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Why Do Home Monitoring Costs Vary?

on Aug 29, 2014

We can all benefit from the peace of mind that comes with a home security system and a monitored system can provide even more protection for your home. Usually for a monthly fee, a monitoring service ensures that a security professional is alerted any time your alarm is triggered, and they are able to notify law enforcement or the fire department right away.

This service can really strengthen the security of a home, and improve the response time of police or other emergency workers. Of course, nobody wants to be paying more than they need to. Prices can vary greatly between companies, or even between individual customers. So it is reasonable to wonder what causes the big differences in price.

One obvious factor in the cost of monitoring is the level of service included. Some plans will be very basic, while other more expensive ones my charge more for features like live voice and video monitoring.

Some companies that offer free equipment and low installation fees might have higher monthly costs because the cost of equipment and installation has been spread out across the monthly payments. This system of payment for home security monitoring is similar to the model of cell phone service providers. The handsets themselves are often heavily discounted or free, but the company recovers the cost through your monthly bills.

When you are shopping for a security and monitoring system, don’t only look at the equipment costs, installation costs, or monthly costs by themselves. Instead, you should look at the entire lifespan of the contract and see how much the whole arrangement will cost after you’ve paid each month through the end of the plan.

Sometimes, having the cost of equipment and installation spread out across your monthly payments may work in your favour. But this is not always the case. You may find that some of the plans that have low up-front costs turn out to be more expensive by the time you’ve finished the contract.

Bear in mind that if you purchased your equipment directly or if you have already completed a contract and own your equipment, you may be able to sign up for just the monitoring service at a better rate, since you now own the equipment and any installation costs are already settled.

Finally, when you are trying to decide about purchasing home monitoring service don’t forget to consider external costs and benefits. Ask your insurance company if they have any discounts available to homeowners with security systems with monitoring. Some insurance providers offer discounts because a home with a security system lowers their overall risk.