If you live alone and spend much of your time traveling (either for business or pleasure), home security may be a concern of yours. Even if you have helpful neighbors who don't mind peeking in on your place every couple of days during your absence, you may be nervous about the security of your home and belongings without a more tangible way to monitor them. Fortunately, technology is on your side, with a number of groundbreaking innovations designed to give you total access to your home from nearly anywhere on the planet. Read on to learn more about some innovations that can allow you to monitor your home day and night, whether you're across the street or on the other side of the globe.
Garage door opener apps
Although a web or mobile application that can open your garage door may not seem too useful if you're hundreds of miles away, this tool can come in handy in a variety of other ways -- from granting access to your home to a neighbor (without having to provide a key) to forever quelling your "did I leave the garage door open?" worries. Not only can these apps open and close your door, but they can provide additional information on the safety of your door (such as a warning that a spring is weakening) or even let you know about break-in attempts.
Garage door opener apps may also be more secure than traditional garage door openers. Older model garage door openers that use a fixed code may be especially vulnerable to hacking, with some hackers using a children's toy to break into a garage in less than 10 seconds. Doors that utilize a rolling code (which generates a different code each time the door opens) are slightly more secure, but can still pose certain vulnerabilities. However, the garage door opener applications can be encrypted to prevent would-be burglars from gaining access to your code without fairly sophisticated electronic equipment, and the monitoring features of this app can give you nearly instant feedback if a burglar does attempt entry. Talk with a garage door company, such as J & R Garage Door Company Inc., for more information and options.
Web-enabled security cameras
Another way to give you peace of mind while far away from home is the installation of security cameras that can provide you with real-time pictures, audio, and video of the inside or outside of your home. Unlike older security cameras, which recorded video onto a cassette tape or DVD for later replaying, these live cameras can record thousands of hours of video to be stored in "the cloud," freeing up space on your camera's hard drive and allowing you to comb through weeks or months of video in only a few minutes.
Some security cameras also have a microphone. Not only can a booming voice from the sky send would-be burglars running for their lives, but this feature can also help you provide real-time guidance to pet-sitters or other visitors who may have trouble finding something in your home -- or even comfort a pet who has been left to his own devices for a day or two.
Having an automated system to control your furnace, air conditioner, and lights can save you a substantial amount of money while traveling and also provide security. From a single web-enabled dashboard, you'll be able to set your home's temperature and turn lights on and off at will, lowering utility costs and making it much more difficult for potential burglars to determine whether your home is occupied. Controlling your house's outdoor lights from your phone or tablet can also prevent you from ever having to fumble with your keys outside a darkened doorway again.