not at home – simply pull up the video from your phone to check in while you are away.
Your HD camera should have night vision, motion detection alerts, and smart home integration. Seek out a camera with at least 4 or 5 megapixels, and ensure your internet is fast and robust enough to deliver HD results.
If you have an Amazon Echo, Alexa has some pretty cool offerings. One being Alexa Guard. After set-up, just say, “Alexa, I’m leaving,” and your speaker will send a notification to your phone if it detects sounds like broken windows, busted down doors, and carbon monoxide or smoke detectors going off. You can also purchase smart lights from Amazon to work with Alexa; read more about all available features here.
So, you have all the cameras and detectors in place – why would you need a window sensor? Window alarms are a critical companion to motion sensors to provide a complete perimeter security system. This type of alarm keeps thieves out, instead of responding to their movement after entry.
Auto or Deployed Sirens
Sirens are one of the more classic features on this list. The importance of sirens is simply the loud shock delivered to both intruders and your neighbors. Many sirens have a powerful punch, both with sound and flashing lights. A twist on this classic is the ability to deploy at will from your smart device.
Parts with the Smarts
Smart doorbells can send alerts to your phone of guests arriving, take HD video, sense motion, have 2-way audio, and document package theft.
Smart entry locks grant you keyless entry, detect when you are nearing the door with your smart device and trigger unlock, and be monitored from afar by your phone.
Smart thermostats save energy, detect and allow you to set your climate preferences for the time of day, and alert you if your home temperature gets to an unsafe area – i.e. if pipes could freeze or a fire has started.
Smart lights can be controlled while you’re away. No more leaving your lights on day and night through a business trip or vacation.
Smart smoke alarms pinpoint precisely where the fire is located in an emergency. They also let you silence your alarm quickly for those smoky cooking mishaps.
Now that you know what to look for and what features mean the most to you, here are several articles outlining side-by-side comparisons of popular home security systems. It’s a great time to secure your home and keep your family safe with the intuitive, accurate, and reliable home safety products available today.
About the Judi Wright Team
Judi Wright/The Judi Wright Team is a real estate group specializing in the suburbs of Frisco, Plano, and surrounding areas. Named the “Best Realtor in Dallas,” by D Magazine fourteen times and a Five Star Realtor with Texas Monthly nine times. Judi is also a Company-Wide Top Performer with Ebby Halliday, a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate.