January 3, 2011 – SecuritySystems.org – “Provider of unbiased information on major security systems on the market for home and business.”
Seattle’s Protective Systems Inc. was a pioneer in security system technology and sales when it began in 1970 and remains a respected leader in its region today. PSI is a great example of a sophisticated, highly-reliable, family-owned, local security system provider. Kim Proctor of PSI explained some of what prospective and existing security system customers need to know.
Since 1970, locally-owned Protective Systems Inc. of Seattle has been providing Western Washington families, businesses and commercial facilities with security and fire systems. Our approach to security provides you with the highest level of safety – protecting your family and your possessions is our business and we take it very seriously.
1. What do people need to consider when shopping for a home security system?
When you are selecting a company to protect your family’s lives and possessions, the stakes are much higher than when you’re choosing the vendor who will install your new carpet or landscape your yard. Many people select a company mainly by price and tend to forget about the primary reason they want a security/fire system in the first place – to protect their lives and property against the threat of intruders and fire. Saving a nominal sum could end up being very expensive if an intruder enters your home and a confrontation occurs, or a fire starts in your home and the security system or monitoring fails.
Central station monitoring is the most important and expensive component of your overall security. A security/fire alarm system is only as good as the quality of the company’s monitoring service – you want dependable, rapid response to an emergency – overlooking an alarm or a slow response can mean the difference between life and death.
Many “Mega Central Stations” run by large national conglomerates have one monitor to serve about 15,000 to 20,000 customers. PSI’s Central Station offers one monitor for every 4,000 customers. This means they have approximately 500% more time than many central stations to assist you.
Proper system design is also critical. Many security companies use an all-in-one control panel with keypad and sounder which actually provides very poor security. All the intruder has to do is listen for the chimes to locate the panel and rip it off the wall.
Quality installation – Protective Systems Inc. is an authorized dealer for First Alert Professional, a Honeywell Company. First Alert is an elite network of independently owned security dealers. That means you get the “hands on” personal care of an independent business, backed up by the innovation and solid proficiency of First Alert and Honeywell, a Fortune 100 Company. PSI is also one of the few companies that can not only install, monitor and maintain the system – we are also licensed to perform commercial fire/sprinkler inspections.
Quality service over the long haul. Poor service is the number one reason why people change security monitoring companies.
2. What’s the difference between a locally-based company like yours and some of the national ones like GE and ADT?
The care and concern of a locally owned business means you will never get lost in the national shuffle – whether you are experiencing an actual emergency or just have a question for the Central Station, PSI will answer the phone within three rings; you will never go into voicemail. When you call a Mega station, you usually get only voicemail. Imagine feeling frightened in the midst of a true emergency; the last you thing you want is to be routed through a series of recorded prompts.
3. What are the primary dangers someone is guarding against with a home security system?
Besides fire and burglary, a home invasion/confrontation with a criminal.
4. Is there a value on surveillance cameras for residential use?
Definitely! Signs are a great deterrent, “This home is under 24 hour local and remote surveillance” – if a break in occurs, the intruders are recorded on video monitored by the Central Station, which can be turned over to the police.
5. What does your business encompass? Residential? Commercial?
In addition to a full range of residential and commercial security and fire protection systems, access control and video surveillance, PSI offers a full range of monitoring services to protect homes and businesses. As well, PSI offers a variety home improvement products and services including Whole House Audio, Home Theater and Closed Circuit TV.
6. What do commercial customers have to concern themselves with?
It’s a well known fact that shop owners need protection from shoplifters; however, a growing number of companies are concerned with employee theft.
7. What are the dangers and scams that residential customers need to watch for when shopping home security systems?
There is a high turnover of security companies in this business – it’s critical that you do an Internet search on Google or Bing “reviews on X company” – you will often be amazed at the number of negative comments. Never purchase a system until you have done your due diligence.
Mega companies often elect to use sub-contractors or “sub dealers” to install an alarm in your home on their behalf. Later, if there’s a malfunction with your system, it can be quite frustrating trying to figure out whose responsibility it is to service your alarm.
Mega companies require a 36-month or lengthier contract. With Mega companies you cannot change security companies as they “lock out” their panels so that no other company can work on your panel. Should you ever by unhappy with their service and desire to have your system monitored elsewhere, you are contractually obligated to pay an early cancellation fee and buy out the value of the contract. Plus, you’d have to purchase a new security system from the new provider.
PRINCIPAL REASONS WHY PEOPLE CHOOSE PSI OVER MEGA-NATIONAL COMPANIES
- Superior customer satisfaction
- No monitoring contract required
- You own the equipment – freedom to cancel service with no legal hassles
- Lower monitoring fees from $18.95/month
- Lower cost of ownership
- System product and design give you a much higher level of security
- Superior central station monitoring
- Increased life safety for you and your family
- Increased protection against loss of property
- Superior installation and service
- State-of-the-art exclusive First Alert Professional products
- We are a Better Business Bureau accredited member with a rating of A+