If you’ve followed technology at all over the last couple decades, you’ll likely have noticed a distinct trend. More than ever, people want to set up and install their own electronics. This “do-it-yourself” (or “DIY”) approach has touched just about every level of product. It runs the gamut from traditionally simple products to set up — such as television sets — to smart home appliances, and even more recent technological offerings such as drones. Additionally, this tendency has affected our industry as well. In this post, we explain why people take on a DIY alarm installation, and how doing so compares to investing in a professionally-installed alarm.

First, we’ll explain why people elect this option in the first place. Having this knowledge in place will provide a useful base for the rest of the article. From there, we’ll look at some of the ways that your security may fall short if you take the DIY route. Specifically, these include issues with installation practices and equipment that can cause security breaches and a less-than-ideal user experience. Moreover, they can also include monitoring and repair-related headaches as well. Now, let’s dive in with a look at the reasons behind DIY alarm installation!

Why Do People Install Their Own Alarms?

Of course, different people choose the DIY route for different reasons. However, we find a few common factors overall that cause people to choose this path. Unsurprisingly, cost savings comes in at or near the top of just about anyone’s priority list. Nothing saves money like finding the products you need and buying and installing them yourself instead of paying someone else to do so. Of course, in most instances, you get what you pay for. But we’ll review the “why” behind that sentiment in the upcoming sections.

A piggy bank with pennies on the floor

Saving money has long remained at or near the top of almost everyone’s list of reasons for taking on a DIY project.

At times, tech-savvy people want to have full control over their security experience. In this case, many people feel that they can find and execute the best options themselves. We’ll discuss the merits of this thought a little later on as well. At this point, we’ve seen why some people may choose the DIY alarm installation route. Now, let’s review some of the dangers of skippping a professional alarm installation.

The Hazards of DIY Alarm Installation

As we hinted at a little earlier, we find that customers more or less get what they pay for when they opt for an inexpensive alarm project versus a professional installation. While any security is better than no security, DIY security generally leaves you vulnerable in certain areas. In this section, we’ll go into detail about the issues causes by a DIY alarm installation. Let’s get started!

Non-Licensed and Uninspected Equipment Installation

The opportunity to have your alarm installed by properly-licensed electricians represents one of the biggest benefits of working with a professional security company. Our company and our technicians have the proper credentials to ensure proper installation of your alarm. These licenses include state-specific electrical licenses for our individual technicians. Also on an individual basis, each of our employees has received a renewable security certificate that requires a background check to receive. Finally, our company also has licenses to install security equipment on a state-by-state basis. Of course, working with experts in the security field puts you at ease. After all, you know that you will receive an effective alarm that meets all installation requirements.

Speaking of installation requirements, we also present one more benefit to those working with us. If you’ve read our recent post on Completing Your Security Inspections, this next point should sound familiar. Many of the alarms we install require permits from the towns or cities we work in. Pulling these permits gives the local building department the opportunity to inspect our work upon completion. In turn, this inspection grants you the security of knowing that you have a fully-operational and well-installed alarm in return for your investment. As you can see, working with a fully-licensed professional security company adds quite a bit of value. Let’s now turn our attention to the actual equipment that we install.

Missing out on the Security Technology That Fits Your Needs

People looking to install their own security systems often do so without knowledge of every product on the market. Oftentimes, “DIYers” end up installing improper or out-of-date equipment that doesn’t quite fit their needs. For example, installing indoor-rated security contacts in garages or exterior areas of your property can lead to quick equipment failures. People who get their hands on what they can, without the industry’s complete repertoire of security products — as well as the know-how to choose and install the chosen equipment correctly — often end up disappointed with their overall security experience. More importantly, they also find themselves more susceptible to the security threats they wanted to avoid. Next up, let’s see how DIY alarm installation can lead to monitoring issues.

Lack of Proper Alarm Monitoring

Alarm monitoring represents one of the most important features of any security system. Creating alarm monitoring involves connecting your alarm to a central station. In turn, an alarm activation will create a central station response and — if necessary — a police dispatch. Our chosen monitoring partner, Rapid Response Monitoring, represents the best of the best in alarm monitoring. For starters, Rapid Response has the backup power and phone capacity to withstand any disaster. They also have the physical personnel to quickly reach out to all of our customers whenever help is needed.

The Operations Room at Rapid Response Monitoring Center

The Rapid Response Monitoring Center has the capacity and technology to effectively monitor all of our customers’ alarms.

Furthermore, Rapid Response has an Underwriter’s Laboratory (UL) listing for security monitoring. Most central stations do not have this qualification! A UL listing for security monitoring means that the central station must meet several security-related guidelines, and pass an independent inspection. It also means that workers must go through specific, rigorous training before interacting with customers. Most DIY customers cannot receive this type of quality alarm monitoring. Many “Do-it-Yourself’ers” simply have their alarms send them alerts upon activation. Of course, this does give them the opportunity to call 911 themselves upon receiving a notification. However, it does not provide you security if you miss the alarm’s initial alert. Now, let’s take a look at how installing your own alarm can eventually end up costing you more money than it saves.

Unexpected Repair and Troubleshooting Expenses

Ironically, DIY alarm installation may end up costing you in the long run. Any and all issues you run into with your security equipment will fall solely on you to fix if you install it. This contrasts greatly with working with a professional security company. In addition to guaranteeing our work, we also offer multiple extended warranty options. These warranties ensure that you never experience an unexpected costly repair down the road. Many of our customers take advantage of these offerings and have saved thousands of dollars in potential repairs as a result. The ability to have these repair costs eliminated makes one of the best arguments for hiring a security company to install your alarm system!

Putting it All Together

We hope that this post helps you see how a DIY alarm installation can leave you wanting in the security department. Ironically, it can also end up costing more than hiring a professional company such as ourselves! As always, we encourage you to contact us with any questions this post may raise for you. We will happily answer any and all of your security-related inquiries. Moreover, we also invite you to have us out to perform a security audit. We provide security walkthroughs and equipment quotes free of charge to both new and existing customers alike.

While on site, we can address any of your existing security concerns. Furthermore, we can also make suggestions of our own based on observations made during our visit. We’ve worked with over a thousand customers to create effective security plans that deliver their desired security experience. Together, we can create a plan to keep you, your property, and your family as safe and secure as possible!