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How to Choose a DIY Home Security System

Congratulations on deciding to install a do-it-yourself home security system. As you have come to realize that there is no need to pay additional money to third-party security vendors and installers, you have joined the ranks of homeowners who understand how to cut costs without compromising quality or security. The next step in your process, actually choosing which system to install, can seem rather intimidating at first, but with time and a few helpful tips you will soon be on your way to  selecting the precise do-it-yourself system needed to help keep your home as secure as possible.

Assess Your Needs

Prior to purchasing a system, you must know exactly what you need in terms of security. Take a look at our home security checklist to determine areas where security is lacking and work on fortifying these most vulnerable areas first. Next, take the time to count all of the doors and windows in your home that lead to outdoor access. Realize that each of these needs to be secured with alarm sensors. It is best not to skimp on the number of door and window contacts that are needed, so select your system with this in mind, but realize that you may also need to purchase additional contacts to be certain that all entry points are secured.

Wireless vs. Hardwired

After reviewing our home security checklist and identifying the number of doors and windows you will need to secure, you are ready to begin evaluating home security devices. One of the first things that you will notice is that devices are offered in hardwired and wireless types. While there is no real difference between the two in terms of performance and reliability, the decision on which type to select will likely boil down to your personal preference as well as your home’s structure.

One exception to making a decision based upon preference, however, is if you intend to secure a larger than average home. In this case, you will do well to explore hardwired options in order to be certain that all sensors are able to communicate well with the alarm’s main unit (which may be inhibited if they are too far away from  one another). On the other hand, if you live in a home where drilling holes into your house’s walls is not an option (or is one that you would rather avoid), a wireless system is definitely in order.

Survey Others

Now that you have a general idea of what type of system you will need, you may want to delve deeper into your research by asking friends and family members about their home security systems. If possible, look for people who have installed their own home security system and ask for recommendations and tips on doing so. As you turn to others for information, make note of the types of problems, if any, people report and begin to research ways to avoid these issues. For example, some people may report frequent false alarms. While this may be due to faulty equipment, it is far more likely that false alarms are due to human error, pet interference or some other user-related circumstance.

Look For Answers

During this selection phase, research remedies for whatever security device issues that you become aware of or contact a member of our technical support team to discuss how such problems can be avoided with a DIY home security system. This is also a good time to begin reading user reviews on consumer forums. As well, it is a good time to begin watching our video tutorials for clues about installing a system, the tools you will need and troubleshooting tips.

Think Big

Assuming that you are starting your DIY home security preparations with an alarm system, it is also a good idea to think about which types of devices you may want to add later. For instance, some people choose to install security cameras or outdoor lighting after installing an alarm system. If you intend on doing so, be sure to purchase a system that will make installing additional components possible. Thinking about expanding your system from day one and making the right preparations, makes it easier to actually do so when you are ready.

Be Serious

While a perusal of our main site proves that you have multiple, very high-quality security devices to choose from, when it comes to purchasing a DIY home security system, the most important point that we want you to be aware of is that this is an important and serious decision. When selecting a system, do not assume that you can afford to cut corners in certain areas because of something like living in a nice neighborhood or because someone in your household is always at home.

Anyone at Any Time Can Be Targeted for Burglary

As someone who often works from home and lives in a nice middle-class neighborhood, the last thing that I ever expected was for my then teenage son to walk in on burglars in our home while I made a rare visit to a friend’s house in the middle of the afternoon. Yet, this is exactly what happened nearly a decade ago. Not only did I lose valuables (some of which were irreplaceable because of what they meant to me), but I could have also lost my young son who narrowly escaped from the burglars who turned on him as he entered our home.

A Valuable Lesson Learned

That day, I learned that living on a quiet cul-de-sac in a nice neighborhood may have actually been what caused our home to become a target. These bold thieves were looking for holiday treasures and this type will often purposely target homes where they are likely to score big ticket items, such as jewelry, expensive electronics, tools and so forth. So, when choosing a DIY home security system, begin the process by thinking of your home as the exact type that burglars are looking for. From that point forward, make it your mission to do everything in your power to keep criminals outside and your family safe while inside. Beginning and ending your selection process with this in mind will help you in choosing the most secure system for your home.