Business Booms For Home Security Companies

Homeowners grow concerned about home invasions

Home security companies are seeing a big increase in business, as homeowners grow more concerned about protecting their families from home invasions.

"We get a certain amount of people who call who have just been victimized, or possibly the neighbor has been victimized, and there's a sense of urgency now in getting the home secured," said Mark Thompson of Plano-based Smith Thompson Security Systems.

Thompson said his company now sees more than 500 new customers every month. That is an increase of more than 25 percent in the last six months. The only time business was better in the company's 31-year history was immediately after the 9/11 terror attacks, Thompson said.

Now homeowners appear to be concerned about a growth in crime. Each of the company's 14 installers sees nearly half a dozen customers a day.

"(A) lady out in Carrollton, they broke into her house on a Saturday evening while they were sleeping -- right in the back door and away they went," said Jason Anderegg, an installer for the company.

Thompson said many homeowners are upgrading existing alarm systems.

"Now with home invasions, typically, the first thing they'll do is cut the telephone line to try to defeat 911 and the alarm system," he said.

To prevent that from happening Smith Thompson and other security companies are selling inexpensive upgrades, which use cell phones to contact the alarm company.

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