Fall is beginning to creep up in Houston, and as the nights arrive at an earlier hour, it's in your best interest to ensure your security measures can keep up with the upcoming Halloween mischief. You and your family will likely be in and out of the house more often as you attend fall festivals and other gatherings, so leave a variety of monitoring solutions to look after your home when you're gone. Here are SounDesign’s top three security suggestions for this fall.
There's nothing worse than returning to a home that's been broken into after only a night or weekend away. Luckily there are ways to keep this from happening. A professionally installed security system and exterior lights that automatically switch on when the sun goes down may be enough to discourage potential intruders from targeting your home. However, using “Mockupancy” methods can add an extra layer of protection using automated scenes that open and close blinds and turn lights and audio devices on and off in different rooms to simulate someone moving around the house. This tricks anyone passing by into believing your home is occupied, hence the name "Mockupancy.”
Whether or not you choose to set up Mockupancy scenes, arm your home every time you leave. Scheduled alerts that are sent directly to your phone will notify you when the system is armed. In case a member of the family forgets to arm the system before leaving in the morning, your system can also send you a reminder to activate your system remotely via a paired mobile app. Our recommendation is to set up daily text alerts at a time when most family members would be out of the house for school or work, around 10 am or so. This way, you can arm your system and spend the rest of your day with peace of mind and be able to focus on what's important.
This fall you’ll be celebrating getting to have more time with friends and family than last year, so you and your family may be coming and going often for costume parties and pumpkin patch outings. However, someone may forget to lock the front door during the excitement. Geofencing technology is the perfect solution; it puts up a virtual dynamic fence around the perimeter of your property and can track your family's movement within its boundaries through Wi-Fi or mobile data in real-time. When integrated into your smart security system, geofencing technology can sense when the last person has left your home and automatically enable smart locks to protect the house, so you'll never worry about an unlocked front entrance or open garage door again.
The location tracking features of geofencing technology have many benefits. You can feel good once you see that your kids have safely arrived home from school or an outing with friends, locate a misplaced phone easily within your house, and keep an eye on sneaky teenagers who may try sneaking out when they shouldn't. Geofencing technology can cover any sized area, no matter if your property has acres of land or fits within a small apartment unit. Once you've installed it, get your family acquainted with all its features so everyone understands how it operates so they can properly enter and exit a secure home. We suggest integrating it with the rest of your home automation system, so you can automate exterior lights to turn on or a garage door to open for a particular registered family member or after a certain time. A few lights welcoming you home can dissipate some of the spookiness that comes during this season.
With advancements in home security systems, you can use more ways to check in on your home no matter how far from it you may be. CCTV cameras, for example, now come equipped with motion sensors. Whenever a person at your front door triggers the motion sensor, the camera will send you a direct message alert with live footage, so you can chat with them with a two-way voice operation system and thank the deliveryman or greet the group of kids trick-or-treating. These systems are also quite handy for indoor use; you can check in with your babysitter, solve a squabble between your kids, and know that your teen won't even try to throw a party if you leave for the weekend. Furthermore, motion sensors can be placed around different areas of the house that may contain valuables or private spaces that you don't want visitors or your kids entering, such as the attic or master bedroom.
As you're gearing up for the delights that the fall season brings, you'll be able to keep your family safe no matter how long you're out of the house. If you have questions about installing any of the security system solutions mentioned above, call our team at SounDesign today!
2521 Fairway Park Dr., Suite 402, Houston, TX