Category Archives: Security Systems

What is Home Automation?

HomeHome automation has existed for decades, but in recent years, the technology has given rise to an industry all its own, and the term “home automation” has evolved into a popular buzzword. No longer do we discuss “home security” as a standalone concept. Now it’s all about “security and automation.” But what exactly is home automation, and what does it entail? If you haven’t yet jumped on the automation bandwagon, it may be time to upgrade your home.

The Basics

Home automation is all about putting your home to work for you. It encompasses all of the technologies, processes and devices used to control the various visual and environmental aspects of your home. From lighting to temperature, security systems to gate access. Home automation enables you to power your entire home with the click of a button, often from the comfort of your chair. Control music throughout your home, manage your intercom system, or lower your blinds from across the room. This isn’t science fiction; it’s real life.

How it Works

A home automation system can be either wired or wireless. Wireless systems have become exceedingly popular in recent years, and they operate using one of several popular wireless communications protocols (typically over radio frequencies). Popular protocols include X10, Z-Wave and Universal Powerline Bus (UPB). When building a home automation system, it’s important to ensure that all of your components use the same protocol. This will enable the most fluid communication and the most streamlined system.

Shopping for a Home Automation System

The great thing about a home automation system is that it can easily be customized to suit your needs. Choose only the components that will make your life easier, like intercoms, lighting controls or audio systems. If you’re looking for easy installation options, make sure to shop for wireless products, and stick with popular protocols like Z-Wave. This will afford you the greatest flexibility and freedom as you expand and enhance your system over time.

80-649-3N-XTIThe Home Security Connection

As previously mentioned (albeit briefly), home automation and home security go hand in hand. With a hybrid security/automation system like the GE Interlogix Simon XTI w/ Z-Wave & GSM, you can arm and disarm your alarm system while also managing lighting control devices, thermostats, door locks and HVAC systems (separate Z-Wave components are required). Any Z-Wave security system will function effortlessly  with the full range of Z-Wave home automation products, as Z-Wave is fully backward compatible.

Automate Your Home

If you’re interested in learning more about home automation, or if you want to start putting your home to work for you, check out the full selection of automation essentials at Home Security Store. You’ll find a wide array of home appliance and lighting controls, power supplies, intercoms, door chimes, and audio speakers, along with our full range of home security equipment. Bring your home into the 21st century, and experience the freedom of total automation.

Getting the Most from Your Home Security and Surveillance Systems

burglar alarm maintenanceA good security system can save your life, but are you really getting the maximum benefit from all those whistles and bells? When it comes to home security and surveillance systems, you really get out of them what you put into them, and even small tweaks can make a huge difference to your safety and security. It’s not always enough to configure your equipment according to the factory specifications, but you don’t need to be a professional alarm installer to optimize your system to its maximum potential.

Maximizing Your Security System

Even if you have a great system, you can always expand it for heightened security. There is always room for additional motion sensors, door and window contacts, window locks and even a reliable driveway alarm. Take a stroll through your home and look for the weak spots. Explore the perimeter, move through each room, and try to put yourself in the mindset of a burglar. Home Security Store carries a wide array of alarm accessories, so you can easily build on your existing system without replacing your control panel.

Second, it’s important to note that even a world-class security system isn’t going to protect you if you don’t actually use it. It’s remarkable to see just how many people will invest in a professional-grade system only to ignore it like a piece of old wall art. At the very least, you should arm your security system every time you leave the house and every night before going to bed. But of course the most effective security measure is to prevent a break-in from occurring in the first place, which leads us to our next point…

If nobody knows about your home security system, burglars may still try to break in. Your system is one of the few pieces of property that you do want to advertise to the outside world, so by all means, post plenty of signs and window decals. The mere knowledge of a home security system will send most burglars running in the other direction.

CAM-DVR-KIT1Maximizing Your Surveillance System

When it comes to your home surveillance, remember that more is always better. There is always more ground to cover, and more vulnerable spaces to record. Some burglars will enter through the front door, some will enter through the back, some will slip in through the kitchen, and others will look for weaknesses in the garage. You should always have at least one camera on the front porch, in order to serve as a deterrent. A dummy camera will also work. The important thing is that it’s clearly visible to everyone who passes by.

Next, take a look at the recording process. Do your cameras record to a remote DVR? A built-in DVR? A cloud network? If you have limited hard drive space, you may want to invest in a high-capacity DVR or NVR with greater storage space. Cloud recording—if you don’t already use it—is extremely beneficial, because it enables you to access your recorded footage from absolutely anywhere, even if your surveillance equipment is damaged or stolen by the thieves.

Lastly, does your system include mobile integration? In other words, can you view your cameras remotely from a smartphone or tablet? If not, you may want to upgrade your system for mobile readiness, or purchase a couple of IP (Internet Protocol) cameras to work alongside your existing system. This technology allows you to monitor your home much like a professional monitoring station, and even receive alerts in the event of a security breach.

If you’re looking to take your home security system or home surveillance to the next level, check out the wide selection of alarms, accessories, and camera equipment available at Home Security Store. We offer the best prices on the most advanced equipment, and most orders ship within one business day. Every home security system can be improved, and every improvement can make you just a little bit safer. Take command of your security today. 

Is Your Home Security System Missing Something?

alarm2So you think you have the ultimate home security system. Whether you installed it yourself or placed your fate in the hands of a professional installer, you may want to take a few moments to determine whether you actually have everything you need. Because even if your system is sufficient, you may be surprised by how easily you can take it to the next level with just one or two simple accessories. Make your way through the following checklist and see if you have everything you need to effectively keep the bad guys away.

Door/Window Contacts

Some systems rely exclusively on motion sensors to detect unlawful entry, but a complete system will also require door and window contacts on all major entry points. Maybe you already have contacts on your front door and window, and that’s a great start, but it’s important to note that many burglars enter through the back, so pick up some extra contacts if you need them. They’re small, inexpensive, and extremely reliable.

Motion Detector

Most alarm systems come equipped with at least one motion detector, but the problem is that many of these systems come equipped with only one. Unless you live in a third-story apartment, your home probably has more than one vulnerable entry point, so if you’re still relying on a single sensor, it’s time to upgrade your home security plan. If you have dogs and cats running around, you can even purchase pet-immune motion detectors.

Strobes

A good siren can send burglars running for the hills, but a quality strobe light adds a heightened level of intimidation that sirens alone seldom achieve. If you want to turn a great home security system into a powerhouse, consider upgrading your standard siren with a siren/strobe combo. It makes for a very powerful psychological deterrent, and it’s an easy modification to make.

Key Fobs and Mobile Control

If you have a wireless or hybrid home security system, you may be able to incorporate remote access, whether in the form of key fobs or mobile apps. A key fob will even work with many hardwired units (the trick is finding a model that’s compatible with your system), and it can make an invaluable tool to have in an emergency situation. Mobile integration allows you to unlock an array of automation features and even manage your system from halfway across the world. If your system doesn’t currently support mobile control, you may be able to optimize it by installing a wireless module inside your control panel. Consult your documentation.

Winn Dummy CamSurveillance

No home security system is complete without a few surveillance cameras. Not only do cameras make excellent deterrents, but they can help secure a conviction in the event that a burglary does occur. Even professional burglars are intimidated by security cameras, and quite often, these devices can be even more effective than alarms when it comes to warding off criminals.

Signs and Decals

One of the easiest home security modifications is also one of the most forgotten. You may have the most sophisticated alarm system under the sun, but if no one knows about it, you may still suffer the trauma of a break-in. Make sure to surround your home with yard signs and decals that alert the world to your top notch security system…even if you don’t actually have a security system .

Additional Burglary Deterrents

We’ve already touched upon the subject of deterrents, but cameras and yard signs are just the tip of the iceberg. There are a few additional deterrents that definitely deserve an honorable mention. For instance, motion-sensored lighting is highly effective for preventing nighttime burglaries, as are TV lights. Dog bark alarms can emulate the presence of a fierce guard dog, and if you can’t afford a full-fledged surveillance camera, you can still deter burglars with a quality dummy camera.

If your home security system could use a bit of an upgrade, check out the full selection of accessories and deterrents at Home Security Store. We offer the best prices you’ll find online, and our products are among the best in the industry. 

Are Hardwired Home Security Systems Still Worth It?

burglar alarm maintenanceWith the emergence of user-friendly, easily configured wireless alarms, you may understandably be wondering whether hardwired alarm systems are still worth the investment. After all, on the surface they seem to require much more labor and hassle for around the same price as a wireless unit. So have hardwired systems become the VHS tapes of the home security world? Not so fast. There are a lot of impressive wireless technologies out there, but don’t write off the wired classics just yet.

Is Your Home Wired for a Security System?

Wireless home security systems were initially developed to accommodate residences and businesses where hardwiring is difficult or even impossible. When purchasing a new home or commercial property, you should always determine if a structure is already wired for a security system. The previous owner(s) may have had a system in place, and that can make it much easier to install a new system. If you’re planning to install the system yourself, you’ll still have to contend with the programming process, but even that chore becomes easy with a bit of affordable, professional phone consulting.

Hacker-Proof Technology

The more primitive technologies have certain advantages. Landline phones aren’t subject to wireless signal loss, old school video games are impervious to viruses, and of course, hardwired alarm systems are incapable of being hacked and manipulated. Criminals may try to cut your wires and disable your system, but as long as you don’t leave any of the wiring exposed, you won’t be vulnerable to this type of interception. The big threat with wireless alarms is that tech-savvy criminals will surreptitiously gain access to your automation features and disarm your system without you even realizing it. You never have to worry about this problem when you have a hardwired model.

Multifaceted Expandability

Wireless systems tend to be fairly homogenous. For instance, if you purchase a control panel from Brand A, you typically cannot use peripherals from Brand B. But with hardwired systems, you can usually mix and match components from different brands in order to create a truly custom system. Quite often, you can even modify your control panel to communicate with wireless components, thereby turning your simple hardwired security system into a versatile hybrid mechanism that allows for the maximum protection all around.

60-511-02-95Less Need for Batteries

One of the downsides to owning a wireless home security system is that you constantly need to replace the battery in each component. With a hardwired system, you’ll need nothing more than a backup battery for your most essential accessories, and most of the time you’ll never need to worry about powering your alarm. The whole thing virtually takes care of itself.

Aesthetic Value

Hardwired home security systems are literally constructed into the home itself, which means fewer protruding parts. The keypads are built into the wall, the door and window contacts are typically invisible, and the control panel is discreetly tucked away. In other words, when you take the hardwired approach, it’s much easier to build a system that doesn’t clash or interfere with your home décor.

Thinking of Purchasing a Home Security System?

Don’t underestimate the power of a good hardwired security system. If you’re looking for virtually impenetrable security at an affordable price, check out the wide selection at Home Security Store. We offer a wide assortment of top-quality systems from top brands like DSC, Honeywell and GE Interlogix. Just take a look at the selection and secure your home like never before.

10 Startling Burglary Statistics

Dumb BurglarBurglary. The very word sends shivers through your spine, especially if you have ever been a victim. If you know what it’s like to experience those incomparable feelings of anger, shock, violation and vulnerability, then you probably already understand why a good home security plan is so essential. But if you have never experienced burglary firsthand, you—like so many people out there—might be complacent, assuming that it won’t likely happen to you. Consider these startling statistics, and see for yourself why this all-too-common scourge demands to be taken seriously.

Did You Know…

  • A home invasion occurs every 13 seconds in the United States, with more than 2.5 million burglaries occurring each year. Burglars commonly steal cash, jewelry, consumer electronics, firearms and power tools.
  • In 2010, just over one million burglaries were attributed to forcible entry. An additional 600,000 burglaries were attributed to unlawful entry (entry without the use of force). If you leave your doors or windows unlocked, you’re practically asking to be burglarized.
  • Also in 2010, a total of 127,251 reported robbery case involved a firearm, and more than 129,000 cases involved the use or threatened use of physical violence. This represents a small percentage of total invasions, but it’s all the more reason to ensure that you have a quality home security system with 24/7 monitoring.
  • The top 10 most burglarized cities are Cleveland Ohio, Toledo Ohio, Memphis Tennessee, Detroit Michigan, Cincinnati Ohio, Indianapolis Indiana, Oklahoma City Oklahoma, St. Louis Missouri, Tulsa Oklahoma and Oakland California. Of course, a burglary can happen anywhere, so even if you don’t live in Ohio (which, apparently, burglars are quite partial to), you should always be diligent about your home security.
  • burglarThe most common means of forced entry is to kick in the door. If you don’t already have one, install a security door made from solid wood, metal or fiberglass, and reinforce all other points of entry.
  • The majority of burglaries are committed by males under the age of 25. Some of these kids are motivated by drug addiction, others by financial hardship, and others by greed. Which leads us to our next point…
  • Eighty-five percent of break-ins are committed by non-professionals, and the majority of these individuals scope out the easy targets.
  • Only 13 percent of burglaries are ever solved, and only about 15 percent of stolen property is ever recovered. So hide the jewelry and lock down those consumer electronics.
  • What are some of the most common tools used to commit a home invasion?  Screwdrivers, pliers, pry bars and hammers. Not exactly the high-tech burglary swag that you typically see in heist films.
  • It’s not all bad news. Between 2001 and 2010, U.S. robberies decreased by 19.7 percent, and between 2009 and 2010 alone, burglaries decreased by 10.5 percent. The outlook may seem bleak, but the long-term statistics actually show a continuous positive trend).

Don’t Become a Victim

If all this burglary news sounds a bit frightening, take heart. You can significantly reduce your chances of becoming a victim by simply installing a quality home security system and exercising common sense. For instance, post plenty of signs warning potential intruders of your home security system (even if you don’t have one yet), don’t allow mail and deliveries to pile up while you’re away, and make sure to install additional security reinforcements like deadbolts and windows bars. Remember, the vast majority of burglars are amateurs in search of easy targets, and the more difficult you make it, the less likely you’ll come home to find a crime scene in your living room.

Do I Really Need a Home Security System? – The Homeowner’s Fallacy

Burglar Breaks GlassUnsecured homes are up to 300% more likely to be invaded than homes with a security system, and yet only about 16 percent of U.S. homes have any sort of security mechanism in place. A burglary occurs every 15 seconds in the U.S., so are you prepared? If you’re living with the assumption that it won’t happen to you, it’s time for a wakeup call. This isn’t about inciting fear or paranoia; it’s about emphasizing the extreme importance of having a security plan, and thereby reducing your risk of becoming a victim.

It Won’t Happen to Me

Ah, those famous last words. If you have never been the victim of a break-in, it’s so easy to become complacent and underestimate your own burglary risk. In the gambling world, there is a term known as the gambler’s fallacy. It is the false assumption—often made at the craps table or roulette wheel—that one can predict future outcomes based on past results. Quite similarly, the homeowner’s fallacy might be reasoned along the lines of, “This is a safe neighborhood; nothing bad ever happens here,” or “I’ve lived in this house for over 10 years and have never had a problem.” But just like the craps player who mistakenly thinks he’s “due for a 7,” you’re drawing a false conclusion based on an unscientific premise. With over 2,000,000 homes burglarized every year in this country, none of us can afford to take chances.

I Don’t Have Anything That Burglars Would Want

It’s important to understand that burglars target modest as well as affluent homes, trailers as well as mansions. Granted, some are after the big payoffs, but others are just looking for easy targets. The typical burglar is under age 25, and just skilled enough to force his way into an average home. Never assume that your home is undesirable merely due to a lack of opulence or an absence of high-value goods. Even if a burglar spends several days casing your home, he (or she) won’t really know what’s inside until he breaks in, and at that point, he’ll take whatever he can get.

I Have Good Burglary Deterrents

Perhaps you haven’t invested in a full-fledged home security system, but you have taken steps to make your home less desirable to burglars. Maybe you have a home security lawn sign, a Beware of Dog sign, a few motion-activated lights or even a fake security camera. These are excellent tools to have at your disposal, and they will certainly reduce your likelihood of being targeted for burglary, but there’s just one problem. Not all criminals are deterred by smoke and mirrors, and in the event that a crook does enter your home, you have no defenses on the inside. The majority of burglaries occur between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., and if an invasion happens while you’re away, you don’t want to be left with a defenseless home. It might as well be an all-you-can-eat burglary buffet.

iStock_000007366103XSmallI Can’t Afford a Home Security System

This is the #1 complaint among people who lack home security. Granted, if you contact an installer to arm your home, you may pay through the nose for parts, installation and possibly even a mandatory monitoring contract. That’s why many homeowners are now opting for the DIY option. Today’s wireless home security systems are remarkably easy to install, and more affordable than ever before. For one low cost (often less than $200), you can install your system in very little time and experience the immediate benefits. No high-pressure sales, no restrictive contracts, no overpriced components. For the homeowner on a budget, DIY is the way to go.

My Security System is Already Pretty Good

If you already have a home security system in place already, congratulations. You’re well ahead of 84% of Americans. At this point, your ideal strategy would be to enhance your system with some new accessories or burglary deterrents. If your system has expansion capabilities, you can always take things to the next level with additional motion sensors, glass break detectors, door/window contacts, or even a few surveillance cameras. Home security is always a work in progress, because it’s all about remaining one step ahead of the bad guys. So do whatever it takes to give yourself the total advantage today.

 

Surveillance Cameras for Everyone?

Surveillance CamerasIncreasingly, neighborhood groups are realizing that 24/7 public video surveillance is one of the best ways to promote the safety and security of local residents. With easy installation, more and more homeowners are also turning to DIY CCTV cameras and other surveillance equipment in order to record and remotely monitor what is going on in and around their homes. Some are even allowing local law enforcement agencies access to private outdoor camera systems in order to help solve crimes. As these trends continue, we wonder if there will ever be a time where surveillance cameras become standard safety equipment common to every home much like smoke alarms or carbon monoxide detectors.

Cities Under Surveillance

Throughout the United States, city governments and law enforcement agencies are opting to install public video surveillance cameras in order to keep a close watch on their jurisdictions. With 3,000 cameras in action, Manhattan is already under watch. London is also under constant surveillance as thousands of public cameras are stationed throughout that city. While such an enormous presence of security cameras in public may make some individual citizens uncomfortable, there is no denying that these security devices also serve to make criminals even more uncomfortable.

Burglars Aren’t the Only Concern

Thieves aren’t a homeowner’s only threat, nor are they the sole reason for groups coming together in order to place entire neighborhoods under surveillance. Daily, our newspapers are filled with reports of sexual and physical assaults, kidnappings and terrorist threats. These crimes are of enormous concern to everyone and are what drives residents in support of public security cameras to advocate so tirelessly for more surveillance.

Residents of Brooklyn neighborhoods like Flatbush, Borough Park and Midwood have deep concerns about possible threats to their safety. Following the kidnapping and murder of a child in Borough Park (the suspect was eventually caught on camera), neighbors have banded together to install outdoor surveillance cameras throughout these areas. Doing so is no small feat either, as more than 300 public video cameras are being installed throughout those specific areas.

Standard Security Equipment

In some states, working smoke detectors are a requirement in every private household. Few would argue against these devices being a necessity as they provide early warnings to residents as to the possibility of fire and such technology is intended to allow enough time for individuals to escape and call for help. In areas where smoke detection devices are required by law, few have argued against them as many lives have been saved as a result of their presence.

Should we take a similar approach to home security? Imagine if every homeowner were required to install, at minimum, a burglar alarm and a surveillance system. Would people take home security more seriously? Or would such a requirement be going too far?

Cameras For Everyone?

Requirements and advocacy aside, we are of the strong belief that no homeowner should ever choose to be without a good alarm and video surveillance system. Indoor and outdoor cameras, as well as hidden cameras all help strengthen security layers and make it possible for homeowners to maintain better control over their own security. DIY home security manufacturers have gone to great lengths to make it easy and affordable for average residents to benefit from levels of protection that were once only achievable by the very well-to-do. With do-it-yourself DVR systems offering multi-channel and remote surveillance, homeowners have flocked to this technology for good reason. Since top-quality DIY video surveillance cameras are available to the public and since we know that they are such good crime deterrents, why shouldn’t everyone have one or more of these affordable devices in their home?

Beyond Home Surveillance

Crime is everywhere, so it stands to reason that everyone should join in fighting it. We believe this and the fact that you’re reading this blog suggests that you do, too. How far should we take the fight, though? Beyond placing surveillance cameras in every home, should private outdoor cameras be accessible to law enforcement agencies? Should neighborhoods continue to band together in a push to install surveillance cameras throughout entire neighborhoods?

This subject triggers a good mix of opinions including those with valid privacy concerns and who oppose moving beyond home surveillance to also include public neighborhood surveillance projects. What are some good security alternatives to public surveillance cameras? And how might we better protect our city streets against crime? All ideas are welcome and respected, so…

Let’s Talk About It

Do you live in a neighborhood where a high level of intentional security exists? Are you interested in forming a neighborhood group in order to focus on public surveillance efforts? Or are you opposed to widespread video surveillance? Please take a moment to share your thoughts, questions, concerns and experiences in the comments section below.

Bundle Your Home Security for Optimal Savings and Protection

DSCQP63-BUNDLEHave you ever tried to build strong security systems for multiple households? Or have you ever wanted to, but felt deterred after adding up the cost of doing so? If you have more than one household to secure or even if you have a large home that requires additional equipment to complete your security system, you may want to consider a bundled security purchase.

DIY home security is, by far, your best option for saving money and time when securing more than one building, but the a la carte purchase of each device and system can still be quite pricey. Bundling your home security, on the other hand, can help you save a nice sum while affording you the protection you deserve.

What Is Bundling?

Most of you reading this are already familiar with the concept of bundling services in order to cut costs. In fact, you’re probably already taking advantage of bundled packages with things like your cable company or your phone company. For those of you new to the idea, bundling is simply buying combined products or services at a discounted bulk price in order to save money. Companies create specially priced bundled packages in order to entice customers to purchase more than one item or service.

Who Needs Bundled Home Security?

Individuals who own multiple properties, those who wish to help secure a separate loved one’s home in addition to their own and those with larger than average houses may all benefit from bundled security packages. Even those who plan to layer DIY home security by purchasing and installing one device at a time can save money with bundled packages. For example, instead of purchasing a wireless burglar alarm, a separate outdoor siren, a wireless keyfob, PIR motion detectors, security warning signage, and door and window sensors separately, a customer can purchase the DSC Power Series 1616 Wireless Bundle Pack for less and install all of these home security devices at once.

If you or someone you know is interested in bundling home security, we strongly encourage you to visit our main store or call our customer service line now.

Is It Time To Expand Your Home Security System?

home security for saleI’m going to go out on a limb here and say, yes, it is time to expand your home security system. How can I say this with any measure of certainty? Well, for starters, most people don’t have enough and can benefit from additional security. I mean, who are we kidding, here? Burglaries, robberies and home invasions are reported each and every day in America and criminals don’t seem to discriminate when it comes to the victims of these crimes. To state this another way, no one– no matter who you are or what kind of neighborhood you live in– is exempt from a break-in.

Further, of those homeowners who purchase an alarm system, few go any further in protecting their home against intruders. Expanding a system and taking steps to layer security with other devices and strategies significantly decreases the likelihood of a break-in, but how many people actually make the effort to go this extra mile for better home security? The very fact that you’re here today and ready to entertain this question is a good step in the right direction. Continue reading for more information expanding your existing system and which devices are a must-have in order to make your security as tight as possible.

DIY Expandable Systems

Expanding your system involves installing additional zones to your existing alarm unit. This means that you need to first have a system capable of such action. To get a better idea of how this works, check out the GE Interlogix Wireless Security – Concord Kit with 16 wireless zones. Known as a hybrid system, this particular kit can accommodate both hardwired and wireless add-ons, such as additional sensors (for doors, windows, freeze alarms, smoke detectors, etc.), additional keypads and additional motion detectors. For an example of a purely hardwired expandable system, take a look at the Ademco 8 Zone Expander. A variety of other expandable systems are also featured in our main store, but these two will give you a good idea of how an expansion works and what kind of system is needed to make it happen.

Should you find that your system is out of date or, for whatever reason, cannot be expanded any further, then we encourage you to consider replacing that system with one of our affordable DIY options that will not restrict you in such a way.

Why Expand a Home Security System?

If any door or window in your home is not protected by a contact connected to your alarm system, your home is vulnerable to a break-in. As is sometimes the case, existing systems were established before an additional room was added to a home and a zone for that room was never created.

Expanding a system is also the best way to include additional alarms, such as those that provide environmental alerts, driveway protection, glass break protection and so on. While you can add each of these items through DIY home security efforts, in order to control them from your central unit, your system will need to be expanded.

ELK-M1GSYS3_1_Other Ways to Maximize Security

In addition to literally expanding your alarm system, homeowners are advised to always target ways to expand home security, overall. Some of these methods include:

 

  • Adding motion-activated security lighting all around a home’s perimeter (especially around doors and windows)
  • Installing surveillance cameras throughout the home and around the home’s perimeter
  • Monitoring a home’s security system via remote monitoring devices (by smartphone or computer) and a 24/7 live home security alarm monitoring service like Alarm Relay (see our homepage for details)

Of course, it doesn’t hurt (and in fact it helps) to also use a variety of deterrents such as yard signs, window decals and other warnings that tell a would-be burglar that you mean business. If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a thousand times…burglars are lazy criminals who don’t want to work too hard at what they do. Making your home look as secure as possible tells a burglar that he’ll have to place considerable effort behind a break-in…and that he’s seriously risking capture if he does.

Home Security Store Is Here For You

DIY home security truly is the best way to save money while optimizing the safety of your family and your home. Doing it yourself, however, does not mean that you are completely alone. All of your purchases from our main store come with clear and concise directions, and should you need further technical assistance, we are always more than willing to help if you give us a call.

Any Questions?

Do you have questions about expanding your alarm system? Do you have advice to share with other readers that may help them in expanding a system or installing additional equipment in order to increase home security? If we missed anything important or if you have questions or comments, the floor is now officially yours.

The 25 Most Burglarized U.S. Cities

top cities for burglary

The FBI maintains comprehensive crime data for major cities across the U.S.

What are the odds that you’ll become the victim of a burglary? It depends largely on where you live. Each year, the Federal Bureau of Investigation collects and organizes data on a variety of criminal behaviors (violent crime, murder, assault, property crime…) in major cities across the nation. Burglary is one of the crimes assessed by the bureau, and it may surprise you to learn where some of our most popular cities rank on the spectrum.

The Top 10 Cities

The data below is from 2012, the most recent year for which we have comprehensive statistics. You can view the complete list at the FBI website, along with detailed numeric breakdowns. The FBI measures crime rates as rations per every 100,000 citizens in the population, since cities can vary dramatically in population size.

  1. Cleveland, Ohio (2,473.5 per 100,000)
  2. Toledo, Ohio (2,352.6 per 100,000)
  3. Memphis, Tennessee (1,912.7 per 100,000)
  4. Detroit, Michigan (1,907.5 per 100,000)
  5. Cincinnati, Ohio (1,851.1 per 100,000)
  6. Indianapolis, Indiana (1,761.6 per 100,000)
  7. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (1,654.4 per 100,000)
  8. St. Louis, Missouri (1,564.6 per 100,000)
  9. Tulsa, Oklahoma (1,563.0 per 100,000)
  10. Oakland, California (1,544.0 per 100,000)
  11. Buffalo, New York (1,515.0 per 100,000)
  12. Kansas City, Missouri (1,500.6 per 100,000)
  13. Stockton, California (1,476.4 per 100,000)
  14. Atlanta, Georgia (1,416.8 per 100,000)
  15. Bakersfield, California (1,404.0 per 100,000)
  16. Dallas, Texas (1,296.0 per 100,000)
  17. Baltimore, Maryland (1,242.3 per 100,000)
  18. Minneapolis, Minnesota (1,225.4 per 100,000)
  19. Houston, Texas (1,223.1 per 100,000)
  20. Greensboro, North Carolina (1,211.4 per 100,000)
  21. Albuquerque, New Mexico (1,205.9 per 100,000)
  22. Phoenix, Arizona (1,205.8 per 100,000)
  23. Fresno, California (1,166.4 per 100,000)
  24. Milwaukee, Wisconsin (1,164.0 per 100,000)
  25. San Antonio, Texas (1,135.3 per 100,000)

Some Interesting Trends

380811_4257

Cleveland, Ohio ranks #1 in the nation for burglaries.

  • Ohio holds 3 of the top 5 spots (including the number 1 and number 2 spots) for burglaries, with Cleveland, Toledo and Cincinnati.
  • Among the top 50 cities for burglary, California is ranked 6 times: Oakland (#10), Stockton (#13), Bakersfield (#15), Fresno (#23), Sacramento (#38) and Long Beach (#47).
  • Only Texas has more cities than California in the top 50, with 7 in total: Dallas (#16), Houston (#19), San Antonio (#25), Fort Worth (#27), Arlington (#39), Austin (#42) and Corpus Christi (#50).
  • New York City, which was once a bastion of criminal activity, actually ranks at #74 for burglaries in major cities. In cities with a population of 250,000 or more, the Big Apple ranks at the very bottom.

America’s Safest Cities

Now that we’ve discussed some of the nation’s most crime-ridden cities, what are some of the safest places to call home? Despite all the doom and gloom, America is actually becoming much safer overall. For instance, robbery rates dropped 38% between 1992 and 2011, according to the FBI. Last year, Business Insider compiled a list of America’s safest cities, also based on FBI crime data. Here are the top 10:

  1. Irvine, California (robbery rate 86% below average)
  2. Fremont, California (robbery rate 47% below average)
  3. Plano, Texas (robbery rate 65% below average)
  4. Madison, Wisconsin (robbery rate 11% below average)
  5. Irving, Texas (robbery rate 47% below average)
  6. Scottsdale, Arizona (robbery rate 55% below average)
  7. Boise, Idaho (robbery rate 73% below average)
  8. Henderson, Nevada (robbery rate 43% below average)
  9. Chandler, Arizona (robbery rate 46% below average)
  10. Chula Vista, California (robbery rate 20% below average)

Protect Your Home

Your geographic location may impact your likelihood of being robbed, but a burglary can happen anywhere, and it’s important to protect yourself and your family. If you don’t already have an alarm installed in your home, it may be time to invest in a quality home security system. By taking simple steps to secure your family and belongings, you can prevent the unthinkable from happening, whether you reside within the low-crime borders of Irvine, California, or within the burglary-prone reaches of Cleveland, Ohio.