Yes, You Do Need a Security System Even if You Live in Utah — Or Anywhere Else

One of the common reasons we receive from homeowners is that they don’t need a security system because they live in a safe area. But what constitutes a “safe” area? Here’s why you need to make sure you’re reading the correct stats about your city and why a home security system is a good idea, no matter where you live.

What Makes Your Town Safe?

There’s a difference in crimes, of course. We all know that, but when we think of our towns being safe, which crimes are they actually safe from? A lot of times people only consider violent crime rates when considering where to live. But what about property crime? Often, this crime goes unnoticed or isn’t given quite the same publicity as violent crimes. 

So what exactly should you be looking for when visiting a crime site like Neighborhood Scout or Area Vibes? Of course, you’ll want to make sure violent crime is down, but also take note of property crimes.

Some Surprising Crime Stats in Utah

Did you know that Salt Lake City has one of the worst property crime rates in the nation? Like its fellow big cities in other states, it is not immune to theft and burglary. In fact, it’s far from it. It’s rated a 1 out of 100, with 100 being the safest score. A homeowner in Salt Lake City has a 1 in 10 chance of being stolen from. That not only includes theft from outside the home, but more aggravated robberies from inside the home. 

Looking at a perceived “nicer” city, such as Draper, will show a better crime rate, but it’s still surprisingly low. With a score of 28, you can expect that at some point you or someone on your street in Draper will experience property theft. To be more specific, 1 in 54 houses every year will experience this type of crime.

Yes, Crime Exists in Small Towns, too

Looking at smaller towns, you’d expect a bit better crime rate. After all, when we think of small towns, we think of close-knit communities that take care of one another. And while that still might be the case, there’s always a chance that someone from another town or even your own might stray from time to time. Richfield, Utah has a surprisingly high property crime rate. While the number of crimes is low compared to a bigger city, the crime rate (the percentage of crimes vs. the number of people) is high. In Richfield, your chance of being a victim of a property crime is 1 in 32, whereas in Utah as a whole, it is 1 in 46, leaving Richfield—a nice small town—with a higher than average crime rate.

 

So whether you live in the big city, a small town, or a nice neighborhood, you always have a chance of being a victim of a property crime. So if you’re asking, we say yes, you do need a security system. Protecting your home with professional home security before that happens is the best way to ensure peace of mind for you and your family.

 

Why DIY Security Systems and Security Cameras Are the Last Things You Should Buy This Prime Day

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It’s Amazon’s Prime Day, which means that tech sales are plentiful. Many of these sales include do-it-yourself security systems and home security cameras. But are these the best setup for your home? And is your house going to be as secure as you’re hoping by adding these items? Here’s why you should really be looking for professional security deals this Prime Day if you want to secure your home.

 

First, let’s address do-it-yourself home security systems. These systems market themselves as affordable and customizable. They can be utilized on their own, without the need for professional monitoring but also have that option. So what’s the problem with that? Well, not every system and not every monitoring company is the same. 

 

Response Times for Monitoring Stations

Response time matters when you’re in the middle of a crisis—whether that’s a break-in, a medical emergency that you’ve triggered with a medical pendant, or a fire in your home. Some companies have a time of upwards of 60 to 90 seconds. When you use a professional security company, like WISE Home Solutions, whose monitoring station has some of the best response times in the business (around 12 seconds), you know that you’re investing in that service. In an emergency, every second counts. 

 

WiFi vs Cellular Security Systems

Professional alarm services tend to use security equipment that is tried and tested over a long period of time. Not only that, but while DIY systems boast their wireless systems, that’s a feature that’s been part of professional home security for a long time. And a professional system doesn’t count on Wi-Fi to keep you secure. Using cellular technology, you can rest assured that your security system will keep working during a power outage, or if someone were to use a Wi-Fi blocker near your home.

 

With professional home security, If your cell phone is working, your security system will be working. That’s why a professional system is much more secure than a Wi-Fi-based system. And while some Wi-Fi systems use an alarm cellular backup, there can be a minute or more delay before it kicks in, with some reports that alarm cellular backup never kicks in. This leaves your home and family vulnerable during that time.

 

Security Cameras are Not the First Line of Defense

Security cameras seem to be all the rage right now and there’s a company that ran a commercial that summed up this craze brilliantly. The commercial shows a series of people on vacation, at work, and other places away from their homes, watching from their phones as burglars break into their homes, as they beg for them to stop or put things back. While the commercial elicits a good chuckle, it poses a great question: what good is a camera if there’s no one responding to your emergency? Cameras should be viewed as a supplementary device to a complete security system. After your alarm scares off any potential intruder, you can send the video to the authorities for evidence. But don’t depend on cameras to keep you and your family safe.

 

So while it may be tempting to buy a DIY system or security cameras this Prime Day, make sure you’re investing in the right security system for your situation. And consider all the options you have out there. Cheaper isn’t always better, especially when it comes to the safety of your home.

 

How to Customize the Best Security System

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There are lots of different kinds of home security plans out there and the market is only growing. With all these plans, it can be hard to find the best fit for you and your family’s needs. We want to make it as easy as possible for you to make the right decision. That’s why we have a customizable plan option so we can help you build the best security system for you and your family.

What Are My Options?

Sometimes the best fit is a standard plan that we already took the liberty of making for our customers. Such as our Wise Choice plan, which is the basic starter pack with devices we recommend for every home. We also have our Energy Plus plan which is our energy-efficient focused home security plan. It features the Nest Learning Thermostat and smart lights to conserve energy. Lastly, we have our Smart Home Automation plan. This plan is an automation focused plan for those who are looking to bring more convenience into their daily routines. That being said, we also give our customers the freedom to dictate what they want with our Design Your Own plan. 

Where To Start

With every customer in the market for a home security plan, we start by assessing your needs. What are you looking for? Do you want to secure and protect your home? Are you interested in adding home automation for convenience? Or are you concerned about conserving energy? Who knows, it could be a combination of all those factors. Either way, it’s best to know what your primary concerns are to help you build your plan. And if you still are unsure, we are always happy to give you recommendations.

How to Customize

Next, we discuss the different areas of your home and build the best security system plan to fit your exact needs accordingly. This way you can get all the devices you want and none you don’t! It’s also important to know a little bit about the neighborhood that you live in. Specifically, what kind of crimes are being committed in the area. Knowing what has happened around you can better prepare you for what you want to protect against in the future.

For example, in Draper, Utah where our headquarters are located, property crimes made up 92% of all crimes in 2019. The chances of being a victim of a violent crime were 1 in 704 while the chances of being a victim of a property crime were 1 in 54. As a Draper resident, it would be wise to add security devices like outdoor cameras, door sensors, and smart locks to your home security plan.

 

So, if you’re ready to build the perfect plan for your family’s needs, call WISE 1-844-904-9473!

 

Kid-Friendly Arizona Home Security

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It’s no secret that parenting is hard. It’s the most rewarding job in the world, and it passes you by in the blink of an eye. With constantly changing schedules and moods, we need all the help we can get. Phoenix, AZ has a crime index score of 8, meaning it’s safer than only 8% of other U.S cities. Adding smart home and home security devices to your home can help make things run smoother and give you much more peace of mind. Here are some of our kid-friendly Phoenix home security device recommendations. 

 

Sensors 

Door and window sensors are a no-brainer. Placing sensors on entry points in your home is like having eyes in the back of your head…and on the side and on top. You’ll know which doors or windows are opened and when. So you’ll know if someone is sneaking out of his window late at night when he should be sleeping. And you’ll know if a window accidentally was left open by one of your children before you leave for a family trip.

 

Indoors Cams

Indoor cameras are great because they give you a peek into what’s going on without you actually having to be there. You can see your kids playing in the basement from upstairs in your kitchen. Easily check on your new puppy at home for the first time while you’re at work. You can make sure the studying that needs to be done is actually happening, even if you aren’t there. 

 

Smart Locks

The icing on the cake would have to be smart door locks. They are a game-changer! These are a staple for your Phoenix home security plan and peace of mind. In 2019, Arizona was ranked 14th in the nation in order of most burglaries. According to research conducted by home security experts, most burglars just use your doors to get into your home. A shocking 34% of burglars use the front door and 22% use the back door, as these frequently aren’t even locked. Let’s change that immediately and switch over to smart locks! They can have up to 30 different customizable access codes so you know which child is going in and out of your house and when. They eliminate the need for hidden or spare keys altogether, which is much easier for forgetful children. 

If you want to make your job as a parent just a little easier give us a call at 1-844-904-9473!

How To Choose The Right Security Company

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You should know what you’re getting when you sign up for a home security plan. There a lot more companies out there now and the choice can be daunting. So, here is a little guide to help you know the right questions to ask a home security company to make sure you’re getting the best coverage possible and the most bang for your buck.

Budget

Outlining a budget is an important step in every new endeavor including picking a home security company.  It’s hard to put a price tag on what your security is worth but most everyone prefers to get the best bang for their buck. Your family’s security is important but it should be affordable. 

 

Monitoring

Depending on which home security company you choose, the monitoring coverage can be drastically different. Some companies don’t offer to monitor at all; they call these “self-monitoring” systems. This means that when an alarm is triggered it notifies the homeowners and no additional emergency services. Conversely, professional security companies like WISE offer 24/7 monitoring 365 days a year.

 

WiFi vs Cellular

It’s important to know how your home security system works before you buy it. Nowadays the most commonly used systems use either Wi-Fi or a cellular source to operate. WiFi-based systems use your internet connection to send you alerts and give you real-time access to the devices in your home. It works great, but the system is not entirely reliable. If you don’t have a battery backup, a power outage can lose access to your security system and leave your house unarmed. And even if you do have a backup battery, there are devices that can temporarily jam WiFi signals that burglars can use to disarm your system and gain access to your home.

Cellular-based monitoring systems are the most reliable method of home security.  They use encrypted codes to send signals from your control panel to the cell towers. Be sure to ask the reps you’re talking to about which monitoring system they use.

 

Choosing A Plan

Lastly, there a couple of things you should ask about when choosing a plan. The most important being is there an option to customizing a plan. There is nothing more annoying than a salesperson pushing products on you that you don’t need. Having an option to customize and build your own plan is great because it gives you, the customer, complete control. This way you can pick exactly the devices that you need and nothing you don’t.  You should also ask if there is an option in the future to upgrade your plan. Maybe you decide later on that you want to add some home automation devices to your home security plan. You should in advance if that option is available to you.

 

We’re happy to chat about any questions you may have for us, give us a call at 1-844-904-9473!

How To Build Your Energy-Efficient Home

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April showers bring May flowers. In other words, it is officially spring! Soon we’ll be prepping our gardens and getting back to doing the yard work we all love to do so much. But before all that, we’ll celebrate Earth Day! In its honor, we wanted to highlight how home automation devices can make your house an energy-efficient home are a win-win for both you and the planet. They save you money, which is a win for you, and by using less energy, it lessens your carbon footprint which is a win for the planet! Yay, go you!

 

Utilities

Each household is different and therefore uses more or less energy depending on a few different factors like location, size, number of occupants, number of electronics, and so on. If you live in an apartment in the U.S., the average utility bill is between $100-150 each month.  If you are a homeowner, your utility bills will be closer to the $400/ per month give or take. Some utilities like sewer, trash, internet, and cable are billed as services and do not depend on energy usages. The average cost for energy in US households is $1411.80 per year. Luckily, swapping some of the typical household features in your home with smart devices can help lower that number and put you well on your way to becoming a more energy-efficient home! 

The Savings

So what devices can save you the most money? Great question, reader—we were just getting to that. Nest Learning Thermostat on average saves you 10-12% on heating and up to 15% on cooling. According to Move.org, nearly half of the average energy bill every month goes toward just heating and cooling. Switching to a smart thermostat alone will save you hundreds every year. Next up would be replacing the light bulbs in the most frequently used rooms in your house with smart light bulbs. Traditional light bulbs are about 60-watts at least and only last between  750-2000 hours. Smart lights only use 9 watts of energy that mirrors a 60-watt brightness and lasts 22,000 hours. That’s 22 years of use at 3 hours per day! Adding motion sensor lighting to the exterior of your home, running your dishwasher, washer, and dryer at night are other minor things you can do to conserve energy!

 

If you’re ready to start building your energy-efficient home call WISE today at 1-844-904-9473!

How Home Security Can Increase Your Home’s Value

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Have you noticed how the real estate market has been booming lately? If there was ever a time to sell your home, it is now. Ready or not, we have officially entered a seller’s market. In fact, the National Association of Realtors has named the Provo-Orem, Utah market one of the top ten markets in the nation in 2020, despite the pandemic. They also predict it will be one of the most successful markets after the pandemic. So how can you capitalize on this and get the most value for your home?

 

The Appeal

According to a survey conducted by realtor.com, 4 in 10 Americans expressed they were more interested in adding smart home features to their homes. Having home security already installed in your home can set your home apart from other listings. As of March 2021, the average sale-to-list price is 100.1%. This means that the average home is selling for above its initial listing price. So, any perk or advantage can be the difference between a buyer choosing to buy your home or going with someone else’s in this competitive market. 

 

Savings

Hopefully, you’re taking advantage of saving on home insurance with your home security system, but in case you aren’t this is your reminder.  Most insurance companies will give homeowners with a home security system a discount of up to 20%. You are less of a liability to them with your system, therefore, you pay less. This lowers the financial burden of being a homeowner. Then, when you’re ready to sell your home, you get both the appreciation value and the savings from home insurance.

 

Convenience 

Lastly, have a combination of home security and home automation devices in your home add a level of convenience that you simply cannot have without a security system. These devices save you time and money and give you a level of security that is invaluable. 

Call WISE today if you’re ready to add more value to your home! 1-844-904-9473

5 Ways to Improve Your Spring Cleaning

We’ve been cooped up in our homes all winter—well actually we’ve been cooped up for about a year now so for some of us, spring cleaning is long overdue. Unfortunately, home injuries account for 21 million medical visits every year. This year we’re going to go about it the safest ways so no one starts off his or her summer with an avoidable injury. Stay tuned to learn how to improve your spring cleaning routine. 

 

1. Plan

You remember that old saying “if you fail to plan, you plan to fail”? It’s true. So before you start doing any heavy lifting, make a plan. Take a walk around your house—inside and outside—and make a list of everything you’d like to accomplish. Once your list is made, you can organize it by order of importance and to ease the flow of your spring cleaning.

 

2. Declutter

This is a crucial step to avoid those injuries we talked about earlier. Give yourself room to work. Make sure your area is clear of bigger items of clutter that you could trip over, walk into, or that could fall on you. This includes small children and pets.

 

3. Top to Bottom

Always work from top to bottom. Whether you’re inside or outside, this forces debris down where it will eventually be cleaned up. It also lessens the number of times you’ll have to re-clean the same places.

 

4. Ventilate

You are about to be using multiple different methods of cleaning: dusting, vacuuming, utilizing cleaning products, etc. It would be wise to open a few windows or doors to keep your home properly ventilated while you air everything out, especially if you have allergies. You may even want to consider wearing a mask—something you’re probably a pro at, at this point.

 

5. Watch Your Step

This goes for just about every step of the process. While your moping your floors, watch your step. When you’re up on the ladder cleaning your rain gutters, watch your step. If you’re using power tools for whatever reason, watch your step. In general, just be careful. You don’t want to hurt yourself or anyone around you because of a lapse in judgment.

 

We hope these tips helped and if you’d like to protect your home from more than germs and dust, give us a call at 1-844-904-9473!

Travel Tips To Protect Your Home While On Vacation

After what we had to go through this past year, we all deserve a breather. Soon, more places will be opening back up which means we can all go on that vacation that we so desperately need! The very last thing on this planet you want to worry about while you’re gone is what’s going on at home, let us do that. To make sure your vacation is truly stress-free, here are some travel tips for you to consider before you leave.

 

Electronics

Unplug any unnecessary electronics before you leave to protect against power surges. This is also a good idea if you have any pets you may be leaving behind. They can get into things or accidentally turn electronics on that were left plugged in and that could end badly.

 

Automation 

Keep some lights on or set interior light timers with your smart lights, if you have them. You don’t want anyone else knowing that you’re going to be away from home for a prolonged period of time. Keeping lights on gives off the impression that your home isn’t empty and vulnerable. In addition, if you have a programmable thermostat, change your preferred settings to conserve energy while you’re away.

 

Secure Your Valuables

Hopefully, you are already keeping your valuables in a safe place but in case you aren’t, consider this your reminder. And we don’t just mean jewelry or electronics, this includes things you may not have thought about that you keep in the backyard too. Things like motorcycles, bikes, lawnmowers, power tools, patio furniture, and sports equipment. Keep your smaller valuables in a lockbox or a safe and bring the other items in from your backyard and possibly store them in your garage until you get back.

 

Online

Don’t post pictures or updates online while you’re on your trip! This is one of the top travel tips we give often and it bears repeating. It seems silly but you never know who could be monitoring your online presence and it’s just a good rule of thumb to wait and post all of your amazing trip details when you’re back home.

 

Deliveries

While you’re gone you may receive some packages along with your normal mail. Don’t leave notes on your door alerting service persons of your absence. Plan with family or a neighbor to retrieve your packages and other mail daily so it’s left with a trusted individual until you get back.

 

Luckily, if there is an emergency or you just feel like checking in on your home while you’re gone, you get alerts and can control everything all from the WISE app on your phone. If you’re looking to get protection before you leave on vacation, call WISE today at 1-844-904-9473!

Texas Reopening: What Now?

It has been an entire year of keeping at home and trying to find ways to entertain ourselves within our own four walls. However, as it turns out, the state-wide mask mandate is being lifted and businesses are set to reopen at full capacity in Texas. The Texas reopening is set to be effective March 10, 2021. If you live in Texas and need a reminder of things that you can do outside your home, don’t worry, we’re here to help!

 

Houston

NASA Johnson Space Center

Space Center Houston

Houston Zoo

Downtown Aquarium 

Kemah Boardwalk

Children’s Museum of Houston

These famous attractions will be most likely be up and running as they were before Covid hit very soon. If you have lived in Houston, TX and you have visited these spots, you are definitely missing out! 

 

Dallas

AT&T Stadium Tours

Cowboys Games

Reunion Tower

Six Flags

Not to mention all of the famous Dallas eateries that will be doing dine-in dinner again and ready for you to go and eat your body weight in BBQ. Come summertime, stadiums will likely be at full capacity and you can enjoy all the social events you missed in 2020.

 

Austin

McKinney Falls State Park

Barton Spring Municipal Pool 

Museum of Weird

Neverland Design Fine Art Studio

University of Texas Campus

Austin, TX is also home to the famous University of Texas. The university is already setting a plan in motion to reopen in the fall of 2021. The famous Austin nightlife is bound to be making a comeback this year as well.

There are sure to be places in Texas reopening near you even if you don’t live near these major attractions. This may include theaters, event venues, spas, arcades, bars, clubs, parks, etc. As we near the home stretch of this pandemic, it’s nice to have a reminder of all the things we may have taken for granted before this pandemic. 

And if you need someone to keep watch over your home while you’re out rediscovering Texas, give us a call at 1-817-697-2069.