Traditionally, a home security system protected you from a single threat: intruders. If the system was armed and there was a break-in, you were protected.
Smart Home Security from ABN Security with Alarm.com is much more useful. It protects you against a range of potential challenges you face as a homeowner, ranging from intruders and safety hazards to extreme weather and even energy wastage.
One of these dangers is harmful elements within your home: fire, carbon monoxide and water leaks.
ABN Security’s uniquely connected network of sensors and devices not only detects dangerous situations, but takes proactive, automatic measures to protect your home and family.
Your first defense against the elements is detection. With connected smoke and carbon monoxide sensors, your system will instantly pinpoint a danger area in your home.
Water sensors can be added to any vulnerable area in your house: under the sink, in the basement, behind the washing machine to let you (or a plumber) know exactly where a leak is coming from.
In a fire, CO or water leak situation, early awareness makes all the difference.
In the event of fire, your professional monitoring service (which all ABN Security’s systems come with) will spring into action immediately. A security professional will assess the situation immediately and dispatch emergency services if needed. Whether you're home or away, help will be at hand.
Meanwhile, your home's alarm will sound and a smartphone alert will tell you exactly what's going on and where. If you're not home, you can visually confirm the alarm using your image sensors or video cameras.
If your system detects a water leak when you're not home, you can use smart access control to let an emergency plumber or trusted neighbor in to turn off your water. Because water damage is fast, this can save you thousands of dollars in cleanup costs, especially if you're out of town.
As well as alerting people, ABN Security’s system takes action in an emergency, triggering different devices to protect your home.
In a fire or CO event, your Smart Thermostat shuts down immediately, preventing smoke or gases spreading through your HVAC system. Your smart lighting also turns on to show you the way outside.
If you're equipped with our full Water Management solution, your home's water will shut off automatically at the source if a leak is detected – a valuable safeguard when even the tiniest crack in a pipe can leak 250 gallons in a day.
Not so long ago, only the wealthy could afford to have a home monitoring system installed where they live. However, with the advances in mobile technology, these systems are more affordable for today’s homeowners than ever before.
Many homeowners feel they do not own any items worth stealing and therefore have no need to install such a system. Unfortunately, in many cases this is not true. Burglars focus on easy jobs that will garner big payouts by searching for items such as tools, jewelry, smartphones, laptops, cameras or small appliances. Items such as these are found in homes everywhere, not just in wealthy neighborhoods. No matter what one’s status or location is, any home is at risk from possible invasion.
Almost anyone can install do-it-yourself safety measures in their home, including cameras, sensors, alarms and other hardware. Some criminals may avoid breaking into a home with a visible alarm system; however, this type of DIY alarm system only works if someone is in the home to hear the alarm. If no one is home, the system is useless.
For this reason, it is important that the homeowner includes 24/7 monitored protection as part of their home system. With a monitored system, they know that no matter where they are, the system is protecting their home from intruders. If an alarm goes off, the monitoring company will immediately contact the police. In addition, many of these systems are programmed to contact the fire department in case of fire or carbon monoxide in the home. Some systems also include a panic button that silently alerts the company to contact the police.
Studies show that a burglary takes place in the United States about every 18 seconds. The following statistics illustrate the risks everyone takes if they do not make use of a monitored system:
1. Burglars are more apt to avoid homes that have security systems.
A study conducted by the University of North Carolina states that 60 percent of convicted burglars admit that the presence of such a system at a home often led to them choosing another home to rob. Most burglars gain access to a home through a window or door. If they see evidence of security equipment in these areas, they are apt to leave that home.
2. Studies show that a majority of burglaries occur between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 pm.
Many burglaries take place during the day while homeowners are at work or at school. This reduces the chances that anyone will notice the burglar. Many monitored systems include cameras that can film the intruder in action.
3. Career criminals can rob a home in less than ten minutes.
Burglars search for homes that are easy targets. They know how to quickly break into a house, take what they want and leave before anyone notices that something is wrong. Again, this is where the use of the cameras becomes important.
4. Home systems with 24/7 monitoring have faster response times than those without it.
If a homeowner cannot respond to an alert, they are confident that the monitoring company will immediately respond as soon as they receive it.
5. Monitored systems cover more than just burglaries.
Although homeowners use these systems primarily to thwart burglaries, a high-quality system also connects to and alerts the local fire department and/or police department. If there is a fire emergency or a high level of carbon monoxide in the home, the fire department will be notified immediately. Depending on the system in use, the fire department will also respond if the homeowner needs help due to falls or other types of medical emergencies.
Most homeowners are already aware of the problems that may arise, including burglaries, home invasions, fires and medical emergencies. No one should wait until a tragedy occurs to safeguard themselves and their family. The wise homeowner will make it a priority to have a 24/7 monitored security system installed before any tragedy can take place.
It is natural to worry about your baby’s well-being when he or she is alone in the nursery. However, there are several ways to reduce your worries and hazards with careful planning. These are some of the essentials when creating baby’s first room.
Smart Safety Tips
You can save yourself a few premature gray hairs and protect your baby’s health with these must-have devices.
Use a video monitor. You no longer have to sit by a radio-style monitor and wonder if your baby is safe. With a basic video monitor that is mounted on or near a crib, you can see what baby is doing at all times. Some advanced, motion-activated monitors even connect to apps that send you alerts when your baby cries or appears distressed.
Use a smart thermostat. This efficient device makes baby’s comfort the top priority in the house by automatically adjusting the temperature. Smart thermostats use a wall sensor to detect the nursery’s temperature and communicate with the HVAC.
Use smart health devices. You can now check baby’s vital stats instantly with a BPA-free smart pacifier and a smart sock. The sock measures pulse and oxygen saturation, and the pacifier measures temperature. Some also come with apps that help you keep track of medication administration and vital statistics changes.
With smart technology that protects an infant’s health and habitat, it has never been easier to plan a safe nursery. Ask about our special security features and alerts that keep you, your baby, and your home safer.
Essential Safety Tips
When you get caught up in the excitement of picking colors and themes, do not overlook these safety issues.
Keep curtains away from the crib. Long curtains can be a suffocation hazard if they reach the crib. Avoid curtains altogether or choose sturdy valances, and be sure to position the crib away from any windows where curtains could fall into it.
Pick a tight-fitting mattress. If you can fit two or more fingers between the crib and the mattress, it is a hazard. Find the manufacturer’s mattress recommendation for your chosen crib.
Keep baby’s bed safe. Never put pillows and stuffed animals in the crib while the baby is sleeping, as these are suffocation hazards. If you use a bumper pad, ensure that it fastens snugly to the crib and does not sag. Be sure that the crib does not have drop sides, and pick a model that was manufactured after 2011 based on the Consumer Product Safety Commission regulations.
Eliminate common injury risks. Put covers on all outlets, and remove lamps and other tip-prone hazards when baby starts to crawl. Anchor furniture to a wall. Also, keep lotion, oil, powder and other supplies out of baby’s reach near the changing table. Be sure that the changing table’s tray can be fastened to something sturdy to avoid a dangerous slip.
Use safe paint. Choose a water-based, lead-free paint for the walls. Do not paint over existing wallpaper or peeling paint. The walls should be smooth, bare and primed before painting.
For many vacation home owners, there has always been great excitement and enjoyment associated with “getting away from it all.” Vacation properties can provide a terrific respite from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. But what happens during the rest of the year when the vacation home is left vacant and unused? What’s more, how do you manage to keep your property in tip-top shape if it is being used by multiple parties? How can you have peace of mind without knowing that your home away from home is safe and sound?
Until recently, the options have been limited – and not overly effective. Many homeowners have depended on property management companies to keep an eye on things, but finding a good one can be difficult and the cost can be high. Asking a neighbor to keep an eye on the place might be feasible in some instances, but what if there are no other houses around for miles? The seclusion that you value so highly in your property is now a bit of a liability.
Things have changed. Now it’s possible for homeowners to directly manage their vacation property regardless of the distance using Z-Wave technology. Z-Wave is a wireless technology that allows for remote home control and monitoring using a smartphone, tablet or PC. Z-Wave is, in fact, the most broadly adopted wireless protocol in the world for control and automation products and services, with over 20 million devices in use today.
With simple apps, homeowners can utilize Z-Wave technology to look after and control their vacation residences in a number of different ways.
1) Security Is Key
When a vacation property is equipped with a Z-Wave-powered home control solution, security is increased exponentially. (Z-Wave powers virtually 100% of the North American residential security panels.) By using a handy smartphone or tablet app, property owners can remotely lock doors (equipped with “smart” electronic locks), turn off appliances, and make sure windows and other openings are properly closed.
A Z-Wave home automation system, in conjunction with a high-quality monitoring systems, can also alert vacation property owners when someone has entered the residence, allowing them to quickly alert authorities should a break-in occur. Plus, security alerts can not only be sent to the owner’s phone or computer, they can be sent to a local partner, property management company or police/fire departments, depending on the nature of the security breach.
2) Maintaining Maintenance
One of the biggest issues for vacation property owners is maintaining basic upkeep on a house or condominium located far away; Z-Wave can help in this scenario as well. For example, when a technician needs to come over to fix an air conditioning unit, refrigerator or another appliance, the homeowner can remotely unlock the door to let them in. What’s more, with many of today’s Z-Wave-powered smart locks, a technician or service provider can be given a temporary code that only works on a certain day at a specific time, after which it is inoperable. Consequently, access to the home is effectively controlled.
3) Share and Share Alike
Many people use vacation homes on a shared basis, whether that means a timeshare model, renting out the space on a part-time basis, or an informal sharing arrangement with others. Plus, as Airbnb becomes more popular, some homeowners are turning their primary or secondary residence into a home away from home for out-of-town guests. Under these circumstances, maintaining the property can be difficult as coordinating upkeep and oversight with so many people can be daunting. Z-Wave is perfect for these kinds of arrangements, allowing either one person or many to have access to the home control system.
4) Working Well With Others
Since the Z-Wave standard is interoperable at the product level and capable of working with thousands of different smart devices and objects, it’s easy to use Z-Wave technology to control virtually every aspect of the home. This also makes it simple to expand your home automation capabilities with additional Z-Wave devices.
5) Save Energy – and Money
The cost saving benefits of a Z-Wave home control system is seen prominently in the energy savings arena. With a Z-Wave-powered vacation home, owners can use their smartphone to operate heating, cooling, fans, lights and other major electronics. Intelligent dimming can save lighting energy by 25-40%.
Perhaps a guest has left the lights or the heat on after their stay at your vacation home. You can turn them off rather than having them burn for days or possible weeks, unabated. Z-Wave pays for itself with the money saved on electric bills alone, not to mention the benefit of receiving a text notification if anything unusual happens to the property.
6) Damage Control
One of the worst fears of vacation home owners is the prospect of damage to their property when no one is there to deal with it – or even prevent it. There are a wide variety of Z-Wave-based devices that can alleviate this concern; leak detectors and automatic water shutoff valves, to sense leaks and shut off the water are a prime example.
Managing the temperature and humidity are more than just a matter of saving energy and money, as noted above. Too-high temperatures and/or humidity can cause a variety of issues, including peeling paint, mold, and more. These problems can be alleviated by controlling fans and air conditioning, dampers, humidifiers, and the like. There are additional sensor products and window shades that can help avoid damage to interiors caused by exposure to the sun. Same principle for cold-weather vacation homes, as freezing pipes can be alleviated through Z-Wave control of the heating system.
7) When It’s Time to Go…
When vacation season is over, you’ll want to put your house in “storage” mode. But can you trust that the last person who uses the property will actually do it? Z-Wave-based devices like the aforementioned power window shades and shutters, combined with powered water and drain valves, lighting timers, thermostat programs, and security programs, all help to simplify the process of closing up the house for the season – while easing the owner’s mind that something small but important was forgotten. No more long check lists that renters invariably forget to follow.
No home is ever truly safe from break-ins, theft or fire. While certain devices are designed with the express purpose of inhibiting or combating these threats, home security is more than just about preventing crime and the loss of or damage to property. Should a fire break out in your home, for instance, you must promptly alert the authorities to ensure a timely emergency response.
You definitely need to keep an eye out for anything and everything that can endanger your life, limb and property. Luckily, sophisticated home security devices allow you to track the number of times a door has been opened or closed. In theory, many electronic security devices in a home or business establishment can be remotely monitored. In line with modern needs, ABN Security can assist you with these.
Round-the-clock monitoring is an important component of any home fire alarm system. After all, you’ll want to alert the local fire department the moment the alarm goes off. Additionally, some devices can also be modified to keep track of carbon monoxide levels inside a home or commercial establishment. Most can even be operated using a smartphone or a tablet.
ABN Security’s alarm monitoring can also keep track of how many times each door has been opened and closed. This is a great feature in keeping a remote eye out for potential issues and business owners can also find different applications for it. For instance, by recording the number of entries, shop managers can count how many customers the business receives daily.
An alarm monitoring company is relevant to any home or business owner who insists on keeping an eye on his property. While crime prevention is still their primary purpose, security systems can also be useful business tools. There may be no such thing as a 100 percent-secured home or establishment, but alarm monitoring services can provide the next best thing.
I already monitor my alarm system via landline – why should I bother subscribing to cellular monitoring? Without a doubt, landlines are the most popular form of communication amongst our alarm monitoring customers. It’s what most people have been doing for years. Recently, however, cellular phones have risen as a viable contender to the traditional landline. In fact, ACA International reports that one in four American homes have given up their landline in favor of cellular phones. Furthermore, nearly 16% of Americans with home phone lines report receiving all or most of their phone calls on their cell phone, even though they have a working landline.
We still stand 100% by our UL listed security system monitoring services through a landline. But we understand that landline alarm monitoring shouldn’t be the only option our customers have when choosing a monitoring service. Whether you’re thinking about giving up your landline or you just want another level of security, here are three great reasons why cellular monitoring on your alarm system is a good idea.
1. Your Security System Monitoring Won’t be Interrupted if Your Phone Line Goes Down Someone hit a telephone poll and your landline is down. Without cellular backup, our central station will not know that your connection to us has been severed. However, if you have cellular monitoring enabled on your home alarm system we can continue our monitoring services without interruption.
2. Your Landline can be Cut If an intruder knows you have an alarm system installed on your property, he or she can cut your phone line and continue on with a robbery. Cellular units, on the other hand, can never be cut: they operate wirelessly over a cellular network, which means your home is still protected even if an intruder disables your phone line.
3. You can Continue to be Monitored if You Get Rid of Your Land Line If you don’t use your landline often and are thinking about ditching it, your alarm monitoring service can continue uninterrupted with cellular monitoring.
If you’d prefer to have backup monitoring communication besides your cellular connection, ABN Security also offers monitoring via your Internet connection. Not sure if your module is supported by Alarm Relay? We support the following cellular modules:
Want to find out more about cellular monitoring or getting rid of your land line? Give us a call and talk to one of our customer service representatives to learn more. (770) 429-8092
Keeping your family and your valuables safe is a task that requires diligence. Here are 8 basic security tips that can give you a start in the right direction.