Complete home security systems are always monitored systems. In other words, once your home alarm system or systems are installed, they will also be connected to a monitoring service that will contact you or alert law enforcement authorities if there’s a problem on your premises. When you install a home alarm system, whether you do it yourself or have it installed by professionals, you will very likely be able to make a choice in monitoring service providers. And along with choosing a provider, you can also make another choice – to contract with a provider or utilize the services of a monitoring company without contractual obligation.
Alarm system monitoring services that provide a no-contract offer sometimes provide such a service because of the specialized nature of the system you’ve installed. If your home alarm system is technologically tied to the same company that installed or sold it, then as a “bonus” for selecting that specialized system, the monitoring service may be provided free of charge.
Similarly, some installation services or home security alarm companies may offer a no contract monitoring service simply as a business ploy. In order to receive a larger share of the security market in your community, or to simply gain a foothold in the marketplace, a security company may offer a no-contract service at least for a certain period of time. You should always compare costs and benefits to be sure that doing without a monitoring contract is effective for your needs.
Another possibility in utilizing a no contract monitoring system is a self-installed, self-monitored system. In other words, if you’ve put in your own system and set it up so that you yourself are in charge of monitoring your home, you obviously will not be contracting with yourself. Such a self service system will usually allow you to utilize your cell phone to check in on a video surveillance system, or will allow you to monitor security footage from an off site computer link.
While each of these options may save you some money, each contains some risk and may not afford the cost savings you visualized when selecting these plans. In regard to a specialized system, the cost of the system and its installation may be high enough that eliminating a monitoring contract and fee is not cost effective, or may be a break even with a contractual monitoring service. And, without a service contract, a security installation company may simply charge more for a basic system to begin with, to offset the loss of frees from a monitoring service.
If you’re using a do-it-yourself installation and monitoring plan, be sure you have the time to act as your own monitoring service.
So, if you’re considering utilizing a no-contract service plan, be sure you know exactly what that entails and shop smart: compare costs and benefits with a contractual monitoring service versus a no-contract option in order to make a security monitoring decision that works for you.