Company Background: SafeMart was founded in 2002 and is the online brand of Live Watch Security LLC. The company’s website states they have won several awards as the top security services company in America. It was also named on the list of Inc.’s 500 Fastest Growing Companies list for 2009, 2010, and 2011.
Monitoring Services: SafeMart offers 24 hour coverage and alerts for burglary, medical emergencies, and fire.
Benefits: SafeMart claims they offer the highest quality services for highly competitive prices for both the systems they sell and the LiveWatch services being offered. The company does not require credit checks and offer a 30-day risk free guarantee, allowing you to cancel services or return a system without a hassle. Technology also allows for 24/7 security for interactive smartphone and Internet access.
Technology: SafeMart offers a variety of security systems including home alarms, 24/7 home monitoring, 24/7 camera security monitoring, and home automation devices such as garage door remotes. Security systems are designed to protect homes through (more…)
Company Background: DCS Security Alarms is considered to be one of the most trustworthy manufacturers in the security alarm industry. They also offer an inventory of top of the line products for home security. The company has been innovative in the development of security keypads and micro-processor based alarm panel systems since 1979. The company is headquartered in Toronto with security product lines selling globally in more than 140 countries.
Monitoring Services: DCS security systems offer dialing capabilities so alerts can automatically contact a monitoring station that will alert homeowners when alarms sound and can contact authorities and emergency responders during actual emergencies. DCS systems also provide protection for smoke detection, carbon monoxide, low temperatures, and flooding.
Benefits: Alarm system components are upgradable; offer false alarm reduction features; large name monitoring services including ADT will support the DSC alarm systems.
Technology: DSC alarm systems are available in hard-wired formats with many systems offering affordable home protection based on needs. DSC security alarms also entail a wireless control panel. This pane can offer support for up to (more…)
Company Background: Alarm.com was founded in 2000 and provides home and business security systems. In 2003, the company was first to launch a secure, all—digital wireless alarm systems with activity reporting features and web-based control panel.
Monitoring Services: Alarm.com offers video home monitoring systems to protect against theft, fire, flooding, open doors, and intrusion for all areas of the home, with specialized sensors to detect disruption of certain spaces such as a safe or liquor cabinet.
Benefits: The wireless technologies used in alarm and monitoring systems are wireless which allows for continued service even if electricity is disabled. The technology is also geared to controlling specific areas of the home including pools, patios, garage doors, and gun cabinets.
Technology: Alarm.com offers technology platforms that allows consumers to monitor their homes and businesses not matter where they are. The company offers more than (more…)
Building a home alarm system that will protect you and your family means picking the right components for your home and your needs. There are plenty of options out there, and not all of them are necessary for every home. Before you invest in a home alarm system, understand the kinds of components you can get and figure out which ones make the most sense for your situation.
Here are some of the more common home alarm system components available today:
- Sensors. There are several different kinds of sensors you can install in your home alarm system. Simple window and door sensors detect whether a window or door has been opened. Glass break sensors use a variety of methods to check and see whether a window has been compromised. Sensors are at the heart of your system, and you need to make sure there’s one for every window, door, or other point of egress in your home.
- Cameras. Today’s home security cameras have greater versatility and more functionality than ever before. There are cameras that have night vision, cameras that are motion-activated, and even cameras so small that they won’t be noticed unless someone knows to look for them.
- Control panels. There was a time when a home security system’s control panel was always a box on the wall. Today, however, you have more options. There are home security systems that use a remote control-type device to access system functions. There are some systems that can be entirely managed with your smartphone, as well. Pick the one that suits your lifestyle. (more…)
Many of today’s DIY home alarm systems install so quickly that you can be up and running in a matter of minutes. While the actual process of installation isn’t necessarily a complicated thing (what with wireless technology and lightweight components that use sticky tape, rather than screws, to hold them to the wall) there are plenty of mistakes to be made.
Here are some of the most common errors people make when installing their DIY home alarm systems:
- Missing points of egress. Sure, you’ve got sensors on your doors and your first-floor windows, but do you have them on your second-floor windows, or even on your skylight? The fact of the matter is that home invaders can get very creative when it comes to getting into your home. Look at your home from the outside, and identify every possible crack, crevice, and opening that a person could use to gain access to your home.
- Poor mounting. There are a couple of aspects you need to be concerned about here. First of all, you need to make sure that multi-part sensors are mounted carefully the first time. Otherwise, you’ll spend way too much time trying to get everything to match up and for the sensors to connect. This also holds true for your home security cameras; in some cases, that mounting tape isn’t really going to be enough. Consider using mounting hardware to make sure it stays in place. (more…)
Your home alarm system is only as good as how you use it. If you don’t ever arm your system, it isn’t going to keep anyone out. Yet, it’s not always intuitive to remember to turn on your home alarm system when you leave. You’d like to be able to access your system remotely, so for example you could arm the system from the office. You wouldn’t mind having access to your system’s video cameras remotely, either.
Fortunately, today’s systems are robust, and feature a number of remote access methods. Here are some of the ways you might be able to access your home alarm system remotely:
- Keychains. While these won’t help you from the office, they will let you arm or disarm your home alarm system from your car. These work great as a backup in case you simply forget to arm the system when you leave for work in the morning.
- Web interface. Some home alarm systems offer you the ability to manage your home alarm system via a secure web page. Log in to the security company’s website and you can activate or deactivate your system, and in some cases even view your home security cameras remotely.
- Smartphone apps. Here’s where things get really interesting. Today’ home alarm systems offer you the ability to manage their features using your smartphone. The app can do just about everything you could do from the control panel, and sometimes more. This means you can access your system from anywhere you have a data connection. (more…)
There was a time when installing a home alarm system meant running all sorts of wires through your walls and ceilings, mounting heavy hardware to the walls, and creating a generally ugly impact on your home’s aesthetics. Fortunately, today’s do-it-yourself home alarm systems are easier than ever to install. They go up quicker, take up less space, and have a much smaller visual impact than systems of yore.
Here are some things to look for in a do-it-yourself home alarm system that let you know installation will be quick and easy:
- Wireless technology. Most of the DIY home alarm systems you find on shelves today will feature wireless technology. That said, there are some that still require a wired connection. Make sure that you pick one that runs on wireless. As an added measure, consider choosing a system that runs on its own wireless network; some will require access to your home’s wireless connection, and that may not be an option for some folks.
- Lightweight components. Today, most door and window sensors can be mounted in your home using simply sticky double-sided tape. For the easiest do-it-yourself home alarm systems, look for components that are not only lightweight, but that already have the mounting tape attached. You simply peel away the paper backing, place the sensor or other component, and you’re all set. Even today’s home security cameras can be made light enough and small enough to mount reliably in this fashion. (more…)
When you own a home, you have much more in the way of options in home alarm systems. Living in an apartment doesn’t mean you can’t protect yourself, however. You just need to understand the constraints you have to work with, and figure out the best possible system from there.
Here are some important factors that make apartment alarms different from house alarm systems:
- You can’t make structural modifications. First and foremost, that means you’re restrained from making certain types of modifications. For example, a wired house alarm system couldn’t be installed in an apartment, because you’re not going to be able to drill through walls or ceilings. Anything you install is going to have to be surface-mounted.
- You’ll have fewer points of entry. This is one of the advantages of living in an apartment. Chances are you’ve got your front door and, in some cases, one or more windows. It’s possible you’ll have a back door, but you definitely don’t need to worry about things like basement windows. Identifying points of entry should be quick and easy.
- You might have to deal with interference. The most common alarm systems rely on wireless technology. If you’re in an apartment, as we mentioned, wired alarm systems aren’t really an (more…)
There are dozens of do-it-yourself home alarm systems out there on the market. Every home improvement store you walk into sells them. You can even find them at big-box retailers like Wal-Mart. How do you know which do-it-yourself home alarm systems are right for you, and which are going to give you and your family the kind of protection you need?
You need to start with a few simple steps:
- Figure out where your home is vulnerable. Standardized home alarm systems aren’t right for every home. You need to be able to identify where exactly it is that a home invader is likely to gain access to your home. Hint: it’s probably not your front door with that deadbolt lock. Identify every possible entry point, so you know where you’re going to need to place alarms.
- Take some measurements. Most do-it-yourself home alarm systems have a limited range. If you have a sprawling ranch home, chances are you’re going to need to carefully consider where to place your control panel. Take measurements of your home, especially noting the location of entry points. When it comes time to (more…)
In an ideal world you’d have the latest and greatest in home security system technology. The fact is, however, not everyone can afford a state of the art home security system. And, while there are budget home security systems out there, sometimes they just aren’t terribly effective.
Here are seven relatively inexpensive things you can do today to protect your home:
- Lie about it. Put signs in your yard that advertise you own a home security system. Burglars may not be able to recognize whether or not you actually have one, so putting up home security signs can be a deterrent to some criminals. In many cases, they’ll just move on to the next house.
- Close your garage door. One of the most common entry points to your house is your garage door. Don’t leave it open at night or when you’re not home. It’s an invitation to burglars.
- Be neighborly. If your neighbors are on good terms, they may be more likely to call the cops if they witness something suspicious. Neighborhood Watch programs have proven effective, too.
- Store your valuables somewhere other than the bedroom. If a thief breaks in, he’s usually going right for the bedroom. That’s where most people store valuables. Put yours somewhere else. (more…)