How to select a home security company?


Old 09-27-15, 11:01 PM
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How to select a home security company?

Hi, I am new here. I recently moved to Toronto. I own a small condo there. I have decided to burglar proof my apartment. I have been searching a lot to find a good service provider. I found a site where there are lot of reviews about different companies. My question is that how should i select one from these listed companies? What all criteria should should i check?

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Old 09-28-15, 12:05 AM
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Do not think of an alarm system as 'burglar-proofing."

The only thing an alarm system is designed to do is get a perpetrator out a bit faster and notify someone -- after the fact.

Being in an apartment building, you must be mindful of disturbing others in case of an alarm.

I would bet that most monitoring companies are about the same [for residential].

That being said, I would select a company with no contract.
Old 09-28-15, 08:34 PM
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If I had to pick one attribute as a guide to pick an alarm company I'd say the length of time they have been in business. Of course another important guide is by personal recommendation. Check with some friend or relatives to see who they use and what their opinion is. All of my business comes by word of mouth after 45 years in the trade.

As far as contracts are concerned, I'm afraid that most of the viable companies who are in business to be successful are going to ask you to sign some sort of agreement. Mostly you'll find a one year agreement is the minimum but there are some companies that will allow you less than that. You have to understand that the contracts are a sign of how much an alarm company is worth. Those with the most contracts are the most successful as it reflects the value of their assets to banks for loans and for investors. If you compare the value of two companies with the same amount of accounts, those companies with no contracts are not worth as much as those with contracts. So it is beneficial for companies to use contracts to contribute to their viability and worth in the industry.

Try to avoid the large national companies and look more towards local small to medium size companies that make up the bulk of alarm businesses. You'll usually get more personal service from them than from the larger companies. You'll find that the national companies are in what I call the "recurring revenue business" not the security business. They're more interested in convincing you that you only need a couple of doors and a motion detector that can be installed in a few hours then a complete system. This is so that they can install more systems per day and collect the monthly fee from two or three installations a day, rather than installing a good complete system that may (depending upon the size of your home) take a few days to install and only collect one monthly fee. They'll even spend extra time convincing you that you don't really need a complete system and inflate the prices of extras doors and windows to discourage you from upgrading from their basic "package", just so they can complete their daily quota of installations. And, you'll likely never see the same person who installed your system again. Small to medium companies give you more customized installation and personalized service. Larger companies sell you a package and you become just another number....... and they WiLL require a contract usually more than a year and will not let you out of it for ANY reason.

Hope this helps.

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