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Will a security system lower my homeowners insurance cost?

Home security systems are now easier than ever to purchase and install, and many have features like cameras that used to be available only on high-end, custom systems.

With advances in wireless technology and sophisticated video that make monitoring a home simpler and less expensive, it’s easier than ever to protect your home. Whether you are looking for a DIY system or a professionally installed and monitored one, there is likely a setup that will fit your needs and your budget.

And, as a bonus, having a security system might make you eligible for a discount on your homeowners insurance premium.

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Do security systems lower homeowners insurance premiums?

While the amount of savings will vary from one insurer to the next and may depend on the type of system you choose, security systems can indeed reduce your home insurance premium cost.

Talk to your insurance company before deciding on a home security system if lowering your insurance premium is a priority for you. Your insurer will let you know if there are any requirements your new system will have to meet for it to qualify for a reduction in your premium.

Some considerations that your insurance company might take into account are things like whether the system has an audible alarm (which can alert your neighbors), if your smoke detectors are connected to it if there are door and window sensors, and even the types of sensors that are included.

How does a security system protect my home?

A security system protects your home using an arrangement of sensors, cameras, and monitoring equipment. These are installed in areas around your home that are vulnerable points of entry, such as doors and first-floor windows.

Some of the sensors are magnets that trigger an alarm if they are separated, such as when a window is opened. Others are sonic sensors that can detect the sound of breaking glass, while others are motion detectors that can sense when someone—or something—is moving in the room, which is why it’s important to let your monitoring company know if you have a cat or other pets that might set off the motion sensor.

Burglars will often skip homes with alarm systems installed—it’s not worth the risk to them when there are other, less-protected homes around.

Are home security systems worth it? Yes. Break-ins are a real risk. According to the FBI’s crime statistics, nearly 63 percent of all burglary offenses were of residential properties.

What are the benefits of a home security system beyond protection?

A home security system can protect your home beyond break-ins by alerting you to other dangers early—so there is more time to respond.

Having working smoke detectors is an essential safety measure, and can save lives by giving you time to get out of the house before a fire gets out of control. But what if there’s no one home to hear the alarm?

A home security system that is connected to your smoke alarms can alert the fire department that there’s a problem—even if you aren’t home.

Some systems are designed to warn homeowners about other dangers, such as natural gas or water leaks. These types of warnings can potentially save homeowners thousands of dollars in repair costs and in the case of a natural gas leak, can also save lives.

Does it matter if I also get a monitoring system?

It can. Here’s why: having a monitoring system means that there’s someone on duty at all times, watching your home’s security system.

There are two types of home security systems—monitored and unmonitored. An unmonitored system (which might probably be more accurately called a self-monitored system), depends heavily on your ability to see an alert and respond to it quickly.

For example, say you are out of town at a work conference. You are just about to go onstage to give a presentation and your cell phone indicates that one of your smoke detectors has been activated. What do you do? Or, for an even more upsetting example, you’ve landed at an airport and have just taken your phone out of airplane mode and see that you’ve missed a notification (or several) from your home security system.

These examples aren’t unusual occurrences, they are everyday situations in which your ability to respond to a self-monitored home security system might be compromised. Insurers recognize this risk, and in some cases, they may offer better premium discounts for a professionally monitored home security system than you might receive with a self-monitored system.

Should I get a home security system with a camera?

Cameras are a helpful addition to your home security system, but you should not rely on cameras alone. That’s because while cameras can help with identification and recovery of stolen goods, an alarm is best to alert to a burglary in progress.

Security systems with a camera are an ideal setup—the alarm sounds, notifying that an intruder is present, while cameras can record who is in your home and what is happening. You get the benefit of both, hopefully disrupting the burglary so not much is taken, and you’ve increased the chance that your items will be recovered if the thief is caught or the goods stolen wind up for sale elsewhere, such as online.

With all of your home security components, but particularly with cameras, make sure that you understand how they work. Because many systems now operate over wireless technology, improperly set up systems can be vulnerable to hacking. It is very much worth it to hire a professional to set up your system if you are unsure about how to navigate technology security—even if you’ve purchased a DIY system.

Where can I find a security system that can help lower insurance cost?

The first step you should take if you are interested in a home insurance discount for a security system is to call your insurance agent. Some carriers work with home security monitoring providers, meaning if you choose a home security system that partners with your insurance company, you could potentially receive a discount on both your premium and on the monitoring system

At a very basic level, even if your home insurance company doesn’t work with a home security partner, they should be able to recommend reputable companies or provide a list of required features that will qualify you for a discount on your homeowners premium.

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How can I get a quote for homeowners insurance?

If you’re looking for a home insurance discount for a security system, it’s important that you have the right homeowners insurance first.

Contact the experts at Guaranteed Rate Insurance to get quotes for the homeowners insurance policy that best meets your needs. They can walk you through the entire process, including finding the right security system—one which saves you the most on your homeowners insurance premium.


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