- Knowledge and Licensing are Important! Most states now have serious licensing guidelines to prevent consumer disappointment and abuses. The public is too often left unsatisfied, having to buy multiple systems in just a few years, because they insisted on the do-it- yourself route and ignored the advice of a properly vetted professional. The knowledge, experience, and expertise needed to install an effective CCTV system goes well beyond the knowledge of burglar and fire alarms companies, IT people, electricians, locksmiths, telephone installers, handy men, friends, family and acquaintances. Finding a knowledgeable company who wears their reputation proudly is the exception no doubt.
- Know What Cost Means: Costs are always relative because like with most purchases, there is an initial cost and a long-term cost. There are specific needs for every business or home that need to be met, which are not considered unless a true industry professional is involved. There are many levels of quality in both products and caliber of installation. The actual installation materials and methods chosen to install surveillance equipment will affect long-term performance and thus satisfaction levels. The end result and long-term serviceability is a function of the individual installer’s expertise and the company’s standards. With technology on a relentless march forward, obsolescence looms near for everyone that wants to jump in the pool at any given time.
- Beware of Online Sellers: eBay, online sellers, home improvement and many other retailers sell surveillance equipment. Cameras, DVRs and related equipment come in consumer and commercial grades. How can anyone know what you need without seeing the building that the cameras and DVR is going to protect? They cannot. Most online claims and warranties are often not backed. What is “for sale” is often not the right tool for any given job, because there is no way to actually know what is correct without a site visit by a responsible company. Driven by a need to sell products, many offerings are often undersized and not functionally capable or supportable over a time. Most installers do not charge enough to return or have an ongoing interest in servicing what they sell.
- Deal with Business Owners: Most consumers of this service do not hire an independent security consultant for evaluations and need not. As it turns out the most reliable way to engage this service is at your premises by a family run company whose owner/s are willing to start a relationship with you directly. No one can understand a business owner’s needs like another business owner. That is, someone who will take their time to educate and present you with your options and written proposal for you to act at a time of you’re choosing and when your budget allows. Business owners care more about customer satisfaction than salespeople who are just looking for their commission. Beware of the “Big Bad Banks” and those companies looking to put you into debt to own a surveillance system, with “end of the world urgency.” Financing with low monthly payments will wind up costing you triple in the end and wreck your credit should you miss a payment.
Haste makes waste and so does opting to cheap-out on the wrong system. A system that is incorrectly installed and unserviceable by a proven company (with hundreds of happy clients’ referrals) is a waste of every penny spent. Stop and do not waste your money! The cost of the professionally installed and fully serviceable system would net out at a $0 cost, because it would have paid for itself ten times, no, 100 times over.