Hi, friends. Hoping someone in my network has some guidance on getting a home security system in place. Do you have a company that you’re happy with that doesn't come with a huge price tag? I don’t have a lot of knowledge in this area - I know I want an alarm on the exterior doors, but not sure if there are other things I should consider as well...
We set ourselves up with a Ring Doorbell on both doors and Ring cameras on each side of the house and one interior as well. We love it!! Also, if you're a Costco member, they have those on sale there right now. :)
Hey liz - another option is Deep Sentinel - deepsentinel.com. was founded by David Selinger, formerly of Amazon and co-founder of Redfin. The system apparently works miracles and uses a combo of Ai for detection combined with human response - Ring, Nest, etc are all pretty much self monitor. You'd have to decide if you want a monitored system or not.
Hey Liz, I have a Ring doorbell but otherwise have my house with an ADT system on the doors and windows, along with inside motion detection. I like the remote monitoring, etc. that these solutions bring. Its old school but works and I pay like $55/mo.
You may be looking for a local recommendation, but if not, we've been much happier with Ring vs. any locally-installed system. Price for annual subscription (for monitoring) is dirt cheap (think it's $100/year) and I was able to install just what I wanted + video monitoring; and it's easily expandable.
When the house gets dark, it lights up with gentle glowing LEDs to simulate a large TV in the room. Who in their right mind would try to break in when it looks like someone is sitting right there? I love this little guy, courtesy of Joe Heitzeberg.
Apart from that, we've tried three security systems - two hardwired with remote "monitoring" and one do it yourself. IMO monitoring is a waste of money since the police will not come, at least in Seattle. One or two false alarms might convince you to turn the thing off.
You are probably better off with a DIY system. At our house we use Arlo. The cameras run on batteries which last for six months. Quality is excellent and no wires! All it takes is one screw to mount a camera. I know several folks who are happy with SimpliSafe as well. I might try that next time...
It depends on the size of home, what you're protecting and number of entry points. E.g., do you have basement windows for example? Pets? Is your home in a crowded/busy/active neighborhood or the last house on the left? Do you have a lot of friends/relatives who might be visiting and entering when you're not home. E,g, Grandparents
I had ADT for over a decade. The all-in cost was more economical than many other simple and DIY options. They do the work and clean up nicely. Remote monitoring can be a good thing. In my previous neighborhood the police did come when the alarm was triggered.
At the end of day what type of peace of mind do you need and what tradeoffs are ok for your family?
I like the new ADT offerings....wireless cameras etc. The Alexa integration is a little bit irritating. It confuses all the other Alexas we have in the house LOL! So we had to disable it.....sorry Jeff Gibb
Not to veer into politics, but there's definitely a thing in Seattle with slow police response times. They are unlikely to charge in and confront an intruder. Instead, they may show up a few hours later to take a statement. I can't imagine the response times have gotten better with recent events...
In Austin, on the other hand, the one time we had a false alarm they showed up within five minutes.
ADT isn't cheap, but they are nationwide and people seem to like them. It will run around $5k for installation and first year. However, you could potentially talk them down to pennies, if you plan to be with them longer. We listened to the sales guy and I just couldn't get behind his type of fear pitch.
I have lived in really bad neighborhoods and once any evil thing with a brain sees a security notice, they are going to avoid your home. Doesn't matter the brand. You could even use a fake ADT badging (or ANY prominent security system signage) and you will help lower your susceptibility right off the bat. ;)
Now if you want cameras, audio, brief video recording, web access for capture downloads, and a few useful features... Arlo :)
If you are comfortable self-monitoring, we use Arlo Pro + Pro2 cameras. They are amazing. Got them on sale, installed them with a few screws and wifi, setup my preferences for pinging and scheduling. I know exactly what is going on. The app lets you allow access to friends, emergency, and housemates, so they can also received notifications and view camera activity -- good for entry ways and package delivery. The whole set (on sale) was around $1k for 5 cameras, 2 security lights, a door bell, and a base station. The subscription plan for additional features (detection of what kind of movement: human, animal, etc, as well as emergency connections) is less than $100 per year.
Arlo is my favorite system so far. It is mostly easy to setup and it requires very little maintenance if you hookup a charging cable to each camera. Otherwise, batteries will need to be recharged/swapped every 8 weeks roughly based on usage.
We use SimpliSafe and are happy with it. I installed it myself and it was relatively pain-free. I've had a few minor issues with the system, but their tech support is good, and i've been able to fix everything with their help.
Echoing everyone else's comments about SimpliSafe. Easy to set up by yourself and add things that you need to add if you decide. I've had other systems in the past and this one is the least expensive and the easiest to manage.
Hi Liz, my husband and son just started a side services business to help homeowners with security, internet, and everything smart home. They can guide you on what to need (pros/cons) and install. Here is the link to the website: ccsmarthome.net if you are interested. Obviously, you will get the friends and family discount and they aren't expensive if you want someone to guide you through the process from purchase to installation.
When I was a Microsoft there was a big discussion group about home security systems. Boy, those geeks geeked out. I read their recommendations. And I read answers on Quora back when Quora did that sort of thing.
tl;dr, Police recommended motion sensor lights and a dog. Security by deterrence generally works well. Fake security system signs can help too. Even fifteen years ago people said that the police generally come too late, if at all.
But if you want or need an actual security system then the recommendations above seem good.
If you don’t want to pay for ongoing service, we have been really happy with Arlo. Wireless cameras, rechargeable batteries, monitored and operated through a phone app. The service included with purchase doesn’t have a monthly bill. The cameras are motion sensitive and capture 15 seconds of video when triggered (including at night, infrared). A week of video clips are maintained by the company, which you can download and save.