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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.
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.
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!
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!
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.
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.
As the south heats up, we spend a lot more time outside. When we spend more time outside, our home opens up as well and new security issues can arise as we might be a bit more careless around our home as far as security and personal safety is concerned!
Enjoy your Spring days, but don’t let your guard down.
Whether you live in South Carolina, or elsewhere, take head and prevent crime and personal tragedies by taking safety and security measures before accidents and crime happen!
Open doors and unlocked and open windows invite trouble. Criminals always look ofr easy ways in and if you don’t know this statistic, it should scare you just a bit:
Most burglaries happen between the hours of 10 AM – 2PM.
That means during the day when you least expect it and when your guard is down. Therefore, always alarm your home, even if you are home and don’t leave doors unlocked and windows open when you do leave.
While swimming pools in the south offer relief from heat and humidity, they are a safety hazard for families with kids. Did you know that children ages 1 to 4 have the highest drowning rates?
Tips to help your family stay safe in and around the water
Read more about pool safety here.
When the weather cooperates, we tend to want to go outside and exercise. While bikes may have been locked up all winter, now that it’s springtime, these are parked either outside or in an open garage.
Bikes are an easy ‘steal’ for a criminal looking for a quick win.
We’d love the opportunity to talk with you. Give us a call anytime at 843-318-6392 with your concerns and questions.
Happy 2021! While we may not all be happy where we are in this pandemic, at least we can say there seems to be a light at the end of the (long) tunnel.
How and where we
The housing market is booming, and so is marketing, outdoor equipment sales and home improvement, just to name a few industries!
In contrasts, the airline industry is in trouble, along with travel and restaurants.
We are seeing new trends and new technology take hold because of the changed circumstances we live in. Today, we’d like to look at 4 home security trends to look for in 2021!
Indeed! This trends that started in 2020 due to the Pandemic will continue far into 2021. As people spend more time at home, they want to improve their home. Increased demand for home security systems will continue far into 2021. Combine this with the increased home sales as people move out of cities to new places due to the ability to work remote and you have a ‘perfect storm’ and more people looking to connect with a local home security company!
As we all continue to spend more time at home, we want smarthome technology! Why not, right? What does this mean? Automation for daily tasks, mostly.
Connecting things like your thermostat, lights, security system, security cameras, shades and audio system so that you can automate through programming, as well as use voice commands to complete tasks. Amazing and smart!
While the demand for smarthome technology has increased, so has the demand for simpler ways to use and integrate these systems. As children, teenagers as well as elderly relatives are home alone more, the need to keep things simple is evident. Brands are looking to simplify technology with the end user in mind.
It has to be simple and easy to use. User-friendly apps, easy-to-read screens and technology integration for technologically challenged seniors are all ways brands are leaning into this trend.
Last but not least, we continue to see an increased demand for health-related features in our home and home security systems, as well as commercial security systems. We’ve seen the need for increased voice-command features so we can be hands-free and germ-free and temperature screening solutions for businesses. As parents continue to work from home and children continue to learn at home, this demand shall continue to increase and evolve.
While this is not a complete list, we are confident that these trends are on-point. Most likely we will see an increased demand in home security systems as more people are relocating. The Myrtle Beach and South Carolina Real Estate market has exploded. So many people who used to be geographically bound due to jobs, are now free to live wherever they wish. Many are choosing the Grand Strand for their new home.
We welcome you and your family!
How do you go about vetting the many choices of home security companies to find the one that is right for you?
This article will give you a few tips to get you moving in the right direction. Ultimately, it’s up to you to find and connect with the best fit and the best company to protect your home and family!
When it’s time to choose a home security company to install and maintain your security system, understand you should always focus more attention on customers service and brand quality, than on price.
Ultimately, just about anyone with a screwdriver can hang a security camera – but it’s the knowledge and years of experience that will tell a professional where to hang that camera and to what system to connect it, as well as diagnose system failures or service interruptions.
Connecting with the right security company means connecting with a company that is interested and invested in your community and will serve your community for years to come.
Here is how we would start a search to connect with the right home security company.
Before leaving your home, and don’t we all want to avoid that these days, start your research online. Google ‘local home security company’ and add your location if needed.
Look for websites, Google reviews, social media presence, online reviews and images.
Create a list of several local home security companies.
Next, ask your friends and neighbors for referrals. Don’t just ask ‘Who do you use?’ but ask them questions about WHY they picked that local business and what they love about working with them. Ask them what services they’ve contracted for and how responsive that company is when an emergency arises!
Last but not least, keep an eye out for service vehicles in your neighborhood. When you take your dog for a walk, try to find signs. When you take a bike ride with your family, look for those service vehicles. take note of which ones are helping your neighbors with their home security needs!
Now that you have developed a list of potential local home security companies you want to give your business to, pick up the phone and call! There is no substitute for a phone call inquiring about services!
You will know pretty quickly if you are getting what is ‘advertised’ so to speak!
Does a human answer the phone? If you got the answering service or a machine, how quickly, if at all, was your call returned? Did you get answers to your questions and a friendly human on the line? Move this company to the top of your list!
Once you have a top 3 of local home security companies you potentially want to work with, make a list of services you need now, and additional services they offer that you are interested in for a future project.
That could includes additional services like
One more point to drive home. We highly recommend asking each potential business if they are locally owned and locally operated. Supporting your local businesses in 2021 is more important than ever.
If you are in the Myrtle Beach area, in Horry County or in Georgetown County, we invite your to give us a call!