A professionally-installed security system may give you peace of mind that fires and break-ins will be reported to the police ASAP when you’re out of town, but it won’t walk the dog. A security system won’t mow the lawn, check the mail or call you if the basement floods either.
The price for a security system varies, but the big companies typically start with a $100 installation fee and $30 a month for monitoring. A house sitter’s rates also vary. Some don’t charge anything in exchange for the place to stay, and others charge anywhere from $20 to $35 a day.
Depending on the length of your vacation, a security system may be the same price as a house sitter’s fees. However, when you factor in all the benefits of a house sitter, there’s no denying that a house sitter provides a better value.
House Sitters do More than Prevent Theft
With a car in the driveway, lights on in the kitchen and the dog looking out the front window, your chances of a break-in go down significantly. On top of theft prevention, a house sitter keeps you home in working order.
House sitters can do a number of tasks while you’re away.
- Lawn care
- Watering indoor plants
- Get the mail
- Pay bills
- Care for pets
- Answer the phone and return messages
- Light household cleaning and chores
- Keep an eye on the house to make sure all aspects are in working order (e.g., pipes don’t burst, air conditioners don’t go out, etc.)
You Don’t Have to Choose
For ultimate security, choose both a security system and a house sitter. Studies show that a home with a security system is two to three times less likely to be robbed. This is significant considering that there were 2,199,125 burglaries in 2009 throughout the United Sates, and 72.6% of those burglaries occurred on residential properties.