Did you know that more than 40 percent of U.S. homes have dropped their home landline phone service and gone completely wireless? This amazing statistic from the federal government’s National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) says a great deal about today’s modern world, one where people have more control over their homes than ever – in large part because of smart homes and smart phones. This smart technology also allows consumers to save money on services that they frequently use and have to pay for monthly. By switching to either digital phone service or going wireless only, customers are cutting their home landline phone bills in half or eliminating them entirely. The savings desire goes well beyond the home phone service and extends to other services including electricity and water services where customers are purchasing devices that lower their consumption. One area where many consumers are not aware that they can save a substantial amount is on their security and fire alarm monitoring costs.
Thanks to wireless home automation, in addition to saving money, some systems also allow homeowners to remotely access and control the alarm systems, door locks, thermostats, appliances and other devices. The trend is expected to continue as ABI Research shows home automation will increase to 20 million installed units by the year 2017. This saves money, time and improves efficiency, coveted attributes in a world where free time is getting harder and harder to find.
As homes have become more valuable than ever, many homeowners are embracing wireless home options with both hands, while others are still holding onto their landline phones. Often, homeowners who retain their landline are doing this because, while many home technologies allow for wireless options, there is still one system that often may require a traditional landline – the home security system. Fortunately for many homeowners, there is a new option. As technology continues to develop in other areas, home security systems and accessories have gotten smarter as well, and the smart alarm system now complements the smart home.
Some alarm companies allow consumers an economical and easy way to “cut the cord” from landline-based security systems and eliminate the associated expenses, which can total as much as $30 or more per month before taxes and fees. Using innovative technology and a broadband adaptor, these companies intercept the security system’s signal and route it through the users’ broadband internet service, giving them control over their security systems from a smartphone. Most systems even provide an option for “attended monitoring” (by a UL certified central station) for monitoring and dispatching authorities upon receipt of a fire or burglar alarm event. This “attended monitoring” option may even allow homeowners to achieve a discount on their homeowner’s insurance policies.
For many, this technology finally puts the promise of affordable home security right in the palm of their hands. In addition to eliminating the landline to reduce expenses, customers can choose a “self-monitoring” option which allows them to also take total control over their security monitoring and reduce security system expenses even further. The “self-monitoring” option allows consumers to monitor their security system themselves, without the cost of monitoring by a central station operator. Consumers who choose this option have the ability to: view the system’s arming status, remotely arm or disarm (with certain compatible alarm systems), view event and alarm history, access service information, manage log-ins, and receive email and text notifications about alarm panel events – plenty of options for homeowners who expect the freedom that smart technology provides.
According to ABI Research, home automation has grown by 1.5 million units over the last six years, and as technology continues to improve, that number is expected to grow. As smart homes get smarter, it’s good to know there are security systems that are getting smarter and delivering big savings at the same time.