Activating a System for Monitoring with Alarm Grid
In this video, Jarrett talks about activating a security system for alarm monitoring service. Alarm monitoring service is what makes it possible for the user to receive automatic help and important notifications whenever there is activity on their security system Any alarm system that has not been set up with monitoring service is nothing more than a local sounder. The system can activate a siren locally to scare off intruders and alert building occupants to an event. But if the user wants to have assistance come automatically, then they need monitoring service. This is extremely important for when a user is off-site and not at the location to respond to an emergency. Various tasks are performed during an activation. These tasks may include setting up the central station document, configuring communication with the monitoring platform, performing various sensor tests to provide the user with a certificate of alarm (CoA), going over the false alarm passcode and duress passcode, and answering any questions or concerns the new user might have.
When you set up a system for alarm monitoring service, you must make sure it has a reliable communication pathway. This what allows the system to communicate with a monitoring platform so that alerts can be forwarded to a central monitoring station and/or the end user directly via text message and/or email. The most popular communication pathways used today are internet protocol (IP) and cellular. We recommend cellular alarm monitoring because it is more reliable. This is because cellular communication is not affected by power outages, and you rarely see cellular service go offline or become unavailable. But keep in mind that cellular is typically more expensive than IP-only. Most cellular monitoring plans will also allow for IP connectivity at no extra charge, so most users with cellular monitoring will ultimately set up dual-path connectivity with both IP and cellular.
Hey, DIYers. Jarrett here from Alarm Grid. And today we're going to be going over how you would set up monitoring services with Alarm Grid. If you want to go ahead and set up monitoring services is actually very straightforward. There's just a couple of different steps going through it. First, you want to go ahead and choose the monitoring plan that you want to use. Depending on the alarm system that you have and depending on the type of setup that you're looking to do for notifications and the type of service then you'll go ahead and choose the different monitoring plants. That's something where we come into play. The planners here at Alarm Grid we can go ahead and help you out using those monitoring plants. Now the second step is scheduling the activation. Again, this does depend on the type of monitoring plan that you're looking to use. Some plans require you to schedule an activation while some plans don't. So the third step is prepping the alarm system for the activation and essentially powering it up, having a programs, make sure the sensors are programmed, and that has a good communication methods so that we can go ahead and proceed with the fourth step. The fourth step is the actual activation itself. Now, one thing to keep in mind is that different alarm systems they're going to be a little bit different when it comes to the programming and the setup and everything. Otherwise, when it comes to the activation it's normally pretty straightforward and it can be the same in certain ways. Now, you might be asking yourself, why am I looking to set up monitoring with your alarm system? Very simple. If you want monitoring services or if you want professional monitoring to be able to monitor for burglary events fire, carbon monoxide, flood detection, you set up a monitoring service. If you want to have a professional service actually monitoring that and if anything happens, they are the ones to go ahead and contact the police for you and actually make sure that things are good to go in that area, then you set up the service. It is very essential to have, especially nowadays, because if there is anything that happens and you're not readily available or if your phone is not available next to you, if you're not able to see the alerts or anything like that, central station service is great to have because they could be the backbone of the system. They can go ahead and send that police dispatch to go ahead and catch anybody who is currently breaking into the home while you may not be aware of it. So that's one thing about it. The other thing is notifications on your phone. Like if you want to use Total Connect 2.0 or alarm.com the only way to be able to set that up is by using monitoring services with an alarm company. In essence, you know us. We're a monitoring company so we can go ahead and set you up with Total Connect 2.0 and alarm.com. So if you want to get a text alert, email alerts, a push notification from either one of those apps then you go ahead and set up that monitoring service. Automation, for instance, that's also another thing that is included with the application of the phone, Total Connect and alarm.com. If you want to set up automation with the alarm system, be able to control the automation and the alarm system itself both within the same amount, you set up the monitoring service because that is all included within Total Connect and alarm.com. There are certain plans you can go ahead and choose, it let you go ahead and do that. And we're going to be covering the majority of those plans a little bit later in this video. But essentially, that is the reason. If you want to have that backbone security to go ahead and monitor your system, if you want to get notifications, control certain automation, all that is included with the monitoring service and the monitoring plans that you go ahead and choose. So the type of system alerts or notifications you can get would be the sensors faulting, trouble conditions on the panel, obviously alarm events where there's a burglary, fire, carbon monoxide detection, or flood detection. And then, obviously, you can get notifications if you wanted to whenever certain doors are being opened or if certain people are arming and disarming the system. All of that is available with the monitoring setup. Now, when you're among the customers of Alarm Grid, and you set up a monitoring plan all of our plans are completely no contract. There's no contract, whatsoever, no additional fees at all either. So it is all just build month to month. It's monthly payment, and then once you activate the system, that is when the billing starts. When you do the sign up for the monitoring service, I do just want to clear this up, you're not going to be billed anything what so ever when you do that sign up. It's basically just signing up for the plan, putting the information to the system, and scheduling that activation. And then once that activation is done, that's when the billing starts. And it's just month to month from there. Your billing cycle would start on that day that you were chosen for the activation when the activation has been completed. So for instance, let's say you activate today the November 18, essentially your billing cycle would be the 18th of each month. So that's really it. Very simple way that we have a set up for our customers. It is month to month, no extra fees, no contracts whatsoever. So if you want to go ahead and set a monitoring with Alarm Grid, you want to go ahead and proceed with the first step. Step one is choosing that monitoring plan. Now, there are different plans that we have available. We have two tiers of monitoring plans. We have the professional 24/7 monitoring plans which would be the bronze through platinum plans on the website. Those include the central station for that professional monitoring service. And then below would be the self-monitoring plans, which is the self bronze through the self platinum. And those are basically plans where they don't include the central station service. You're basically supplied with the application either Total Connect 2.0 or alarm.com, depending on the alarm system that you have. And you can go ahead and receive immediate notifications that could be a text, email or a push notification depending on what you set up. You can set up all three if you want to. And then, basically, you've been notified to find any of those events that I had named off, the center notifications, center false, alarm notifications, all of that. You will get all those notifications, however, it would depend on you to go ahead and contact the police or fire department for the home at that point, home or business. Because if using a self-monitoring plan, then again, you're basically self monitoring with the application. You don't have a central station service. Now, as I mentioned the plans depend on which alarm system you have. So if you have like an alarm.com system or a system that's using a cellular communication method, then you got to look at plans that are covering the cellular data charges for that cellular communicator. So, for instance, alarm.com systems, they need to have the cellular communicator in order to be set up with the monitoring service. So if you're looking to use alarm.com, then you're going to be looking at the gold, platinum self gold, self platinum plans we have on our site. The gold plans both are covering the cellular data charges for the alarms or for that cellular communicator and in the supports of setup of alarm.com. And then the platinum and self platinum plans they both support the cellular data charges as well. However, those plans are meant to be used if you wanted to use like alarm.com cameras or even total Total Connect 2.0 cameras. So if you're using a Honeywell system that is using a cellular communicator, it's going to be the same exact thing, you're going to be looking at the gold plan, self gold plan, platinum, and the self platinum plan. Because those are going to be the ones that are covering the cellular data charges. Now there are differences between the gold, self gold, platinum, and self platinum plans. Essentially, if you want to use the actual Honeywell or alarm.com cameras, then you're going to be looking at the platinum and self platinum plans. Yes, they are covering the cellular data charges, but those are basically set up for those cameras and setting up the cloud storage to be able to use those cameras. If you're not using either Honeywell or alarm.com cameras, and those do include outdoor and indoor cameras, not the doorbell camera-- if you're not using those, then you're going to be looking at the gold and self gold plans. If you are using them, then at that point, you would look at the platinum and the self platinum plans. Now, if you have any further questions about using cameras with the alarm system, just let us know. We can help you out and help figure out what you can do for the different monitoring services. As I mentioned, there are different monitoring plans. There is the bronze, silver, gold, and platinum, which are the professional plans, professional central station plans. Then you have the self bronze, self silver, self gold, and self platinum plans, which are the self-monitoring plans. So let's say for instance, have a Honeywell system that is using just an internet connection or a landline connection, and you just want monitoring service, then you're going to be looking at the bronze plan. The bronze plan gives you the central station 24/7 monitoring service. It allows an internet connection or a landline connection with the system. Just keep in mind you're not going to have Total Connect 2.0 with that plan. If you want to go ahead and set up Total Connect 2.0 for the remote access, then you'll be looking at the silver plan. The silver plan is the next tier up. That is actually an IP only plan, it doesn't really include landline service. If you do want to have a landline as a backup communication for the alarm system, you can. However, the silver plan is really used if you want an IP connection with it. And you did want the professional monitoring, and you did want the Total Connect 2.0 axis along with automation, the silver plan includes all of that. Now, the next tier up would be the gold plan. If you wanted to go ahead and use that cellular communication method and still have the professional monitoring, and still have the app on the phone, then the goal plan is what you would use. The gold is basically same exact thing as a silver plan, includes all of that. However, you're adding the sales communication with it because that is covering the cellular data charges. Now, if you're using an alarm.com system, you're going to be starting off with around the gold plan and self gold plan. The alarm.com systems, they're not going to be able to use the silver or the bronze plans or the self silver or self bronze plans because those are meant for IP only setups. Alarm.com systems cannot be used an IP only. They need to have the cellular backup in order to be used. Now the last thing, not the last thing, but the next tier up would be the platinum plan. The platinum plan same exact thing as the gold plan. It includes a professional monitoring, the cellular backup, the automation, Total Connect 2.0 or even alarm.com. However, that's if you would use a platinum if you wanted to set up those cameras. As I mentioned, the Honeywell cameras or the alarm.com cameras because that plan is covering or is setting up the cloud storage for those cameras to be set up with that plan. Now if you don't have those cameras, you're not going be worrying about that plan at all. You could be looking at the gold plan at that point. So now moving on to the self monitored plans, we're going to be covering those very briefly. Pretty straightforward, self bronze plan is if using IP only. You just want a basic Total Connect 2.0 service. Again, it doesn't support alarm.com, but if you hired like a Honeywell system, and you want to Total Connect 2.0, you didn't want monitoring, then you would use a self bronze plan. That on is $10 a month. And that does not include automation. So if you wanted to set up automation, then you would look at the self silver plan, which is the next tier up. So the self silver plan is $15 a month. That is still an IP only plan. It is only for Total Connect 2.0, but that gives you the access to Total Connect 2.0, the notifications and everything, arming and disarming, and then automation. If you wanted to use a cellular backup with the system or if you had an alarm.com system that you wanted self-monitoring with, then you'd look at the self called. Self gold is $25 a month. Basically, that is including everything that the self silver plan does, but you're taking on the cellular communication with that system. So that plan is covering the cellular data charges for this cellular communicator. That plan includes Total Connect 2.0. If you had Honeywell system, if you're an alarm.com system then be using alarm.com. Now, if you had cameras. You know, again if you had Total Connect 2.0 or if you had Honeywell cameras or alarm.com cameras then you can be looking at this self platinum, which is the next tier up. So the platinum plan is the next tier up or the self platinum plan is the next tier up from the self gold. Essentially, it's the same thing as a self gold plan as it does include Total Connect and alarm.com. You can get notifications and everything. You can control automation, and you have a cell backup that is included with that. However, that plan would only be used if you're using either Honeywell cameras or alarm.com cameras because those cameras do need a cloud storage to be setup with that plan. So basically that plan is just covering that. That plan is $35 a month. And that is also the self monitored plans. So keep in mind if anything happens then you would need to go ahead and contact police on your account so that you can go ahead and take care of the situation depending on what's going on. All these plans are on our website. You can view them all right there on our website page, and they're all no contract. Again, no contract whatsoever. And there are no additional fees at all. And it is all just month to month. So now moving on to the next step, which is step two. This is basically scheduling the activation. Now as I had mentioned a little bit earlier in this video, it depends on the system that you're-- or depends on the monitoring plan that you're choosing on whether you had to schedule the activation or not. So essentially what I mean by that is if you're using a plan that includes central station service, that's the bronze, the platinum plan, those need to have an activation scheduled. Essentially, you're going to be choosing a day and time of when you would want the monitoring services to start. Now, when you're choosing this scheduled activation, you want to make sure you're choosing this at least a few days after you have installed the system or a few days after you have received the system in the mail so it gives you a little bit of time to go ahead and install the system and get it set up before that activation. You always want to make sure that the system is at least powered up, connected with either internet or that cellular backup or cellular communication, has at least a few central programs. We definitely prefer you to have all of the central programs, so we can make sure everything as being tested correctly. And then obviously you have to be on site with the system for at least an hour to work with our activation team to go ahead and proceed with that activation. I'm going to explain this a little bit later in the third step, which is prepping for the activation. But basically, that's when you want to go ahead and schedule. I mean, you want to schedule the activation at least a few days out after you've received everything to give you some time to go ahead and set things up. And now, if you're using a self plan, though, like a self monitor plan, you don't need to schedule anything at all actually. With those plans, we don't need to speak with you on the phone or anything to do that type of activation. We can actually activate the systems remotely for you. And with that, I mean, all you have to do is just let us know once the system is installed and ready to go, and then we can go ahead and start the activation on our side, and set you up remotely. Now the third step is prepping for the activation. So essentially, what the prep is is basically just installing that system before that activation that you had scheduled. Essentially, again, you want to make sure it's power it up, [INAUDIBLE] programs. You want to make sure it's connected to the internet or has the cellular communicator installed, and then you just need to be next to the system for us to go ahead and do that with you or do the activation. Now, if you're scheduling the activation, that's when you would need to be next to the alarm system for at least an hour to work with your activation team. If you're doing a self-monitoring plan, you don't need to be next to the system unless we need you to. If we did need you to, we'd let you know. Other than that, for a self-monitoring plans, we could just do that for you remotely. And then the last step here is completing the activation. Essentially, if you're doing a central station plan, and you schedule that activation, we give you a call at the day and time that you choose, and we go ahead and walk you through some programming. We go over the information that you input for the central station form and make sure everything is working correctly. And we do some testing with you to make sure that the system is communicating properly and that the sensors are working properly with the system. For a self monitored service, basically, you just let us know when the system is ready to go. Give us the information that we need to be able to connect to the system, and we go ahead and set that up for you remotely. So the information that I'm referring to is what we would need to do the activation is like the Mac address and CRC code and/or the IMEI number for the cellular communicator. So, for Honeywell systems, we need the Mac address, CRC Code. For the cellular communicator for Honeywell system, we would need the AID number and the CRC Code. All of those can be found on the boxes that the equipment has arrived in. If you have already thrown out the boxes by the time you've installed the system, and you're speaking with us, we can help you with finding the information. So there's no problem. Now, for alarm.com systems, you don't need all that information. The only thing that we really need is the IMEI number for the cellular communicator and then we are we're set to go. And that is how you activate an alarm system with Alarm Grid. If you have any further questions about the activation process or signing up for a monitoring plan, please reach at support @alamgrid.com or go to our website alarmgrid.com. If you've found this video helpful, please like and subscribe. If you want notifications of feature videos, please click the bell icon. This is Jerry with the Alarm Grid. You have a great day.