When it comes to weighing the cost of a home security system against the value, there are two forms of measurement to consider: monetary and peace of mind. Monetary cost and value pose questions such as: “How much does a security system cost to install and maintain? How much can a security system save me?” Peace of mind, however, is a little more abstract. This poses questions like: “Do I feel safer in my home? Do I worry less about my family and my belongings while away?” We’ll be discussing both forms of measurement in this post to give you a little insight into just exactly how much a home security system costs and what value it can provide. Let’s start with monetary cost and value.
The Monetary Cost of a Home Security System
As with any other product, not all security systems are created equally. Some can be installed for as low as $85 and others for as much as $4,000. Usually, price is somewhat indicative of what features a security system offers. To maintain the integrity of this analysis, let’s use the national installation average as provided by HomeAdvisor, $697¹. In addition to this cost, home security systems require a monthly monitoring fee. For this, let’s use the monthly monitoring fee of a mid-range alarm system that comes with some useful home automation features — $41–$45 a month.
After installation fees, your first year with a security system will cost approximately $1,213. All things remaining constant, each year after this, your security system would cost around $516.
¹This is a national average. Installation prices vary drastically from city to city and from system to system. The average in our home city of New Jersey is $1,139.
The Monetary Value of a Home Security System
How does cost compare to value? In 2017, the FBI reported that the average dollar loss per burglary offense in the United States was $2,416. So, if your alarm system deters one burglar at some point in its lifetime, you will have covered your installation costs, your first year’s monitoring costs, your second year’s monitoring costs, and still have $171 left over. But what about the rest of the monitoring costs? Five hundred and sixteen dollars adds up quickly over the course of a few years. Well, why don’t we take a look at some of those useful features we discussed in the paragraph above.
Most security companies offer a variety of options when it comes to equipment, features, and services. In fact, here at Supreme, we customize almost all of our systems to match the buyer’s needs. The average mid-range monthly fee we used in our cost break down is a starting point for many high-quality systems. These systems are often paired with features like cellular monitoring as well as remote lighting and thermostat control. Below we’ll be looking at how much you could potentially save from having just one of these features.
Thermostat Center estimates that with a programmable thermostat a family that pays $2,000 in gas and electric a year could save as much as $300–$400 annually. With the ability to adjust the temperature of your house remotely, it is probably safe to say that you could save $350 a year. This should cover the cost of updating your existing thermostat in the first year and will leave you with a net reduction of $166 on your security system costs for each year to follow ($516 in monitoring costs for the security system minus $350 saved on gas and electric bills).
The “Peace of Mind” Cost and Value of a Home Security System
We all worry about our homes and our families, especially when we are away for extended periods of time. It only makes sense that we would fear for the safety of our loved ones, but does a home security system actually relieve this stress and worry? We can’t say that getting a security system will make you feel 100% safe all the time — peace of mind is something that varies drastically from individual to individual — but we can say that most of our clients feel a lot safer after having home security systems installed.
With motion detectors, you’ll know if someone enters your home through a window or door (and the police will too). With glass breaking detection, you’ll know when someone quite literally breaks-in, even if you are 2,000 miles away. And with Video Verification, you’ll be able to grab a shot of any unwanted intruder to your home. Not to mention that modern home security systems can notify you of things like flooding, carbon dioxide levels, and fires. They can even reassure you that you remembered to shut the garage door and turn off the lights. They can put your mind at ease in a variety of ways, so the question is how much do you personally value the peace of mind a home security system offers.
So, is a home security system worth the cost?
We certainly think so. Whether you are looking for a simple alarm system or a multi-faceted system with home automation features, we can provide you with a custom security plan that fits your needs and your budget. Just click here to browse all of our home security options.