why have a home security system

a home security system can help prevent home burglaries
don’t be a victim of a home burglary

Why have a home security system. The dogdays of summer are here.

Did you know this is also the time of year when most residential burglaries occur?

According to the FBI, there were more than 1.2 million burglaries in the U.S. in 2018 (the last year for which we have complete data). That a burglary every 25 seconds. July and August are the busiest months for burglars.  Statistics show that more than 95 percent of burglaries involve break-in by force, such as by breaking a window or door lock and 59 percent of home burglaries occur during the day while residents are at work or at school. Homes with a lot of cover, like large bushes, trees, fences, and gardens, are more likely to be broken into.

Victims of burglaries suffered an estimated $3.4 billion in property losses in 2018—about $2,700 in property losses per burglary.

And those are just the thieves who get inside. Porch pirates steal about 1.7 million delivered packages every day according to a study by the New York Times. One in three Americans report having at least one package stolen from their front porch or stoop. And nicer neighborhoods see a higher number of these thefts than lower income neighborhoods do according to Nathan Richter, Senior Partner of Wakefield Research.

The U.S. Postal Service reports postal inspectors arrested almost 2,500 suspected package thieves in 2018. But those thefts add up to more than $25 million in stolen items every day—more than $9.1 billion a year, according to C+R Research. Nicer neighborhoods see a higher number of porch pirates than lower income neighborhoods do according to Nathan Richter, Senior Partner of Wakefield Research.

In many cases, a security system could prevent homes from becoming a part of these statistics. The National Council for Home Safety and Security says that homes without alarms are three times as likely to get burglarized. It’s also important to point out that residential burglaries have declined nearly 40% since 2014 according to the FBI, while the number of residential security
systems rose.

Security company window stickers and yard signs can deter crime. A comprehensive five-year study by researchers at the Rutgers University School of Criminal Justice found that residential burglar alarm systems decrease crime. According to the study, the presence of a home security system deters burglars from breaking into that home and acted as a deterrent for neighbors’ homes too. And a neighborhood or community with several homes that have security systems installed deterred burglars from the entire area.

The jury is still out as to whether Doorbell cameras stop thieves, but police say they can play a role in solving crimes. St. Louis County Police officer Tracy Panus told KMOV-TV these videos do help. “I think they are a fantastic investigative tool”, she said.  Vancouver Police Department spokeswoman Kim Kapp told Government Technology Magazine that doorbell camera videos have helped police investigating crimes including residential burglaries, package thefts, auto break-ins and vandalism.

According to data insights firm Strategy Analytics, global spending on doorbell cameras is expected to triple from $500 million in 2019 to $1.4 billion by 2023. These tiny electronic watchdogs monitor who come and goes. They offer video streaming and let you use your smart phone to chat with visitors, keep an eye on kids coming home from school, and watch for package deliveries. They can be tied to door locks and motion detectors and can be part of a professionally monitored home security system.

Nathan Stroup of Secure 24 specializes in working with new home buyers. Stroup says security systems today are highly customizable and come in all shapes, sizes, and price ranges.  Consumers have access to multiple DIY options as well as fully monitored and automated systems that can integrate with all a home’s other systems like heat and lighting. Stroup says it’s important to do a little homework to get the features that fit your needs and your budget, especially if you’re doing it yourself. “There’s just so much available today,” he said.

Working with a full-service security company can be very helpful according to Stroup. “There are dozens of features and hundreds of ways to configure a system,” Stroup said. “ADT clients can get everything from a basic system with motion detectors, door sensors, and doorbell cameras, to complex set ups with indoor and outdoor cameras, and smart home integration, and control it all using virtual assistants like Alexa,” he said.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, homeowners can see substantial savings on their insurance by installing anti-theft security systems. Monitored home security systems can lower a homeowner’s insurance premium by as much as 10-20 percent a year. Even adding a
camera doorbell can cut a home insurance policy rate by five percent or more.

Pat Howard at Policy Genius says even with the savings, “you probably shouldn’t get a home security system if the end goal is to make your homeowners insurance cheaper,.” You just don’t save enough to fully cover the costs. “However,” he said, “you should get a home security system if your goal is to make your home a safer place and prevent future theft claims down the
road.”

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Secure 24 ADT Rep Nathan Stroup talks about evaluating a home’s security needs:

For more useful home maintenance tips and information visit us at:

https://hawleyhomeinspectionsllc.com/

https://www.facebook.com/HawleyHomeInspections

Thermal Imaging is an Important Tool for Inspectors

Thermal Imaging  – Infrared Inspection

The New Home Inspection Essential

 

Hiden water leaks often show up with thermal imaging
water leak

Buying a home is be the biggest purchase most people will make in their lifetimes. So, it’s important to invest the process. The home inspection is a critical part of the home buying process. It provides buyers with an impartial, professional, visual assessment of the home they are about to purchase. This gives buyers and their agents a valuable tool for negotiation, so it needs to give them as much information as possible. Enter infrared thermography.

 

As with most other industries, scientific advancements and new technologies have broadened the scope of a thorough home inspection and improved the inspector’s ability to assess the condition of the home. The development of modern tools like accurate, short term radon testing devices and air quality pumps and cassettes has allowed home inspectors to provide radon testing and airborne mold testing and given buyers valuable insights into the health or health risks of a home. Likewise, thermal imaging or infrared (IR) cameras have given home inspectors a whole new way to evaluate the home that gives buyers and their agents information that was previously unavailable to them.

 

Thermal imaging or thermography is an advanced, non-invasive technology that uses infrared imaging to take pictures of temperature variances of surfaces. These non-contact tools give the inspector the ability to see things that can’t be seen with the naked eye. Infrared thermography can’t actually see behind walls, but it can detect temperature differences on the surface of walls, often revealing what’s hidden. This technology can help the inspector identify and document issues that may not be apparent in a visual inspection. Using an infrared camera can reveal moisture intrusion, heat and energy loss, unexpected hot spots, and more.

 

IR cameras can detect moisture intrusion. They can find otherwise hidden plumbing leaks. They can help inspectors locate missing, damaged, or wet insulation. They can reveal unseen leaks before the damage gets serious. According to the US Department of Energy, “because wet insulation conducts heat faster than dry insulation, thermographic scans of roofs can often detect roof leaks.” Thermal imaging can also expose water and moisture intrusion at the foundation, subfloor, and around exterior doors and windows that could lead to structural damage and mold.

 

Moisture levels may show up in IR pictures when not obvious to the human eye

 

Thermography is excellent for determining issues of heat loss and air infiltration. These can be revealed in walls, ceilings, floors, windows, and IR may be able to identify electrical problems such as loose or bad connections and over loaded circuitsdoors. This technology can help an inspector find damage in radiant heating systems and determine if something is malfunctioning. Thermal imaging makes air conditioner compressor leaks visible. It can shine a light on structural defects that can lead to energy loss, like under-fastening or missing framing members. An infrared camera can detect broken seals in thermal windows.

Infrared imaging is excellent for finding hidden hot spots. These can be a sign of significant safety or fire hazards. Infrared cameras are effective at locating hotspots caused by circuit breaker defects, overloaded and undersized electric circuits, and overheated electrical equipment. Thermal imaging can find electrical faults before they cause a fire.

 

Thermal imaging can be used to help determine if appliances are working correctly. Properly operating appliances will exhibit surface temperature differences that can easily be picked up with an infrared camera.

 

Thermal cameras can’t see behind walls, but by using infrared technology, they can find a lot of problems that might not be obvious upon visual examination. Some of the other things IR cameras can reveal include serious hazards like exhaust flue leaks which can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning. They can spot heat signatures created by intruders like mice, rats, raccoons, and other pests hiding in the walls or ceilings of the home. They can even help the inspector see termite and ant infestations by revealing points of energy loss through shelter tubes leading outside.

 

Infrared inspections have their limits. Thermal imaging is not an X-ray or similar technology. An IR camera can’t see through walls. It can only detect conditions that produce a temperature difference at the surface of the evaluated area. The thermal imaging device can’t see behind any obstructions including furniture, pictures or anything that will obscure the surface of the area being evaluated. Specific condition must be present for infrared imaging to find wet building materials, but when those condition are met, the images are telling.

 

As with any type of inspection, thermography can’t predict future conditions. But it can give your inspector insight into conditions that could predictably worsen. Finding hidden moisture intrusion along the roof line using thermal imaging allows for repairs to be made before it causes serious structural problems.

 

Our inspectors are Certified Residential Thermographers. That means they are trained and tested professionals. Interpreting the data gathered using infrared thermography is perhaps the most critical aspect of a thermal imaging inspection. Infrared images must be interpreted by an expert who understands the limits of the technology and issues that can cause errors in measurements like dry areas and reflected heat. Professionals understand the limits of surface readings. A qualified interpretation lets buyers know what the findings mean. Is the issue found is of immediate concern, like an overloading circuit breaker, or a home improvement item, like adding insulation to an exterior wall? The distinction is critical. Our certified inspectors have the skills and know-how to accurately interpret infrared images and explain their findings in clear language that puts the issues found in proper perspective.

 

We expect thermal imaging to rapidly become one of the more indispensable implements in our home inspection toolkit. The IR camera equipment is expensive enough that not every inspector offers this type of inspection. Those who do often charge a hefty ancillary fee. Not us.

 

At Hawley Home Inspections, we feel the information gathered using infrared imaging is too important to leave out of a complete home inspection, so just like our free WDI/termite inspection, we are making it part of the standard home inspection process. And issues found with IR equipment during the home inspection are included in the free follow-up inspection. This is the only sure way to determine whether the repair work performed has effectively addressed the issues that our thermal imaging inspection uncovered.

 

Our mission is to set the standard for the home inspection industry in the St. Louis region by providing our clients the most thorough, highest quality professional inspections they can get and to do so at a fair price. Adding infrared thermography to our home inspections without charging extra is part of accomplishing that mission.

For more useful home maintenance tips and information visit us at:

https://hawleyhomeinspectionsllc.com/

https://www.facebook.com/HawleyHomeInspections

Radon Causes Cancer

Radon Causes Cancer

Are you sure you are a nonsmoker?

Did you know radon causes cancer?  That may seem like a silly question of course you know if you smoke or not, right?

Well before you answer too quickly, did you know about the dangers of long-term exposure to high levels of Radon Gas.  Radon Gas is a tasteless odorless gas that occurs in all parts of the county.  Unfortunately, concentration levels vary for many reasons and maybe high in one area and low just a few blocks away.

Radon causes cancer, exposure to radon of more than 4.O pCi/L is equivalent to smoking 10 cigarettes a day
radon causes cancer  According to the US EPA, a Radon level of 4.0 pCi/L (picocuries per liter) in your home may be equivalent to smoking 10 cigarettes a day.  

Radon Gas is estimated to cause 21,000 deaths per year in the United States.  In contrast that is more than the 17,000 deaths caused by drunk drivers.

 The Center for Disease Control lists exposure to Radon Gas as second only to smoking as a leading cause of Lung Cancer.  Furthermore, both state that smokers are at greater risk of developing lung cancer when a smoker is also exposed to elevated levels of Radon Gas. 

No level of Radon Gas is safe

However, levels of 4.0 pCi/L and above are the cut off level at which mitigation is recommended.  Radon Gas mitigation is relatively inexpensive and non-intrusive for most homes.

In order to assure proper results Radon testing and mitigation should only be performed by licensed or certified Radon technicians.

Consequently, testing is the only way to find out your home’s radon levels.  The US EPA and the US Surgeon General recommend testing all homes for Radon Gas.

If you would like to have your home tested contact Hawley Home Inspections LLC at 618-593-9631 or 314-257-0040 or send us an email at  HawleyHomeInspections@gmail.com.

For more useful home maintenance information visit us at  www. HawleyHomeInspectionsLLC.com

or like us on Facebook   Hawley Home Inspections https://www.facebook.com/HawleyHomeInspections/

check us out at:

the Better Business Bureau                      http://www.bbb.org/stlouis/business-reviews/home-inspection-service/hawley-home-inspections-in-pocahontas-il-310486659

The State of Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulations

https://ilesonline.idfpr.illinois.gov/DFPR/Lookup/LicenseLookup.aspx

InterNACHI

https://www.nachi.org/my/listings

Discounts for Veterans

Discounts for Veterans

Discounts for Veterans and First Responders

We offer discounts for Veterans and First Responders in honor of those who served.  Hawley Home Inspections, LLC will give a discount on our home inspections.  All veterans qualify regardless of length of service.   Active first responders will also receive a discount.

 

This is our way of paying it forward for those who have ran towards trouble as other have ran away.  We come from a family full of veterans and first responders and know the sacrifices you have made.  This is but a small token of our appreciation of those who take the responsibility of serving others.  

We are a veteran owned and family operated Home Inspection company operating in the St Louis and Southern Illinois area.  We have been providing home inspection and ancillary services since 2010. 

In addition to Home Inspections we also have the following services available:

  • Asbestos and Vermiculite Testing
  • Air Quality Testing (for mold and mildew)
  • Gas Leak Testing
  • Log Home Inspections
  • Radon Testing
  • Sewer Camera Scopes
  • Septic Inspections 
  • Termite Inspection (included with Home Inspection)
  • Well Water Testing

Our Inspectors are ASHI and InterNACHI certified and licensed by the State of Illinois.  Each inspector is required to constantly upgrade their education through continuing education courses approved by the State.  Your satisfaction is our reward for a job well done.

Our goal is to be “Your Home Consultant for Life” feel free to continue to contact us after your inspection.  We welcome your questions and only ask that you refer to friends and relatives.

for more information about us visit our website https://www.hawleyhomeinspectionsllc.com

For a copy of our Standards of Practice click the link below

https://www.nachi.org/sop.htm

Visit Us @ BBB

The State of Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulations      License #  450.010421

https://ilesonline.idfpr.illinois.gov/DFPR/Lookup/LicenseLookup.aspx

Contact us:

618-593-9631

314-257-0040

hawleyhomeinspections@gmail.com

Ten questions to ask your home inspector

Ten questions to ask your home inspector

Ten Questions to Ask Your Home Inspector

(HawleyHomeInspectionsLLC.com) Here are ten questions to ask your home inspector before you make the largest purchase of your life.  Most realtors recommend and many lenders require having a professional home inspection performed.

A home inspection may save you thousands of dollars by revealing structural or safety issues that may not have been obvious. It may give your home a clean bill of health; either way knowing is always better than guessing. Before you choose a home inspector you should ask the following questions:

1. Q. Are you and your inspectors licensed by the State of Illinois?

A. All of our inspectors are trained and licensed by the State of Illinois and take extended trainings throughout the year.

2. Q. Do you have errors and omissions,  liability and workmans comp insurance?

A. Yes

3. Q. Can you provide references?

A. Visit our web site at www.HawleyHomeInspectionsLLC.com for both text and video testimonials.

4. Q. What professional organizations do you belong to?

A. We are a member in good standing of the Better Business Bureau (BBB) with an A+ rating, the Greater Gateway, Association of Realtors (GGAR), the Realtor Association of Southern Illinois (RASI), St Louis Realtors Association, Inter National Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI) and the America Association of Home Inspectors (ASHI)

5. Q. Is it OK to attend the inspection?

A. Not only is it OK to attend, we feel strongly that the buyer should be present for the complete inspection. Most inspections will take about four hours, if you need to leave you can leave us a cell phone number and we will contact you when we are finished.

6. Q. What other services do you provide?

A. We provide free termite inspections with every inspection and when requested Radon Testing, Sewer Scopes, Air Quality Testing,  Gas Leak Testing.

We also provide Septic Inspections (by an affiliate)  and Well Water, Asbestos and Vermiculite testing (by a state approved laboratory).

7. Q. Do you provide repair services?

A No, we consider it unethical for an inspector to perform repairs or profit from suggested repairs within three years of an inspection they have performed.

8. Q. How soon can you schedule an inspection?

A. We understand most real estate transactions have short time frames to complete inspections and repairs.   We try to accommodate your schedule, we work Monday through Saturday.   By working days and evenings we can schedule most inspections  within 3 days or less.

9. Q. How much does an inspection cost?

Inspections are based on square footage, termite inspections are included and we give discounts for new construction homes as well as Veterans and First Responders.

10. Q. How soon will I get the results of my inspection?

A. At the end of your inspection we will provide you with a verbal review of the inspection report and the termite inspection.  Our inspector will review the inspection report and revise if necessary.

The reports will be emailed to you and your agent  you will normally receive it by the next business day. 

The Termite Report,  Sewer Scope, Gas Leak and Air Quality test reports  will usually be attached to the Inspection report sent to you and your agent the nest business day also. 

Radon, Asbestos-Vermiculite and well water test results may take longer and will be forwarded to you when we receive them.

We hope these 10 questions to ask your home inspector are helpful

Buying a home can be a terrible or pleasant experience  Seek the help of an experienced Realtor and a professional home inspector and  the process will go much smoother.

Your realtor will not only help you find your dream home but a good Realtor will help you every step of the way.  They will help with negotiations, paper work and give a realistic opinion of  the homes value. 

They can also invaluable in other ways such as advising you on the neighbor hood, the local schools and churches and may even be able to help you with moving and relocation recommendations. 

Your Home Inspector will carefully and skilfully inspect the major systems of the home and provide both a verbal summary of their findings and an a detailed email summary.

Of coarse there are more than ten questions to ask your home inspector

Please feel free to contact us about any other questions you may have. 

At Hawley Home Inspections LLC we are a Veteran owned and family operated business with one goal in mind.  We want to be your “Professional Home Consultant for Life.”  Once we have completed your home inspection we encourage you to continue to use our services and consider us as your homes partner.

We are a multi inspector company with  10 years of business success serving Southern Illinois, The Metro East, St Louis City and the surrounding communities.

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