Who Owns ADT Alarm Systems After Install?
You’ve paid to have an alarm system installed in your home. Do you own the equipment? Most likely, but not yet if you contracted with a big-box home security company like ADT.
Payment Plans for Equipment
Most people sign up on special offers in which they will pay an installation fee for the equipment, but not the equipment itself. The equipment is paid for over time, as part of the monthly monitoring fees, and usually for a minimum of three years.
This arrangement can work out well if you know you’ll be in your current home for a long time and are 100 percent certain you will be happy with the monitoring services provided by the company with which you are contracting.
Downfalls of Package Pricing
If you are renting a residence, intend to move within a few years, or want the flexibility of choosing the company that monitors your alarm system, this type of arrangement might not be the best option. You’ll be locked into a long-term contract that you will be required to fulfill, including monthly monitoring charges, and you won’t be able to take the alarm system equipment with you when you move. In this situation, you might want to consider purchasing your equipment. Your up-front cost will be higher, but your monthly costs will be lower, and it may well work out to be the better bargain in the long run.
Another downfall of package pricing can be the fact that you don’t get to choose the equipment you want. Most starter packages come with specific options, such as a control panel, alarm sound, and two entryway sensors. If you want to add additional equipment, such as window sensors or cameras, the monthly costs jump way up. Before locking into a long-term contract, you should price out the equipment separately and make sure you don’t end up overpaying. Also, make sure the monthly monitoring costs are fixed for the entire length of the contract. Many times, the introductory rate is only good for a short period and then a much higher rate kicks in.
Why You Should Purchase Up-Front
A benefit of purchasing your equipment from the get-go is that you also get what you want. Not all sensors and cameras are made equally. You may be paying a premium price for equipment that’s not top-of-the-line or not the best fit for your lifestyle. With the enormous range of options and features available to homeowners today, it’s worth it to check out the options that are available rather than just assuming all home security system components are the same.
There are a lot of options to think about when choosing an alarm system – equipment options, monitoring, experience, contract length, convenience, usability and much more. Take the time to do your homework and compare several different providers.