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watts3000

join:2002-01-21

replacing home security company

Guys I'm looking to replace my current home security company with a cheaper setup. As of right now I use Vivint we have Zwave based system. So I would like to know are there any good monitoring companies out there that will let you wire up your equipment and you just pay theme a monthly fee?


askinder

join:2010-07-08
Kansas City, MO

If you we're unfortunate enough to be swindled by Vivint, you likely have a 5 year contract. If you are wanting to install your own system and have just monitoring, look at companies like Alarm Relay, Next Alarm and geoarm that cater to the DIY market. I am a 10 year veteran in the security and automation field I have had positions ranging from monitoring rep to installation manager, currently working in the commercial space as an integrator. Feel free to ask me any questions you have.


watts3000

join:2002-01-21

My contract is 3 I made sure of that up front because I had heard stories of these alarm companies pulling users into 5 year deals. By the way what I really want to do is keep my current go control panel and switch it over to another company however I'm sure Vivint has locked the system so that only they can use it. So my first question is can these systems be unlocked so you can move them to different providers and who all does two way voice Vivint claims they are the only company that can do two way voice?

This is what we have installed

»www.amazon.com/2GIG-CNTRL2-KIT3-···ol+panel



chip89
Premium
join:2012-07-05
Independence, OH

If you want to keep your system you can only choose ADT because your system uses Zwave.


watts3000

join:2002-01-21

I looked at the companies askinder posted and they support 2gig gear. So I must ask what does zwave have to do with anything? BTW askinder I checked our unit out looks like it uses a 2GIG-GSM1 cell module.



chip89
Premium
join:2012-07-05
Independence, OH

The remote monitoring will no longer work with out Zwave.


askinder

join:2010-07-08
Kansas City, MO
reply to askinder

Re: "If you want to keep your system you can only choose ADT because your system uses Zwave." This is BS disregard

Honestly, the zwave has nothing to do with the security system other than it allows you to interface with lighting modules, thermostats etc.

Re: Two way voice, many companies offer two way voice, although it is generally mostly offered by the door to door companies like Vivint. It is more of a gimick than anything else.

You should be able to reuse your GO Control panel if you can get into programming (the cell unit may not be released by Vivint, though). I have the APX - Vivint installer code on one of my old laptops, I will try to find it. Furthermore, you may want to take a closer look at geoarm since they sell and support the Go Control.

Best of luck.


watts3000

join:2002-01-21

askinder thanks for the pm it looks like from what you said I may not even have to replace the gsm module since it was not released by Vivint anyway. I am going to go out and download the install manual this may be just accessing the unit via the code and resetting it back to the original factory default than going back in and adding my components back such as motion detector, glass break, door sensors etc. Also it seems like Vivint uses Alarm.com for most of these functions one function I do like is having the daily weather forecast and I also like the critical weather alerts such as tornado watches and warnings. I will check with your other providers to see if they can also provide that service.


8744675

join:2000-10-10
Decatur, GA
reply to watts3000

Ask how many home burglaries have been stopped by a home alarm. Unless the cops were sitting in the neighborhood, probably zero. 99% of home alarm calls responded to by police are false alarms. By the time a monitoring company goes through their routine of contacting your home and anyone on your contact list before calling the police, the crooks are long gone.

The 2 best burglary prevention methods are:

A car parked in the driveway
A security company sign in plain sight.

A crook will look for a safer target without an alarm or someone who might be home. Save yourself the cost of monitoring and the false alarm fines.


watts3000

join:2002-01-21

Thanks for the info but we don't feel that way


askinder

join:2010-07-08
Kansas City, MO
reply to watts3000

Do not default the panel! Simply log in and out of programming to ensure you have the right installer code. Your new monitoring provider will walk you through changing the account number and receiver numbers.


watts3000

join:2002-01-21

askinder I was able to log in with the code but as I stated in the pm its an option that states system configuration that I can't get in it says that it was disabled. I assume you do not want to default the panel because you will have to set everything up from scratch.


itguy05

join:2005-06-17
Carlisle, PA
reply to 8744675

said by 8744675:

Ask how many home burglaries have been stopped by a home alarm. Unless the cops were sitting in the neighborhood, probably zero. 99% of home alarm calls responded to by police are false alarms. By the time a monitoring company goes through their routine of contacting your home and anyone on your contact list before calling the police, the crooks are long gone.

I agree. If you're out in the country who is going to hear it? And by the time the cops get there the bad guys will be long gone. In the city, who is going to stop someone or even care? And the police will still take their sweet time getting to you.

If anything it's just going to notify you someone broke in your house. The other effective thing is a dog. Nobody is going to want to tango with a barking dog when you could simply move on to another dog-free house.


tmh

@verizon.net
reply to 8744675

said by 8744675:

Ask how many home burglaries have been stopped by a home alarm.

doesn't seem to agree with

The 2 best burglary prevention methods are:

...A security company sign in plain sight.

The obvious intent of (2) is the bad guys assume you have (1). But if (1) doesn't do anything, then....

Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
reply to itguy05

In my town, the police response time would probably be under 2 minutes. They take burglar alarm activations seriously.



Hawk
Riding Thermals
Premium
join:2003-08-25
The Desert
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
reply to watts3000

We recently swithched to Protect America and are quite satisfied. No wireing required and monitering is through our broadband. They have a large selection of monitering options as well as package deals that are cheap or high end ie; cameras, etc depending on your needs. I highly recommend at least taking a look before pulling the trigger (which is my personal option!)

Edit: You can also monitor & configure your system online from any browser (very handy)


itguy05

join:2005-06-17
Carlisle, PA
reply to Bob4

said by Bob4:

In my town, the police response time would probably be under 2 minutes. They take burglar alarm activations seriously.

Doubtful. You would have to have a cop literally around the corner. Remember the alarm company has to call your house, not get you, then call 911 (or the local police directly) and go through their questions, then the cops get called and they have to get there.

Here are a couple articles on police response times:
»apbweb.com/featured-articles/118···ity.html
»www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/results···response
»www.metro.us/newyork/local/artic···ls-slows

I'd say the crooks know even with an alarm chances are they could get in and out before the cops show up. The smart crook casing a joint will trip the alarm a couple times to measure the response time.

watts3000

join:2002-01-21

I will look at Protect America but for some reason I'm not sold on broadband monitoring if your internet connection is down you have nothing so that's why I look at GSM.



alkizmo

join:2007-06-25
Pierrefonds, QC
kudos:1
reply to itguy05

said by itguy05:

I'd say the crooks know even with an alarm chances are they could get in and out before the cops show up. The smart crook casing a joint will trip the alarm a couple times to measure the response time.

Yeesh, I doubt thieves will case a house like that (Stores ya, houses not if it's middle class).

I had a thief enter my house through the basement once. They tripped the motion sensor once they got upstairs and ran out before the cops came. He took nothing.

Thieves are cowardly, for a typical house, they won't risk that a cop car was just passing by randomly.

Plus, even if a cop takes 10 minutes to arrive, it makes the thieves be limited in what they take. They can't really load up their car with a big TV in a hurry without the risk of being noticed/identified (plate written down by passing people). Though at night it's another issue. In my case it's to protect the house during the day time when we are at work.

Oh and then there's the fire alarm that's a real bonus. If a fire starts while you're not home, the alarm company will alert the firemen. Even if things are insured, a house fire can cause a lot of personal loss and be a big deal if the house burns down vs. an isolated fire that was stopped early.

Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
reply to itguy05

The under 2 minutes is from the time the police get the call. This is just a guess on my part, knowing that the police are always patrolling nearby.

My town had a grand total of 9 burglaries in 2011.



Hawk
Riding Thermals
Premium
join:2003-08-25
The Desert
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
reply to watts3000

Broadband monitoring is just one of their options. They offer land line, cell. etc as well. My apologies if I wasn't clear.

The one thing I appreciated is our start up was leas than a year ago. We recently moved and the components went with us with ease. I took the system down and re installed and tested in less than two hours. big plus IMHO.

Regarding police response, I could really care less. A txt is sent to my cell as well and I'll probably beat them to the property. All they need to do is clean up the mess.


askinder

join:2010-07-08
Kansas City, MO
reply to Hawk

Please stay away from Protect America, they use a UTC Simon panel that is junk and they have their panels hard coded from the manufacturer so they cannot be used with any other provider. Furthermore the send you the sensors with Velcro preinstalled. LOL really, Velcro?!?!


askinder

join:2010-07-08
Kansas City, MO
reply to watts3000

I do like broadband monitoring when coupled with cellular backup. I personally use a DMP XT30 with broadband and cell monitoring. System was made in the US, supports zwave and can do pretty much anything I throw at it.


Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
Reviews:
·Optimum Online
reply to Bob4

said by Bob4:

In my town, the police response time would probably be under 2 minutes. They take burglar alarm activations seriously.


Quote from one of our detectives:
quote:
You're not going to come into our town and break into our houses and not be held accountable. We're going to find you wherever you go in New Jersey.
This was after the detective participated in a 16-member task force to find one burglar, and followed him 100 miles to catch him breaking into a house.

»newjerseyhills.com/bernardsville···e6c.html


IowaCowboy
Iowa native
Premium
join:2010-10-16
Springfield, MA
Reviews:
·Verizon Broadban..
·Comcast
reply to watts3000

I installed my own security system (DSC Alexor) and had a local security company take over the monitoring. It is monitored via phone line to a monitoring station about 2 miles away from me (just over the bridge in Ludlow, MA). And the response time is quick. I accidentally punched in a duress code by accident and a few minutes later, a cop is knocking on the door. He said "is your alarm going off", and in the absence of the screaming sirens, I called the alarm company and they said they received a keypad distress signal and that is an automatic dispatch. A duress code is when a dirtbag breaks into your home with a gun to your head threatening to shoot unless you disarm/cancel the alarm signal (it silences the alarm but sends a distress signal to the central station, similar to a holdup alarm in a gas station or bank).