Throughout the years, there have been many security companies that have offered alarm systems that will only work with their monitoring services. These are known as "proprietary systems", and they greatly reduce the freedom and flexibility that a consumer has in choosing a security plan.
There are many tactics that companies use when providing proprietary systems for their customers. One common strategy is to entice users with a "free security system" in exchange for signing-up for monitoring services. Although a free security system certainly sounds exciting, it doesn't give the user very many options if it will only work with that particular monitoring company. If the user wants to use that system, then they essentially become married to that monitoring company. This presents them with very little flexibility in the long-run.
Another common tactic for these monitoring companies is to lock their customers into contracts so that they are obligated to pay for service for an extended period of time. If a user tries to cancel their plan, they might be on the hook for heavy cancellation fees. Then when the contract expires, the user will still not be able to choose a different monitoring company, as their proprietary system will only work with that company. Again, the user is still married to that company if they want to keep using that system. Make sure to always read the terms carefully before signing-up for monitoring service to ensure that you don't lock yourself into a contract. It can be very tricky to get out once you are locked in!
Not all monitoring companies that offer proprietary systems use these tactics. The important thing to remember is that the system will only work with their particular monitoring service. If a user tries to bring that system to a different company, then it will not work. Some companies will even up the game by using proprietary sensors that only work with their system. These sensors cannot be recycled and brought over to a new system, which means a user looking for a new monitoring provider has to start from scratch. Another strategy is to use a proprietary alarm system communicator. In some cases, it is possible to simply replace the communicator so that the system itself can be taken over. But it isn't always this easy.
We strongly encourage everyone in the market for a new security system to obtain non-proprietary equipment. It's very important to conduct proper research beforehand to make sure that you know exactly what you are buying. You should also obtain monitoring service that does not require you to lock yourself into an extended contract. That way, if you are ever dissatisfied with your monitoring company, you can easily take your system to a new company. You will not have to replace your existing equipment, and you will be able to make a seamless transition to a new company.
Alarm Grid only supports non-proprietary systems, and we never lock our customers into contracts. Our customers are free to terminate their service at any time if they believe they can obtain better monitoring services somewhere else. All of the systems we support can easily be taken over by a different monitoring provider if a user decides that switching is in their best interest. While we don't offer any free security systems, we will do our best to perform a takeover of existing equipment if possible. But keep in mind that we cannot do this with proprietary alarm systems, as they will not work with our services. While we would love to takeover existing proprietary alarm systems and equipment, it is simply impossible for us to do so.
If you ever need help choosing or designing a security system, we invite you to send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us at (888) 818-7728 during our normal business hours of 9am to 8pm EST M-F. We have a team of security experts who are happy to help you find the perfect non-proprietary alarm system for your needs. We also invite you to check our monitoring page for more information. The entire Alarm Grid team looks forward to providing you with top-quality monitoring service, while also ensuring that you always have the freedom of choice that you deserve as a consumer.