If you’ve followed our blog over the last several years, you know well that we strongly recommend installing a monitored burglar alarm. Doing so provides you with a couple forms of security. For starters, any alarm activation creates an ear-splitting siren response. Of course, this alerts anyone on the property to the breach and likely scares away the crook. Additionally, a monitored alarm also creates a police response when necessary. These layers of security make a monitored home alarm one of the most valuable security measures we install. In this post, we share the benefits of the most popular, secure, and user-friendly monitoring service that we offer. Today, we will look at the power of interactive residential alarm monitoring.

First, we’ll share alarm monitoring “basics” to help you learn what this service entails. This will provide a great base to understand the rest of the material presented in this post. From there, we’ll see how we add this service to our customers’ alarms. Then, we’ll list some of the security benefits this important service creates. Finally, we’ll shift our focus to some of the smart home-related benefits of interactive residential alarm monitoring. This type of monitoring creates convenience and functionality even above and beyond its bare-bones security benefits. Now, let’s dive in with an explanation of alarm monitoring services.

The Basics of Alarm Monitoring

As we pointed out earlier, a monitored alarm can call out for help and set in motion a visit from the police upon detecting a burglary. In order to create this response, we must connect your alarm to our central monitoring station. Traditionally, this process involves tying your property’s existing phone lines to your security panel. In turn, this allows your alarm to dial out to the central station upon detecting trouble. Upon receiving a signal from an alarm, a central station dispatcher attempts to contact the homeowners. If they fail to do so, they will then call the police to check on the premises. At this point, the central station also calls a customer-created list of individuals to alert them to the alarm event.

An orange phone with a cord

If you rely on your property’s old-fashioned phone lines for monitoring, you will not experience the most consistent or reliable monitoring available.

Unfortunately, phone-line based monitoring comes with some serious shortcomings. Since this service relies on a working phone line for its monitoring path, any phone outage effectively negates your alarm monitoring. Of course, events such as severe weather and traffic accidents involving telephone poles can affect phone service. Furthermore, burglars often cut phone lines before attempting a break-in. Doing so can keep residents from calling for help in addition to disabling alarm monitoring. For these reasons, we recommend a more updated and secure monitoring service. In the next section, we’ll describe how we can create interactive residential alarm monitoring to make your security system as effective as possible!

Adding Interactive Monitoring to Your Alarm

Cellular monitoring, our most popular type of monitoring, adds additional security. This service involves the installation of a cellular dialer next to your alarm panel. In turn, this dialer uses a cellular network to monitor your alarm. Therefore, cellular monitoring allows your alarm to dial out for help even during phone outages! Furthermore, our cellular dialer, powered by Alarm.com, adds added security and convenience. For example, it offers “interactive” security monitoring that puts you in unique control of your security system. The benefits to this type of monitoring include both security and convenience-related features. Let’s start by looking at the security you can experience with interactive residential alarm monitoring!

Security Benefits of Interactive Residential Alarm Monitoring

When we refer to interactive monitoring, we refer to the ability to control and communicate with your alarm directly using a smartphone or any other internet-connected device. Installing an Alarm.com dialer gives you access to an Alarm.com account. In turn, this lets you use their website or smartphone app to interact with your security system. First and foremost, this allows you to arm and disarm your security system remotely. Obviously, this adds a major level of security. Forget to arm your alarm on the way out the door? No problem! Now, you can use your phone to fix this issue immediately. Of course, the ability to disarm your security system remotely also adds security. If you need to give access to a house sitter or contractor while away from your home, now you can do so without giving away an alarm code.

Speaking of alarm codes, additional interactive monitoring features include the ability to manage codes remotely. For example, you can add a temporary code for alarm use and then deactivate it, all remotely! Finally, our security-related ineractive monitoring also allows you to receive alarm alerts. These real-time notifications give you the ability to see when someone arms or disarms your security system. Furthermore, it also provides alerts if an expected event does not happen. Expect the kids home from school by 3pm? Now you can create an alert in case your security system stays on past this time! This allows you to check in on the situation and see why they haven’t come home yet. Obviously, these factors make interactive residential alarm monitoring a game-changer. Next up, we’ll look at some smart-home related Alarm.com features that add to your overall alarm experience.

A Yale smart lock and Alarm.com app open on a smartphone

Z-Wave deadbolts, such as this Alarm.com-enabled model by Yale, allow users to control their locks remotely, adding both security and convenience.

Smart Home-Related Interactive Advantages

Our Alarm.com customers can install smart devices that connect to our cellular dialer’s Z-Wave smart home receiver. The term “Z-Wave” refers to a mesh network providing communication between our Alarm.com cellular dialer and smart home devices that operate on this network. As one of the most popular smart home platforms, Z-Wave technology gives you many options to add smart security devices. Our customers control these smart home appliances with the same Alarm.com app that they use to control their security systems.

For example, these devices include appliances such as Z-Wave light bulbs that you can control remotely to make your home look occupied while you are away. Additionally, Z-Wave locks allow you to let contractors or housesitters into your home without providing a key. Moreover, the universal Z-Wave outlet allows you to turn any appliance into a smart home device. For example, customers often plug coffee pots, hair curlers, or other potentially dangerous devices into these outlets. This allows them to ensure they’ve powered down any electrical appliances that may start a fire. Of course, if they’ve forgotten to do so, they can fix the issue with the push of a button! The ability to intsall Z-Wave smart home devices is yet another important reason customers often request interactive monitoring features.

Putting it All Together

We hope that this post helps you see the benefits of adding interactive residential security monitoring. Over the past several years, we’ve connected hundreds of customers’ alarms to this valuable service. Additionally, we encourage you to contact us with any questions you may have about the material presented here. We will happily answer any security monitoring-related questions you may have. Moreover, we encourage you to take advantage of our free site survey program. We offer complimentary security audits and equipment quotes to both new and existing customers alike. While on site, we can address any security concerns you may have. Furthermore, we can make suggestions based on our own observations that we make during our visit.

Perhaps you already have an alarm in place, and want to upgrade your monitoring service to take advantage of the features described in this post. Or, maybe you have yet to install an alarm and want help with the entire design process. Either way, we are here to help. Together, we can help you create a monitored alarm system that keeps you, your home, and your family as safe and secure as possible!