What is the best house alarm system for you?
With 28% of Irish people reported to have been a previous victim of a break-in, people are becoming more security conscious and looking to secure their home with a house alarm.
However, what is the best alarm system for you? There are wired, wireless, monitored and non-monitored alarms. We breakdown the benefits of each to help find the best alarm for you.
You may think that all alarm panels on the Irish market are the same, but be sure to ask what features the panel has. With the HomeSecure ZeroWire™ panel, you get a Stay and Away function. The Away mode is your standard, arm all sensors setting, which is ideal when your home is empty.
Our Stay function is extremely useful, for home's set up with perimeter protection. This function solely arms your perimeter sensors. With the majority of Irish break-ins actually occurring between 5pm – 11pm, the Stay button is vital to any home’s security and can deter someone from trying to gain access to your home.
The ZeroWire™ panel also comes with emergency buttons for Fire, Garda and Ambulance, so you’re getting the fastest response in any urgent situation. Once again though, not all alarm panels will have the same features, so make sure to investigate.
How do I choose what sensors I needs?
There are many ways to secure your home. As your doors are the most common entry points for burglars, you should always put a sensor on your perimeter doors. Over half of all burglars will enter through a front, back or side door; so securing these is critical.
The Gardaí do require at least one motion / internal sensor to help verify break-ins, but after that, it’s really up to you on how you want to secure your home.
You can choose to add a sensor to all of your windows, some of your windows or none at all. It’s recommended to protect vulnerable windows, such as ones at the back of your home and ones that can be easily accessed from a slanted roof or garage.
Remember that burglars don’t carry ladders, so you don’t have to put a sensor on every window, you can always use a motion sensor to cover a whole room and a series of windows.
It does depend on what type of house you do have. If you have a bungalow, it’s recommend to go for a more motion-based burglar alarm setup.
You can always get guidance over the phone from the sales team and on the day of an installation, the engineer will give his professional recommendation on what needs to be covered. HomeSecure engineers will ask you a series of questions to help set up the sensors in a way that works for you and your family.
Monitored vs non-monitored alarms
An age-old question when it comes to home alarms, is whether or not to get it monitored. If an alarm isn’t monitored, the external bell will ring for up to 15 minutes once the alarm has been activated. A non-monitored alarm system will have a bigger upfront fee, usually €800 - €1,000 for a good standard one.
A monitored alarm that has a verified break-in can alert the Gardaí and with HomeSecure, the nearest mobile unit will be dispatched to your home. The upfront cost on monitored alarms is usually lower and the fee is spread out over a number of years with your monitoring costs.
Burglars are savvy to monitored alarm companies and know not to even approach these houses, as they have the best protection. A monitored home is proven to be three more safer than a non-monitored home.
Self-monitored vs monitoring station
There are options to have a self-monitored alarm or have your alarm monitored by a monitoring station. Let us explain the main differences.
A self-monitored alarm works as a text service. This means when your alarm has been activation you can get a text message. One benefit of this is, it’s a cheaper way to monitor your home. The main disadvantage here, is you are don’t have a guaranteed Garda response. As of January 2008, the Gardaí can only respond to houses when there has been a verified break-in. Receiving a text isn’t a verified break-in, as you have no way of knowing if it is a false alarm or not. Another disadvantage is, it requires you to respond. If you are at work and not looking at your phone, a text is pretty much useless.
When your alarm is monitored by a monitoring station, is it generally a more expensive option, but you do receive round the clock protection. Here if your alarm is activated, the monitoring station will call your designated keyholders to confirm if you are okay. If your keyholders don’t answer, if you confirm nobody is home or if a perimeter and internal sensor are triggered, the monitoring station can dispatch the Gardaí immediately, as this is treated as a verified break-in. Unlike the text service, you'll have full-time staff dedicated to your home's security.
With your home being the biggest asset you will ever own, it is critical to give it the protection it deserves, so although there are cheaper options, we recommend getting a monitored alarm.
With most self-monitored systems, you may have to pay for call out fees, if you are getting your alarm serviced or repaired, so although it may seem like a cheaper option, there are more hidden costs here. With many monitored companies including HomeSecure, your maintenance fees are included in your monthly fee.
Here at HomeSecure we have made house alarms more affordable, by offering monitored alarms from just €99! With our monthly fee, you will receive 24/7 monitoring, an annual service and you’re covered for unlimited call-outs, if you have any technical issues with the alarm.
Independent Research carried out by Accuracy Research on behalf of HomeSecure. Results based on 1,008 respondents and are nationally representative. Additional security stats taken from on Garda Siochana website site and other industry sources.