EMC is a Georgia security firm that gets good marks for service and reliability. The company has added a do-it-yourself self-install security system to their product line. Its basic monitoring cost starts at $16.95 per month, lower than most. The upfront basic equipment charge is $299.

The $299 basic system comes with these security-monitoring devices:

Keypad/Base Station:  Has a full-color, touchscreen keypad with large icons and text. Comes with an optional (free) two-way voice feature. With two-way voice you can communicate with the central station to ensure the proper response if an alarm signal is received.

3 Door/Window Sensors: These wireless devices detect the opening and closing of your door or window. Add $45 for each additional sensor.

Motion Detector:  This is a passive infrared motion sensor for placement in the main living area of your home for maximum protection. If you want an additional motion detector, add $135.

Key Fob: A wireless remote that arms and disarms the system without having to enter a passcode. Push a single button to disarm the system. Add $65 for an additional key fob.

2 Yard Warning Signs and 4 Stickers

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The Optional Add-Ons

As you might suspect the extras drive EMC prices up. They consist of the following:

Cellular Communicator ($149 plus $7 additional per month): This adds cellular telephone communications to the self-install system. The system already comes ready to connect to your home WiFi network.  The cellular communicator for adds another layer of failover security.

Mobile App Control ($7 additional per month): Controls the security system from anywhere in the world directly a your mobile device. Connects with smart-home Automation/or mobile app).

Video surveillance sold separately

Video cameras are not included in the self-install package. EMC offers a separate indoor and outdoor cameras surveillance package. Indoor cameras start at $99 each and outdoor cameras start at $199. Costs include installation.

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Adding up the costs:

So, figuring in the annual monitoring cost of $203.88, plus $299 for the basic equipment package, your first year’s is $502.88.

Throw in optional extras of 2 more door/window monitors ($90), 1 additional motion detector ($135), another key fob ($65) and the cellular communicator console ($149) and your equipment costs rise to $738.

Also adding the cellular equipment and apps will bring our monthly monitoring costs up another $19 to a total of $35.99.

If you’re thinking about adding a $99 internal video camera, your total first-month upfront package comes to a hefty $908.98.

By the way, EMC offers a mobile emergency alert package. It comes with an active emergency alert button that connects to the AT&T 3G network. The cost is $21.95 per month. Add $16.95 for an in-home medical alert voice-to-voice emergency response service, an ideal option for someone who wants to stay mostly at home while remaining independent.