Member Discussion

Looking To Get Into Alarms

I have been asked so many times if we do alarms, its sad how much we have turned away. For the record I am licensed and can legally install all low voltage items.

 

I am partnering up with an independent tech who does alarms and A/V. He is going to get us started and do all the installs etc. Probably be a financial loss in the beginning but I look at it as an investment. He is familiar with Honeywell and 2GIG

 

If you had to start all over, which panels would you use for residential and small commercial? We are considering 2GIG and Honeywell as they seem common and our sub knows them. I pass ADI daily (honeywell) and Tri-Ed (2GIG) is about 45 minutes away, so inventory should not be an issue. I also saw in another post Nellys is carrying 2GIG. I have some expeience with them, and they seemed like a pretty decent company to work with.

 

As far as monitoring companies, I am looking to partner with one that can do intrusion AND video monitoring or at least verification. Any suggestions? I know I need to review the list of monitoring companies IPVM published

 

 

 

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For someone just coming into it, CMS offers alot in the way of guidance and support. They can also handle billing. We outgrew them, but they were fantastic when we first got going on burg. they also do video monitoring.

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Security -Central is a good bet, they are super honest and very competive

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Being a Bosch, Honeywell, DSC, and DMP dealer I would say the best in the industry is DMP by quite a large margin. I would go Honeywell over 2gig for the ability to do larger and potentially commercial fire alarm combo panels (if allowed in your jurisdiction) off of the Honeywell system. If you are targeting solely small commercial and residential go 2gig as honeywell is slow as hell to address the competition in this space for an integrated solution.

 

I mean if you are serious in the space you will need more than one line eventually as a lot of the nationals accounts and larger enterprises are split between Bosch/Honeywell/GE. It all depends on the day and who you are selling to.

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Depending on your segment revenue (residential to commercial) is how you should look at things. 

Majority Light Commercial- Honeywell, you will be surprised on how many people want to reuse their 15 year old wired motion detectors. The Vista series is a great fit for new installs and retrofits.

Majority Residential- What existing panels do you see the most in your area when you go into a house? Honeywell Lynx and 2GiG are fine for new residential installs but take overs and retrofits are going to depend on what you see the most. Honeywell wireless 5800 products do work with 2GiG but do you want to be the 5th 2GiG dealer in the three county area? 2GiG doesn't have the hard wired background or lineup you might need in some situations. Keypad with wired zones etc. 

Honeywell has worked well for us since 2009 in this specific area. Bosch had dropped the ball in the light commercial and residential market so we naturally moved to them because ADT had a ton of panels around us that were Honeywell. ADI helped as well even though we are mainly commercial and govt. We looked at DMP but they weren't making the gains in the govt. market needed for us (still not today by the way). We stuck with Bosch for heavy commercial and for Feds.

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I have a ton of questions.

 

Alarm.com What exactly do they do? I have some pricing from one monitoring company but some services had to go through alarm.com?

 

 

Is there any system that will allow users to monitor the system via a mobile app when offsite? I saw Honeywell has something but that requires a fee to Honeywell. For the residential I would not mind putting in XYZ and using their cameras if they integrate into one app and we can create one seem less bill for that.

Any system that we can use for residential that will meet those criteria?

 

For commercial same question but can we use different cameras? Can we integrate with Dahua/Milestone?

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Alarm.com is the app/home automation for DSC, 2GiG, Interlogic and Qolsys panels. If you want to use those panels, you got to use alarm.com for the app. There are some home automation features as well. Honeywell's is called Total Connect.

I always sell HIK for residential camera systems so we don't integrate cameras with our Honeywell panels but you should look at Honeywell's Lynx 5210 panel. It does have camera intergration, home automation with a $20 module and is 100% in terms as functioning as an alarm panel. It works with alarmnet 360 as well unlike the Vista series.

To my knowledge Milestone only integrates with Bosch and DMP on the alarm side. If your go to market is commercial, then you need to look at them

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Don't follow the herd just for the sake of following the herd.

Qolsys is a 2Gig competitor and I think superior and Tri-ed carries them.

They both work with Alarm.com and that allows you into the world of low budget home automation.

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If you are a true integrator then it will be tough getting into the intrusion business depending on your labor and service rates. I work for an integrator and the only time we do intrusion is when it is with an existing customer or we can roll it into access control and video. By the time I price out an intrusion system to a customer a basic system can cost over $2000. Unlike a true intrusion company that probably sells the majority of their contracts we can't front the up front cost to the customer like an intrusion company would give a system away. I used to be in the intrusion business and it was really good money back in the day and frankly probably still is. Also if you are going to be doing lots of residential systems then that is a completely different business model as compared to an integration company. Lots of evening sales and service calls. Last minute installs on a Friday afternoon and lots of saturday installs as well. Don't get me wrong there is a great market in the intrusion side of our industry but you have to look at it from all angles. My personal favorite is the Honeywell systems. The link above is for a Vista-15P which is a basic panel with no IP integrated. The Vista-21IP is the way to go depending on the size of the system. Also their new Lyric is slick as well. With all the automation abilities now that can be installed with ease as apposed to the old X-10 stuff sometimes makes we want to do residential again, but then I think about hot stinking attics and quickly reject the notion. Anyway good luck with whatever you decide. Also Central Security Group out of Tulsa is a great monitoring company as well. I have known the owners of that for years.

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Why Not , everyone is a alarm dealer and thinks that anyone can do it. 

Just hire the right people. 

But count the cost

usually they are labor demanding. 

24/7 , that s when they want someone. 

anytime , any where and you have to have some one ready to go. 

IT depts, Electricians, GCs who just want to do everything in house. 

But Know this , the experienced Company's wait to fix all the mess of this type attitude. 

 

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Yes because only certain people can gain the knowledge to install alarms, and the rest of us do not have the capability to go to training, learn from others etc.

 

Don't worry, my field techs are well prepared...

 

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