About Homes & Land of Tampa Bay: Homes & Land of Tampa Bay is a comprehensive real estate guide, covering Tampa, FL and surrounding areas. Home buyers and sellers can search Tampa homes for sale, as well as find land, lots, condos and other property for sale. If you are planning to sell or buy a home in Tampa, you can find and contact Tampa real estate professionals, broker offices, mortgage lenders and other real estate service providers. We also provide community and neighborhood information for Tampa. Tampa area REALTORS®, real estate professionals and brokers can advertise their listings on Homes & Land of Tampa Bay, and also get a personal website.
Search Assistant
Search for Real Estate for Sale...




Area Resources
Real Estate Services

Articles & Tips

Whatever your Real Estate needs or interest, we have information that can help! View Articles


For Advertisers

Current advertisers login here.

To learn more about advertising in this magazine, click here.


About This Magazine

Our Community

Articles

Homes & Land Magazine Directory


Order a Magazine

Information for Advertisers

Alarm Systems: One of the best investments a homeowner can make...
 
Alarm Systems: One of the best investments a homeowner can make...
by Kathy Scott

Few industries enjoy a high positive customer relationship like that of alarm companies. According to a study done by Dr. Simon Hakim, director of the Center for Competitive Government at Temple University, 94 percent of alarm owners are satisfied with their systems. With one in five homes currently electronically protected, that's a pretty amazing statistic.

According to FBI statistics, a home is burglarized every 14 seconds in the United States. Dr. Hakim's study reported that homes without security systems are nearly three times more likely to be broken into than homes with security systems.

Security Systems Save Lives and Property

Alarm systems are no longer simply a first line of protection for burglaries. Many safety related features have been added to the main alarm system like carbon monoxide (CO) detectors, smoke detectors and flood detectors for high risk areas. Even low temperature sensors are available which will alert the alarm company if the temperature within a home drops below a preset level. There is also more sophisticated equipment such as closed circuit television (CCTV), video cameras connected directly to a television or VCR, which provide additional surveillance.

Choosing the Right Alarm Company

With hundreds of companies and plans to cull through, choosing the right alarm company can often be overwhelming. Fortunately, the NBFAA offers help and a checklist on choosing the right system for you and your family. Not all alarm companies are created equal. When interviewing different companies, make sure to follow these simple steps:

  • Contact your insurance agent, the NBFAA or your local police department's crime prevention unit for names of security system companies.
  • Make sure the alarm company is licensed in the state.
  • Ask if pre-employment screening is done on all their employees such as background checks.
  • Ask the salesperson for a free security inspection and system recommendations.
  • Get a written estimate for the entire system including monthly monitoring fees.
  • Compare similar systems and pricing.
  • Determine if you will own the system or lease it from the alarm company.
  • Make sure your system will be monitored around the clock (24/7) by the central station.
  • Negotiate. Most alarm companies will negotiate on system add-ons, providing a free motion detector, additional keypads or even one month free monitoring service.
  • Make sure the system you choose is equipped with a battery for backup power.

Once your system is installed, choose a user-friendly code that everyone in the family can remember. Let your insurance agent know that your home is being monitored, and additional insurance discounts may be available. Check to see if your municipality requires homeowners with security alarms to register with the local police department.

Monitored alarm systems are one of the best investments a homeowner can make. Not only does it provide security but it can provide safety-nets.

DID YOU KNOW?

The NBFAA is a valuable resource for homeowners researching systems for their home. Many alarm companies are members of the organization, meaning they adhere to a National Code of Ethics and pledge to render alarm services at the highest level of quality possible. To learn more about home security systems, call the NBFAA Marketing Department at (301) 585-1855 for a FREE consumer brochure or visit the NBFAA on the Internet at www.alarm.org.



Local Agents