Intruder Alarm Costs - any ideas?

rio1981

Well-known Member
Mornin' all,

Well the Mrs and I are settling in to our 5th day at our first house and we're brainstorming about what we can do to the property whilst we've still got some money burning a hole in our pocket.

The house is a cracker, the area - without wanting to sound like a snob - ain't the best and the house isn't protected by an alarm. I don't have quite the multitude of kit that some of you guys and girls have, but it still runs into thousands (once you count my guitar into the mix too :D).

For peace of mind we want to get one fitted but I have no idea of a ballpark figure, and it's tricky to call security places whilst at work (apparently I'm supposed to be working?!).

Anyone bought and had an alarm fitted recently? And if so did it make a decent dent in your monthly contents insurance?

Be interested to hear your thoughts and advice :smashin:
 

Mr_Wistles

Distinguished Member
I had a local firm install an alarm and dialer (calls a list of five people when it goes off) with sensors in my kitchen, hall, dining room, lounge, landing and home cinema room and if memory serves me right is cost £800.

Insurance wise it saved me about £20 a year. It is more of a hindrance now because if you get burgled and it is not on you don't get paid. You also have to have it serviced every year (£80) or the insurance company won't recognise it.
 

chrisw

Well-known Member
I've just bought and installed a BT VP1000 wireless home monitor alarm... it cost me £80 (£199 from BT) from savastore and seems to be an ok bit of kit, which was fairly easy to install and setup. A professional install was looking like costing £600+ for my house, so we went with the cheap option. Haven't told the insurance company, as they would not recognise it and as Russell says, it can be a pain in the bum having to turn it on at every juncture.

As most people will say, it's better to ensure your locks, doors and windows are up to scratch, as this will deter a burglar much more than an alarm.
 

rio1981

Well-known Member
Cheers for the replies - I like the idea of a visible deterrant but don't like the idea of a makeshift box on the front wall pretending to be an active alarm.

Motion sensing may be a problem as we have three cats :D

I guess you get what you pay for and how far you're willing to push the home security issue, much as anything. I probably wouldn't end up fitting it myself because I'd only make a complete bodge of it :suicide:
 

Mrs AutomanUK

Active Member
How about a huge dog ? Train it to sit on your guitar box beside your AV stuff, and growl at anyone or anything that so much as looks at it. That should do the job.

I would agree with Chris. Look at all the possible entry points on your property and make them burgle proof. Get great locks on your doors and windows. Even an alarm these days gets ignored if it goes off because it's assumed it's a mistake that it has gone of. Look at the sides of your house and see if there is any deterrent to a would be thief like something thorny running along the top of the fence for instance, install PIR sensor lighting round your home, and if you have a drive that needs replacing, then go for crunchy stones rather than tarmac. Not those pink pebble things, but nice, normal coloured stones that make a noise when walked on. It makes it impossible for anyone to creep up on the house without being heard and they look really nice too.

Russell, I was amazed to hear that your alarm needed so much 'looking after' to keep the insurance right. Are all insurance companies like this?
 

the whistler

Active Member
rio1981 said:
Cheers for the replies - I like the idea of a visible deterrant but don't like the idea of a makeshift box on the front wall pretending to be an active alarm.

Motion sensing may be a problem as we have three cats :D

I guess you get what you pay for and how far you're willing to push the home security issue, much as anything. I probably wouldn't end up fitting it myself because I'd only make a complete bodge of it :suicide:

Most modern sensors now come in a 'pet freindly' option. Small dogs and cats will not trigger the sensor.
 

rio1981

Well-known Member
Mrs AutomanUK said:
How about a huge dog ? Train it to sit on your guitar box beside your AV stuff, and growl at anyone or anything that so much as looks at it. That should do the job.

I would agree with Chris. Look at all the possible entry points on your property and make them burgle proof. Get great locks on your doors and windows. Even an alarm these days gets ignored if it goes off because it's assumed it's a mistake that it has gone of. Look at the sides of your house and see if there is any deterrent to a would be thief like something thorny running along the top of the fence for instance, install PIR sensor lighting round your home, and if you have a drive that needs replacing, then go for crunchy stones rather than tarmac. Not those pink pebble things, but nice, normal coloured stones that make a noise when walked on. It makes it impossible for anyone to creep up on the house without being heard and they look really nice too.

Russell, I was amazed to hear that your alarm needed so much 'looking after' to keep the insurance right. Are all insurance companies like this?

Some good ideas, thanks! The front garden - if it could be called that - is effectively a blank canvas so we could easily get some stones down. We do need to replace a gate at the side of the house as it's rotting away - a nice metal one with those semi-spiky railings at the top would be good.

Excuse my ignorance Mrs A but PIR sensor lighting? :confused:
 

stealther

Active Member
Good idea to get the pros in to install your alarm system. Poorly calibrated alarms are the fastest way to alienate your new neighbours. Trust me I regularly lie awake at night dreaming about burning down the house 2 doors up from me.:D

My advice get the best you can afford for peace of mind along with a big dog, barbed wire, and motioned sensor machine guns calibrated to exclude cats of course:devil:
 

stealther

Active Member
rio1981 said:
Some good ideas, thanks! The front garden - if it could be called that - is effectively a blank canvas so we could easily get some stones down. We do need to replace a gate at the side of the house as it's rotting away - a nice metal one with those semi-spiky railings at the top would be good.

Excuse my ignorance Mrs A but PIR sensor lighting? :confused:

I think it means Pyroelectric Sensors. They come on when you approach them
 

rio1981

Well-known Member
stealther said:
My advice get the best you can afford for peace of mind along with a big dog, barbed wire, and motioned sensor machine guns calibrated to exclude cats of course:devil:

:rotfl: So if the horse-sized dog doesn't get the cats first, the machine guns will yeah?! I think when it comes to something of this importance, and being our first place, I'd get it done by a pro simply for the peace of mind even if I knew how to fit the thing anyway.

the whistler said:
Most modern sensors now come in a 'pet freindly' option. Small dogs and cats will not trigger the sensor.

Ah, cheers for this info, this I didn't know.
 

chrisw

Well-known Member
PIR = Passive InfraRed - uses heat and movement to trigger a switch (in the case to turn a security light on).

The VP1000 that I bought has pet friendly sensors (apparently it can ignore objects of up to about 20kgs ... somehow!).
 

Mrs AutomanUK

Active Member
rio1981 said:
Some good ideas, thanks! The front garden - if it could be called that - is effectively a blank canvas so we could easily get some stones down. We do need to replace a gate at the side of the house as it's rotting away - a nice metal one with those semi-spiky railings at the top would be good.

Excuse my ignorance Mrs A but PIR sensor lighting? :confused:

You know.. those ones that come on automatically when someone breaks the beam. PIR stands for Passive Infra Red. You can get these lights in B and Q or cheaper online if you want and wire them up yourselves. Set their sensitivity at dusk by twidling the switches on it, and then take a walk around your house to see how far you get before you set the light off. Angle it so that a would be intruder can get no further than a side window perhaps.... put one round the back and on the front, but not so bright that you blind your mates when they come to visit !!
 

rio1981

Well-known Member
Mrs AutomanUK said:
You know.. those ones that come on automatically when someone breaks the beam. PIR stands for Passive Infra Red. You can get these lights in B and Q or cheaper online if you want and wire them up yourselves. Set their sensitivity at dusk by twidling the switches on it, and then take a walk around your house to see how far you get before you set the light off. Angle it so that a would be intruder can get no further than a side window perhaps.... put one round the back and on the front, but not so bright that you blind your mates when they come to visit !!

Ah I see, that's another good idea, cheers.

Now, how about a moat and drawbridge? :D
 

Mr_Wistles

Distinguished Member
the whistler said:
Most modern sensors now come in a 'pet freindly' option. Small dogs and cats will not trigger the sensor.

I have two large labradors and the company set it up so that the dogs dont set it off.
 

Pat_C

Well-known Member
Russell_Piper said:
I have two large labradors and the company set it up so that the dogs dont set it off.
Does anyone know how these devices can ignore pet movement? I've been considering some sort of intruder alarm system but had assumed that the dog would be a problem with motion sensors. Now I'm intrigued to know how they work.

Another option that I think is perhaps a good visual deterrent is CCTV cameras, even if they aren't connected.

BTW - I did hear an ex-burglar being interviewed recently (TV or radio, can't remember) and he said that he was attracted to houses where the property or front garden had a run down look about it. The thinking was that if people didn't bother about these things they were very unlikely to worry much about deadlocks, alarms etc.
 

Pat_C

Well-known Member
Lawrenzini said:
What about if you get a dwarf robbing you?
I imagine that would trigger a small claims procedure.
 

Mr_Wistles

Distinguished Member
Pat_C said:
Does anyone know how these devices can ignore pet movement? I've been considering some sort of intruder alarm system but had assumed that the dog would be a problem with motion sensors. Now I'm intrigued to know how they work.

Another option that I think is perhaps a good visual deterrent is CCTV cameras, even if they aren't connected.

BTW - I did hear an ex-burglar being interviewed recently (TV or radio, can't remember) and he said that he was attracted to houses where the property or front garden had a run down look about it. The thinking was that if people didn't bother about these things they were very unlikely to worry much about deadlocks, alarms etc.

The beam is angled up at over a certain height. When the bloke set it up he crawled around on all fours, pretending to jump while his colleague changed the angle of the sensors, not very high tech.
 

Pat_C

Well-known Member
Russell_Piper said:
The beam is angled up at over a certain height. When the bloke set it up he crawled around on all fours, pretending to jump while his colleague changed the angle of the sensors, not very high tech.
Did you rub his tummy and give him a biscuit when he had finished? :)
 

neilmcl

Well-known Member
Russell_Piper said:
Unfortunately I had to give him £800
I'm assuming its that expensive because of the dialler service. I got mine a few years back for around £250 incl front/back door contacts, 4 PIRs, panic button etc. plus they only charge £39 a year for servicing. You really don't have to spend large amounts if you want a decent passive alarm system.
 

Mr_Wistles

Distinguished Member
I think the dialer was an extra £200.

I got four different quotes and £800 was the cheapest.

I remember when I got everest round for a quote on my two bedroom flat in 2003 and they wanted £4300!!!!!!!
 

rio1981

Well-known Member
Do these guys quote prior to a site survey to give an estimated figure based on the size of house, etc, or is a survey the only way to get a quote?
 

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