Alarm systems and companies?

Discussion in 'The Fire Hydrant' started by Kat09Tails, Apr 1, 2012.

  1. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

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    Do any of you use an alarm system or home monitoring company?

    I'm trying to figure out which company to go with installing a security system at our family summer home. I know it's not going to be an easy install (there's no phone line or internet) so I am scratching my head figuring out what to do and who to go with.

    So any recommendations out there?
     
  2. JessLough

    JessLough Love My Mutt

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    anybody I know with alarm systems, plus my work all have ADT. Other than that, not useful LOL
     
  3. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    I use Monotronics. But I'm pretty sure you need a phone line so it can be monitored and relayed to the police station. They are reputed to have a very quick resonse time, which proved true when I had a false alarm. lol. Soooooo embarrassing. I forgot that it wasn't just the Chihuahuas at home. They're too low to set off the motion detectors. I also had Toker, my son's dog there while I went out. The neighbor told me the police came and were walking all around in the back yard checking it out.
     
  4. JacksonsMom

    JacksonsMom Active Member

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    My dad owns a local alarm company, he would hook you up, but I'm sure you don't live in Maryland so I guess I'm useless.
     
  5. maxfox426

    maxfox426 My dog tickles my soul

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    We used to have ADT, we recently switched to a local company (Guardian) for upgraded features.

    We didn't have any issue with ADT while we had them, but as soon as we cancelled their service realized that if there HAD ever been a break-in... ADT was next to useless.

    We called ADT to cancel, and then had their system disconnected and the new system installed. TWO WEEKS LATER, ADT called us to say, "We've detected that your phone lines have been disconnected or cut. Do you want us to investigate a potential break-in?"

    US: "Um, we cancelled and disconnected your service two weeks ago..."
    ADT: "Oh, well, we only check the disconnection alerts once a month or so, so we just didn't see it until now."
    US: :yikes:

    Basically, if a burglar HAD cut our phone line to deactivate our alarm system, they could have robbed us blind and/or murdered us, and ADT wouldn't have noticed anything amiss for WEEKS, much less sound an alarm or call the police.

    Our new system is wireless, so there are no phone lines to cut. I'm glad we made the switch.


    ETA: Long story short, I would do your research on local alarm companies. Find out what options they have for your specific situation. Since you mentioned no phone/internet... wireless may be the way to go, or you can also consider just putting in a no-frills landline, if the price to upgrade to a wireless system is too high (it's a pretty pricey upgrade... *sigh*)

    Also... sorry about my rant. It probably wasn't all that useful. :eek:
     
  6. ACooper

    ACooper Moderator

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    Another here to say DO NOT GO WITH ADT............they are less than useless.

    We had the back door alarm violated more than once and the police were NEVER notified........never. One time my sister (lives an hour away) came to visit and we weren't home. She figured she'd just come in the back door (with her key) and wait on us (she knew the dogs, the dogs knew and loved her) so no prob there. As soon as she opened the back door, the alarm went off. She went back to her car and figured she'd wait for the cops and explain, LOL............no cops were notified or showed. I could give several accountings of the same.

    I will say their fire monitoring was excellent. Any time our fire alarm went off, the fire dept was notified BEFORE adt called us to check in...........and that happened several times, LOL, teenagers learning to cook can cause a ruckus, LOL

    As to their billing, PFFFFT.........crooks. We cancelled by phone and in writing the day our contract was over. We had them set up on bank draft and they took another months pay. I called, they said they'd clear it up. Next month, same deal.........I called and was NOT nice. They then tried to tell me why we owed them even more money :rolleyes:

    I ended up going down to Wells Fargo and having them block any more payments from ADT. You know what Wells Fargo told me? No worries.........trust me, you aren't the first one to have to block ADT. :eek:

    So ya, I'm no help on any other security company, but I can repeat STAY FAR AWAY FROM ADT!!! Bad monitoring, poor customer service, and worse billing!
     
  7. maxfox426

    maxfox426 My dog tickles my soul

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    Holy crap they did the same thing to us! We had to change our autopay information to an inactive card for them to stop billing us, and then they owed us money for the month (maybe two? don't even remember now) that they kept billing us. We called every week about that refund for about six weeks, and every time they told us, "it was put in the mail yesterday". :rolleyes: Jon finally demanded a supervisor and was SUPER not nice. Then we finally got *most* of our money back.
     
  8. ACooper

    ACooper Moderator

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    I just wrote it off as "Good riddance to bad rubbish" and didn't contact them to get our money back.........I was just happy to be done, LOL

    I've heard similar billing nightmares about ADT from more than one person :(
     
  9. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    It wouldn't hurt to read some customer reviews on companies you're thinking about using. I think a smaller, more local thing would be better too. I'm pretty sure that's what I have. The guy was comparing his co. to ADT and mentioned some things that are better with Monotronics. Naturally, he's the salesman. But he was also an ex cop. Anyhow, so far, I'm happy with them. Good luck. It does give peace of mind to have a security system like that.
     
  10. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

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    It's just a bizarrely complicated install. Not quite sure what systems and companies can really handle it. So far I've heard back from ADT, Protect America and I'm waiting to hear from Frontpoint. So far everyone has been pretty nice - and wanting to do a free house eval when we can schedule it.
     
  11. yoko

    yoko New Member

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    Do NOT go with guardian. I worked there for five years. You DO NOT WANT THOSE DISPATCHERS TO HAVE YOUR INFO. They do not back ground our drug test. I can't tell you how many times workers write down personal info of the customers.

    I would personally advise against an alarm but if you absolutely need one avoid guardian like the plague
     
  12. JessLough

    JessLough Love My Mutt

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    Uh... That's what alarm systems are supposed to do. The alarm goes off, of they immediately leave, no police needed. The number one feature of alarms is to scare people off, if It scares them off then your house is safe. The police are called if they decide to further go into your house after the alarm was set off.


    If police were sent out every single time an alarm went off, police would always uselessly be out at somebody's house.

    ADT here is nowhere like that, they're pretty awesome (talking from experience), but then again I'm in Canada. Haven't had any problems canceling yet
     
  13. ACooper

    ACooper Moderator

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    No dear, if the alarm is triggered ADT is supposed to call our house-ask for our code/safety word and make sure it was a false alarm. If they can't reach us, they are supposed to notify the authorities to come check things out.

    How is ADT supposed to know if the burglar ran away at the sound or came inside to rob/kill/destroy? If the perpetrator happens to go past the one and only motion sensor (ours was positioned just before going up to the second floor) then ADT would know they headed upstairs...........otherwise, no, they wouldn't know any more than they tried to enter the back door (front door, window, whatever)

    It's the same with businesses too..............if a door alarm is triggered, the monitoring company notifies authorities and the owner/manager/whoever of the situation...........that is the WHOLE point of 'monitoring' LOL

    EDIT: There are plenty of "Noise making" devices you can purchase to "scare" people away. Nothing wrong with those at all, but when you PAY a company a monthly fee to MONITOR that "noise system" they are SUPPOSED TO MONITOR!
     
  14. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    Yup, our alarm at work has been triggered, and the closest management member to the store gets a call asking if someone should be there.
     
  15. Sweet72947

    Sweet72947 Squishy face

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    My parents use a company called Vector. Their customer service is very good. The only issue they've had is that signals weren't getting from our house to the company, but we got that fixed and all is good. If an alarm gets set off, they call our house and we give them a password if everything is ok. I would recommend testing your alarm system at least once a month to make sure signals are getting where they are supposed to go.

    Vector also offers such services as sending you an email every time the alarm goes off, or even every time the door opens. I know this because my dad opted for the latter. Yeah.
     
  16. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

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    So far Frontpoint seems to be the most competitive offer and they do have systems that will do what we need it to do.
     
  17. maxfox426

    maxfox426 My dog tickles my soul

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    Jess, it was written in our contract that the police would be called in event of a break-in. As ACoop said, the alarm company is supposed call the house to reach you, and if they can't to call the police. Like I said, it was written in our contract as part of the service we were PAYING for.

    If we wanted just a noise machine, we wouldn't have paid the extra $$$ a month to ADT to "monitor" our system. They STATED the police would be notified... why should I assume that isn't part of their job?


    ETA: I only skimmed Coop's response before replying, and she worded it so much better than me. :rofl1:
     

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