Question Re: Residential Leasing
    We have a couple of residential jobs coming up, one which is an existing customer of ours whose system is leased.  They have an old lease contract, and are adding alarm.com to their current system.  We are going to use your lease contract and add the alarm.com rider but my question is, what do we use for the value of the installed equipment (his current system is valued at approx. $2400.00)  Do we list all of the existing equipment again from the original job, or can we just list "existing equipment" on the proposal along with the new alarm.com unit? 
    The 2nd one is a similar scenario however it is not one of our existing customers.  We are adding alarm.com and a few devices to their system.  We have been attaching the proposal on new installs but this one has existing equipment we are installing the alarm.com with.  What is the best way to fill out the paperwork so the legal aspects of the contract cover everything.  Warranty is only on new equipment added.
Thanks for your help.
Peggy Smida
SOS Security Systems, Inc
    Use the Standard Residential Lease All in One for residential leasing.  As you noted that form calls for the value of the installed equipment.  While I can't say that we have definitive court decisions interpreting "installed equipment" the intent of the term is the value of the entire system installed in the premises.  Because this is a lease transaction and the subscriber is not paying for the installation or equipment the subscriber has less interest in the "agreed value" when the contract is signed.  Rarely do subscribers think about the consequences of defaulting under the contract at time of signing.  The agreed value becomes important only when the subscriber defaults and you sue for not only the balance of the contract but the agreed value of the equipment.  The agreed value is therefore the cost of the equipment and installation plus a "healthy" profit.  Certainly not cost or below.  
    Because you are providing alarm.com services you will need to use the Rider we provide that covers the terms that alarm.com requires your subscribers to sign.  We recommend a Rider because we don't want to include the alarm.com terms in your agreement.  Those terms are designed to protect alarm.com and in my opinion the terms in our Standard Form Agreements provide better protection for you.  
    In your second scenario you have the option of including all of the equipment or only the new equipment in your Residential Lease.  Even though your Limited Warranty is covering only the new equipment, which you make clear in your Schedule of Equipment and Services, hopefully you are signing the subscriber up for Service [repair service], monitoring and inspection as well as other RMR opportunity services such as remote access, cameras and integration systems, all covered by the Standard All in One Agreements.  If you're servicing the system it's not likely that the service extends only to the new equipment, though it certainly could.  Just make it clear in the Schedule of Equipment and Services what is and what is not covered.
    Subject:: Does Sonitrol provide true verification?   Who benefits from a Sonitrol system?  Police?   Or the paying customer?
    Is Sonitrol the true definition of verified?   I also have prior experience with Sonitrol. I will admit that Sonitrol has far less false alarms than conventional alarms, but still has false alarms. Unless things have changed, Sonitrol also dispatches on single trip alarms, such as perimeter contacts with no audio verification. I also have witnessed a mouse in a trash can full of soda cans, tree branches hitting the window, swamp coolers gone bad, even a raccoon bandit stealing a cheese ball, all of which resulted in police responding to a Sonitrol  true "verified" alarm.  
    Even when Sonitrol does detect a burglar, Sonitrol utilizes a police response and when police respond 2 hours later to a silent alarm this provides no protection to their client. Most Sonitrol systems that I am familiar with require a silent alarm so the microphones can hear an intruder. In cases where the police do not respond in a timely manner all the client receives is a recording of his inventory leaving the premises. With no local siren to scare off the burglar, what benefit does even a 30 minute police response provide on a 5 minute burglary? 
    Yes, if your objective is to reduce false alarms and provide police with a great tool to catch bad guys, then Sonitrol is a great tool for police. If your goal is to protect your client's property, then an alarm with an audible sounder and a fast private sector response provides a far better form of protection to your client. The use of Sontitrol's audio verification is another example of how dispatching police has misdirected the industry into attempting to prevent false alarms, rather than focusing on securing our client's property. If your clients objective is to risk losing his property, to help police catch a few bad guys, then Sonitrol is a great solution for that client. If the client is attempting to protect his property, then I suggest a system which detects intrusion, even at the risk of a few false alarms. System should also provide an immediate deterrent to an intruder, such as a blasting siren, lights, etc.
Roger D. Score
    I think Sonitrol's audio service has a proven track record.  Whether it's the "end all" to alarm verification is questionable, and whether putting false alarm reduction ahead of subscriber protection is a worthy goal is another question.  [I'm not a fan of that position].  However false alarm reduction and catching criminals, all aiding police services, is certainly worthwhile efforts.  The alarm industry is not and should not be in competition with police.  The alarm service and police services are each integral to the other, and each would have more expense and less efficiency without the other.  Though private guard response may be a revenue opportunity for the alarm industry, as is false alarm reduction measures, ultimately police protection is a governmental obligation and private business should not have to provide the service in place of police.  
    Incidentally I don't think that a Sonitrol system and service necessarily precludes full intrusion detection services, though I don't know if an onsight siren or alarm interferes with the audio components.  I am sure someone from Sonitrol will let us know.
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