When it comes to monitoring your home, there are tons of options to choose from. There are wired vs. wireless devices, and even hundreds of plans and services to compare. There is also the option to forgo professional companies altogether and install your own DIY home security system. If you’re someone who likes to take matters into your own hands, then installing a DIY home security system may seem like the way to go. But if you’re on the fence about which one to choose, then comparing and contrasting the methods is a good way to decide which method would work best for you.
What are the differences between DIY home security and professional security monitoring?
DIY Home Security
So maybe you want a security system, but you’re not interested in getting someone to set it up for you. Luckily, there are tons of DIY home security kits on the market that you can buy, and the installation is fairly simple. The DIY method is becoming more and more popular as many people choose wireless systems over wired monitoring systems. While there are positives to choosing a hardwired system, the fact is that most people want the flexibility that comes with choosing a wireless system. On top of that, doing it yourself can also be beneficial, depending on the person.
The biggest drawback to installing a home security system is the steep cost. Many security providers have expensive monthly subscription plans that require a multiple-year contract. Now more than ever, being locked into a long contract is unappealing to many, especially since most people do not stay in one place forever. Most DIY kits offer flexibility in pricing, you can find a system as low as a couple hundred dollars. Also, instead of paying a monthly fee to a company to monitor your house for you, you eliminate that cost. One of the main reasons more and people are opting for the DIY route is the fact that you’d be saving thousands of dollars.
In the same vein, home security systems also come with complicated installation procedures. If you’re going with a traditional company, the company usually charges a high installation and labor fee in addition to the equipment, so you’d be looking at high start-up costs. Besides the installation costs, the process can also be long and complicated, especially if you choose a hardwired system.
Hardwired systems require a professional to come and drill holes in your home to manually connect all of the motion sensors to the main control panel. In the event that your home doesn’t come with this wiring, getting this done can be a time-intensive and costly procedure. DIY systems are instead wireless and don’t require any type of hardwiring to function. The setup also tends to be a bit easier to understand and doesn’t take too much time.
However, if you’re worried about not setting up the system right, going with a professional may be the better option. A professional would ensure that the wireless system is installed correctly and functioning perfectly. They can also explain to you exactly how the system works and clarify any issues or questions you may have.
The biggest difference between a DIY system and a professional system are the monitoring services. Both wired and wireless professional home security systems offer monitoring through a company. That means that your home is monitored 24/7 for you, and if a breach happens, they will notify both you and the authorities. This can leave you with a peace of mind and relieve some of the burden of monitoring your home. This does, however, come at an additional cost.
In the case of a DIY system, the monitoring is done by you. Most DIY home security systems offer 24/7 monitoring that is accessible by a computer or a smartphone. You can stay in the know of what is going on in your home at all times. When a breach in security happens, the system will notify you and up to 10 other people, who you can customize. The downside to this option is that you can’t alert the police like you can with professional companies. DIY systems instead leave the power in your hands when it comes to what to do next. This is seen by some as a huge disadvantage for DIY home systems.
Last but not least, another difference to consider is the amount of warranty for your home system should the equipment fail or damage. For the professional monitoring companies, the monthly price usually includes a warranty if anything were to go wrong with the system. This could save you the frustration of paying out of pocket for a new system later down the line.
DIY systems usually come with limited to no warranty or support. In the case of something going wrong, you’d have to call the equipment manufacturer or just pay to get the system fixed out of pocket, which could be expensive.
Depending on your lifestyle, a DIY home security system could be the right option for you. If you are a tech savvy, flexible person who doesn’t want to be tied down by monthly fees and long contracts, then this method could work for you. Also, if self-monitoring is something that doesn’t bother you, then this could also be a good option as far as security monitoring. On the other hand, if you want to ensure that your system is installed correctly and want to leave the monitoring to a professional, going the traditional route may be a better option for you. Whichever one you choose, your home’s protection comes first.