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 CPI Security Consultant Rhonda Goodman tells us what we should know about home security systems and protecting their property and loved ones.

 Rhonda Goodman is your CPI Regency Park Neighborhood Representative & Security Consultant. Rhonda has been responsible for the installation of more than 2,500 home security systems in Wake County and talks to us today about how we can protect our property and loved ones and about the basics of a home security system.

Rhonda, you and CPI have helped many area home owners learn about the basics of home security systems and how they can use them to help protect themselves, their loved ones and their property. But there are still many families in our area that are not aware of the advances in home security technology and how easy it is to have a security system installed in their homes. Let’s start with some very basic questions – things that every homeowner should know.

What is the difference between a wired and a wireless system?

A very good first question. Most home security companies offer both wireless and wired systems. Wireless devices communicate with the home control panel without the need for wires and of course the remote devices in a wired system are each wired to the same control panel. Normally would need a home with a crawl space in order to have a wired system.

What do you see more of?

We are doing more of the wireless systems. They are easier to install and of course the various security devices can be later easily relocated by an authorized technician if the need ever arises. But a wire-less system does require the homeowner to change the batteries when they get low and also as part of a preventative maintenance program.

So are we saying that wired system do not have batteries?

The remote devices for a wired system also have back up batteries. The difference is that while the batteries for wireless devices are the only power source, the batteries in a wired system provide backup power in a power failure.    These batteries will re-charge themselves once the power comes back on.  

How do the basic system devices work?

All of the devices send an alarm issue signal to both you and to a remote monitoring center. The major difference is that you would hear the alarm first if you were home which gives you an opportunity to cancel the alarm before the monitoring stations receive it.

What are the more basic or common components and how do you use them?

These would be the door, windows, glass break, and motion detectors.

You mentioned motion detectors, but won’t these set off an alarm if we are at home and moving around the house?

Another excellent question. There is a way to make your alarm system active when you are in the house so that all devices except the motion detector are active and another way to set the all the devices when everyone will be way. This is easily controlled by using a different code at your control panel.

What about monitoring and how does this work?

Remote monitoring stations manned by trained technicians operate 24/7. There are usually several monitoring stations that cover a specific area in case of a power outage or any other major problem at one monitoring station. If the monitoring station receives an alarm from your location, it will automatically notify you, the authorities, and anyone else that you specify.

What will a system actually cost me?

The cost for labor and materials will vary depending on the type and number of devises that are necessary to protect your home. Many companies may offer special promotions and discounts as incentives for the installation of basic system components. Many companies also offer a free no-obligation security survey conducted by a trained professional to determine what your need actually is and what the cost would be. And the time required to install a hoe system is approximately 3 to 4 hours.

What about the remote monitoring, what will this cost?

This varies by the company and may also depend on if you add other types of devices that require monitoring such as smoke, fire, and carbon monoxide detectors. But the monthly cost for a basic system might run from about $30 to $40 per month.

Is a home security system all I need to protect my home and family?

There are certainly other things a homeowner should do even if they have a security system, such as fire escape ladders. Clearly marked and visible house numbers, fire escape routes and plans, and a way for authorities to get into your home in case of a fire or medical emergency. 

What further enhancements are generally offer by home security companies?

Remote door locks, Exterior & Interior cameras, programmable thermostats, garage controllers are among the many additional equipment options that can be added to a home security system.

Thank you Rhonda for all of this valuable information. Is there any last bit of advice you want to offer?    

Yes - many insurance companies offer an annual homeowner’s policy discount for having a monitored alarm system. This will vary by the insurance company and the type of policy.  

Your area CPI Security office is located at 5150 McCrimmon Parkway in Morrisville, NC. Visit their website at cpisecurity.com .  And if you have any questions or want your own personalized home security evaluation please call Rhonda at 919-669-3928, or email her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.