The main and most essential reason to invest in a security system is to deter crime in the home. An approximately 21 million U.S. homes have professionally monitored security. On the residential side, the security and monitoring space has changed more and faster in the past few years. The Paris attack last year triggered a higher demand for security products.
Security sellers found themselves competing against cable and Internet companies that come into the market and offer security as part of their services at a much lower cost. Also, consumer electronics manufacturers sell DIY products online and at mass market retail stores. This industry is changing and is not going to keep what it was.
Adoption: US vs EU
The levels of adoption of home security and safety devices vary by country, region, and segment; as does consumers' readiness to accept more advanced forms of security. Across Europe an average of ten percent of homes has some form of security alarm, according to the EU Crime Prevention Monitor.
However, based on Strategy Analytic's quantitative research, an average of just six percent of the total housing stock across Europe have monitored alarm systems. The strongest growth has been in the Nordics. In Finland, penetration grew from 2% in 1989 to 9% in 2004, while Norway soared from 9% to 28% over the same period. In addition, there are many self-installed systems which just ring, or alert the homeowner. According to the 2012 English Housing Survey, 30% of households had some form of alarm (both professionally monitored and self-installed), up from 25% in 2001.
Despite the different levels of adoption across different regions of Europe, the EU remains considerably behind US, where adoption of monitored alarm systems range from 17 to 26 percent, according to different market reports. One of the key factors affecting the home security market in the US, beyond just the maturity of the market, gun crime, the role of the sheriff in the response to alarm events, etc, has been the active involvement of telecom operators.
In the US, every telco offers some form of professional monitored home security subscription plan. Depending on the operator, the service might be installed by professional or do-it-yourself, but the service proposition is similar.
However, what is clear is that telcos have helped drive the market, especially over recent years. Another interesting factor is that consumers, who in the past relied on home security providers, are increasingly switching to telecoms as provider of choice for security.
The Consumers of Home Security
The main deterrent for people thinking about getting a home security system is the cost, which usually includes a monthly bill and any initial installation products and fees. The majority of security households rely on professional installation channels for the setup and maintenance of their system - only 14% were self-installed.
Among U.S. broadband households with a home security system, the ability to protect one's home while travelling is the top driver for their security purchases. Remote access capability plays an important influence in motivating these purchases - nearly 40% of home security households claim this feature as a key driver for their security ownership.
The Convergence: Smart Home & Home Security
Security households, rather than being content with their current system, have a predilection to add more smart features to their home. The smart home market has flourished on owners of security systems. According to the same research by Parks Associate, nearly 20% of US broadband households own at least one smart home device, and over one-half of these device owners also have a security system. Sixty-five percent of the US broadband households that own a security system plan to buy a smart home device within the year.
Seventy percent of U.S. security dealers installed some type of interactive smart home device or system within their residential offerings or plan to do so within the next 12 months. Nearly three-quarters of security dealers offer interactivity with their devices, which can be controlled through smartphones, tablets, and computers. Nearly 40% of installs in 2015 had system interactivity and enhanced smart home features, an increase from 31% in 2014. Dealer revenues for smart home services are around $14 per month.
Smart Home is dominated by security and fuelled by peace of mind that comes from connected home technology. Ninety percent of consumers say security is one of the top reasons to purchase a smart home system. In fact, the most popular smart home devices are networked security cameras. These connected devices have made security the strongest channel for smart home devices and controllers. The more people know about this technology, the more interested and excited they become about incorporating it into their everyday connected lifestyles.
The convergence of smart home and home security creates great opportunities for multiple channels and industries.
Home Security: Robberies in the Home
Before the Break-in
1. Most break-ins occur between 10am to 3pm
Break-ins usually occur in the daytime when occupants are at school or work. July and August are the most frequent months for break-ins. February is the least frequent for home breaks. In the U.S. a home burglary occurs every 13 seconds.
2. Burglars usually live near your neighborhood
The typical burglar resides within two miles of the target home. In fact, 65% of victims actually new their attacker, only 28% of offenders are total strangers.
Before Entering the Home
1. 60% use forcible entry, 30% enter through unlocked doors and windows
Burglars gain access to a home through force entry, which counts for 60 percent of total burglary. Another is by entering through an unlocked door or window. In fact, over 30% of criminals don't have to do anything special to break into your home; they just walk right in unrestricted or hop through a window.
2. 33 % enter through the front door
Use solid wooden doors or metal doors which are harder to break down. The types of tools used to break in are usually simple; a screwdriver, pliers, pries bars, and small hammers are most common.
3. Homes without security systems are 300% more likely to be burglarized
Burglars check the house first if it has surveillance and alarm systems before attempting to rob the place. According to FBI burglary rates, 1 in 3 homes without a security system will fall victim to a burglary as compared to 1 in 250 homes that do have a security system. According to the Electronic Security Association's "Home Safety Fast Facts" report, 9 out of 10 burglars said that if they encountered an alarm or home security system, they would not attack the home.
4. Burglars will try to cut wires
Twenty-five percent of burglars will attempt to disarm wirings of your phone or any security system you might have. It is best to go for wireless systems.
During the Robbery
1. In 28 percent of burglaries, a household member was present
Seven percent of people who were in the house during the robbery, suffered some form of violence.
2. The master's bedroom is first room to rob
The top things that burglars want from your home are cash, electronics, weapons, and jewellery.
After the Robbery
1. The burglar comes back
A burglar may return to loot the house. Since they already know the layout of the house and where the valuables are kept. Make sure to have a security system installed before another invasion happens.
2. A burglary costs the average homeowner $2,185
This amount exceeds the cost of a basic home security system, not including the emotional damage brought upon the family.
3. Only 13% of robberies are resolved
Only 72.4% of burglaries are reported to police, and only a small portion of that gets the robber caught and convicted.
Park Associates Research: The New Face of Home Security
SDM Mag: State of the Market: Alarm Systems
A Secure Life: Security Stats & Facts: What You Need to Know to Stay Safe
IControl Networks: 2015 State of the Smart Home Report
IFSEC Global: Why Home Security is Key to Unlocking the Smart Home's Potential
Photo and content contributed by Ntek.