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Taking steps to secure your home can save you heaps of money by protecting your belongings. But overspending on a security system is easy to do with many high-cost systems on the market.
To save money on home security services, research inexpensive and effective security systems, consider smart home security apps and take advantage of other simple tips to secure your home. A combination of cost-effective system features alongside old-school home security steps can help you make your home safer without breaking the bank.
1. Price Compare for a Cost-Effective System
Not every security system is built equal, and that's true in both design and cost. When you start to look at home security systems you may see a wide range of pricing. Keep in mind that the average burglary victim loses more than $2,500, according to FBI data, so it's important to find an effective system without going overboard on cost.
As you get familiar with different design options available in your area, compare for the most cost-effective system. For example, you may not need window alarms and glass-break detectors in every single room.
Likewise, doing a DIY system may help you save. These systems tend to be modular and low-cost. So if you're up for some simple installs, these may be the most cost-effective systems you can find.
2. Ask About Discounts
When saving money is your goal, remember to ask for discounts. If you are a member of a particular group like students, seniors or veterans, it's always worth asking if you may qualify for a discount.
Similarly, check any rewards programs you may be enrolled in by your job or associated with your rewards credit card. You may be able to find deals for a specified percentage off due to your association with one of these organizations.
3. Pick Wireless
Wired security systems require invasive and expensive installation processes. But when you choose a wireless system you can cut installation costs. Wired security systems average between $800 and $1,600; wireless systems, on the other hand, have a much lower entry point, around $200.
These modular systems may also allow you to cost effectively add only what you need, possibly saving money compared to traditional wired packages. Frequently, these systems are simple DIY installations.
4. Go Subscription-Free and Ditch Monitoring
Subscriptions may sound like a cheap monthly price to pay for a service that you like, but eventually, you may realize you've spent more than buying an expensive subscription-free model upfront. This is true of home security services as well. Monitoring averages around $32 per month, ranging from $5 to $65.
Some home security services come with a charge for monthly monitoring. When you stop paying for this monitoring subscription, you may find yourself saving. Choosing a system with a high-quality smartphone app means you can do the monitoring yourself.
5. Opt for Local Storage
Your system will collect hours and hours of footage from around your home. Some systems will charge you a fee to back up this footage on their storage. Others may offer only a limited amount—such as the last week of footage—of free storage.
If you install a local storage option, such as a hard drive in your home that cameras record directly to, you can save on these storage fees. You may pay more upfront to purchase the hard drive, but over time will have fewer associated costs.
6. Get Savings From Your Home Insurance
Some home insurance providers offer discounts if you install a security system. This could reduce your overall monthly costs of owning a system.
Check with your insurer to see if there is a particular style or brand of system they require for a discount. Verify all steps needed to get this discount so that you can install and submit documentation, saving money.
Low-Tech Home Security Complements
Home security systems may be a high-tech response to threats to your home. But there are still some great low-tech options out there to help protect your space without breaking the bank—or overloading your Wi-Fi router.
Consider some of these old-school, low-tech home security strategies to complement your digital system.
- Hang bells in entryways. Think about hanging bells in entryways that will make noise when a window slides open or a door is cracked. This could alert you and possibly scare off an intruder. Bonus frugality points if you recycle food cans to make these alarms by hanging several on a string from your doorknob.
- Add battery-powered, stick-on alarms. Often available at dollar stores or home improvement stores, these battery-powered alarms can be stuck to entrances like doors or windows and manually set to trigger at night or while you're out.
- Replace doors with a secure option. Replacing exterior and even some interior doors with steel doors or adding a door reinforcement kit can help make your home more secure.
- Remove sidelight windows. Though a great architectural detail, windows alongside your door are easy to break and use to turn the locked door knob from within.
- Install motion lights. Inexpensive, solar-powered motion lights can be mounted around your house and potentially run for years. Overlap lights to create a circle so that they are triggered no matter which direction someone approaches your home from.
- Repair and replace broken locks. Don't dawdle on maintaining the most basic home security feature: the locks on your doors and windows. Repair or replace these as quickly as possible.
- Clear around your home. When there is no cover to approach your home from under, it becomes a less attractive target.
- Remember man's best friend. Though dogs are a regular bill completely unto themselves, they can provide some helpful home defense without any extra cost. Many dogs are excellent at alerting owners to someone approaching the house, especially at night. Homes with dogs may be less frequent targets for burglary as well.
The Bottom Line
Security doesn't stop with what you put around your house. Extend the protection you provide your family to the online space. When you create an Experian membership account, you have access to a personal privacy scan and dark web surveillance.
These privacy tools can help protect you from digital ID thieves. But they can also help prevent you from becoming a victim in real life. Use these tools to assist in removing personal data like your address and phone number from people finder sites and protect your privacy.