The Wide Range of Services Video Surveillance Systems Offer Homeowners. Alarm systems, security lighting and gate and door locks all provide valuable protection for homeowners that want the best security for their families and their property. One of the additional protections available that may seem unnecessary at first are cctv systems. Many middle class homeowners do not feel the need to install cameras in their home because they mistakenly believe this is something used only by people in large homes with security guards and priceless possessions. This is not true and the camera systems have proven useful to people from all walks of life and for much more than just recording break-ins. Stop Suspicious People Exterior cameras mounted on front and back doors can alert residents in the home to the presence of a stranger at the door. Viewing a monitor from a secluded room or any area away from an entrance will prevent the homeowner or any family member or friend in the home from having to make themselves vulnerable by answering a door or standing in a window to see who is knocking. An intercom system can make it possible to speak to the individual or to ask them to leave, if needed. Suspicious behavior outside the home is easy to document as well with these systems. This includes capturing people planning potential future thefts or other crimes by masquerading as delivery personnel or other service workers and unknown and suspicious vehicles that drive by too frequently. Protect Against Disasters CCTV systems provide a real-time view of what is happening all over the home. This makes it possible to see when a washing machine is beginning to overflow or smoke indicates the presence of a fire in the home. This type of alert system makes it possible to get emergency personnel to the home quickly and reduce the amount of damage the home suffers. It also makes it easy to see when the rooms in danger are empty, so no one has to risk their lives by going in them to check for family members or pets. Record Bad Behavior There are many incidents of people recording illegal behavior inside their homes on their cctv systems. This includes housekeepers stealing from their clients, abusive nannies and service technicians billing for work they did not complete. Laws regarding whether or not people need to be notified when a camera is present and where the cameras can be installed varies and should be reviewed with an attorney before use. A good idea for sidestepping the expense of an attorney is to leave the camera in view and to mention to any workers that cameras are in use. Some people may refuse to work where a camera is present, but many others are comfortable with employers wanting to protect their property and family. Provide Consistent Supervision Pets, children and the elderly often need frequent supervision to keep them safe. CCTV cameras make it possible for people to cook dinner, fold laundry or manage other tasks while still supervising their loved ones. Monitoring from another room makes it easier for the responsible adult to notice potential problems early, before a problem happens. The cameras also make it possible to know exactly where the person or pet they are watching is at all times. This is especially useful for parents of adventurous toddlers that have now mastered the art of unlocking doors and anyone caring for dementia and Alzheimer’s patients that have a tendency to wander. Surveillance systems along with door and window alarms make it possible to have the highest level of supervision over children and the elderly even overnight. Document Certain Incidents Recording a specific incident on camera is a wonderful way to avoid the “he said, she said” problem that is common in many disagreements. There are a number of times when this could be helpful. For example, a delivery driver intentionally drops a package containing something fragile but denies the mishandling, or a neighborhood child throws a ball that breaks a car window and then denies they were responsible for the action. There are an endless amount of possible incidents that a camera system may record and it takes only one case to make the entire security system profitable for the homeowner. Real-life examples of this type of system in action have included the recording of multiple hit-and-run incidents in front of residential homes. The video recorded was able to provide the police with the information they needed to bring the guilty party to justice. Without this type of evidence it is unlikely the drivers would have been caught and convicted. If homeowners are installing their own cameras there are some things they should keep in mind. Pointing a CCTV camera at property belonging to a neighbor could violate local privacy laws. It is important to make certain that the recordings are only capturing what is happening on the property of the home that is protected by the system and the public property (sidewalk or street) near the home. Also, when mounting the camera pay attention to the angle it is filming. Cameras that are too high may not reveal anything other than the top of the head of the perpetrator and make identifying them impossible. Professional installations can avoid these common mistakes and make it possible to connect the CCTV systems with other parts of the security system. This could mean front gate sensors that initiate video recording when they are triggered and even connecting the surveillance cameras to smartphones so the home is safe even when no one is home.