What do you recommend for home security systems?
It's time to put a security system in the house. It would give peace of mind while I am at work or on vacation. My question is, what do you recommend? Going with a security company and have it monitored or a do it yourself? Not sure I like what I hear about ADT but I'm open to suggestions for a company and equipment.
Contact your home insurance company and find out if they have a relationship with an alarm company.
We have our home owner's insurance with USAA and they have a relationship with ADT.
ADT did the installation and has been great to work with from the start. Only problem I've had in twelve years is that I've had to replace the wet cell battery in the controller once. Easy DIY job. System has been 100% reliable and the one time that the cat climbed up, in front of one of the motion sensors, the Sheriff was at my door within ten minutes. Have also had a couple if incidents with house sitters and the response from ADT was immediate. Both my wife and I are completely satisfied with ADT, their installation, and their service. Price is great also, because of the afore mentioned relationship with USAA.
Contact your insurance company !
I would add a camera system, nothing gives better peace of mind than logging into you DVR remotely and actually see whats going on.
I did my hardwired system myself that replaced a former hardwired/wireless nightmare of a system. I was able to reuse about 50% of the wiring.
It's really not very hard if you're familiar with basic home construction and willing to put in a LOT of time.
Plus you'll know it's done right.
I have mine monitored by a popular local alarm company. They had no problem with monitoring a system I did myself. After a few tests it was all good to go. Most alarm companies support the few basic protocols that the alarm systems can produce.
As far as a company to monitor i would highly recommend it, i know there are alot of folks that want their system to contact their cell phone only, but you have a huge risk of not getting the call if you are in a area with bad cell phone signal
I was with ADT for years and switched to Vivnt a few months ago. Customer service is excellent, a real person answers the phone quickly. The standard control panel will allow you to arm/dis-arm from your phone, it's got built in cellular back up, if your phone line is cut or you can use the cellular only. You can setup all kinds of alerts to be delivered to your phone, arming, if you want to be notified if a particular sensor is open for too long, all kinds of stuff. If the alarm is set off, they contact you through the control panel within seconds. All this is standard, but with ADT the smart phone/ touch screen panel was a $600 upgrade IIRC, then the cell back-up was an up front fee plus extra every month. I'm very happy with the system so far.
My advice would be to drive around your area and look at the storefronts of places that are really serious about security. Banks, jewelry stores, guns shops, any respectable business. See who they are using and I bet it's a local/regional business. I personally stay away from ADT. Another great place to ask might be local law enforcement. Often you may find law enforcement departments respect some companies better than others.