According to recent statistics, crime is on the decrease. We are safer than ever living in the UK, but many don’t feel safe, especially at home.
Burglary is still one of the most common types of crime.
If you know someone who has been burgled, you’ll know how distressing the experience is.
Technology can be of assistance when it comes to protecting your house from unwelcome attention.
One of the best security measures is having a CCTV system installed to provide monitoring over your property at all times.
Being on camera is enough of a deterrent alone to get most burglars to move on to an easier target.
If they do still break in, the film evidence gives a better chance of catching the thieves. But is the cost of home CCTV systems too expensive for the average domestic property?
Crime Prevention Audit
The first step in buying a CCTV system for your home is to undertake an audit to work out how many cameras you need, and where they should be located.
A poorly-positioned CCTV camera, not focused on weak points of your property is almost as useless as no CCTV at all.
Local Community Police Officers offer free crime prevention checks in your home to identify weak points and suggest appropriate security measures.
They may give guidance about how many CCTV cameras you need, and where to locate them.
Companies which sell CCTV systems provide a similar service, but bear in mind their aim is to maximise your spend so might not be as impartial.
Once you have a general idea of how many cameras you need and where they should be located, you can shop around for the best deal.
Camera Cost Of Home CCTV Systems
Your first cost is the cost of the cameras. Prices range from basic cameras with infra-red night vision costing £30, to high definition cameras at £150.
The very basic cameras are probably best avoided by you as picture quality is rarely good enough for crime detection.
At the other end of the scale, the very high resolution cameras can add to your costs considerably when you are buying several of them.
A mid-range camera is probably sufficient for most standard domestic installations.
You should ensure whatever type of camera you choose it is vandal proof. Footage should be time stamped to prove the time an event happened.
Wired or Wireless?
Traditionally, CCTV systems were hard wired. Every camera was connected to the house’s electricity supply for power, and pictures fed down wires to a central recording box.
Modern technology means wireless CCTV digital cameras are available for homeowners.
These are easier to install and less disruptive too as wireless systems mean you don’t need wires running around the walls inside.
A wireless system is more expensive for you though as cameras cost more than standard wired ones and can be prone to interference from your other home electronic devices.
A digital system which saves footage to a hard drive or computer in your home could let you access the system when on holiday or away from home.
With limited server space, you should think about motion-sensor cameras which start recording when someone walks past.
You should get professional advice from a range of CCTV providers before choosing a system appropriate for you, given budget and type of property.
DIY Option for Installing your CCTV
You can buy basic CCTV systems with a couple of cameras and recording equipment from main DIY stores for around £250.
If you have tools and knowledge needed to put the cameras up (and recording) in the right locations then this could be all you require.
If you live in a block of flats with a CCTV system inside then an additional couple of cameras for inside the property could be sufficient.
If you audit your property and find you need something complex such as motion sensitive or night vision cameras, get specialists in to supply and fit equipment for you.
Overall Cost Of Home CCTV Systems
The cost of getting home CCTV systems installed in your house will vary. This depends on whether you opt for analogue or digital system, wired or wireless,
The number of cameras needed and their location will have a role to play in costs of your home security system.
It is important you speak to a few local security companies to get quotes.
Ask them to survey your property and submit formal written quotes.
This process makes it easier for you to compare costs for your home CCTV system and decide best value for money offered.
You can expect to pay upwards of £1,500 for a CCTV system for a 3 bedroom semi-detached house, plus installation and recording equipment.
If your home is larger, or you need state of the art equipment and the best cameras on the market, expect to pay much more.