The London Metropolitan police have shown in a recent study that properties who have been fitted with alarm systems are less likely to fall victims of theft. Choosing the right one however can seem like a mine field. If you are looking at purchasing a burglar alarm as part of your home security system then there are several key points to consider.
What type of system do you need? This is often all about personal preference, budget and the level of protection you require. Depending on where you live, i.e. living in a detached property in the middle of the countryside or an apartment in a block of flats in a busy city, your needs will obviously differ.
- The first consideration is how you want the alarm to sound if entry occurs. Bell systems will create a loud noise but will not contact the police station. A speech dialler system will contact you or a nominated person that your property has been broken into.
On the other hand a monitoring contract means that you can pay an annual or monthly fee to have your property specifically watched, the police would be called as soon as an alarm went off and any necessary action could be taken immediately. The costs between each of these different systems obviously vary so it is worth investigating which system would work best for you.
- Alarms can be wireless or fixed systems. Wireless systems have the benefit of being easy to install, are aesthetically more pleasing and can be removed and reinstalled if you sell or move property. They use battery-powered sensors that communicate with the control panel by emitting radio signals.
The alarms themselves are often dearer however they are easier to install and can be fitted by you or a professional. Wired systems do need to be installed by a company as all of the wires need to be hidden from view, this means that the labour costs can be higher.
- Bell only alarms, will warn off an intruder if it sounds, however despite making a loud noise it will be up to someone nearby to alert the police or take any action. So they do not necessarily guarantee that anything will be done. If you live in an active neighbourhood watch area then bell alarms can be a successful system, however in severely built up areas where alarms seem to be going off constantly, a monitored alternative may be more effective.
- Whatever system you choose it should be maintained regularly not only for peace of mind but also insurance purposes. This will make sure that there are no defects that inhibit it working. If you have decided to purchase an alarm that has a maintenance contract alongside it then these will be checked by the installer, normally once a year and twice a year if the system is police monitored. The costs will vary depending on what type of maintenance contract you have decided to take out.
By Harry Price
Harry Price is a full time writer who in his spare time loves to be outdoors. Anything from walking his dogs to rock climbing, as long as fresh air and open space is on the agenda, you will find him there!