Best, most affordable security systems for your home - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Best, most affordable security systems for your home

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KANAWHA COUNTY, WV -

Home security systems may not be able to prevent break-ins, but they sure could help in the aftermath.

Officials from both the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office and First Security, a family-owned business located in South Charleston, recommend people in the area buy both monitored and camera security systems to install in their homes.

They both say this combination of security systems is the safest route homeowners can take.

“It’s not one of those things where I’m worried something would happen and I wouldn’t be able to take care of myself or handle it,” said First Security’s Rob Lockhart, who also has a security system in place at his home. “It’s the peace of mind of knowing that if something were to happen and I wasn’t there, at least I would know, at least somebody would know.”

Customers who buy monitored systems pay a one-time fee for the equipment and installation, then pay roughly $35-$50 a month for service, Lockhart said.

Camera security systems cost a one-time payment of $500-$5,000, depending on the quality, Lockhart said.

Lockhart said they also offer other advanced security products, like two-way voice response and alarm.com.

The latter lets customers access their security cameras via an app on a smartphone. While some people question the ability of thieves to hack the system this way, Lockhart says the site is secure and no more vulnerable than when people are accessing their bank accounts online. 

KCSO and Lockhart say security systems can stop thieves from stealing as much as they could in a home without a system, adding, security systems also help law enforcement catch criminals and recover stolen property.

“If you don’t have [a security system, the thieves] have got all day. They can take their time, no rush, no hurry, dig through, find your hidden stuff,” Lockhart said. “They can take their time and take everything. At least with [a security system], there's a response and they’re on a short time limit.”

Lockhart says across the country, a break-in occurs every 15 seconds.

KCSO Sgt. Brian Humphreys said in Kanawha County, burglaries happen on a weekly basis.

“They happen all over the county in cities and in rural areas,” Humphreys said. “People sometime think because they have neighbors close by they won’t be a victim, and that’s not necessarily the case.”

Humphreys suggests having neighbors you trust pick up your mail and check in on your home or apartment when you leave town for an extended period of time. He also advises waiting until after you return home to post pictures from your trip, warning that potential burglars could see your photos while you’re away.

Lockhart also provided some free safety tips.

“First and foremost, as stupid as it may sound, lock your doors. I mean people leave their doors unlocked  that keeps honest people honest everybody says,” Lockhart said. “But take it a step further. If you have bushes, shrubbery, things of that nature cut that back so that doesn’t obscure the view of other people seeing your windows. That makes it easier for somebody to hide back there and get in.”

Humphreys adds anyone who sees a suspicious car at a neighbor’s house should call 911 immediately.

“We’ve had several times where neighbors have watched someone moving items out of a house as it’s being burglarized and assumed it was someone known,” Humphreys said. “They waited until the homeowners were there and tell them ‘Hey somebody was at your house this is the vehicle that it was.’ It could have been stopped in progress but people were waiting to talk to the homeowners themselves before they reported anything.”

You can find a list of First Security’s products and prices here.

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