Moving? 4 Tips for Safety and Security in Your Home

If you are preparing to move to a new location, there are so many important things to think about! To help with this, we’ve compiled a list of items to check that will help secure your new property and ensure that you and your family have peace of mind in your new residence.

FOR EXISTING HOMES

1) Acquaint yourself with the neighborhood:

Take the time to introduce yourself to your new neighbors. Let them know who you are and who will be living (coming and going) in your new home.

Find who is active in the neighborhood watch group. Meet with them to introduce yourself and offer to do what you can to contribute.

Take the time to locate the local police, fire, rescue stations, and hospitals to understand routes and response times.

Reacquaint yourself with any features of the location like local ponds, pools, walking trails, and parks so you can review safe usage of these areas with your family.  

2) Take inventory and fix/enhance the safety aspects of the property:

Check how well the entry, walkways, driveway, yard space, and window areas are lit. Add lighting (motion sensor lighting is great) where lighting is not adequate.

Examine the landscaping for overgrown or poorly placed bushes that can block out lighting or give potential intruders a place to hide, especially near doors and windows.

 

3) Re-examine the doors to the exterior:

Doors should be built out of metal or with solid wood cores and have deadbolts. Sometimes the most aesthetically pleasing decorator doors offer the least amount of safety from intrusion. Glass panels in or next to the doors offer easy access for intruders. When possible, replace doors that offer sub-par security before moving in for ease of mind and convenience.

 

4) Check your home security system:

A security system can give you peace of mind when moving to a new area and home.

If a system is already installed, have it checked out, upgraded if needed, and activated as soon as you move in. Upgraded systems can include touchscreens, a mobile app for communication with the security system, automation features, and cameras strategically positioned around your residence and property.

Make sure that either you or a security system professional check out the window and door sensors for proper functioning. Take the time to test each location and alignment of the motion sensors to ensure they are properly aimed and positioned for maximum benefit.

If your new home doesn’t have a security system, consider adding one. They are an effective method for ensuring your new residence will offer you the safety and security your family desires. And it may help save on your homeowner’s insurance.

Secur-Tek, Inc. is here to help with your home security needs. We can complete a security audit of your home and design an upgrade or new system that is right for you and your location. Contact us by calling 919.387.1800  .

 

IF YOU ARE BUILDING A NEW HOME

The best time to install features like security systems, home automation, whole-house audio systems, and central vacuums is during construction.

Secur-Tek  installs both wired and wireless security systems. For new homes under construction, we recommend a wired system (you will have less maintenance with fewer batteries to change).

What system would be best for your new home?

New homes under construction Install a wired system as it will have less maintenance with fewer batteries to change
Existing homes wanting a security system installed Install a wireless system
Home renovations Add wireless system or wireless components to an existing Honeywell security system
Existing home security system Upgrade systems to include features to enhance security and convenience:

•      Touchscreens

•      A mobile app for communication with the security system

•      Automation features,

•      A doorbell camera

•      Camera system with motion detectors

Please call our office or use the form below to see how we can assist you with your new home.

Secur-Tek is locally owned and operated in Apex, NC, offering home and business security, monitoring, automation audio and central vacuum systems. We proudly serve: Apex, Cary, Fuquay-Varina, Chapel Hill, Clayton, Garner, Holly Springs, Durham, Raleigh, Morrisville, and Pittsboro in North Carolina.

Providing Peace of Mind Since 1990

Security is our industry, but for us at Secur-Tek, it’s not just a business.

We feel what we do is important.

Our job is to help people feel safe, more secure, and able to get help when it’s urgently needed.

 

As a locally owned and operated company based in Apex, we are proud to serve our neighbors in the greater Triangle area:  Apex, Cary, Fuquay-Varina, Chapel Hill, Clayton, Garner, Holly Springs, Durham, Raleigh, Morrisville, and Pittsboro.

We appreciate all our customers and take the time to understand their unique situations, so we can give you an honest quote on a quality security system customized to fit your needs.

Speaking of customization, some of the features frequently asked for include:

Cameras – indoor and outdoor cameras

Security – dual technology motion detectors, with the combined strength of microwave and PIR technologies providing superior detection and reduced false alarms

Video doorbells – see who is at your door, from anywhere

Smart locks – go key free; lock and unlock from anywhere

Secur-Tek can also include smart devices that can make your life more convenient, all connected by the Resideo Total Connect® app:

  • Temperature controls – to control your climate and save money on your heating/cooling bills
  • Water leak monitors
  • MyQ Garage door control
  • Smoke and CO detectors – these life safety devices actively protect 24/7, even if the system is not armed

We also offer special customizations to make life easier for senior citizens:

With our Total Connect app, family members can receive event notifications and alerts for the home where the senior is living, letting them know when the senior arms/disarms the security system or presses a button to call for help. A text alert can be sent when the medicine cabinet or the door to the garage is opened. Having a Total Connect camera near the TV, for example, will allow the caregiver to chat with their loved ones during their favorite tv show.

 

We’ve been in business since 1990 and have many long-time customers. We’ve grown by referral. And we appreciate them

 

If you have any questions or would like a complimentary quote, please call us at 919-387-1800 or fill in the form below.

 

8 Tips for Package Theft Prevention

Will you be receiving packages this holiday season?

Packages left on the porch/mailbox are vulnerable at any time of year, but the holiday season usually means there are a few more parcels arriving at your doorstep. A study from InsuranceQuotes that examines holiday hazards  notes there were approximately 26 million thefts of deliveries from doorsteps and economic indicators show online shopping is up over 28% so far for this holiday season over last year.

Whether you’re ordering gifts online for family and friends, or receiving them from others, you’re more likely to have packages sitting vulnerable on your porch this time of the year.

To prevent your deliveries being stolen, check out these EightTips for Package Theft Prevention. 

  1. Customize delivery. If the ordering system allows you to choose the time of delivery, select a time you know you’ll be at home.
  2. Get a smart doorbell.Swap your current doorbell for a Skybell and enjoy a higher level of safety and security with remote monitoring and cloud recording features. When the delivery person rings the doorbell, you can see how and when packages are delivered. No more interruptions during family dinner or missing important packages while you’re gone! You can also check for unwanted visitors at your doorstep.
  3. Deliver decisively. If you’re not home much, consider having the package delivered to your office or a friend or neighbor’s house for safekeeping.
  4. Hold the post. If your package contains very valuable items – Have the post office or carrier hold the package. Request UPS, FedEx and the Postal Service to hold packages at their facility for you to pick up later. UPS has created a service called Access Point that enables you to choose an alternate delivery location in your neighborhood.
  5. Alert a neighbor. When you are expecting a package and won’t be home, you can ask a neighbor or friend to keep an eye out for it. If you use Nextdoor.com or a similar neighborhood app you can let neighbors know if something has been stolen from your porch so they can keep an eye out and report suspicious behavior.
  6. Talk to family and friends who may be mailing your holiday gifts. Ask them to let you know when they send packages so you can watch for them.
  7. Light it up. Install outdoor lights. Your package is more likely to be stolen during daylight hours, but night falls early this time of year. Outdoor lights with motion or light sensors are a good way to keep unwanted people away from your home in any season.
  8. Monitored home security A home security system can do a great deal. If there are visible security features like cameras or alarms, potential thieves will be more likely to move along to a less protected house rather than risk getting caught by a security system. And you can even tie in your Skybell with security and automation features for greater convenience, like letting in out of town guests that arrive when you’re out doing those last-minute errands.

If you are going out of town, check out our Security Checklist before you leave.

We hope you have a great holiday season. If you’d like a quote on Skybell or would like to learn about other home Security System options to increase your peace of mind, please contact us.

 Happy Holidays to You and Your Family!!

Frequently Asked Questions on Home Security Systems

FAQs on Home Security

Do you have questions about home security systems?  We asked our staff to answer some of our customer’s frequently asked questions – check the answers below.  

How often should I test my home security system?  We recommend you test your system once a month.

How do I test my monitored home security system? I don’t want to bother the police. We are glad you asked that!  First, call the 800 number on your sticker and tell the monitoring company to put your system on test, then activate your alarm and call monitoring company back to verify alarm signals were received.   

Who do I call for service on my Secur-Tek system? To set up a service call, please call our office at  919.387.1800. Secur-Tek stands by our products and the same reliable technicians install and service our systems.

Can Secur-Tek upgrade my system?  Yes, but it does depend on the type of system you have. If you have a Honeywell home security system, we can upgrade your system by adding remote monitoring, cameras, and gas, smoke and motion detectors. If you have another type of system, we still may be able to help you, just call for a consultation or contact us.

How many cameras are needed to have a complete home security system?  The number of cameras you may need to safeguard your home depends on your home design. We can add cameras to most security systems and offer a complimentary consultation where we take a look around your home and recommend how many cameras are needed and the locations to install them.

Should I have my home security system monitored?  Having and monitoring a home security system can increase your peace of mind, especially if you travel or have valuable items in your home. For more information, see our blog on monitoring.

How much does monitoring cost?  We offer reliable, low-cost monthly monitoring. Our monitoring starts at $21.95 for standard monitoring and $31.95 for cellular.

Do you require a three-year contract?  No.

How long is the monitoring agreement?  Our monitoring contracts are just for 1 year. We don’t require long-term contracts.

Can I monitor my security system myself?  We don’t recommend it. Our monitoring goes to a company that provides monitoring 24/7 and will contact the police, fire and medical emergency agencies. They are always there to call the authorities.

What type of remote services work with your home security systems?  You can view and run your system from your smartphone or iPad with Honeywell Total Connect Services.  

What types of systems are compatible with Secur-Tek’s low-cost monitoring?  We can monitor many types of systems. To determine if your specific system can be monitored, please call your office.

We hope you found this helpful. If you live in our service area and have further questions, would like an estimate on upgrading or monitoring your security system, please give us a call at  919.387.1800

Secur-Tek, Inc. serves all of Central NC, including the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area, Apex, Cary, Holly Springs, Fuquay-Varina, Pittsboro, Wake County, Chatham County, Durham County, Orange County, Harnett County.

7 Ways to Tighten Your Home Security for the Holidays

Every year at this time, you’ll read stories about the increase in home burglaries while homeowners are away. Studies show that increase is not always fact. Instead, many factors affect burglaries in different communities and when they occur.

21908228_sStill, it’s smart to play it safe with home security around the holidays. After all, you may have extra valuables inside after buying all of your gifts, and you may be absent more often as you attend holiday parties or head to grandmother’s house.

According to FBI data, in 2010, there were an estimated 2.1 million burglaries in the U.S. Victims of burglary offenses suffered an estimated $4.6 billion in lost property, an average dollar loss of $2,119 each. In the Raleigh-Cary area, including Franklin, Johnston, and Wake counties, there were 628 burglaries per 100,000 residents in 2010.

Keep your holiday gifts and your home safe this season with a few simple measures:

  • Light your home. The strings of Christmas lights may bring good cheer, but they don’t keep burglars out. Mount exterior lights on your home, out of reach. These can be put on a timer or used as motion detectors. Put indoor lights on timers.
  • Burglars don’t want to spend all day trying to break in. Keep your doors and windows locked and install deadbolts on exterior doors, making it tougher to gain entry.
  • Check your doors. Your lock might be amazing, but if your door is weak, a strong kick will give a burglar easy access. Make sure your door is solid wood or has a solid wood core. You can also consider a fiberglass or metal door.
  • Trim the shrubbery. Don’t make it easy for burglars to hide behind bushes as they work to open a window. Keep the landscaping trimmed so it’s easier for a neighbor to spot the suspicious person standing outside your home.
  • Install a home alarm system. More than 90 percent of burglars say they would avoid a home with an alarm, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Effective alarms don’t just make noise, but alert emergency services. Many insurance companies offer a discount on homeowners insurance if you have an alarm.
  • Hide and lock your valuables. Once inside, a burglar doesn’t want to take too long. He or she knows to check the desk and the bedroom for important documents and jewelry. Put your important papers and expensive items in other locations and hide them well.
  • Heading out of town? Be sure to:
    • Have your mail held, or have a neighbor pick it up.
    • Schedule deliveries. Packages are at risk this time of year sitting on your front porch. Try to time deliveries so that they don’t arrive when you are out of town.
    • Leave blinds in their usual positions so it appears you are home.
    • Ask trustworthy neighbors to keep an eye on your home. Letting a few people know you are gone will help keep them on alert for something amiss.

Questions about home security? Give us a call: (919) 387-1800.

5 Technology Upgrades to Home Security

Home security has come a long way since the invention of chain link fences and guard dogs. Today, technology has made it possible to keep an eye on your home 24/7. Whether you’re looking for the latest cool tools in home security or just want an easier way to keep your home safe, here are 5 technology upgrades to consider:

  1. Door locks – Forget to lock the door? If you have an electronic door lock, it’s no problem. You can remotely lock it from anywhere. Electronic door locks work with your entire home security system. In addition to locking the door from your smartphone or tablet, electronic door locks track the history of opening and closing and can send you text message alerts if you want. You can also give visitors an access code that only works during certain times of day, making it easier to keep your home secure when working with household staff. Plus, no more digging around for your keys!
  1. Remote monitoring – Keep an eye on your home from anywhere with videos and photos of what’s going on. Home security systems now offer streaming security camera feeds, the ability to arm and disarm from anywhere, send alerts, and more.
  1. Cameras – Speaking of streaming, home security cameras are no longer for the super-rich mansion owner. Cameras are inexpensive and easy to install. If you don’t want to check the life feed, you can save it for later if you need to — a nice option if your home is burglarized or if you need to check up on working crews.
  1. Home Sensors – Your home is so smart, it knows you’re coming. Home sensors can open and close the door for you. They also work as part of your home security, for motion sensing when you’re away. They’re smart enough to work off of winks or waving and can be controlled from your smartphone or tablet.
  1. Garage systems – Many people use a button in their car to open the garage. The latest systems not only open the door when you want, but give you remote control from your smart device, allowing you to let people to enter when you are not home. It can also track how long the door has been open. Systems today also have motion sensors to protect those jetting through the door as it’s closing.

Secur-Tek can help you install a Control4 Home Automation System to help with these areas and more, including lighting, sound, and more. Contact us today to find out more.

CCTV By Secur-Tek: Keeping the Triangle Safe and Secure

CCTV imageIf you live in Apex, NC or across the surrounding Triangle region and you own a business of any size, Secur-Tek Inc. has the product to have on-site that just might make all the difference in the success of your company.

Secur-Tek knows that business owners can always benefit from a closed circuit television system (CCTV).  Whether it’s an issue of trust, safety or just for peace of mind, CCTV can provide an aspect of protection to any business.  Just the presence of security cameras in customer and employee areas will often minimize issues ensuring the safety of your operation.

Secur-Tek of Apex, the premier installer of CCTV systems in North Carolina, offers any size system, from one to one hundred cameras that can be installed and configured by our installation team!  Custom specifications make each system unique and tailored to each and every business.

CCTV systems are highly effective in:

  • Monitoring and ensuring safe practices in an industrial or warehouse setting.
  • Discouraging theft within a business from both external and internal parties!
  • Reviewing performance of employees in action, both in real time and in replay.
  • Reviewing inconsistencies in normal operation.

If you have any doubts about your employees, or feel like heightening security could positively affect your business, do not hesitate to call today for an estimate of the cost of your custom developed system.

At Secur-Tek we offer:

  • Customizable specifications that allow total flexibility of your system.
  • PC based systems that easily monitor and keep track from the computer and related devices!
  • Remote video transmission systems to make it even easier to review the video
  • Strictly observation systems, for an affordable protection option.

Choose the system and functions that work best for your operation, and we take it from there!  You will benefit greatly in safety from the addition of every level of added protection.  Call Secur-Tek Inc. today to explore the options and make a change for the better!

Automation! 3 Ways to Simplify Home and Office with Secur-Tek

Control4When talking about home or business electronic systems, the terms integration or automation may not be especially familiar to everyone.  Secur-Tek of Apex, NC specializes in building system upgrades.  Whether it’s a home, office building or business, Secur-Tek can install and maintain everything from alarm systems to surround sound.  We can set up computer networking, optimize wireless capabilities throughout a building, and even install central vacuum systems to make it easier to keep every room clean and improve the air you breathe!  Technological upgrades are a way to improve the conveniences in any building, and Control 4 automation is the ultimate system upgrade!

What are the benefits of Control 4 automation?

Here are three examples of how automation can make home and office functions easier:

  • Operate appliances remotely from any room.  Turning functions on and off from anywhere in the room or building makes life so much easier.  For example, when having guests over, blinds can be lowered or raised, music can be changed easily and lights can be dimmed, all from the touch of a button on a tablet or cell phone.
  • Total control of electronic functions.  An easy to use application on a cell phone can keep tabs on all electronics.  Having control of the on/off functions of appliances is also energy efficient.  Knowing which appliances are running, and which are off, at all times will optimize the power bill.  This is also a great function to remotely monitor the functions of a Secur-Tek alarm system in a home or office!
  • No more remotes to keep up with!  When everything is synced to a tablet or cell phone app, worrying about finding the remote to the air conditioner is no more a chore!  All home and office functions are controlled by a single unit with a total automation configuration.

Considering these wonderful benefits, what home or business wouldn’t appreciate total electronic integration?  Secur-Tek can configure and maintain Control 4 automation for any size building, from apartments to businesses or office buildings.  Don’t be left in the dark ages!  Call or contact Secur-Tek today to learn more about how automation works, and get an assessment of the possibilities for your home or business!

Also, take a look at this video for a great example of how Control 4 automation can benefit a home!

Security & Home Automation