As time goes by, there are more and more security companies that enter the market. These companies offer new technology that promises to provide you with better security. Still, some veteran competitors in the market tend to upgrade too.
Years of experience in the field can be an advantage to these businesses. One of the security companies that have been around for a time now is Ackerman Security.
Read on this Ackerman Alarm Security review to learn more about the company’s services and whether it is the right choice for you.
Ackerman Security Systems’ History and Reputation
The Ackerman Security Systems was founded by Bruce Turry and Charles Ackerman. Turry has been a victim of a home robbery that led him to create a security company with Ackerman.
The company was acquired by the Canadian firm, the Imperial Capital Group, last 2015.
It has been in the business for almost 50 years – making it one of the oldest home security companies in the US. It claims to be the only security company that guarantees a quick response time. It is on the 19th spot based on SDM’s ranking on the 100 Top Security Systems in 2017.
With its tagline “The Sign of Real Security”, Ackerman promises to offer its customers professional equipment, installation, and monitoring. It is also one of the few monitoring stations in the country to receive both U.L. and CSAA Five Diamond certifications.
Ackerman offers cheap and customizable security plans that will fit your home or establishment. Compared to the other security companies, it offers one of the most competitive and lowest rates in the industry without compromising the quality of security.
It makes use of Honeywell security equipment; an already trusted brand that is known for its reliable performance. It also uses fire safety products from First Alert and equipment from Panasonic.
Ackerman goes with new technological advancements that let its customers manage the security of their own homes with a touch of a button. One commendable part of its service is their Smart Home feature.
Since it has been around for quite some time already, it is one of the most popular choices in the areas that it serves.
Its services are currently available in Mid-Atlantic states, specifically Georgia, Maryland, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. However, because of its limited service scope, Ackerman still doesn’t have a strong service network.
It currently has an A+ rating on BBB. Still, out of the 21 reviews on the BBB site, most are negative. Most customers didn’t even bother to add a review and went straight to the complaints section which is currently loaded with 188 complaints as of writing.
A large number of negative reviews and complaints are because of poor customer service and sketchy cancellation policies. According to them, Ackerman restarts the contract without notice.
Another part of its negative reviews says that they feel like Ackerman has been scamming them since they pay for service that they don’t really receive. Some customers say that their homes have not been monitored for months and the company isn’t even aware of it.
The company also seems to contradict its own claim of having professional installation, equipment, and monitoring since it always has some technical problems that come from poor installation and also unreliable equipment.
Plan Pricing and Services
Ackerman doesn’t release pricing information, pre-existing packages, and its terms unless you are ready to sign a contract with the company.
Information from its website says that its monitoring system starts at $19.95 a month. This comes with a $99 activation fee to start the service. However, this is only a standard residential plan that makes use of a landline monitoring. It also requires a 3-year contract.
One good thing about Ackerman Security is that it creates a home system that would suit every customer’s needs. It also caters to both residential and commercial customers. The following are some of the features and inclusions of its residential security system.
- Burglar alarm products like motion detectors, security cameras, glass break sensors, and sirens.
- Fire detectors that use ionization detection technology and carbon monoxide detectors.
- Medical alert monitoring pendant for immediate medical help.
- Smart home that lets you control the thermostat, lights, video cameras, locks, and garage doors through your phone and other devices.
It also offers system services for businesses and other commercial establishments. Some of the features of its business security are:
- Security Systems that will safeguard the facility from theft and other crime.
- Access Systems that will monitor and secure key areas, allowing only selected and authorized personnel to enter and exit.
- Video Surveillance Systems that provide protection from both external and internal security, safety, and profitability threats. Live feed can be accessed through the Ackerman Security app.
- Monitoring Systems that will protect your establishment against fire, carbon monoxide, and other potential disasters.
Ackerman Security System offers services that will suit the customers’ business size:
- Small business with 30 employees or less (less than 5,000 sq ft) – This plan has the basics that would fit a small business like keypads, motion detectors, glass break sensors, cameras, and remote access.
- Commercial business with 31 employees or more (5,000 – 1 million sq ft) – Have a bigger business? Ackerman offers custom security solutions and integration. This plan also has an advanced internet video surveillance systems. You can also have the ability to easily control and monitor on who has access to your facility.
- National accounts with multiple site locations – Businesses with multiple site locations can also be protected by Ackerman Security. The features may depend on the business but the basics offered are customer security solutions and integration, advanced internet video surveillance, as well as visitor management.
Although the base rate is $19.95 for the simplest monitoring, its packages can go up as you add more equipment and customizations to your system. Upgrades to cellular or broadband monitoring cost $29 per month.
If you also want the mobile application access, it would cost you an additional $35 per month. These rates are fixed and won’t be raised over the duration of the contract unless you want to have additional equipment.
If you have existing equipment from other companies, Ackerman Security promises to switch your monitoring system at no extra cost. In addition to this, it also offers free upgrades when your monitoring agreement ends.
Ackerman also boasts its “No-Theft Guarantee” claim. In case of burglary, it won’t just cover the total theft cost, it will pay you double. It also offers a five-year warranty on control panels and one-year warranty on security components.
It also has cellular radio monitoring which can be used in case of a power outage. You can connect with the monitoring center using this. Just always make sure that its battery is always sufficiently charged.
As of now, it is offering a free HD indoor camera that comes with any interactive security plan.
Top Tips for Buyers
Potential customers are easily attracted to the posted $19.95 deal in Ackerman’s website. However, before signing any contract, buyers must first thoroughly read the whole agreement. Ask the agent for any additional fees that may apply to your plan.
Ackerman is known to be very vague when explaining details about the plans so it’s better to be proactive in asking questions about your desired package. This will help you avoid being stuck in an unclear agreement with the company.
According to some reviews, Ackerman has increased its monthly charge when it upgrades to wireless system.
If you also want better monitoring, it is better to upgrade for cellular or broadband monitoring since landline is much less secured. Thieves can easily cut your phone lines and without it, the company won’t be able to monitor and respond to your home.
If you have existing equipment, you can save a few bucks by utilizing them instead of buying new ones. Ackerman will change the monitoring system for you with no additional fee. But if your current equipment has panels that are not compatible with the system to be installed, be ready to spend a little.
Cancellations and Transfer Policies
There is no information available on its site when it comes to guaranteed money back. Reviews from past and current customers are usually about issues when canceling the service from Ackerman.
If you opt to cancel your current plan, you need to notify the company 60 days before the policy automatically renews. Be sure to ask for a cancellation form from the company. Send it two months before your contract ends via email and according to past customers, via snail mail too.
Furthermore, if you decide to discontinue the service in the middle of your contract, you must pay the full price for the remainder of the year. Most customers were not aware of this.
What if you decided to move and want the same system on your current location to be applied to the new one? Don’t worry since Ackerman offers free moving as long as the new location is within the scope of its service which is mostly in the Mid-Atlantic States.
What’s the Bottomline
Ackerman Security’s years in service and low base price might look good when you’re looking for a possible security system for your home. The company also wouldn’t get an A+ rating and diamond certifications for nothing. It uses equipment from some of the most reputable brand names after all.
However, vague information on its site might put away potential customers. The reviews and complaints you can see online about its system, especially about cancellation issues, is a bit of a turn-off too. On the other hand, some of its customers seem to be just fine with Ackerman’s services.
On a final note, Ackerman Security seems to be a decent enough pick for customers in the areas that it serves. Customers just have to thoroughly inspect everything on the paper before deciding to push through with an agreement.