“There’s no place like home,” said Dorothy, in the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz. Had Dorothy lived in today’s world she might have said, “There’s no place like a home protected by a state-of-the-art security system.” If you’ve been considering extra protection for your home, but you haven’t gotten around to it because you think it’s too expensive or that maybe you really don’t need it, here’s a list of 7 smart reasons to install a home security system sooner than later. After all, you’re not in Kansas anymore.
- Protect your valuables: While you may not have a pair of priceless ruby slippers, we all have material possessions of monetary or sentimental value that need to be protected from theft. A home security system can serve as a very effective deterrent to potential burglars. Especially since the companies that provide security systems and services post signs and stickers in high profile places to let would be intruders know that the home they’re considering breaking into is equipped with a security system. Motion sensitive flood lights and strategic placed security cameras are also very effective in preventing break-ins. Should an actual breach occur, the bells and whistles activated by the break-in will cause intruders to flee the scene quickly. As a result, fewer valuables will be taken and more importantly, family members who might be home during the break-in will be better protected against physical altercations with intruders.
- Arm and monitor your system remotely: With advances in technology many security systems are wireless and offer remote access from a laptop, tablet, or smartphone. This means that homeowners can arm their security systems without actually having to be in the house. That feature can come in handy for those who go on vacation and forget to arm their systems. Also, if you have arranged for someone to water your plants, feed your pets, or just check on things in your absence, you can deactivate the alarm remotely and reset it once the person has left to prevent the alarm from being set off accidentally.
- Save on homeowners insurance: When it comes to saving money on homeowners insurance, most insurance companies offer discounts for homes equipped with security systems. Ranging from 5% to 20% per year, these discounts can offset much of the costs of installing and maintaining your system.
- Conduct remote surveillance: Today’s security systems aren’t just about protecting your home while you’re away. Wireless systems that are internet enabled allow you to check in on things whenever you desire. Using a laptop, tablet, smartphone, or internet browser, you can log on to your security system from almost anywhere and, with the aid of wireless cameras, see what’s going on in your home in real time. This is particularly handy for looking in on pets while you’re at work or seeing how the kids are doing with the nanny or babysitter.
- Stay within your budget: Although cost is the most common reason most homeowners put off installing security systems, the reality is that today’s systems are very affordable, and can be tailored in terms of features and functionality to fit your budget. In fact, as technologies have improved and competition has increased, many security companies have replaced hard-wired systems with wireless web-enabled systems which offer consumers better features and smaller price tags.
- Take advantage of life-saving features: Aside from protecting your home and family from the obvious dangers, today’s security systems offer valuable features not associated with break-ins. In the event of a fire, many systems offer additional protection in the form of smoke and fire detectors that sound loud alarms to alert home occupants of impending danger---as well as alerting first responders of the need for immediate aid. In addition, home security systems can also be set up to monitor carbon monoxide detectors, alerting both home occupants and emergency personnel should the levels of this deadly, colorless, and odorless gas begin to rise above safe levels.
- Enjoy greater peace of mind: It’s human nature to worry about the people and things that matter most to us. Installing a home security system can go a long way in alleviating safety concerns---knowing that your home, your personal effects, and your loved ones have been given an added measure of protection. While any attempt to improve home security will help you sleep a little easier, both at home and away, wireless systems with web-enabled features that give you a greater measure of interactive control, anywhere and at any time, will also give you greater peace of mind.
Dan Babin is a freelance writer who specializes in home improvement.