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Secure Yourself Some Peace of Mind

Your home should be your safe space, a place to make memories with your family. But unfortunately for a growing number of Alaskans, criminals are making them feel unsafe in their own homes. Property crimes like burglary and car theft are on the rise in Anchorage and other parts of Alaska.

Dan Locke, a security consultant with Guardian Security Systems, often doesn’t meet with people until it’s too late. “I don’t think people always think about security until something happens close to home,” Locke said. “Either they get broken into or their neighbor does.”

After 39 years in the security business, Locke has seen big changes in trends and technology. Home security systems were once a luxury and now they’re becoming the standard. “Everything is wireless now,” Locke said. “Security systems are more affordable and user-friendly.”

More and more homeowners are choosing to install home security systems as a precautionary measure. Meanwhile, homebuilders see home security systems as an added selling point. These systems can range from simple to comprehensive. There are do-it-yourself options on the market and customized systems like those provided through Guardian Security Systems and other companies.

Basic systems include an alarm that trips when a door or window is broken. In the case of systems installed by Guardian, the company is equipped with the only central station in the state. The alarm transmits to the central station, which displays the homeowner’s name, address and what’s happening. “We have the only in-state central station,” Locke said. “The central station calls the homeowner and there’s a hotline to the local authorities.”

More advanced systems include outdoor and indoor cameras and automated systems that control the thermostat, lighting, garage door and more. With the continued popularity of online shopping, homeowners are using cameras like these to battle the rising tide of “porch pirates,” thieves who swipe packages off doorsteps. This system also allows homeowners to take a sneak peak before they open the door to people outside.

When it comes to camera gear, Locke says you get what you pay for, especially when you consider the Alaska elements. He encourages homeowners to invest in equipment that will survive harsh weather and perform properly in both direct light and low light. Installation location is also very important. Cameras need to be able to

capture faces and license plate numbers. High-resolution images can help the authorities catch and convict criminals.

Today’s security systems go way beyond catching criminals; they provide homeowners with a sense of security and comfort. Video cameras allow people to check up on their pets when they’re at work, shut the garage door if they forgot and adjust the temperature while away. Alarms also alert homeowners to a wide-range of other problems like fire, floods and loss of heat or power.

“There are tons of options, everybody can choose something different for their needs,” Locke said. “And because it’s wireless you can always add on as your life circumstances change.”

If you have questions about finding a reputable company to install a home security system call AHBA at (907) 522-3605.

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