Many a family has passed up buying a home security system because of money – or the lack thereof. Today’s technology is state of the art, and plenty of consumers think that it’s unaffordable. Since the economy is still in recovery, a security system purchase might seem unwise.
People assume it would put undue strain on their bank accounts. However, home security might actually benefit your finances. Home security systems act as a shield between your family and intruders and guard your possessions and home. Systems are already fairly affordable, but by protecting your finances from worst-case scenarios, your bank account has another shield of defense.
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 2011, nearly 2 million break-ins occur each year, each one averaging $2,185 in losses. Home security systems aren’t unreasonably expensive. Some consumers are surprised to learn that one can have their home electronically monitored for little more than a dollar per day. At that rate, a family can secure its home for less than $600 each year. Just one break-in could cost your household the same amount of money it would cost to secure it for more than three years. You weigh the pros and cons: Would you rather spend $2,000 on replacing your possessions after a burglary or on peace of mind for the next three years?
Flood and Fire
Theft isn’t the only threat to home security. Household alarm systems also guard dwellings from flood and fire. These two disasters can result in costly damage to both to your possessions and the structure of your home. Home fires are quite common. According to the National Fire Protection Association, home fires caused roughly $228 in damage per second from 2006-2010. Security systems can reduce damage by alerting homeowners earlier when a blaze breaks out.
Flooding can be even worse, particularly because standard home insurance typically doesn’t cover flood damage from rising waters. You need a separate policy for that. Old flood maps are being updated to reflect current risk levels, and homeowners need to make sure they are properly protected. But rising waters aren’t the only potential flood issue. Burst pipes can also cause trouble. Many security systems have sensors that again can alert homeowners to the problem early and minimize the damage.
Replacing damaged or lost goods and rebuilding part of a home’s structure because of fire or flood issues is awfully expensive. Even if the damage is covered by homeowners insurance, you’ll have to pay deductibles. Again, weigh your deductible against the cost of preventing damage in the first place with a top security system.
Insurance providers also sometimes reward security system owners with additional discounts. You might be able to decrease your premium by 10% just for installing an alarm system. Some security companies offer basic equipment for free. You might receive motion sensors, entryway detection points, an electronic keypad and installation at no charge. Instead of you futzing with complicated manuals, a professional will install your system for you. During installation, ask for a tutorial on how to use your system. Learn how to arm and disarm your alarm and exactly which dangers are monitored. You might need to purchase additional sensors for fire, carbon monoxide, flooding and freezing. Considering the potential for these factors to cause havoc in your household, many consider the extra investment worthwhile.
For consumers, particularly parents, the assurance that comes with a home security system is invaluable. If you’re considering a purchase, get in touch with a security company and your insurer and have an agent crunch the numbers. They can add up in your favor.
About the Author: Shannon Casey is a writer for HomeInsurance.com. With a background in comedy and playwriting, Shannon branched into blogging and marketing in 2011, writing for several national brands. She graduated from Hampshire College in Amherst, MA, in 2010 with a B.A. in Liberal Arts.