Originally Posted by Walt34
I'm a retired police officer. Alarm calls are viewed as a PITA call because 99.9999% of the time it is a false alarm. In 18 years on the street I remember two that were not, and we ran at least two or three a day, often more. In only one instance was the burglar, a stupid teenager, still there in the store.
Some police departments do not respond to alarm calls at all any more because of the false alarm rates. Others have instituted fines for too many false alarms. Rest assured that if the police where you live still respond to alarms, they're not going to be in a hurry."
You are probably right for many places, but it depends on where you live. In our previous primary residence town, a wealthy north shore suburb of Chicago, the police responded very quickly to any alarm. They took it very seriously because they didn't want the town to be a target for burglaries and robberies.
Our cleaning ladies were in perpetual fear that we would forget and set the alarm (they didn't have the code), and they would trip it when entering the house through the garage (they had the code to the garage door). One time at another house, they triggered the alarm and the police showed up with guns drawn.
Anyway, we wanted monitored alarms no matter what for CO, fire, water, temperature. We were gone a lot, and having the house monitor itself was helpful.
Our current primary residence is a condo with individual alarm systems, but no one uses them because it is a gated 24-hour security place with cameras everywhere, and the safety systems are monitored centrally separately.
Out current secondary residence has an alarm system we do not use when there (except smoke, CO, etc.) because crime is almost non-existent. When gone, it is helpful to monitor systems and keep out the opportunistic thief