Advice and Opinion

Good security systems add greatly to the value of any home

In South Africa today, says Tony Clarke, Managing Director of the Rawson Property Group, it pays every time for a home seller to install a state-of-the-art security system in his home before putting it on the market.

Buyers, said Clarke, have become increasingly security conscious and are no longer satisfied with just burglar bars, security doors, concertina barriers and electronically operated gates, useful though these are.

“Today’s buyer,” said Clarke, “will inspect the security systems with great care and is usually prepared to pay a premium price for the sort of system that has alarms on all doors and windows and at the same time is able to leave certain areas unalarmed for specified periods.”

“Such buyers also want panic buttons in most of the rooms and systems which allow several occupants to carry panic buttons on their car keys or in their handbags.”

In addition, said Clarke, electrified and alarm perimeter fencing is now regarded as essential and if it can be backed up by a perimeter alarm system, so much the better.

Other precautionary measures which will increase the value of a home and are much appreciated by buyers are cameras at the entrance and boundaries of the property and intercom systems to the home as well as adequate powerful external lighting, preferably activated by triggers linked to infrared beams.

Most importantly, said Clarke, the occupants must have a direct link to a reputable security agency, not just via the panic buttons but also by landline and cell phones – and it has to be proved to them that the security agency will respond fast.

Such precautions are essential, said Clarke, especially if women and children are on their own a great deal or where the local police force is known to be already so busy that its response times are likely to be slow.

Asked if it was not possible for the new home buyer to install such equipment for himself, Clarke said, “Yes, of course – but the simple truth is that already installed systems give the seller a better chance to achieve a selling price close to that of their asking price.”

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