You live in an apartment. You’re probably not going to be there forever, but you want to make sure your valuables are safe. You’d like to get a home security system, but what about installation and moving costs? Some home security companies will charge substantial fees for installation and moving, and your landlord probably won’t want loads of holes getting drilled into the wall for a home security system. Here’s what you need to know and what you can do.

Contracts and Moving Fees

If you’re living in an apartment, chances are you’re not planning on being there for the rest of your life. When it comes to home security service contracts, most plans will span a period of 3 to 5 years. Naturally, it’s more convenient to have a shorter contract, so the closer you can get to that three-year mark, the better.

That being said, make sure you don’t agree on a home security contract until you’re totally positive you can pay the fees in the long run. It’s a big commitment. Ask yourself if you’re going to have a source of income that will allow yourself to pay for the system in three years. Also, ask yourself if the company you’re considering has a solid track record of customer satisfaction. You don’t want to be with a company long-term when you’re not completely positive you’re going to be satisfied at every turn.

In terms of moving, this is where a lot of home security companies will charge. It’s very rare that companies will let you move your system without a hitch, but occasionally, a company will allow it. With Protect America, for example, a move is as simple as alerting a customer support representative of the move, acquiring a move kit, and disconnecting your system. But for the most part, other home security companies will charge substantial fees for moving your system. Reach out to a company representative to confirm this before signing on the dotted line.

Installation

Home security companies will normally offer either a DIY security system or a system that needs to be installed by a professional. It’s rarely both. Professionally installed systems can be nice in that you have the peace of mind of a professionally-licensed employee working on your home, but it also comes at the price of convenience. Some installation jobs aren’t the most glamorous, and you might have to take an afternoon off work while you hang around and learn how to operate your system. Also, if you’re uncomfortable about strangers of any sort coming into your home, there’s that issue as well.

Arguably, the best way to go is the do-it-yourself home security system that also offers professional monthly monitoring. These systems are fairly simple to install and don’t require a lot of wiring or drilling in order to fully install. This way, your landlord stays happy. This means that the system can also be easily disassembled and taken somewhere else if necessary. Again, it’s important to consult with your home security company to be sure that they offer this level of functionality.

Non-Monitored DIY Systems

There has been a massive flux of home security devices that have flooded into the marketplace in the past few years. The majority of these are WiFi-enabled security cameras that can be accessed by your phone or other mobile devices. It’s definitely tempting. These devices can be relatively inexpensive and have no ongoing fees attached. Not only that, but the video quality is pretty high as well. So what’s the problem?

The issue comes with professional monitoring. You’ll find that when you buy one of these WiFi-enabled cameras, you don’t have a professional representative monitoring your system like you would with a traditional home security system. That means if someone breaks into your house or your camera detects unsuspected movement, it will send you a push notification, but may not contact police. When it comes to these moments, every second can count, so a WiFi security camera might not be enough.

Professionally-monitored systems don’t just keep an eye on your place for burglaries, as well. These systems can contact emergency personnel in the event of a fire or carbon monoxide leak. And if you’re away from home or away from your phone, this is indispensable.

If you think you can get by with a simple WiFi camera that might be okay, but it’s not going to have the same functionality of a full-fledged home security system.

Look here to find top-rated home security companies that offer professional monitoring.