Did You Know? Security Systems Provide Financial Benefits

Published May 5th, 2017 | By

When in the market for a home security system, homeowners are not only comparing the different security providers and their various security packages, but they are also looking at upfront costs. Depending on the security company and their equipment, homeowners can either rent their system or buy it completely. But either way you look at it, monthly charges will occur for monitoring services.

There are obvious benefits in having a home security system (such as 24-hour monitoring from break-ins, fires, floods and carbon monoxide leaks), but what many don’t consider are the financial benefits of having an alarm system. Here are three ways it can help profit you financially:

1. They Lower the Cost of Homeowner’s Insurance

Most homeowners know how crucial it is to have homeowner’s insurance (though some opt out of having this option, despite the potential consequences). Homeowner’s insurance offers protection against possible home events such as fires, floods, property & structural damage, etc. It means having a peace of mind against devastating threats to both the home and property. For instance, According to the U.S. Fire Administration, the average household will lose approximately $4,000 in property damage in the event of a fire. Those unexpected loses can be financially devastating without homeowner’s insurance.
For those who currently have homeowners insurance or are looking to add it, an alarm system can directly affect monthly insurance rates. How much can it save? Rates can be reduced by up to 20 percent. These savings are an additional, effortless way of having money in your pocket that you otherwise wouldn’t have.

2. They are Potentially Tax Deductible

Dealing with taxes and the IRS is no joking matter. To see whether a security system can be tax deductible, an accountant will have to first verify that this not only pertains to you, but that it’s also worth claiming. The only way a security system can be considered as tax deductible is if a homeowner works from home and has a designated space for a home office. The portion of the home that’s a home office is technically also protected by the security system, which can be viewed as a business expense. Anything that’s tax deductible can generate a tax return or lower the amount of tax owed.

3. They May Increase Home Value

Owning or buying a home is a financial investment. And over the years, with home improvements done here and there, homeowners hope to have their homes increase in value. Whether it’s doing appliance upgrades (such as adding stainless steel kitchen appliances), adding hardwood floors (to previously carpeted areas), adding crown molding, etc., installing a home monitoring system is equally considered to be a home improvement.
These all add intrinsic value to any home. Regardless of whether a homeowner is planning on staying at their property for many years, or they are placing their home on the market, projects big and small are beneficial in increasing

3 Eco-Friendly Tips for your Home

Published March 23rd, 2017 | By

Transforming your home into an eco-friendly home doesn’t have to be difficult, especially with some tips on how to go green. Though it might take some adjustments, the benefits of green living are substantial, and you’ll notice them over time. The payoff is great, even when it comes to saving money on utilities.

Here are a few tips on how to transform your home into an eco-friendly home:

1. Add Additional Landscaping

Depending on where you live, you may or may not have a lot of landscaping. Newer residences in particular tend to be scare when it comes to having trees and bushes. If that’s the case, get prepared to roll up your sleeves and do a little planting. Landscaping not only adds some curb appeal, but it also provides several additional things: 1) air purification 2) natural cooling and 3) extra protection.

Plants help absorb carbon monoxide and in turn, they produce oxygen. With all the pollutants that we put in the air, we need all the air purification that we can get! When it comes to natural cooling, having trees in particular provide shade. In summer months especially, any extra cooling is certainly welcome. You wont have to withstand the blaring heat with some planted trees that will grow and mature with time. And lastly, trees and shrubs also add extra protection in the event of things like a car crash or even an outdoor fire. With a little strategic planning on your part, landscaping can truly go a long ways.

 

2. Use Solar Power and Eco-Friendly Products

 

Today, many homes are deciding being equipped with solar panels to cut back on the use of fossil fuels. We’ve depended on fossil fuels for over a century and we continue to use it at an alarming rate. Unfortunately as popular as fossil fuels are, they are polluting the planet and emit greenhouse gases (which causes global warming). Homes with solar panels save around 20 percent on monthly utility costs. Overtime, that amount is staggering! Also, when you invest in solar, there are government tax incentives, which is great to claim when you file your taxes.

If you don’t want to go so far as getting solar for your home, you can still make some minor everyday energy-saving modifications, which will help make your home more eco-friendly. First, look for Energy Star products. These range from appliances (dishwashers, washers, dryers, refrigerators, etc.), electronics (TVs, stereos, tablets, etc.) building products (windows, doors, insulation, etc.), and more.

How far can an Energy Star product actually help? Well, one Energy Star light bulb alone uses 75 percent less energy and lasts much longer than a standard light bulb. Looking for that Energy Star seal of approval will greatly impact how much energy is being used by your home—saving you countless dollars in the process.

 

3. Invest in Smart Technology

Smart technology isn’t just for those who are tech-savvy. Believe it or not, many smart products are made for virtually anyone to use and are accessible by easy-to-use interfaces, such as an app. Smart technology doesn’t have to mean complicated…but it CAN help your home become more energy efficient.

Can you believe that 7 percent of people’s salaries go towards paying energy costs? Think of all the heating and cooling, and lighting required for daily living. Utilities are expensive and prices will only go up—unless you can curb how much is being consumed. Smart technology allows you to have a range of products such as smart thermostats smart appliances and smart lighting.

The central part of these amenities is that it allows you to remotely management whichever—whether it’s the thermostat, appliances or lights from any location (even if you are away from home). This is particularly great if you’ve forgotten to do things like decrease the thermostat on your way out, or if you’ve forgotten to turn off a light. You can save nearly 20 percent on energy consumption with a smart thermostat alone.

Again, going eco-friendly has its numerous advantages. Taking these steps will get you well on your way to better, cleaner living.

Wired vs Wireless: Which Security System Is Best For You?

Published September 28th, 2016 | By

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When it comes to choosing between a wired or wireless security system, your decision will depend on a variety of factors. This includes: whether or not you have a landline; the size of your home; whether you own or rent, and your budget.

Keep in mind that there really is no “right” or “wrong” when it comes to deciding between either setup. Everyone’s needs and situation will vary, necessitating either one or the other. But let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages of both, alongside which lifestyle/situation is the best match.

Wired Security Systems

In the age where everything is wireless, some might view wired security systems as outdated or in applicable to current technologies. While wireless security systems are a more recent iteration of home security, there is still something to be said about having a wired security system.

Advantages

  • Constantly up and running through power supply – Since everything is wired, no batteries are needed to keep your system up and running. This increases the overall reliability of your security system. Even if your power goes out, your ADT Security System will be protected by a backup battery system.
  • Covers a larger area – If you have a larger home, a wired system may be preferable, but not required/necessary. Between the control panel and sensor, coverage extends 1000 feet. This is potentially larger than wireless systems, although product capability will vary.
  • Less Expensive – Taking a look at ADT Security Systems, you’ll notice that the Basic Package – which is the wired system option – is the lowest priced option of all ADT packages.

Disadvantages

  • Can’t install without a landline – If your home has no landline, then you will not be able to install a wired home security system. Your landline would serve as the main connection for your system, and without the line, there is no system.
  • Self-installation not recommended – Wired systems will require a noticeable amount of drilling in order to install, thus requiring a professional installer. The process can potentially be lengthy and more intrusive than one might expect.
  • Not portable – Once a wired security system is installed, it is installed. If there comes a time for you to want to move, you will not be able to take your existing system with you. This is wher wireless systems do serve a strong advantage, as will be discussed in the next section.

Wireless Security Systems

The prevalence of wireless security systems is more common than that of wired. With less homes and apartments being built with a landline, wireless home security systems are becoming the go-to for many security customers. Although a technological improvement with a slew of advantage, wireless security systems are not without their own drawbacks. Let’s take a look at both.

Advantages

  • Easy, non-intrusive installation – There are no holes to drill or anything of the sort when it comes to installing a wireless system. The process is quite simple, and can be set up within a quicker time frame when compared to a wired system.
  • Mobility – Wireless systems are perfect for renters or those who are regularly on the move. When it comes time to move to your next place, you will likely be able to take your security system with you. When you order through ADT Home Security, you’ll be protected by the Mover’s Guarantee when you’re a customer for 2+ years.
  • Opens the door to home automation – You may have heard about Pulse, ADT’s home automation solution. ADT Pulse relies on advanced Z-Wave technology that allows devices in your home to “talk” to one another. A wireless system is essentially the staple of ADT Pulse.

Disadvantages

  • Communications interference – Although it isn’t terribly common, one’s wireless system may be subject to interference that compromises the overall functionality of the system. However, this isn’t really anything to be overly concerned about.
  • Battery replacement required – Since wireless systems aren’t connected to a regular power source, battery-powered equipment will require battery replacement. Maintenance isn’t terribly regular, but will still be something that you as a customer will want to stay on top of.
  • Cost – With more convenience and improved technology will come higher costs. Keep in mind, however, of the many advantages relating to convenience and mobility when thinking about a wireless system.

Choose what is best for you

As stated in the beginning, it would not be accurate to say that that a wireless system is “better” than a wired system, or visa versa. Depending on the setup of your home, your lifestyle (renter vs owner, for example), and your overall security needs, it’s really up to you in deciding which is actually best. Take note of the advantages and disadvantages of both, look into further research, and you’ll be able to find a solution.

Your house has been burglarized. What do you do now?

Published August 9th, 2016 | By

Burglary

It is a trauma that you hope never happens to either or nor anyone you care for. If it has happened to you, you know that having your home burglarized can create bouts of everything from anxiety, to mistrust, and depression. Such feelings are certainly understandable, but it’s important to know that if you’ve been burglarized, taking the proper measures to get back on board towards a normal life is essential.

1. Observe the situation and rationalize

Having your home violated will undoubtedly be a terrible feeling for everyone in your family, and it’s completely normal to react this way. While panic and fear might run rampant, it’s important to take the time to rationalize and truly understand what just happened.

Most burglars have no desire to return to a place where they’ve already been, since they know there’s a high level of attention being given towards a home that they have targeted. No one is coming back to do anymore harm to you or your property.

If you have come to home to discover that your house has been broken into, it is best to immediately leave the premises and go to the home of a trusted neighbor or family member. You can handle what needs to be done from there.

2. Don’t touch anything in your home

It’s not a fun thing to think about, but after a burglary, your entire home is lawfully a crime scene. It might be tempting to search through your home and see what has been stolen or broken in detail, but at this very moment, interfering with a crime scene isn’t something that you’ll want to do.

All objects in your home can potentially serve as pieces of evidence for when the police arrive,and they need to see your home the way that the burglar(s) left it.

3. Contact the proper authorities

If you do not have a monitored home security system, no one but you will be aware that your home was just burglarized. As a result, you’ll need to make the call, and you’ll need to do it as soon as possible. Every second is another second that the person or persons who broke into your home get further away from the justice that they deserve.

Wait for the police to arrive, and they’ll let you know when you can enter your home for a full assessment of damages. They will likely ask you to list out all items that you believe have been stolen, along with any descriptors that make the items unique. Try your best to ensure that all items in your home have been accounted for, as there is a chance that all of it can be recovered.

While police are investigating, take photos of the scene for insurance purposes. We will cover this in the next step.

Side Tip: Document the serial numbers of expensive items such as electronics, and keep them on file for use in the event your home has been burglarized. Serial numbers help police better track down items that belong to you. 

4. Contact your insurance company

This is important to do right after you have filed a police report, since your insurance company will need a wealth of information from the police in order to work with you for your claim. There is a chance that a claims adjuster will have to come to your home to get an accurate assessment of the damages.

The insurance claim process can potentially serve as a source of headache, but how fast it moves actually has a lot to do with you. Whenever the insurance company sends you paperwork or calls you, make it a point to give them whatever they need as soon as you can.

Having an inventory of household items can also help give the police and insurance company a clearer view of what has been stolen and/or damaged. In fact, there are several apps available that can help you organize all items within your home.

Liberty Mutual Insurance has the Home Gallery App, and Binary Formations, LLC has a highly-regarded app called Home Inventory that allows you to keep detailed information about all home items. Home Inventory will run you $25, but if you’re serious about your inventory, you might find it to be a worthy investment.

5. Inform your neighbors about the burglary

Whether you live in an apartment complex or in a standalone house, a burglary has the potential to affect the entire neighborhood.

Make it a point to let your neighbors know about what has happened so that they can take the initiative to increase their own security. It may help build stronger bonds with those who live around you as well.

6. Rebuild your home and life

It might take some time before you and your family will really feel safe again after a burglary, but it’s essential that you don’t live in a constant state of fear and anxiety. Go about your day as if it were any other, and don’t feel like you can never leave your home again. Just be sure to be more mindful about keeping your doors locked, and start thinking about other ways you can secure your home.

Home security monitoring can serve as a massive source of relief and ease when trying to protect your home. In the event of a burglary, ADT Home Security will immediately contact your local authorities and will keep you in the know. Burglars who know that a home is armed with a home security system is also much less likely to even try to make an attempt.

The effects of being a burglary victim can be overwhelming at first, but it’s not a tragedy that has to take hold of you for an extended period of time. When you learn to grow from such an unfortunate event, you’ll feel better about the extra security and care that you’re able to provide for those around you and the ones that you love.

Tips for Safe Grilling

Published May 20th, 2016 | By

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There’s no better way to prepare some delicious food than outside on a grill. Food just tastes…better. Whether you are grilling out to simply take advantage of great weather, or you are hosting an event for some friends, neighbors or family, be sure to exercise caution. Some people prefer gas grills; others are diehard charcoal fans—but one thing to keep in mind is that without plenty could go wrong with an open flame.

Each year, there are nearly 9,000 grilling-related fires throughout the U.S. Of these, 82 percent are caused using gas grills. It’s reported that there is an average of 140 injures per year and nearly $100 million lost in property damages throughout the country.

Want to get the most from your grilling experience? Try these on for size:

General Safety Tips

  • Allow a 3-foot grilling area. You’ll need some space that’s away from anything that could potentially catch on fire. Many backyards and patios are filled with landscaping—like pine straw, wood chips and even over-hanging trees. A clear, three-foot grilling area, away from these will make the most of a pleasant grilling experience.
  • Never leave your grill unattended when it’s in use. You’ll find that grilling requires a lot of back and forth to get supplies and food from inside. As tempting as it is to leave the grill for a few quick minutes, it’s best to either plan ahead accordingly, or have someone man the grill while you step away. One second is all it takes for something to potentially happen.
  • Keep children and pets away from the grill. A grill stays hot long after you are done using it—so it’s essential to keep all kids and pets away from it while it’s in use and a couple of hours afterwards too.
  • Never use an outdoor grill inside. Just don’t do it—it’s not worth the risk! It’s just asking for trouble.
  • Remove grease build-up from the grilling rack and drip tray. Few things catch fire as quickly and easily as fat and oil. Every time you grill some chicken, steak, etc., a layer of grease and fat is building up both on the grilling rack and on the dripping tray, located down at the bottom.

Charcoal Grill SafetyChimney_starter_in_Smokey_Joe

Grilling with charcoal can be a lot of fun. The smoke from the charcoal seems to be it’s own pleasurable reward when taking the first few bites of your grilled meal. But the very thing that gives off such a great flavor can literally make anything it touches go up in flames. Embers fly and are easy to catch on nearby trees, pine straw, the deck, or even your house.

  • Avoid using lighter fluid to help light your charcoal. Plenty of places sell fluid, so it’s easy to get some, but what really is safest (and works best) is actually a chimney charcoal starter. When using a chimney charcoal starter, the charcoal is able to light and heat up evenly before you begin cooking. Within 15 minutes, you’ll be ready to scatter the lit up coals and throw the food on the grill.
  • Use grilling mitts and proper grilling utensils. With charcoal grills in particular, you have to scatter the hot charcoal once it’s ready. Especially in using a chimney charcoal starter, you’ll have to dump the charcoal into the bottom of the grill—meaning embers will be able to potentially fly. Also, your hand and arm will be exposed near the heat. Using a grilling mitt and good grilling tools will help you keep control of the charcoal and reduce the likelihood of getting your skin burned.
  • Let the coals die down completely before trying to discard them. It takes a while for the coals to cool off; and more than likely, they’ll turn into a powdered ash that you can then quickly scoop away.

Gas Grill Safety

Gas grills are easy to light up—a benefit for many who don’t want to deal with charcoal.bbq-825711_960_720

  • Always remember to turn off the gas when you are done. It’s dangerous to have a gas line running continuously; it’s a certain fire hazard.
  • To look for gas leaks, use soap. If something doesn’t seem right with your gas grill, put soap on the closed gas tank. Bubbles will form if gas is leaking.

 

Looking for more home safety tips? Here are other ways to protect your home and family.

Sources:
http://www.nfpa.org
www.usfa.fema.gov

4 Tips for New Homeowners

Published April 17th, 2015 | By

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If you are a new homeowner, you probably have spent countless years renting and relying on your landlord for all your home maintenance needs. Whether facing a minor or major issue, your residence was never truly your home. Now that you’ve closed on your home and have finally settled in, be prepared for a whole new living experience.

Here are several ways to take charge and make your home as comfortable and safe as possible.

 

1. Change The Locksdoor-159330_640

When the previous owner hands over the keys, there is one huge thing to consider. How many key copies were made and handed out to a variety of people (strangers to you) over the years that the previous owners lived there? Numerous keys— keys into your house could be floating around. With that in mind, it’s a great idea to change all of your locks. You can now have complete control and personally decide who can enter your home.

You can even look at ADT Pulse for home automation components— including a remote lock that you can access and monitor via an Internet-enabled smartphone, tablet or computer.

 

2. Make sure to have WORKING smoke and carbon monoxide detectors

You never can predict when an emergency can strike. Everyday, you may double…or triple check that the oven is turned off or that the toaster oven is safely unplugged; but there are many potentially devastating circumstances that you can’t foresee or control. Between the threat of a house fire or carbon monoxide leak (a silent killer), you must have a working smoke and carbon monoxide detector. Having these could quite literally save your life and keep your home safe.

If you currently do have a working smoke and carbon monoxide detector, make sure that there batteries aren’t low. You can do this by pressing the “test” button on the face of the detector—you’ll likely hear a loud beep or see some sort of visible sign that it’s working properly. Try to have these detectors set up in every room—or at least strategically in several key rooms throughout your property.

 

3. Get to know your neighbors

Your neighbors don’t have to become your best friends, but it’s a great idea to at least introduce yourself. Familiarize yourself with your new neighborhood; it’s a unique little community that you are now part of. Everyone goes out of town for business, vacation or other instances. It’s great to know that you can rely on a trusted neighbor to keep an eye out for any suspicious activity while you are gone. A great neighbor could be a potential life or property saver.

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4. Landscaping

Sometimes when a house has been on the market for a while, there could be an issue withlawnmower-384589_640 landscaping overgrowth. Regardless of the state of your lawn be sure to scale back any bushes or trees that block views to your doors or windows. Having these areas clear will help detract potential burglars. Having a well-maintained yard will also indicate that someone is typically at the residence (rather than out of town).
 
 

Keep in mind that whatever your home protection needs may be, ADT home monitoring provides a range of package options that fit any lifestyle or budget.

 
 
 

Contact an ADT home monitoring customer service representative today to find out more!

 

10 Tax Write-Offs You Don’t Know About

Published March 13th, 2015 | By

 

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Tax season is here…actually it’s been here for the last couple of months. If you still haven’t filed, there is plenty of good news yet! Regardless of whether you expect to owe money or get a return, there are many different items that you can write-off for tax deductions. Some items you already know about, but there are others that are relevant to almost everyone, yet somehow lost in the cracks.small-business-tax-tips

Between now and April 15th, dig up all of your expenses and prepare to write-off these 10 potential items:

 

1.  Energy Efficient Home Upgrades

If you are a homeowner and have added energy-efficient upgrades, these items can be written off:

  • Insulation
  • Exterior windows & doors
  • Roofing
  • Heating & air conditioning systems
  • Hot water heaters
  • Alternative energy

Refer to the IRS’s Energy Incentives for Individuals in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for more information.

 

 2.  Mortgage Interest

Homeowners can potentially write-off interest paid on the following mortgage-related items:

  • Mortgage Interest
  • Home Equity Loan Interest
  • Mortgage Insurance Premiums (applicable to privately held policies)

Refer to the IRS Interest Item deduction page for more information.

 

3.  Business Use of Your Home

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These days, many people work remotely. If you are a remote worker who uses your home for business use, these may be of substantial benefit to you:

  • Business Use of Your Home. Examples of this would be the business part of your home interest, portion comprised on bills (e.g.: Internet and energy), furniture used for business (desk, desk chair, file cabinets, etc.) and more. Refer to this page for more information.
  • Business-Use Depreciation. An example of this could be a personal computer that is used for business purposes. (Refer to this page for specifics.)

 

 4.  Home Office Supplies

Any time you paid for home office items (such as pens, notepads, paper clips, etc.) you can write these items off— if you’ve saved the receipt.

 

5.  Continuous Education

The government encourages people to pursue additional education—and it doesn’t have to be for college classes. The Lifetime Learning credit provides deductions on career-based educational pursuits that will improve your job skills. This includes online classes (ever signed up for a Groupon class? Something of that nature fits this category perfectly). IRS Pub 970 covers all the details.

 

 6.  Gas Mileage & Car Maintenance

If you use your personal vehicle for work-related purposes and don’t get compensated for these expenses– you can write these off if they comply with the IRS’s Publication 463 on Travel, Entertainment, Gift, and Car Expenses.

 

 7.  Additional Health Care Costs

health-care

Healthcare is expensive. Fortunately, you can potentially write off these items:

  • Preventative care expenses
  • Dental care
  • Fertility treatments & pregnancy tests
  • Prescription drugs
  • Glasses, contacts and contact lens solutions
  • Out of pocket doctor bills
  • Psychologist & psychiatrist visits
  • Medical care home improvements

Review the IRS’s Topic 502 on Medical and Dental Expenses.

 

 8.  Car Loan Interest

This falls under the personal interest section and only applies if you use your vehicle for business.

 

9.  Moving for Your Job

If you relocated for your job and moved at least 50 miles away, you could write off your moving expenses. IRS Pub 521 has all of the qualification details.

 

10.  Looking for Employment

It’s expensive to be unemployed while looking for employment opportunities. If you’ve spent over 2% of your gross income looking for employment, you could potentially write this off as a miscellaneous deduction. You must be looking for a position within your same field and it cannot be your first job. View all specifics under this category under the IRS Pub 529.

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Know what type of deductions you could potentially write off may save you hundreds of dollars this year on your taxes. At any rate, it’s better than just crossing your fingers! Who knows, maybe you can upgrade to the ADT Pulse Package with your return check!

Why Digital Security Protection Matters

Published March 12th, 2015 | By

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It’s essential to protect your home and your family from potential threats. Just as you’d lock your doors and windows to keep out home invaders, you need to have safeguards to protect your digital identity and security. After all, thieves don’t just target physical items. Digital theft is on a wide-scale rise and anyone can become a victim.

What are you currently doing to protect your digital identity? Chances are that your tablet or smart doesn’t have any sort of security. You are not alone; 75 percent of people lack digital protection on their devices. Think of all the places that you access your online information—it could be while you are at the coffee shop, the doctor’s office or many other unsecure online locations. Don’t set yourself up for a potentially horrible situation.

ADT has teamed up with McAfee to provide McAfee LiveSafe™ ADT® Security Edition. It provides digital security with cross-device flexibility, which is good across laptops, smartphones and laptops. Keep all your sensitive information secure and out of reach from people who could compromise your financial accounts, personal information and more. Nowadays, virtually everything important is accessible online— you need to make sure no one else can access sensitive information.

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The Facts:

• Every day, there are over 1.5 million cyber crime victims. That number translates to an estimated 556 million victims per year.

• Over 232.4 million online identities are exposed and compromised (this includes social media accounts).

• Each day, over 600,00 Facebook accounts are compromised by phishing or other online hacking techniques.
• Cybercrime is a pandemic that cost more than $445 billion worldwide. It is estimated that the U.S. lost $100 billion alone.

McAfee states the following regarding cybercrime incentives:

“Cybercrime produces high returns at low risk and (relatively) low cost for the hackers. The two most common exploitation techniques—social engineering,
where a cybercriminal tricks a user into granting access, and vulnerability exploitation, where a cybercriminal takes advantage of a programming or implementation failure to gain access—are both surprisingly cheap.”

These days, digital security protection is just as important as having physical home security alarm. Keep what’s important safe—your future depends on it. The time is now to act before anyone targets you. Explore what type of protection ADT provides; call a customer service representative today.

 

Sources:

http://www.mcafee.com/us/resources/reports/rp-economic-impact-cybercrime2.pdf

http://www.insecpro.com/index.php/articles/cyber-crime-statistics

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/report-cybercrime-and-espionage-costs-445-billion-annually/2014/06/08/8995291c-ecce-11e3-9f5c-9075d5508f0a_story.html

 

Winter Weather Home Safety

Published February 17th, 2015 | By

Feature - Winter Safety

It’s important to prepare your home for winter weather. Winter storms can bring a mix of snow, sleet and ice that can cause pipes to burst, the power to go out and the inside temperatures to drop. Being prepared makes all the difference; be sure to follow these essential tips to ride out any snowstorm with minimal risk.

Prepare your Home for Adverse Weather Conditions.

Is your home ready for the next winter storm? Here’s what you can do.

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Stock up on Food and Water

If bad weather is headed your way, it could potentially be days before it’s safe to drive. Make sure you have enough non-perishable foods and water in case the worst were to happen—you can never be too safe. Keep in mind that perishable (items like milk and eggs) will go bad if the power goes out.

 

Protect Your Pipes

When the temperature drops, it can mean disaster for your pipes. You can either open the cabinets under the sink (circulates the home heating) or allow your sink to slightly drip (prevents the water from freezing in the pipes).

 

Insulate Your Home

Proper home insulation is vital to keeping out cold air and moisture. Make sure your doors and windows have intact weather strips. Many doors (especially the front door) loose their weather strips due to frequent use. You might not notice a big difference day-to-day, but these strips help keep out cold air and moisture from rain or snow.

 

Have a Supply of Batteries, Flashlights and Candles

You never know when the power will go out. Ice on the power lines can cause widespread power outages—don’t find yourself in the dark. Have several flashlights and candles at hand with backup batteries available.

BRAMPTON ICE STORM CLEANUP


Maintain Driveway and Sidewalks

Before a storm, scatter either cat litter, sand or salt on your sidewalk and driveway. These will help minimize the amount of icy patches that can cause you and others to slip and fall.

 

Be Cautious of Alternative Heating Sources

Carbon Monoxide is a silent killer. It has no odor and can cause headaches, nausea or even death. If you use your fireplace and it isn’t properly cleaned, you run the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. The same can occur if you use alternative heating sources like outside-only grills or stoves. Having a carbon monoxide detector can literally save your life.

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Keep your home safe this winter! Keep these safety tips handy and know that ADT is here for your 24/7 home protection in your city.

The Truth About Home Invasions

Published February 6th, 2015 | By

home-invasion-prevention

There’s no way to predict where or when a home invasion will occur. They can happen anywhere and aren’t limited by neighborhood. Heavy high traffic areas, like apartments and condos have a higher probability of being targeted—the steady flux of people coming in and out make it harder to spot potential security threats. Regardless of where you live, you should know the real truth about home invasions.

The following statistics are eye-openers to the importance of securing your home with a home monitoring system.home-security-alarm-symbol

  • Over 2.5 million home burglaries happen each year in the U.S.
  • The most common time for a home burglary is in the middle part of the day, while most people are away.
  • Over 60 percent of all burglaries happen at residential addresses rather than business addresses.
  • 30 percent of burglars enter through an unlocked door or window.
  • 33 percent of burglars enter through the front door.
  • 60 percent of burglars break into a home by force.
  • The average home burglary victim will suffer around $2,185 in physical losses, but will cause additional emotional distress that will last beyond any monetary value.
  • 28 percent of home burglaries occurred while someone was home. 7 percent of these break-ins resulted in physical injury to the victims.
  • Police only resolve around 13 percent of all home burglary cases.

The facts prove how devastating home invasions are; but ADT can help minimize these risks. Homes with home monitoring systems are less likely to be broken into. Find the home monitoring package that is right for your home and city (for example, Chicago). Protect your loved ones, yourself and your home today with ADT.

Additional Benefits of Having an ADT home monitoring system:

 

1. ADT can Save you Money on Your Homeowner’s Insurance.

Many home insurance companies will offer discounts to homeowners who have a home monitoring system. With an ADT home monitoring security system, you could potentially save up to 20% on your homeowner’s insurance. Check with your home insurance agent or broker to see if you are eligible!

 

2. ADT Provides a Theft Protection Guarantee

In the event that your home is burglarized while your alarm system is ARMED, our theft protection guarantee can cover up to $500 on your insurance deductible.
TheftProtectionGuaranteeHomeownersIns

Have a peace of mind with ADT; never battle the odds alone ever again.

Sources:

$99 Customer Installation Charge. 36-Month Monitoring Agreement required at $36.99 per month ($1,331.64). 24-Month Monitoring Agreement required at $36.99 ($887.76) for California, including Quality Service Plan (QSP). Form of payment must be by credit card or electronic charge to your checking or savings account. Offer applies to homeowners only. Local permit fees may be required. Satisfactory credit history required. Termination Fee applies. Certain restrictions may apply. Offer valid for new ADT Authorized Premier Provider customers only and not on purchases from ADT LLC. Other rate plans available. Cannot be combined with any other offer.
ADT Pulse Installation starts at $199. Burglary, Fire, Carbon Monoxide and Medical Alert monitoring requires purchase and/or activation of an ADT security system with monitored Burglary, Fire, Carbon Monoxide and Medical Alert devices. Fire, Carbon Monoxide and Medical Alert services are an additional charge. Quality Service Plan (QSP) is ADT’s Extended Limited Warranty. 36-month monitoring contract required from $52.99 per month, ($1,871.64), including Quality Service Plan (QSP). Additional charges may apply in areas that require guard response service for municipal alarm verification. Prices subject to change. Prices may vary by market. Some insurance companies offer discounts on Homeowner’s Insurance. Please consult your insurance company. Local permit fees may be required. Satisfactory credit history required. Additional monitoring fees required for some services. Photos are for illustrative purposes only and may not reflect the exact product/service actually provided.