As we have mentioned before, having a home alarm can save you money. Estimates have shown you can save between $300 and $1,000 annually on your homeowners insurance by having an alarm, not to mention that an average insurance claim for a break-in is almost $4,000. But did you know that a false alarm could potentially cost you money? Some cities charge fees every time law enforcement responds to an alarm and find that it isn’t a true alarm. The rules and requirements of false alarms vary by area. Certain cities won’t start charging fees until the second or third false alarm, while others send out a bill on the first time. It’s always a good idea to contact your local police department to find out their false alarm policy.
In the end, the benefits of having a home alarm greatly outweigh the small risks of a false alarm occurring. We have gathered up a few helpful tips so that you can lessen the likelihood of a false alarm on your end.
1. Know Your Codes
One of the first things you should do when you first get your alarm is memorize your alarm code. Make sure everyone in the household knows the code by heart as well. This way, in the event the alarm accidentally goes off, you aren’t fumbling around trying to remember the right sequence of numbers. Also consider that it might be necessary to provide a code to others that come into your home regularly, such as house cleaners, dog walkers and babysitters. Emphasize the importance of them remembering the code and entering it correctly each time they come and go.
2. Know How To Use Your Alarm System
The best way to prevent a false alarm is to make sure you are using your alarm system correctly. If you need a refresher course on how to use your system, call your alarm company. Often times they are able to send a technician out to give you a refresher on how your system works. At the very least, a customer service representative should be able to walk you through the functions and the user details over the phone. If you have others who come to your home and will be arming or disarming the system, be sure to give them a tutorial on how to do so.
3. Utilize the Time Delay
Maybe you are carrying a bunch of groceries into your house or just need more time to get in the door. Putting your system on a 30 or 60 second time entry delay will ensure that you have plenty of time to disarm your system before the alarm bells ring. This is especially useful if you have your outside gates or garage doors connected to the system.
4. Alarm Company Information
Chances are there will be times when you or someone in your home sets the alarm off and you can’t make it to the keypad in time to clear it. Have the contact information for the alarm company easily accessible, that way everyone knows who to reach and how. When you call your alarm company, they will most likely need more information, such as a verbal password. Make sure everyone who has access to the system has and knows their verbal password to clear the alarm, but never keep it written down and easily accessible. This is not something you would want a potential burglar to find.