It can take us a lifetime and a lot of investment to get the perfect home put together, so being a victim of a burglary can be a devasting experience for any proud house owner. There are of course many high-tech security systems of out there and if you live in a particularly well off area or area targeted by local crime it's worth every penny to install one of these bad boys. What happens, though if you can't afford a state-of-the-art security system but want to install something in the interim, or perhaps you rent but can't get your landlord to fork out the cost of one those expensive systems but would like to protect your property? Well, the good news is there are plenty of security devices out there that won't break your budget!
There are advantages and disadvantages of having one of these home security systems so it's worth knowing the following before you decide to purchase one.
You will have to do a bit of DIY and install it yourself, if you don't feel confident then perhaps ask someone who is confident enough to help you or has installed one themselves. Many of the DIY versions though are very simple and easy to set up as the mounting is simple, they are wireless and only need a power outlet or batteries. A great advantage for those who rent and may want to take the system with them when you move house.
One-Off Costs vs Ongoing Costs
Home installation security systems are mostly modular and can cost anything from £200 to over a £1,000 pounds, depending on what brand and what components you need like the number of cameras (colour or black and white), smoke detectors, door sensors and additional mobile App functionality. Remember, this could work out very little cost wise compared to the contractual monthly costs you get with a full system.
With a DIY security system, you don't have the added benefit of professional monitoring as you would with the more sophisticated security systems which are usually connected to your local police station or official security company. DIY systems are designed to connect to your mobile, so it's your responsibility alone to keep an eye and usually keep your footage archived and up-to-date.
Considerations Before Buying
- Ensure you buy a security system which has a hub that can connect to the internet so all the individual parts of your setup work together properly and so you can access it from anywhere - your bed or when on holiday even!
- Get a system which has a smartphone mobile app so you can monitor your home remotely.
- Make sure it includes Door & Window sensors so it can detect when they are left open.
- Consider paying more for movement sensors so it can detect when something moves inside your home but be aware this might drive you crazy if you own a pet.
- It's worth paying for a central camera which is connected to the internet so you can see what's happening live in your home, this is perfect for those who also want to keep an eye on their nanny or mischievous pets!
- Find out how loud the alarm is as a high-decibel alarm will be more of a deterrent to thieves and also help alert your neighbours.
- It's always worth splashing out on a few extra features to make your security system even better a good system even better.
- If you have smart home gear set up, try purchasing a security unit which is compatible with it and will work in sync with your other devices around the home.
- Check what the battery life is like on your system if it works without a main power supply as you don't want your cameras dying on your every few months.
Some Home Security Systems Out There
We loved Sentri as a beginner home system, more attractive than some of the other more sober models out there and looks like an iPad and operates as wall or desk clock when not in use.
Blink system is tiny and discreet and is a very popular device online but is battery powered only (2 years apparently using AA batteries) so as powerful as your smoke alarm and may not be sufficient for all your monitoring needs. Good news is that is compatible with Amazon Echo, Echo Dot and Amazon Tap!
The Yale EF Series looks like it means business. You can add up to over 30 accessories to this system so you can tailor it to your home. The main system initially comes with basic sensors but no cameras but it is easy to install, pre-linked and is wireless ready.
The Fortress Security Store lives up to its name with the level of sophistication and accessories behind it. It doesn't look particularly sophisticated but it ticks all the boxes when it comes to motion sensors, loud decibel siren and is the closest you'll get to a professional security system, however this one is not wifi enabled and is connected to your phone only!