Can house alarms reduce home insurance costs?

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A home alarm system will generally reduce your insurance costs, but a few variables might determine the amount you save. With all insurance companies, you must follow their rules and requirements to save the most amount possible.

Not following their requirements can result in zero savings, even if your home is more secure. Examples of the types of stipulations can include the following: 

  • Deadbolts
  • Smart locks
  • Burglar alarms
  • Smoke alarms
  • Motion sensors
  • CCTV
  • Internal alerts to emergency services and the Gardaí

Insurance companies favour smart home security systems because they integrate multiple intrusion systems to create a comprehensive approach to home security. That comprehensive approach includes combining physical alarms that make a lot of noise with internal alerts to the Gardaí and fire, cameras, and physical actions that prevent entry by intruders.

Stipulations for a policy are listed in the policy declarations and in the content of the policy itself. Making sure you read the entire agreement to document any discounts and inform your purchase decisions is critical to getting the equipment that will give you the largest discount possible.

Is it worth having a house alarm?

The worth of an alarm system goes beyond any discounts you get on your homeowner’s insurance policy. For example, even if what you have gets you a minimal discount, it keeps your home secure and your belongings safe, and it is worth the investment.

Whether it is a good investment for insurance discounts depends on the company you have the policy with and their internal requirements. Insurance companies exist to make money, and having to pay out claims is something they actively work to prevent.

Adding an obstacle or obstacles to intruders, an alert system for fires or gas or water leaks, and ways to document what is happening around your home helps them avoid paying out claims. Because of that, as long as you install a system that complies with their requirements, they will likely give you a break on your insurance rates.

How many different types of alarms are there?

There are many different types of alarms that provide warning systems for many different aspects of home security. Here are a few of the most common.

Burglar alarms

These are the standard type of home alarms most people recognize as the “traditional alarm system.” Burglar alarms usually have a very loud warning system designed to alert the homeowner and neighbours of an intrusion and scare off those who activate the alarm but have not gotten into the home yet.

They include door and broken window sensors, motion detectors, and invalid disarming code alarms. If connected to a Professional monitoring service such as Smartzone, they will have links to the Gardaí, Fire and Emergency Services.

With a monitored house alarm, you will receive a phone call to verify that you are experiencing a break-in. If you do not reply or do not give them a security code, they will treat any activation of the alarm system as a break-in. With the Gardaí and fire, if they cannot confirm that there is no emergency, they will dispatch personnel to check it out in person.

Smoke alarms

Smoke alarms are standard in just about every building. The only question is whether the alarm is a high-pitched warning that is impossible to ignore or whether it is the warning siren plus alerting the Gardaí and emergency services. As with burglar alarms, if you do not provide a security key directly into the system or through a separate call, the alarm will be treated as a fire emergency.

Heat sensors

Heat detectors and sensors are usually placed strategically around a home, and their purpose is to pick up on extreme temperature differences or increases in temperature. Internal and external alarms go off when a heat signature activates the sensor. Internal alarms can go to a third-party security management firm or the fire service, depending on your service.

Carbon monoxide alarms

Carbon monoxide alarms are usually an alarm that alerts the parties in the home that carbon monoxide is present. Some systems will link the alarm to a third-party management firm. Few get linked to a fire department. When an alarm goes off, the standard operating procedure is vacating the premises and contacting fire emergency personnel.

With a third party, they will usually try to contact you and fire personnel to investigate the report of carbon monoxide.

Leak detectors

Leak sensors cover both gas leaks and water leaks. Gas leaks can cause an explosion or fire. Water leaks can do thousands of euros worth of damage. When an alarm for gas goes off, an internal alarm usually alerts your gas provider and the fire service. You must vacate the premises as soon and as carefully as you can.

For water leaks, the alert is usually contained to the home unless you have a third-party service that will give you a call.

Are home alarms easy to install and maintain?

The difficulty of installing and maintaining an alarm system depends on the type of system you choose to install. Most systems that qualify for an insurance discount will require a professional installation by a PSA (Private Security Authority) registered installer. If you install the system yourself, you will usually need to have it inspected by a PSA professional to verify it works and complies with insurance company stipulations and requirements.

Monitored vs. unmonitored alarm systems

Monitored systems are managed by a third party and linked to the Gardaí, Fire and Emergency Services. 

With unmonitored systems you monitor and must physically inspect it, calling the Gardaí or other emergency services if you deem it appropriate.

Why is Smartzone the best home alarm provider in Ireland?

Smartzone is the best home alarm system provider in Ireland. They have years of valuable experience, and their staff will expertly analyse your system needs and customise an alarm to meet them. Their combination of experience, skills, knowledge, and success make them a “go-to” choice for many customers.