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Wisconsin
The Summer Months Ring an ‘Alarm’ for Consumers
June 29, 2012

BBB tips for selecting and installing a home security alarm system

 Milwaukee, Wis., June 29, 2012 –The number of consumers searching home security system dealers continues to increase year to year, according to Better Business Bureau. Inquiries are especially high during the summer months, when families are planning their summer vacations and looking for ways to avoid leaving their home vulnerable to thieves.

But, finding a reliable dealer can be tricky. Over the past 12 months, the Wisconsin BBB has received 44 complaints against home security system dealers and operators.

Many complaints to BBB allege consumers were continuously billed after canceling service or unaware their contract would automatically renew. There were also issues with faulty equipment. In addition, some complaints involved companies selling door-to-door. In these cases, many times consumers felt pressured or deceived into buying or upgrading their current home security system.

In a matter as crucial as the security of your family and your home, consumers need to be especially careful in deciding on the type of alarm system to use and who will install it. BBB encourages consumers to follow these tips in finding the right home security system:

· Be wary of door-to-door alarm sales. Don’t be pressured into buying something you don’t want or need. A trustworthy company will let you check out the offer and compare bids from several installers.

· Check out the “free” alarm system offer. Many times salespersons will deceive consumers with a “free” offer. And while the equipment may be free, there is typically an installation charge and a monthly monitoring fee.

· Check licensing. Wisconsin law requires any company who provides security services in the state to be properly licensed. Visit the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services to check licensing requirements.

· Verify who will monitor your system. Ask if the same company you are signing a contract with will be the ones to monitor your system. If not, make sure you obtain the name, address and phone number of this company and review its BBB Business Review through bbb.org.

· Study the contract carefully. Confirm such information as; the installation price, monthly fee, length of contract, cancellation process and timeframe. Make sure the contract includes all information promised or agreed upon.

To check the reliability of a company and find trustworthy businesses, visit BBB. To receive news, tips and advice from the Wisconsin BBB, follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.