To honor National Fire Prevention Week which was created in commemoration of the Great Chicago Fire in 1871, we want to discuss the importance of having a central station monitored alarm installed in your home. Our philosophy here at Townley Kenton Insurance is to do all we can to help you avoid having to file a claim before a loss ever even occurs. One of the ways we do this is recommending our Atlanta Home Insurance clients always install a central station monitored alarm. Although this can save you money on your home insurance, we cannot stress enough that the most important reason to install the alarm is to potentially save the life of you and your family.
Some staggering statistics
Every year in the United States, home fires cause around 13,000 injuries, 2,500 deaths, and nearly $7 billion in damage.1
More than half of residential fire deaths occur in fires that start between 11:00pm and 7:00am. The peak night hours are from 2:00am to 5:00am, when most people are in a deep sleep.1
One in six homes will be burglarized.3
The F.B.I. indicates that burglars are 2.7 times more likely to target homes without alarm systems.3
Why it’s important to install a central station alarm
As if the statistics above weren’t already enough to make you reconsider installing a central station alarm at your home, here are some other important reasons that we as your Atlanta independent insurance agent so highly endorse getting one:
A centrally monitored alarm could be the only line of defense in saving your life
Unfortunately, we know tragic stories of people who have passed away in their sleep due to fires that broke out unbeknownst to them in their homes. And with the change in production and quality of homes and furniture today compared to 30 years ago3, fire experts agree that now you only have two minutes to escape a burning home before it’s too late to get out (compared to 17 minutes in the past).4
If installing an alarm is the best way to prevent a similar situation with your family, wouldn’t it make sense to gain that peace of mind? The small monthly cost of having your home monitored is worth your life and the lives of your family.
Your home is protected while you are away from it
Even the biggest homebodies must leave the house from time to time for work, appointments, grocery shopping, and of course vacation (for you non-homebodies). Central station monitoring centers will be watching over your home while you are away and will alert the first responders if there is an issue. This may be the only way to save your home and possessions should a fire start while you are gone.
You get a discount on your Atlanta Home insurance
This is the obvious financial perk to having a central station alarm installed. But do you understand why the insurance companies provide a discount? It’s because it’s been actuarially verified that homes with central station alarms are less likely to have a loss due to a fire or theft. Depending on the system you get, the savings on home insurance may offset the monitoring cost or more!
How to determine which central station alarm is right for you
The home monitoring industry has increased and improved significantly over the past five to ten years, and there now are many options for you in choosing the best fit to protect your home. These are some factors to take into consideration.
National or local affiliation
There are some strong nationally recognized brands, as well as local ones. We would be happy to give you our recommendations based on your preference if you call or email us!
You can elect to have a basic system installed, or you can add bells and whistles such as motion-sensing surveillance cameras, window sensors, security lighting, smart home products, and more.5 The more you choose, the more you will have to pay which brings us to the next point…
Differing budgets and amounts of assets to cover cause the cost of security systems to vary greatly. These are some factors that will contribute to your monthly bill:
- Financed equipment costs: The monthly security hardware cost, if you don’t pay for it all up front.
- Alarm monitoring: The cost for your home to be monitored.
- Size of your home: Bigger homes provide more potential fire-causing opportunities and more access points for burglars to attack, so they may require more cameras or motion sensors.
- Landline vs. cellular monitoring: Landline monitoring costs less per month but can be turned off with a single cut to your outdoor telephone line.
- Environmental sensors: Sensors that detect heat, smoke, carbon monoxide, flooding and more will cost more.
As your trusted risk advisors, we hope this information will help you in considering the installation of a central station alarm at your home. Please reach out if you have any more questions about the benefits of central station alarms. Although providing you with insurance is part of our job… educating you on protection is sometimes the most important part.
- Fire Safety Statistics. (https://www.unitypoint.org/blankchildrens/fire-statistics.aspx).
- Crime Statistics. (https://www.hsmc-ul.com/alarms/crime-statistics).
- Jeff Rossen and Josh Davis. (2017, October 16). Newer homes and furniture burn faster, giving you less time to escape a fire. https://www.today.com/home/newer-homes-furniture-burn-faster-giving-you-less-time-escape-t65826
- Sarah Layton. (2014, October 27). 2 Minute Fire Drill: Can You Escape?. https://redcrosschat.org/2014/10/27/2-minute-fire-drill-can-you-escape/
- How Much Do Home Security Systems Cost Per Month?. (https://www.ackermansecurity.com/blog/home-security-tips/how-much-do-home-security-systems-cost-per-month).