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Types of Home Security Systems

Have you been a victim of burglary? The FBI's crime log determines that a burglary takes place once every 15.4 seconds. That's why so many people are looking into home security systems, and you might be smart to do the same.

Even if you belong to the friendly neighborhood watch, this does not ensure that your home is protected. Keeping a gun at home is another option that many people choose, but this can result in unforeseen tragedies. Besides, you may end up having your gun used against you by intruders. Your home may be better-protected if you live with a large family and the home is rarely left unoccupied, but many burglaries occur with people in the house too. Choosing a home security system is a reliable and safe way of protecting your home.

Indoor vs. Outdoor Alarm Systems

Home security systems are broadly divided into indoor systems and outdoor ones.

Most standard indoor home security systems are installed at your doors and windows. They work by checking for two things: opening of doors and windows, or signs of movement inside the house. The system detects the latter with the help of motion sensors. To use this type of system, you need to enter a special code into your control set, which allows you to set your alarm when you need to, and also to turn it off before you enter the house.

The outdoor home security system also monitors your grounds. Most outdoor systems are programmed to turn on flood lights at the slightest hint of movement on your grounds. In earlier models, there was the possibility of your cat setting off the alarm as she took a stroll around the compound, but newer models are programmed to check the size and weight of the intruder before setting off the alarm, and consequently, there are fewer false alarms.

Outdoor alarms also include driveway alarms to ensure the safety of your car.

Electric or Battery Powered?

Most systems operate on either electricity or batteries. While the latter are more reliable in case of a power shutdown, you also have to check the battery supply routinely.

Add Video Surveillance?

Some of the more expensive and sophisticated systems offer you the added security of close-circuit television (CCTV) and wireless video surveillance (VSS). These generally consist of several transmitters and one receiver, which is connected to your TV or VCR. The advantage with such wireless systems is that the only cable you use is the one that connects your receiver to your TV. Wired systems are more reliable than wireless ones.

Security for Apartment Buildings

If you live in an apartment building, you can also opt for special systems designed to be installed in multi-apartment premises. Usually, these are installed by the building supervisor, and include giving out access card keys to residents, which are used with key pads installed at the entrance to apartments, floors, and common areas like gyms and swimming pools.

Open areas should also be lighted during the nights, so that they may be easily monitored by security guards. If your apartment complex doesn't have such security facilities, speak to your building supervisor today!

Don't Forget the Risk Assessment

An essential component of choosing the right home security system is to carry out a program of risk assessment. Many home security product providers offer you free risk assessment modules. Since there are many types of home security systems, risk assessment is essential to allow you to decide what kind of system will optimize your individual needs.

Common-sense Stuff

Choose a security system that also has an in-built smoke detector, so that you also protect your home from fires. Remember that installing a home security system only complements your own, more conventional means of protection. That is, don't depend on your system to do all the work!

Make sure you have sturdy doors and windows which you can bolt and lock. Place grills on your windows so that even if the glass is broken, they do not allow access for anyone to enter the house. There is no replacement for the good old fashioned porch light. Make sure you have adequate lighting around the house and at strategic locations in your grounds, since nothing deters a would-be burglar than a bright light. Whatever system you choose, make sure that signs of its installation are clearly visible. Having ensured all this, turn on your alarm and enjoy a night out with absolute peace of mind!

2. What to Know Before You Buy a Burglar Alarm

3. Hard Wired vs. Wireless Home Security Systems

4. Do-It-Yourself vs. Hiring a Pro

5. How Much do Home Security Systems Cost?

Article Reviewed: July 25, 2012
Copyright © 2014 Healthy Magazine

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