06:48PM | 01/19/06
Member Since: 01/18/06
21 lifetime posts

With the emphasis now a-days leaning on good home security, where do we go from here? Many lock experts are telling us that locks are the priority, since we want to discourage an intruder before he or she makes their grand entrance.

Most lock experts will tell you that we must stop these opportunists before they break into your home. Locks would surely stop a would-be intruder at stage one (a locked door), before they had the opportunity to test the waters in stage two (an alarm system).

Or would they? Careful consideration must be made as to the type of locks you install in your home. There are several types of locks and lock enhancing hardware on the market, so the consumer must be careful when selecting the right combinations to assure maximum protection against the bad guys. Many homeowners have opted to let budget prevail over security, by purchasing cheap locks.

Burglars love this mindset, making a break and enter quick and easy. Consumers need to realize when selecting good locks, they should consult a security professional. Locksmiths not only are able to advise which lock would best suit their needs but which function should be considered.

Maybe you should opt for an alarm system, and forget about the lock upgrades. Possibly this will give you the most bang for your buck. Many alarm salesmen are quick to point out that for only $25.00 or $30.00 a month monitoring fees, presto, you have a monitored alarm system.......just sign on the dotted line!

If you're prepared to lock into a three year contract because you're away from home quite often, perhaps this is the avenue you should be traveling. But keep in mind that most free alarm packages offer bare bones coverage. You may need to spend a little more to guarantee you have the utmost home protection.

If you're sitting in a home with cheap locks and a bare bones alarm system, chances are an intruder could blow through your door, take off with your valuables and be gone long before the police arrive. This is not what I would call good home security, in fact it's not even mediocre.

Good home security involves a culmination of good locks and a well covered alarm system. The first line of defense is still the locks, so make sure to install good quality deadbolts with all the strength enhancing hardware to assure a stronger defense against physical attack.

Once you have secured your home with all the physical security, it's time to install a good alarm system. Don't get caught with the cheapest system, cheaper is not necessarily better. Don't feel obligated to sign on with any one company right off the bat. Get three or four quotes from alarm companies and ask lots of questions. This will be a learning experience for you and will certainly help with your final decision.

And remember there will never be a winner in the locks vs alarms skirmish. No matter how you slice it , this bout will always come up a draw.

Frank Fourchalk

Security Consultant/Columnist

Jim D

11:23PM | 01/22/06
Member Since: 01/06/01
342 lifetime posts
Fourchalk - hi, you've posted some good reading to help people think about security. As you pointed out, it can be easily overlooked. I've also seen the opposite extreme, where people put a $200 lock on a $50 door and are then surprised when they are burglarized. Locks serve as deterrents as they basically delay entry by unauthorized people. Alarms serve as deterrents as they'll announce an unauthorized entry. Those brazen enough to burglarize homes and businesses assess the locks and alarms and then decide if "the crime's worth the time" they'll serve if caught. That's why many local police departments provide free or very low-cost security surveys/assessments to homeowners and businesses. And, for those with lots to lose in the way of valuables, they can hire experts in your line of work to get thorough assessments done. It's easier and cheaper to build security in at the beginning than it is to add it after the fact, especially after a burglary! Regards! Jim D/West Point, VA


11:35PM | 01/22/06
Member Since: 01/18/06
21 lifetime posts

Very well said, I couldn't agree with you more! Cheers!

Frank Fourchalk

Frank Fourchalk

Security Consultant/Columnist
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