Choosing a Security Installer.
My Personal Guidelines:I know its a long list but please read it and take notes.
There are many excellent Alarm Installation companies around, all fitting systems that comply with the relevant British Standards. The Cost of Alarm Systems can vary greatly according to there level of sophistication, and the Installation charges can differ greatly dependant upon the type of premises you want to secure. The typical cost for a home security system (Bells Only) will be around £500, and upwards of £700 for your basic monitored system. But both these price guides could easily rise to several thousand for larger and more complex systems.
A good idea is to get several other quotes from reputable installers before making your choice, but remember that the cheapest installer is not necessarily the best. Your local business telephone directory is often a good source for finding suitable companies, but perhaps the best source is a recommendation by a friend or family member, also have a look around your neighbourhood to see which other companies bell boxes are fitted.
Make sure the installer is covered for any damage he may do to your home, nothing usually goes wrong but plastic pipes for instance are almost impossible to detect in walls.
Remember that your the boss, don't let the salesman blind you with science, and ask as many questions as you want. Its a sad fact that most salesmen have never actually installed an alarm system. Has he turned up wearing a 3 piece suit and carrying a briefcase..? The best person to actually quote you for an alarm system has actually been or is currently an installation engineer.
Do not be afraid to make suggestions or even specify key features for your own alarm system, but do listen to advice from the salesman. Explain to him how you intend to use the alarm system, do you want to set it at night..? do you want to set it while your at home in the day..? could you just set any number of individual zones you want, ask for pet sensors if you have a cat or dog.
Always get your quotes from similar companies or you might find a rather large range of prices, for basically the same equipment.
Ask to see brochures which show the equipment they will be installing and be happy that it will go well with your decor and is really fit for the purpose they are specifying.
Insist that the main control panel is well hidden, or out of easy reach. Preferably behind a locked door, in the loft or perhaps the garage. Access to this main control panel must be protected by a detector. This is the heart of your alarm system, if a burglar finds this he could shut up your bells and internal sirens in less than 30 seconds without damaging the alarm system at all.
Ask how the wiring will be routed to each given detector and enquire about how long the system will take to be installed. Its awkward to guarantee installation times but as a rough guide allow 1 day for up to 5 detectors, any more detectors expect 2 days or more (It once took me 2 1/2 days to install a 5 detector alarm system that my boss had allowed a day for).
Don't be taken in by freebies, nothing is free.
Ask if the installation engineer will clean up any mess he's made, and is able to satisfactory refit any carpets or other flooring he may have lifted during the installation.
Ensure the Alarm is covered by a no quibbles guarantee. You don't pay for any parts or labour charges for the first 12 months if the alarm system should go faulty (this doesn't include cables being accidentally cut or burglars smashing up the alarm system etc etc). All good companies will fully cover you for the first year including any night time and weekend callout charges. After the first year they should offer at least a service contract.
More Information Here: www.TheSecurityInstaller.co.uk