DIY Alarm Systems and Self-Monitored Security

You’ve installed an alarm system yourself and have learned how to program your phone to receive alerts whendiy-alarm-system-pic-alliance-security-team. your alarm is triggered. This can be an inexpensive way to monitor your alarm system but at what price? Sure you save money but what about your life, your families lives or your possessions?

D.I.Y alarm systems and self-monitored security have their benefits but there are also some disadvantages to this system that need to be considered.

Carbon Monoxide – There is carbon monoxide filling your home and the CO detector you installed isn’t monitored by a security company. Yes, you’ve installed your CO detector from the local department store and programmed your mobile phone to receive a notification when it has been triggered but what if it’s the cheaper alarm model that takes longer to trigger and it’s the middle of the night and you’re asleep? While your alarm is taking its time to trigger, you’re succumbing to carbon monoxide poisoning. What good are your phone notifications to you then?

With a professionally installed carbon monoxide detector that is locally monitored from a central station, the fire department will be notified immediately when your alarm is triggered by the presence of carbon monoxide. Rather than you stumbling out of bed with the affects of carbon monoxide exposure disorienting you while you’re fumbling to call 9-1-1, the security company can do all the leg work. All you have to worry about is evacuating yourself and your family.

Fire – If your home is on fire and you’re self-monitoring your alarm system, receiving an email or alert on your mobile device is not entirely reliable or prompt. Seconds matter when fire is concerned. With a monitored fire alarm, the fire department is dispatched immediately when the alarm is triggered. This immediacy could mean the difference between having a house or just a smoldering foundation.

Break and Enter –  You’re on vacation in a different country and someone breaks into your home while you’re away. You’ve set up your burglar alarm and programmed your phone so you can receive an email or alert when your alarm is triggered. When out-of-country, most people generally turn their phones off or keep them at home so they don’t incur roaming charges (which are ridiculously expensive). So how good is your self-monitoring strategy if the burglars are in your home and you’re in a different country? With a locally monitored system, the authorities will be alerted as soon as your alarm is triggered possibly saving your home from property damage, loss of possessions and increasing the chances the burglar is caught.

By-laws and False Alarms – There are significant fines for false alarms and/or unregistered alarm systems. Be sure to check with your local municipality to see if you’re in an area that has alarm registration by-laws. Inexperience around proper alarm system installation could cause you to have nuisance alarms that falsely trigger. You can expect to pay upwards of $185 in fines to the police for a false alarm. Check out the Kingston By-Law Regulations here.

False alarms may also result in annoyed neighbours and waking yourself or your family up in the middle of the night.

Insurance – Insurance companies will recognize professionally installed and monitored security systems and give discounts of up to 10% of your premiums. This is not something a self-installed and self-monitored security system will grant you.

Knowledge and Peace of Mind – With an alarm system that is professionally installed by a reputable company (ideally one that is a Canadian Accredited Security Company), you can be self-assured in knowing that you are getting the most reliable and effective products on the market. Plus, a professionally installed security system comes with a warranty guaranteeing that the system works.

For more information on professionally installed security systems and monitoring, call us at (613) 547-6666