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Home Security Systems: DIY or Have It Installed?

Regardless of age, staying secure at home is something important to all of us. Older adults, in particular, can be more susceptible to household crimes such as invasion and theft. Luckily, many home security systems help protect you, your loved ones, and your belongings.

Home Security Systems and Seniors

According to a report from research firm Markets and Markets, the home security solutions market is projected to reach $78.9 billion by the year 2025. This comes as good news for security-minded homeowners who have more tools at their disposal than ever for protecting themselves and their property.

But while more choices are ultimately a good thing, choosing a home security system can be overwhelming, particularly when it comes to the question of whether to do it yourself or go with a professional installation. Here’s a closer look at the pros and cons of each.

DIY Home Security Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Free Installation
  • Simple to Move Between Homes
  • Installed in Under One Hour
  • Often, No Long-Term Contracts
  • No Wires and Holes
  • Easy to Upgrade

Cons

  • Only Virtual Assistance
  • Potentially Complicated for Those New to Smart Home Technology
  • Higher Up-Front Costs for Equipment
  • Requires a Smartphone

Professional Home Security Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Guarantee of Optimal Installation
  • In-Home Security Assessment
  • In-Person Guidance and Instruction
  • Lower Equipment Costs
  • Reduced Home Insurance Premiums

Cons

  • More Costly Installation
  • Difficult to Move to New Place of Residence
  • Often Requires Long-Term Contracts

DIY Home Security Installation

DIY home security systems, which can be as simple or sophisticated as you need, have their fair share of advantages. At the top of the list, for many budget-conscious homeowners, is the price. If you have the time and technical ability to take on this job yourself, you can expect to pocket significant savings. Ring home security systems, for example, start at just under $200, and you can customize your system with the cameras and systems befitting the needs of your home.

Ring Home Security Equipment
Ring home security system

While the truth is that installing a home security system may not be as difficult as you think, you may still end up wondering whether or not you did everything correctly. This is why many DIY companies offer guidance, both through instruction manuals and smartphone apps that walk you through the setup process.

Many homeowners find one significant upside of installing their own alarm system is having the freedom to do things their way. While a technician is likely to follow a by-the-books setup, installing your plan allows you to customize it according to your preferences.

Additionally, if you’re worried about dealing with potentially complicated wiring while doing your installation, you can set aside these concerns. Why? Because today’s DIY services are wireless, meaning you can put down the drill while still gaining access to security features like video surveillance just by attaching a few battery-powered sensors to your doors and windows.

Professional Home Security Installation

Home security professionals know all the ins and outs of home security, from the best installation methods to the latest technologies to safeguard people and their homes. If you’re short on time, lacking in technical know-how, or only looking for the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re getting the best results from your investment, then a professionally installed security system might be right for you.

Vivint Smart Hub
Vivint home security system

With companies such as ADT, you can expect to pay a fee for professional installation; however, the expertise that comes with this in-home method cannot be overstated. A professional doesn’t just show up and install the system; instead, they will evaluate your home for security issues and suggest various security devices to address these concerns. Furthermore, if a problem arises during installation, meanwhile, you’ll benefit from onsite troubleshooting.

Something else you should keep in mind is whether you plan to move shortly. DIY home security systems are often completely wireless, allowing you to move your security system to a new home quickly. Professionally installed systems, however, are usually hardwired into your existing home, making it more difficult (and potentially costly) to move your system somewhere else.

FYI: For your home security system’s professional installation, you should expect to pay between $99 and $200.

Recap

One last thing to keep in mind? While there are pros and cons to both professionally installed and DIY security systems, experts recommend one thing for both: read the fine print carefully before signing any documents. Some contracts lock in a set price for a particular period, a potentially costly move given that prices frequently change.

Ultimately, choosing an installation method—along with the alarm system itself—is anything but a one-size-fits-all process. The more you know about the products, their costs, and your own unique needs, the more informed a decision you’ll be prepared to make.

DIY Home Security Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can you install your home security system?

    Some home security systems must be installed by a professional; however, many companies give you the option of installing them yourself. Depending on your level of technological expertise, a do-it-yourself installation can be both simple and cost-effective.

  • If I change residencies, can I take my security system with me?

    In most cases, home security providers will accommodate a change of residence; however, this process is usually more straightforward with Wi-Fi and Cellular-based systems, as they are not hardwired into your current home.

  • Do professionally monitored home security systems offer more excellent protection?

    This depends on your home security needs and how willing you are to monitor your system. With most DIY plans, you can use your smartphone to tap into live camera feeds and receive notifications in the event of a triggered sensor. For those of us who are unable to stay on top of this, however, a professional system might be more up your alley.

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