Today’s home security systems are more effective than ever at keeping your home safe from intruders. But beyond that primary function, the more advanced systems on the market have “super powers” you may not have expected. Here are four surprising ways that a home security system can help you with more than burglary prevention:
Super Skill #1: Keep You in the Loop
Today’s home security systems are designed to be interactive – meaning they’re built for two-way information exchange. Their primary job is to keep you aware of security-related issues at your home, such as a break-in or fire. But they don’t stop there. They can alert you to situations like a power outage or an open garage door. With unique user access codes, the system can track who comes and goes from the house. You can access this data from anywhere, and check what time the housekeeper arrived and how long she stayed. Or learn that your daughter came straight home from school, but her brother didn’t arrive until 4:55.
These “super” home security systems accommodate today’s mobile society. Although you are often away from home, you don’t like to be disconnected or uninformed. With interactive mobile apps, your home security system can keep you in the loop, no matter where you are. Your preferred contact info is programmed into your system’s control unit, along with a list of alerts you’d like to receive. Then, if a security sensor triggers at the house, or someone types in their arm or disarm code, you’ll receive a message, via text or email.
Super Skill #2: Video Monitoring
They say a picture’s worth a thousand words, so video must speak volumes. There’s no better way to stay connected to home and loved ones than watching live video. Today’s super home security systems can send you video footage directly from your house, using your home broadband connection. Video is an effective security measure, but it’s also especially beneficial to your peace of mind. Home alarm system customers often add video security cameras specifically to keep an eye on pets during the day, while they’re away at work. Parents who travel frequently or serve in the military appreciate the chance to actually see their spouse, kids and home, and know that all is well. Seeing is believing.
The most advanced security camera systems can record and store video clips as well as stream live video. These systems often use cameras that are motion-activated. If something moves at the home, the system will automatically generate a short video clip and store it on a customer portal. The user can access the portal from anywhere, to view the clips on demand. These clips are often used to apprehend and prosecute burglars. Security cameras are available for both indoor and outdoor use.
Super Skill #3: Protection from the Environment
Many home security systems include “environmental sensors,” which guard against threats from Mother Nature, such as smoke, heat, water (flood), or freezing temperatures that can lead to burst pipes. They can also detect carbon monoxide, a deadly gas produced by common appliances, such as gas or oil furnaces, refrigerators, clothes dryers, etc.
When these environmental issues arise, your interactive home security system will alert you, enabling you to take immediate action. Security system customers have saved thousands of dollars in home damage by receiving early warning for situations such as water leaks or burst pipes. Carbon monoxide sensors have saved countless lives.
Environmental protection is especially useful when you’re out of town. Now you can travel with peace of mind, knowing you’ll receive ample warning if something is amiss at home. You can even automate your door locks, enabling you to remotely unlock the door and let a friend in to address the issue while you’re gone.
Super Skill #4: Control Your Utilities
An advanced security system can integrate with other elements in your home, and function as the control center. You can use it to automate features such as your lights, heat, AC and even appliances. Wireless “Z-Wave” technology enables communication between devices, including your security system control unit. That control unit communicates interactively with you.
You can use your home security controls to turn lights on or off, or turn the thermostat up or down, anytime, from anywhere. You can also set a schedule for these utilities, to better coordinate with your work and home routines. For example, you can set the lights to come on at 5:20, just before you normally get home. Or you can program them to automatically react when your security sensors trigger.
As with environmental sensors, this “home automation” can really come in handy when you’re out of town. For example, you can program the lights to come on and off at varying times, making the house appear occupied (and thus, more secure). You can also optimize the use of heat and electricity, to save on your utility bills, but return the house to comfortable levels just prior to your arrival.
As amazing as this “super” home security system technology is, you’d be surprised to learn how easy it is to set up and operate. It’s also remarkably affordable. For more information, check out our website at www.frontpointsecurity.com.