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Profitt Report: The price of home security during the summer

Photo credit: MGN

The summer season is also vacation season, meaning your home is left vacant and vulnerable to thieves.

“We hire a college student to stay at our house,” said Sue Foster while with her family in Frankenmuth, “take care of my cats, water my plants, take in the mail.”

Foster knows, newspapers in the driveway and mail in the box are a dead giveaway to thieves that your house is empty.

“There’s also flags that thieves know, RV's maybe not in your yard, trailers, boats things of that nature, but summer is the highest break in season,” said Steve Wagner, senior security consultant at Audio Central Alarm in Saginaw.

They monitor calls at their center in Saginaw.

“We have direct lines to Saginaw County dispatch and to the outlying areas,” Wagner said.

We asked him to break down the basics of home security. First, you have your motion detection alarms.

“We usually do the key areas that are most common, of course doors… window-opening motion detectors in the house that will catch them from going too far, we always put in a siren as a deterrent, he said.

With new technology you can see what’s going on inside your home with a tablet, smart phone or anything with internet capabilities.

“The surveillance allows you to capture a person because you can get a facial view and things of that nature,” Wagner said.

The big question is: how much does this cost? There’s no perfect answer, it depends on your home and how much protection you want, but you can expect to pay $250 to $1,500 up front for the equipment according to ASecureLife.com.

Also, you might get a kick back from you homeowners insurance.

“The average is a 10 to 15 percent discount,” Wagner said.

You’ll want to check with your insurance company to make sure they offer one before you buy.

There are other possible costs after you purchase the equipment, depending on what you buy and who installs it: activation and installation fees and monitoring costs every month are something to ask about.

The Profitt Report wants to hear from you - please send consumer questions and story ideas to ProfittReport@WSMH.com

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