Home Security 101 – Designing Your System

How do you design the right system to begin with? There are plenty of options out there, and it can be confusing. There’s really no mystery to good alarm system design – and with today’s technology, a little basic information and some common sense is all you need.

What you Need to Know – the Top Ten

  1. Wireless cellular monitoring. Cellular monitoring is the core of every safe and reliable alarm system. With features such as “Smash and Grab” protection it provides you with the finest in protection.
  2. Wireless sensors. They work, and they are the easiest (and most convenient) way to protect your home or business. You can add to your system at any time, move them or even move the entire system. Plus, they allow pre-programmed systems to be self-installed, which will eventually be the norm.
  3. Start with your exterior doors. Almost 60% of burglaries happen through the front or back door, and when you add in the garage, the total is two thirds of every forced entry. Clearly this is the place to start your design – and don’t forget your basement, or that door from the garage into your house. Having good locks (and using them!) should go without saying.
  4. Windows – basement and first floor. First floor windows are next in line behind the front door as points of illegal entry: 23% of burglaries happen through a first floor window. What’s even scarier is how many of these windows are not even locked! Start with sensors at the back and side windows of your house first, as they are generally the most vulnerable, with less illumination and less visibility from the street. Think about the windows you consider the most easily accessible and the most hidden – that’s how the bad guys think!
  5. Decide how you are using the system. Here’s where we need to remember the “Stay” and “Away” modes on your system. The Burns & McBride Smart, Safe Home system allows both ways to arm the system, and the way you are going to use the system will determine not only which mode to use, but also which sensors you select
  6. Work up from the basement. If you don’t have a basement, then it’s simple. But if you do, remember that those doors and windows are also vulnerable. Finished basements may be treated just like the first floor, while unfinished basements may allow a simpler solution – like a motion sensor. When you get to the second floor, you can usually relax – the incidence of entry above the ground floor is extremely low, unless there is a low roof, or stairway that provides easy access.
  7. Think about your pets. Pets are an important alarm system design consideration. Your large dog with the run of the house during the day probably means that you won’t arm your motion sensors, so you may need more window sensors or glass break sensors. Also, pets are a really good reason to make sure you have monitored smoke/heat sensors. My dogs are clever, but they do not dial 911 very well!
  8. Speaking of fire monitoring… we strongly recommend at least one monitored smoke/heat sensor with every system. They cost about $100, and what’s more important – there is be no additional monthly charge for fire monitoring. Also, be sure to get the maximum discount from your insurance company for a monitored system – even more savings with fire monitoring.
  9. Environmental sensors. We just wrote about the nasty lesson a friend learned from the flood in their office – so make sure you add those sensors for carbon monoxide, water/flood, and low temperature. Again, there is be no additional monthly charge for adding these.
  10. Thermostat – Our Smart Thermostat helps to pay for your monthly monitoring fee with energy savings. This is a very important part of any interactive home management system.

All of these design components will  work best when you have a system with interactive monitoring capabilities. With interactive features, you not only have the confidence that comes with professional monitoring, but also the added benefits of remote arming, text and email notifications from your system, and even special free apps for your iPhone, BlackBerry, or Droid device. Burns & McBride Home Comfort, a  leader in interactive, wireless security systems, specializes in these interactive services.

For more information on this exciting product call us at 302-656-5110 or visit our website at http://www.burnsandmcbride. Finally you might want to follow our blog at http://www.burnsandmcbrideblog.com. Just as Smartphones are adding applications and changing every day so to with the technology behind our Smart, Safe home system. Our blog explains some of the constantly changing things that are happening in the industry and we hope that you find it informative.

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Filed under Energy Management, Home Safety, Home Security, Home Security 101, Uncategorized

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