Exploring Home Security Systems

Lots of people have home security systems. Having a home security system installed in your home is a proven effective way to reduce the chances that your home will be burglarized. The advantages of having an alarm system include not only the reduced risk of a burglary, but other available monitoring services such as fire and carbon monoxide detection, reduced homeowner’s insurance rates, and peace of mind that comes with knowing that somebody is monitoring your home when you aren’t there.Many people like the idea of having a “silver bullet” that automatically makes their home safer, but is this really the case when you purchase a home security system? Let’s look at what makes up an alarm system and how it prevents theft.When I refer to a “home security system,” I am referring to a monitored system that is usually installed by a home security company or a security professional. Hardware is installed in your home. This usually includes sensors at windows and doors to detect when they are opened. There may also be sensors to detect glass breaking, motion within rooms, and even cameras. These sensors are controlled from a keypad control usually located close to an entryway. The system can be turned on and off from this control pad and can also be tested and put on different modes depending on whether you are home or away. A major component of this type of system is the monitoring feature. For a monthly fee the system is monitored for you by the alarm company and any alarms will trigger a response by the alarm company. Most alarm companies will notify the local police department when they receive an alarm activation. Many will also call you or somebody that you designate on a list of “key holders,” people that you designate to check your house or know when you are out of town.


Upon receiving an alarm activation notice, many police departments will respond to the location and attempt to determine the cause of the activation, and whether a crime has been perpetrated. They may stay at the location until a key holder arrives to inspect the inside of the building. Some alarm companies have their own security guards that respond as well.Most security alarm activations are false alarms. Because of this, not all police departments routinely respond to home or business burglar alarms. Many municipalities charge a fine for excessive false alarms due to the unnecessary response of their officers. Many police departments do not respond to routine burglar alarm calls as an emergency call, meaning they drive with normal traffic. The ramifications of this are that even if somebody breaks into your home or business, the police may not respond, or if they do respond, their response may not be in time to catch the burglars and it may end up costing you a fine if it happens to be a false alarm.


Home security systems have been shown to reduce the risk of a building being burglarized, but they are not necessarily a silver bullet when it comes to home security. Alarm systems serve a purpose but you need to be informed regarding how they work, the ongoing expenses of having a security system and the security shortfalls that they represent. By having this information, you can better decide if a home security system is right for you.