Most people install an alarm system hopefully before any unfortunate incidents. When this is the case the first reason is usually to help protect the valuables inside the home from being stolen. Naturally nobody likes the idea of having their possessions stolen, however the first and foremost reason to have an alarm system installed should be to help protect the people that live in the home.
From Our Experience home burglaries are typically committed by young male drug addicts, followed by low level thieves, vandals and unfortunately sometimes kids from the neighborhood that are just getting their "kicks". Naturally these perpetrators prefer to commit their crime when they believe nobody is home. The homeowner upon returning to discover that their home was burglarized and their possessions were stolen naturally is furious and angry.
The upside to this scenario is no family member arrived back home during the actual crime and was confronted by the then surprised and scared thief or thieves. Kids returning home from school, wives and even "tough guy macho men" are sometimes surprised and frightened to realize someone is in the home. Whether it's a drug addict, low level thief, vandal or the local neighborhood kids they are as scared as you and suddenly will react just like a wild animal in their determination not to get caught.
This is how innocent people get hurt or worse during a home burglary that suddenly escalates into a dangerous situation. With this in mind the alarm systems first priority is helping to protect the family or any innocent victim. For the most part stolen property can be replaced or is covered by insurance. With people protection now as the first priority the alarm can also offer protection from the much more terrible scenario when a thief unwittingly or purposely decides to break in when someone is home either during the day or worse, at night. Whether it's during the day or night, the sound of a siren immediately going off is enough to frighten any thief to change their mind. Naturally they don't want to get caught or even recognized.
Arriving home or sleeping through the night without being confronted by a dangerous situation is the true peace of mind that an alarm system can give us. With people protection as the undisputable first reason for an alarm system we can now look at the additional benefits. Although most worldly possessions can be replaced there are times when personal items that have no real monetary value are stolen such as family heirlooms or other items that are near and dear to us. These things can never be replaced.
Additionally, vandalism from local punks can cause unbelievable heartache. Besides safeguarding people and our possessions alarm systems can additionally offer a whole host of other benefits. A Temperature sensitive device will detect a drop in temperature in your home in the event the furnace breaks down, causing the water pipes to then freeze, subsequently bursting and causing thousands of dollars in water damage. Notification of this potential disaster to the proper contacts can help avoid this situation.
A water level device placed in the basement or in a sump can alert you and your contractor if need be to a potential flood. The weak link in every basement drainage system that employs an electric pump is naturally the scenario when the electricity fails during a storm. Because the alarm has reserve battery back up, notification is received before the rising water can cause damage. Additional detectors that are important to saving lives as well as property should also be considered as standard ad-ons.
The unexpected presence of carbon monoxide is a deadly killer. It has no smell, nor can it be seen. Disastrous results could occur should it be present while the resident is sleeping. Our own heating systems are the main source of this killer gas. Sometime low levels of this deadly gas are present and family members feel sick all the time, especially during winter months when windows are kept closed. Homes with fireplaces or wood burning stoves should always have a carbon monoxide detector as part of the alarm system. Natural gas detectors warn of the presence of other dangerous gases such as a leak in the gas stove or gas furnace that gone undetected could cause an explosion. Lastly adding monitored smoke detectors to the alarm is without a doubt the most prudent and important of all.
Unfortunately most homeowners will say "I already have smoke detectors". The existing smoke detectors are not integrated into the alarm and will provide only one element of protection and only if they are in perfect working condition and placed in the proper locations. They will activate and emit their sound and alert us only if we are home. Who will hear the warning sound should smoke be detected during the hours the home is vacant? Monitored Smoke detectors will provide notification to the central station instantly relayed to the local fire station to prevent your home from burning down. Monitored smoke detectors are "supervised" 24 hours which means even if you've forgotten to set your system whether you've left the home or are sleeping at night the smoke detectors are always ready to report the presence of smoke to the central station.
Notwithstanding the value of protecting the home and its contents from fire, the occupants of the home will be alerted during the night hours. Non-Monitored Smoke detectors are sometimes not working or placed in the wrong areas and may not alert the sleeping occupants. Once smoke is detected by the monitored detector a 95 decibel alarm is sure to arouse any "deep" sleeper. Lastly all pets which are considered members of the family have extremely low tolerance to the presence of gases, especially smoke. They also benefit from the alarm system.
To capsulate the benefits of a monitored alarm system:
1. Help Prevents any family member especially kids returning home from being hurt or worse by an intruder.
2. Alerts family members to any suspicious activity during the night hours, thus preventing injuries or worse.
3. Gas detectors and smoke detectors save lives (both human and pets)
4. Help Prevents our valuables and family heirlooms from being stolen
5. Help Prevents vandalism
6. Help Prevents the destruction caused by fire to the property and its contents
7. Help Prevents other property related loses. I.e., water damage from floods or frozen and bursting pipes
8. Gives us peace of mind that our family and our property is protected
9. Allows a discount on the homeowners insurance policy (typically between 10% - 20% with the maximum allowed with the addition of monitored smoke detectors) Certainly the least of all reasons to have an alarm system installed, but nevertheless a benefit
It goes without saying anybody who has ever experienced their home being burglarized has had something taken from them. The sense that they'll never feel safe in their own homes again. This is a terrible feeling. Unfortunately many perpetrators of this crime receive a mere "slap on the wrist" by our judicial system and never fully understand nor do they care about the "real" damage their crime has brought to their victims.
The purpose of this information was to help sort out all the reasons why every home should be protected by a security system. It is also important to note that statistically if a home has already been burglarized the chances of it happening again by the same thief or thieves is very likely.
Bill Mullen, Owner & President: Audio Deterrent Systems/ and proud to be an authorized dealer of ADT Security Services