Clark Howard is a huge consumer advocate here in Atlanta and helps people avoid being ripped off. He had some super points when it comes to purchasing a security system and burglar alarm monitoring contracts for your home or business. SafeCom is locally owned and and operated, never requires a long term contract and offers a competitive monthly monitoring rate.
Posted: 12:00 a.m. Thursday, July 15, 2010 By ClarkHoward.com
How to shop for a home burglar alarm system
Nothing makes you feel more invaded than coming home to a break-in. Burglar alarm salespeople often read local police reports and may show up with an emotional sales pitch seeking to capitalize on your fear and anxiety.
Of course, it’s better to search for an alarm-monitoring company before you need them. Clark recommends looking in the YellowPages and starting to call companies from the back of the listings — not the ones at the front with the big ads.
First, ask if they require a contract. You never want to sign a long-term contract. If you do, you open yourself to the danger of hidden rollover provisions.
Your second question should be about their monthly monitoring fees. You want something in the mid-to-high teens — no more than $22 or 24 per month at the most.
Then you have equipment installation costs. You can usually get a preliminary quote over the phone by counting the number of doors and windows you have to protect. Consider adding an internal motion sensor as well. Initial equipment installation costs can be anywhere between $600 and $800 for a typical home.
Finally, make sure your monitoring station is UL approved and also offers fire detection.