Hiring a CCTV camera installation company can be an intimidating process, especially if you’ve never done it before. You have to ask yourself the right questions to make sure you’re hiring the right company. Hopefully this guide will help you with that task.
1) What Is My Budget?
Most people want to know how much a security camera system will cost them up front. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to put an exact price on your new video surveillance system until we visit your site and conduct an in-person audit and consultation. There are several key factors that affect supply & installation costs, including property size and layout; the number of exterior cameras; the number of interior cameras; storage options (cloud or local); cable access and integrations. At our initial consultation, our experienced team can provide some ballpark figures for what your custom system might look like. One thing for sure is the price shouldn’t be one of your primary concerns when selecting a security company. While you should definitely factor total outlay into your decision-making process, it shouldn’t be the top priority because even if another company is willing to install a less expensive setup, they might not match up with everything else you’re looking for! Be sure to ask other questions before making any decisions. You don’t need to ask us all eight here, but do make sure you at least cover these five vital ones:
- Does Your System Offer Privacy & Security Against Cyber Crime?
- What Kind of Storage Is Available & Best Suited to Me?
- What Are Integrations?
- What If I Need Support Later On?
- How Fast Can We Get It Done?
Making these enquiries now may help reduce costly backtracking later down the track. For example, if budget isn’t important right now, but full cloud integration is something you want down the line, consider asking potential partners whether they’ll provide free updates down the road as well as their timeframe for implementing software upgrades once available.
2) How Do I Protect My Privacy?
Let’s be honest: if you’re installing security cameras, your goal is not to make every patron of your home or business feel like they’re being watched. Your goal is to protect your premises and secure yourself against theft and other threats. This doesn’t mean you should need to sacrifice privacy in order to secure your business. Find out what steps security camera companies take to ensure that their surveillance systems don’t violate your personal, customer or employee’s privacy rights. There are many tactics to employ to protect privacy; some as simple as positioning of camera; other methods more advanced like privacy masking in the software settings.
3) What Type of Cameras Are Used?
After you’ve decided on a company, it’s time to select the appropriate cameras and other security-related hardware. While there are many different types of cameras out there, your best bet is to choose an all-in-one system that combines both smart camera technology and video recording in one device. If possible, make sure each camera will record separately from other cameras (so if one breaks or malfunctions, it doesn’t take out your whole system), as well as include smart features such as high-definition resolution and infrared night vision or night color vision capability. If you have specific needs—like keeping an eye on your furry friend during work hours—ask whether those features are available.
4) Will I Have Trouble Viewing Recorded Footage?
You want to make sure that you can easily access, live view, and review recorded footage. If you’re going to have an expensive security camera system installed, you want to enjoy its benefits. In addition, it’s always helpful if your security company offers a remote access solution so that even if you are away from your home or business, you can still access your footage easily. It’s also vital to ask your contractor about how your CCTV system monitors their health status. A good quality system should have the capabilities to monitor the status of your recorder and CCTV cameras 24/7. Monitored notifications should include the minimum;
- Camera fail/disconnect
- HDD (Storage Hard Drive) Full Or Failed.
- Network disconnected
- IP Address Conflicted
- Illegal Login
5) Is There Any Additional/After Cost?
As discussed, there are two main price points that companies charge for security camera installation: hourly and flat rate. On average, you’ll pay more to hire an installer who charges by the hour. Don’t expect your security camera installation to be done in just one hour—unless it’s small-scale and basic. A professional will also always provide you with an estimate based on what he or she sees during your consultation so that you know what you’re paying for. Your invoice should include everything installed, including any equipment and supplies used. Always ask if there are additional after costs before signing a contract or committing to an installation. Sometimes add-ons like viewing monitors, additional hard drives, router upgrades etc., can drive up prices. Some installations may require setup fees in addition to their monthly monitoring fees. However, there are many systems available that support no ongoing subscription costs or monitoring fees.
6) Does the Firm Offer 24/7 Emergency Support?
If there’s an urgent issue with your CCTV camera installation, you want to be able to call your security contractor and get help as soon as possible. After all, that’s why you chose them in the first place! Make sure they offer support around-the-clock before signing any contracts. While it may seem like a given at first glance, most companies don’t offer 24/7 support; make sure yours does before starting work.
7) Can They Provide Equipment That Complies With My State’s Video Surveillance Laws?
All states have security camera laws that dictate where, when, and how video surveillance equipment can be installed. Because rules differ from state to state, you may want to check with your local authorities before hiring a security camera company. If you do install cameras without following these regulations, you could face steep fines or even criminal charges. Licensed security companies know all of these regulations inside and out; if they don’t work in your area (or are unfamiliar with its laws), that’s probably not a good sign! Make sure to ask if they generally service your area; so you can be confident they know what they’re doing and will follow regulations.
8) Will the CCTV Installation Cause Interference or Impact With Other Electronic Devices in My Home or Business?
There are many other electronic devices that you may have installed in your home or business, such as smart TV’s, laptops, phones, PC’s, Wi-Fi routers and even phone lines. If any of these items are installed within your premises, you’ll want to ask about any potential interference or possible impact on existing devices. Your technician should be able to highlight if any interference/impact is likely and what you can do about it. If not, they aren’t qualified to install a CCTV system for you. It’s best to know ahead of time so you can select an installation location based on how much potential interference there is.