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In 2023, technology is more affordable than ever!
Smarthomes, smart technology… as more and more people jump in, especially with new home construction, these types of systems have become more affordable and thus more commonplace.
Last year Strand Security installed these window shades, these types of Smarthomes systems, and several smarthome home theater technology systems!
Alexas, Google homes… who doesn’t own a ‘Siri’ device, right?
Let’s look at the best new home security tech gadgets for 2023. We know you’ll want them!
We don’t do anything halfway.
We’ve collected a list of not one or two, but ten home security gadgets.
In no particular order, here they are!
We encourage you to vet your service provider carefully. We’ve been installing smarthomes for many years and work with the best brands. If you are looking for the best brands, the best service at the best pricing and like supporting locally owned and locally operated small businesses… we are it!
Give us a call today and let’s figure out how we can help you.
Today we want to share three stories of homeowners who are thankful for their security cameras. It is November and a great time be thankful for technology and home security systems.
If you are a homeowner and you are lucky enough not to have had the need of a home security system, or have not had an emergency in your home that warranted a call to police, fire or ambulance, you are indeed lucky!
We found this story on YouTube and Ring also wrote about it here.
Joey was home alone when he collapsed on his front porch on a hot summer day in Texas. Thank goodness he had a Ring camera! His son saw his dad, called mom who was out of town, who alerted a neighbor who called emergency services! Phew.
We are so glad that Joey is ok and that his Ring Camera saved the day!
This man is a hero!
While out jogging, he saw smoke and decided to take a detour to check it out. Good thing he did! He saw fire! After ringing the Ring doorbell, he first gets a recorded message saying the homeowners are not home. But the homeowner who wasn’t home, got an alert and answered the doorbell from a remote location.
ONce she saw the smoke coming out of her home, she begged the jogger to go inside and rescue her pets. Two dogs, a rabbit and a cat. He did! Due to his quick action he not only saved the pets, he also saved the home.
What a wonderful story! Make sure to watch the video.
This is one of the craziest stories!
As parents are out to dinner, three teenagers are home alone. Then gunmen appear and a home invasion is caught on camera and is livestreamed to the parent’s phone. They are able to call the police and then talk to these home invaders, warning them that the police is on the way.
This is a chilling one to watch.
Imagine what would have happened if they did not have these camera in their home! Police credit the camera system for the quick retreat of the criminals.
Phew. We got serious chills watching this video. We are glad the teens survived this home invasion.
These homeowners prepared for emergencies and so should you. Coe talk to us at Strand Security now, or after the holidays. We’d love to help you choose the right system to protect those you love.
A quick Google search gets you the most common home security tips.
We’ve covered them here on this Strand Security blog extensively over the past 7+ years! But what about the more unusual security tips? Things you might not think about when you purchase a home?
We’ve gone and done it! We’ve collected five of the most unusual home security tips we could find into one blog. Get ready for these home security hacks you wish you’d known sooner.
Sure, most people depend on security companies (us) to install keypads for a home security system, but some don’t. If you are among a growing number of homeowners going the DIY home installation of home security systems like RING, do a quick audit on the location of the keypad.
Here is why!
“An observant burglar might scope out the place and even watch you enter the numbers into the keypad. A would-be burglar can also glance through a window to see if you’ve activated your alarm system before leaving the house.”
Move it out of sight!
Most homeowners keep jewelry, cash and valuables in… their master bedroom! One way to secure those items is to NOT put them there in the first place.
May we suggest the back of a storage closet, a kitchen cabinet, a floor safe or elsewhere in your home, ANYWHERE BUT the master bedroom?
During the day keep the keys and car keys near you. You’ll need them to lock your home, as well as drive your car. But what about at night? Do you have a habit of hanging your car keys near the back door, garage door or front door?
Don’t do it!
Instead, take them with you into your bedroom where the are much safer and you’ve just made it much harder for a thief to take off with your car(s).
Get decoy security cameras, a decoy safe and even decoy keys. Burglars go in and out in minutes. They will not open up a safe, they will just carry the safe out and take it with them. If you want to fool those fools entering your home uninvited, become the master of decoys.
(for personal safety, we recommend a decoy wallet, too, especially when traveling and visiting new unfamiliar cities!)
If your home has a beautiful glass sliding door, you need more protection than just a simple lock. Sliding door usually have small locks that are easy to break so adding an additional security measure seems right. If the door is not properly installed, a burglar can easily lift it off the tracks, so be sure to check your sliding glass doors for baseline security.
The best way to secure a sliding glass door is to put a rod (wood or metal) or something similar on the tracks and lodge it between the door and the wall. If an ill-intended burglar manages to unlock the sliding door, they still won’t be able to slide it open with a rod is in the way on its tracks!
Follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn for more tips, tricks and to stay up-to-date on all things home and commercial security.
Who doesn’t love home automation?
Smart home Automation means automating recurring tasks in your home.
That includes things like:
With the latest technology, you can pretty much automate any appliance or system in your home.
Automation doesn’t just happen, or is only possible from within the house!
We’ve entered hurricane season!
When the next hurricane hits the Myrtle Beach area and you need to evacuate, using smart home technology you will be able to watch-in-real-time and take care of your home while away, from a distance!
Security cameras and smart home technology will enable you to keep an eye on your assets during a mandatory evacuation while you are safe and secure away from the storm, during the next named storm.
Today, we are going to show you the latest (and super cool) automation!
What is Alexa?
Alexa is Amazon’s voice-based AI-powered digital assistant that powers an entire smart device ecosystem. Alexa can reply to simple queries and perform various tasks or commands that one gives.
Alexa is a lifesaver for people with disabilities.
For example, someone who is visually impaired can use Alexa and voice commands for tasks like
Check out this awesome smart home window shades demo by one of our Strand Security technicians.
At Strand Security, we have being installing Smart Home Technology, Smart Home Systems as well as Commercial Smart Technology in local, Grand Strand homes and businesses for many years!
Technology advances and brands change. We at Strand Security will always be on trend with the latest technology and the best brands to provide you with the best customer experience and the best smart home or commercial automation system available.
No matter what home security system you have right now, chances are you can keep (part of) your current system and add smart home technology to make all systems work together.
Here are some brands we work with:
Give us a call if you want to learn more about home automation, like these window shades!
South Carolina homeowner: are you ready to choose smart home security cameras for you home? What has made you decide to invest in home security cameras? If it is for safety reasons, you are in good company! Most homeowners looking for home security cameras are doing so to protect the people they love, and the assets they invested in.
There might have been a life changing event to trigger the need for home security cameras:
Whatever life event that has made you look for smart home security camera options, you’ve come to the right place!
A Smart Home Security Camera is a camera that connects to the internet using your home wifi. This means you can watch a live camera feed, receive alerts when you’re out and about, and, with the right type of camera, record footage.
There are many brands that offer this type of camera.
This type of camera is great for everyone!
They are affordable and easy to operate. Peace is mind is one of the most common benefits that users report! Strand Security can help you set up a complete Smart Home System, or Smart Home Security Cameras to integrate with an existing system.
Monitored Home Security Cameras are part of a monitored security system which is actively monitored by a professional home security company. We use COPS Monitoring for all of our monitored clients in Horry County and Georgetown County. When the system detects an emergency: a break-in, fire, or other emergency, it notifies the security team at COPS who will contact emergency responders.
One of the ‘newest kids on the block’ is the floodlight home security camera!
This technology is great for busy two-income households and for those who live alone.
What is a ‘Doorbell Home Security Camera and how does it differ from all the other home security cameras?
Video doorbells like the RING Doorbell are doorbells that have a built-in camera to provide an initial home security video check and protect your property. Crimes like package theft, burglary or home invasions can be caught on camera in real time, or prevented. Doorbell Home Security Cameras can be either battery-powered (wireless) or hardwired into an existing doorbell.
These Doorbell cameras are connected to your Smart Phone or other mobile device, where you can receive instant activity alerts, and talk with visitors using two-way talk which is a great way to stop a criminal act in real-time, and live stream video.
We’d love to help you with your choice. Give us a call anytime.
If you are a parent, you know the importance of keeping your family safe and sound. Home safety includes keeping kids and teenagers safe from fires, water and chemicals.
While prevention is the key to keeping your family safe, installing security cameras in the right spots can help give you peace of mind when you are not in the same space as your family.
Security cameras trained on your pool for example, can not prevent a drowning, but will give you an instant access view of the pool and pool deck when needed.
Keeping an eye out in hallways, garages, bedrooms and living rooms might help you spot a problem before it endangers the life of someone you love and care about.
Here is a story of how a security camera system saved the lives of a family after moving into a home with a faulty fire alarm!
Next, another reason to install and use security cameras it to keep an eye on your property. Think not just home, garage and yard, but also car(s), boats, bikes and motorcycles!
Security cameras might detect someone scouting your home for a potential burglary or home invasion. Keeping track of who comes near your home, who stops in front of your home and who is suspicious looking, might actually prevent a crime.
Teenagers are impulsive and might get in with the wrong crowd and try sneaking out of the house in the night. Surveillance of your home and property would identify when and where and with whom they associate.
If by chance a crime does occur, having security camera footage will certainly help law enforcement in their effort to identify and capture the thieves and return your property to you.
Last but not least, security cameras help you spot potential security breaches before they happen.
Your child or teenager might forget to lock up, or leave doors open at night. They might forget to lock the car doors, leaving the car unlocked overnight. Having a camera system trained on the right spots could identify these types of potential security breaches before they become an issue.
Security cameras are also a great tool to keep an eye on outside workers when they need access to your home, whether you are home, or not. These include but are not limited to babysitters, nannies, home healthcare workers, petsitters, construction crews, delivery personnel, etc.
Identifying potential security breaches can prevent big problems down the road.
Here are a few helpful articles about security cameras should you want to learn more.
If you’ve had a home security system for years, you might be curious about making your home into a smarthome. Technology has changed so much over the last few years and so much more is possible now, more than ever before!
The good news? You do not have to start from scratch. Systems and brands can communicate and work together to create a smarthome.
The best news? We have the best way, the best solution for you to get started on this project. Keep reading for the best way to effortlessly connect Google Home, Alexa, Ring or Nest to your home security system!
Home security systems can be added to other technology to create smarthomes.
What if you could just TELL (by voice) your home to
How amazing would that be?
That is what smarthome technology can do: your current system can be updated to link up with other systems on your home.
Google Home offers many apps to connect to.
Control Appliances and Fixtures
Control Home Security (including Alarm.com)
Got a Google Home System? Connect your home security system to use voice command.
Alexa is a Amazon product.
“You can build smart home and other products that customers can control from millions of Alexa devices with just their voice. Expand your device’s capabilities with Alexa to create delightful experiences for lights, switches, thermostats, cameras, locks, and more.”
Alexa can be linked to your entertainment center and control the TV. Alexa can be linked to a microwave and used with vioce command and much, much more!
Got an Alexa system? Connect your home security system to use voice command.
New for Ring.com is an integration with home security systems. Known as the “DIY home security camera system”, Ring has branched out and can be integrated with home security systems as well as other smart systems.
Another Google product, Google Nest also lets you connect devices in your home for a fully integrated smarthome system. Their tag line?
“Build your helpful home!”
Here is the easiest way to do connect a home security system for another smarthome system, like Google Home, Alexa, Ring or Nest, just to name a few:
Reach out to Strand Security, or your own home security experts! They are trained to do this for a living: effortlessly and without much trouble.
If you value your own time, hear this: this is one DIY job you really don’t want! Let the professionals handle the integration. You’ll be glad you did!
Kids are going back to school and that means parents who work outside of the home, will have help with caring for their kids after-school.
Whether it’s a babysitter, family member, neighbor or whether your child teenager is old enough to come home to an empty house, it’s important to go voer home safety rules every so often. Take the month of August to reevaluate your family safety plan.
Being aware of potential danger is the first stop to preventing harm!
School bus safety and rules come from the school district. Take the time to go over the school bus rules with your child so that they know what to expect. It is important to tell your child(ren) to let you know that the ride to and from school isn’t safe any longer for a variety of reasons (bullying, unsafe driver, unruly students, heat or cold)
If you child walks home alone, or with a group of friends, make sure you have a system set up to check on them each day right after they arrive home. Go over the rules (no lingering, don’t bring friends home) so that you both know what to expect!
When is your child ready to stay home alone after school? It depends on each child as well as the area you live in, technology you currently have installed in your home, the maturity level of the child and the state you live in (law)
Read more about how to know your child is safe to stay home alone after school.
If you think your child might be ready to be home alone without a babysitter or after-school care, read this!
If you do need to give a babysitter, tutor or neighbor access to your home, it’s important to have a security system installed with a mobile app so that you can have a visual of what’s going on at home!
Hiring a babysitter should not stress you out , instead focus on creating a back-to-school family safety plan!
Tips about how to handle a stranger at the door, from a previous article here on the Strand Security Blog. We suggest you share the following with your teenager who might be home alone!
1 Take a look at the Stranger.
Try to get a look at who is knocking on your door. You may need to find a window in the house that makes your front door visible or use the peephole if you have one. You must have a way to see who is at the front door without opening it!
2 Keep Your Phone on You.
Have your phone visibly on you for the knocker to see. If a situation should occur you will have easy access to call 911.
3 Call Out to Someone in the House.
“Can someone get the door?” or “I’ll get it”
Maybe you are alone but the knocking stranger does not have to know that! Make it evident that there are others in the house with you. This can deter any planned unwanted activities.
4 Do Not Ignore Them.
Sometimes the first reaction is to just ignore a stranger’s knock all together. However, in doing so, you are silently announcing that your house is empty and now is a good time to break in. So, it is better to say something no matter the time of day. A majority of break-ins occur during the day when people are thought to be at work.
5 Request Their Identity.
If a utility worker knocks at your door, ask for them to prove their identity with the company they work for. You can always call the subject’s company to check if they have sent someone to your house.
6 Do Not Share Information.
Strangers may take advantage of you by saying they are in trouble, hurt or in need of help. As much as we all would like to help our fellow citizens, it may be a better choice to let them know you are calling 911 and help is on the way.
Technology can help in this situation! Read more about which devices can help here.
THIS is the time to talk to your kids and teenagers about online safety: cyber security! Not when they start to act strange, not when they are upset, scared or sad. Talk to them before leaving them home alone for extended periods of time!
Cyber safety and security should take an important, prominent place in your back-to-school family safety plan.
Set rules, boundaries and check in often!
Last but not least… house rules are house rules whether you are home as a parent, or not! Make sure you instill a sense of responsibility in your child or teenager, to build mutual trust. Respect goes both ways. Always be sure to tell the kids you’ll be checking the cameras remotely if they are home alone. They need to know you can see them or talk with them.
Safety rules about pool usage, opening doors for strangers or or operating dangerous tools are all important enough to warrant a frequent reminder!
Your house, your rules, and that includes rules for friends and rules for pets, too!
We wish you, your family, your kids a fantastic 2021-2022 school year. We are here to help you navigate it all. If you need smarthome solutions to keep your family safe, need (additional) security cameras, or a panic button for your employees or elderly parents, we can help you with all of that!
If you are thinking a home theater would be great to have at home, we can help with the design, installation and servicing for that as well! Just give us a call!
If you are looking for gifts ideas for the dad in your life, you are in the right spot. We are a locally owned and locally operated small business and we have a location right here on the Grand Strand. Stop by for a demo, or to just say hello in Murrells Inlet. All the gadgets we are recommending below can be purchased and installed by us! Give dad not just the gift of technology, but also the gift of time and worry-free installation!
Really give him the day ‘off’ this Father’s Day
Dads love all sort of gadgets. Tech gadgets are most likely on top of dad’s wishlist. If you ask a dad what he wants for his birthday, Christmas or Father’s Day, he often won’t know how to answer, BUT we’ve never seen a dad disappointed with a tech gift!
If your dad is like ours, he loves to tinker, and get the latest technology. Does the dad in your life like to upgrade his phone as soon as the next model is available? Bingo! He lives for tech gadgets!
What can you get the dad-who-loves-tech-but-has-everything?
We’ve collected a few ideas for you. Keep on reading. Of course, all of our ideas are dad-approved by our very own resident dad! 🙌
Our first tech gadget idea includes the popular Ring Camera series. We don’t know any dad who doesn’t own a smartphone with a gazillion apps. Instead of playing games, the dads we know watch YouTube and Netflix. Why not have the dad watch the house while he’s at it?
Ring Cameras and the app allow dads (and moms) to keep an eye on the house, the yard, the kids, the pets, the babysitter and much much more from his smartphone! When movement is detected by the Ring Camera, the app is activated and a notification will be sent to the phone for dad to check it.
Ring Cameras are available in a variety of sizes and configurations and packages, depending on the size of your home and the needs of the family. While installation is DIY-friendly, we highly recommend consulting with a Security Company to insure these cameras are installed at the right height, angle and location. Yes, Strand Security installs these!
You know what most dads love? Sports!
You know what most dads complain about? Background noise when trying to watch ‘the game’.
SONOS provides a line of speakers that will give ultimate sound quality all through the house! Dad can watch the game with surround sound, even when you’re throwing a party poolside or working in his garage!
Check out all the SONOS options and get in touch with Chuck for the latest recommendation SONOS speakers for the dad in your life.
Did you know you can have a vacuum for a boat? How much time does dad spent on getting his boat back in shape after the family spent a day on the river? Lots of time, right? Give dad the gift of a BEAM central vacuum for his boat. You’ll be his hero and maybe even to get to help him clean it. 😉 We at Strand Security can help you get your hands on the ‘On-Board Marine Vacuum Kit‘ for dad!
If dad has ever expressed interest in turning your home into a Smarthome, come talk to us about URC. We can design and install the perfect automation system that fits your needs and lifestyle. Why not surprise dad with this gift – he’ll be the coolest among his friends and he will love and use this gift day in and day out! Heck, if it’s cool enough for the local North Myrtle Beach Brewery, it’s cool enough for your dad, too!
As always, let us know your questions and how we can make your experience working with us unique!
As we publish this, summer 2021 is fast approaching. Spring weather has turned into summer weather. Pools are open. School are nearly done for the year. And as the USA is slowly opening back up after a pandemic year, families are most ready than ever to hit the road and take a vacation.
Homeowners who travel leave behind a huge asset: their home that they love, care for and have invested a ton of money into. This is why protecting the home you love and everything in it is important. A burglary, or break Ins will leave you feeling violated and attacked!
Who doesn’t want to go on vacation this summer, without worry?!
We all want this right?
In order for a burglar to ‘skip your home’ and move onto the next, you need to be proactive! Make your home less attractive to a potential criminal.
Reducing the risk of a break ins and making it harder and less attractive for a burglar to target you, is not a difficult task. It does take a bit of planning and action on your part. We are going to give you several actionable ways you can help prevent a home break in while on vacation.
In previous blog articles, we’ve shared our best summer security tips. It’s always good to revisit some of these tips and hints as we enter the next summer. We know as you do, that family circumstances changes quickly!
The following 5 action items should be high on your list of things to do to prepare before going on your next family vacation. Whether you go away for the weekend and stay close to home, vacation somewhere for two weeks in South Carolina or take a cross-country trip, these tips apply to you! It takes less than a minute for most burglars to get into your home and only 8-12 minutes to get back out and get away!
When you leave your home unattended for an extended period of time, make it look like someone is home. Leave a dog toy or two out, a child’s ball, and put your indoor and outdoor lights on timers! Arrange with a neighbor or friend to come pick up mail, packages and return your garbage can back to your home. Alternatively, you can have the USPS hold your mail. Don’t forget to notify your newspaper delivery person too because nothing says ‘we are on vacation’ like a bunch of unread newspaper on your front lawn!
Large shrubs and trees that aren’t trimmed, can hide a person (i.e. a criminal) making it easier for them to enter your home undetected. Before going on your next trip, cut back branches and trim that shrubbery!
If you have an alarm system, activate it. This might seem one of the ‘silliest’ action items, but you’d be surprised home many homes with alarm systems are broken into undetected because the system wasn’t activated! Make activating your system a habit and a priority! Teach everyone who routinely enters your home to activate your system: it will little room for error!
Making it harder for a determined burglar to breakin usually results in the burglar moving on to the next (read: easier) target! Therefore, investing in new deadbolts might make a lot of sense. The longer it takes for someone to enter the home, the more likely they are to move on to another home.
We recommend (and install) security cameras for your home. Ideally, your cameras should be strategically placed in and around your home and be connect to your monitored system. While a monitored alarm system should give you the highest level of comfort and security, monitoring your own cameras at the same time, allowes for additional visual queues of potential danger!
We wish you and your family a gorgeous summer and a wonderful and memorable trip, no matter where you go. Go with peace of mind, knowing your assets are protected and monitored by the best!
As always, let us at Strand Security know how we may help you.