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Some models use your existing keyed cylinder and deadbolt hardware and attach to the inside of your door, while others require that you remove your existing interior and exterior escutcheons and replace the deadbolt and strike hardware. Smart locks can be opened and closed using a mobile app and will send a notification when someone locks or unlocks a door, and most allow you to create permanent and temporary access schedules for family members and friends based on specific hours of the day and days of the week. Features to look for include geofencing, which uses your phone's location services to lock and unlock the door, voice activation using Siri HomeKit, Google Assistant, or Amazon Alexa voice commands, support for IFTTT, and integration with other smart home devices such as video doorbells, outdoor cameras, thermostats, smoke alarms, and connected lighting. Best Smart Home Security Systems Featured in This Roundup:ADT Pulse ReviewMSRP: $28. 99 at Pros: Fast and knowledgeable service reps. Many components available.

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If you want to ensure that your purchase will be worthwhile and will last longer, go for well known manufacturers who have already built an outstanding reputation. 5. If you’re a beginner when it comes to home security systems, consider buying a starter kit instead of purchasing separate components. A starter kit usually provides the basic equipment and software needed, as well as detailed instructions on how to install them. Eventually, you may choose to expand your system and add more elements. 6. Most home security companies use standard components that are compatible with all major providers in the market, while some offer proprietary equipment. In order to have the flexibility and versatility to buy from different suppliers and the option to expand your system, stay away from companies that only sell proprietary equipment. 7. Consider setting up a separate computer to store your CCTV video feeds. Although a common DIY home security system records video only when there is movement in the camera’s field of view, that footage needs to be stored in a computer that is kept on at all times.