With longevity comes experience. This is what often comes to mind whenever we hear of a company who’s been in the game for a long time. It shows us that that company has survived major changes in market trends.
And in the home security industry, the experience is a key determinant of success. One of these longtime contenders is the AFA Protective Systems.
But does the company’s time spent in the industry equate to good services? Let’s find out in our AFA Security review.
AFA Protective Systems’ History and Reputation
The company was established in 1873. Throughout its over 140 years of experience in the industry, it has expanded and conquered the entire East coast. It serves from Maine to Florida, providing fire and security solutions to various establishments in the area.
In terms of growth, however, it wasn’t able to interest a lot of customers. Due to this, it only ranked as the 23rd largest security company in the United States. This was based on the recurring monthly revenue ranked by SDM Magazine in 2016.
Despite this, AFA Protective still proves to bring quite a hefty punch. It’s been awarded the Staples Loss Prevention Vendor of the Year thrice. It also boasts a Notifier President’s Circle Award.
Its central monitoring station is UL Listed, FM Approved and CSAA Five Diamond certified. These awards and recognition show that the company’s service network is very capable in the business.
The Better Business Bureau has accredited the business since 01/20/2012 and gave it a rating of A+. There are currently no reviews on the company, but it has closed down two complaints. These complaints were about delivery and the product or service.
Customers have also reported that its prices tend to lean to the more expensive side.
Plan Pricing and Services
AFA Protective Systems offers solutions to a wide array of establishments. Aside from residential and commercial buildings, it also serves the government, schools, healthcare buildings, and banks and finances.
It doesn’t, however, offer any direct plans or packages. No prices are also listed on its website as it insists on doing an in-home review. This is because it wants to provide a fully customized security solution.
A website comparing alarm company prices, however, lists AFA’s starting monthly price at $26.00 which was confirmed by an advertisement by AFA itself in a review article. It also has a reported upfront price of $559.00.
Here are some of the features of its residential alarm systems:
- Home Security System. This feature provides a variety of alarms and monitoring devices. These include the following: panic alarms, medical alerts, carbon monoxide detector, smoke and heat detectors, water and low-temperature detectors, and outdoor perimeter protection. Although, it could be noted that devices such as smart locks and motion sensors are missing. It’s also unclear if the company offers additional devices, and at what costs.
- Vision Remote Services. This gives you an instant access to your video feed. Also, this functions as a sort of automation as it allows you to control your security system anywhere you are. Some of its features and devices are virtual keypads accessible through any web-enabled device, vision IP cameras, email and text alerts, and notifications of any detected activity.
- Video Surveillance Systems. This works in tandem with the previous feature. This allows you to remotely view your camera feed. It also has live and archived time and date-stamped videos you can also view.
- Fire Protection. The company boasts that it has been building and monitoring fire alarm systems since its establishment. Its experience in fire protection includes system design, maintenance services, test and inspection, system installation, and system integration.
For businesses and other commercial establishments, AFA Protective also provides solutions. Some of the features of its commercial systems and services are:
- Commercial Security. Like its residential equivalent, commercial security provides devices and features tailored for businesses. These include door and window contacts, infrared motion sensors, shock sensors, glass break sensors, safe and vault alarms, and photoelectric beams. For businesses that have a higher risk of loss due to burglary (like banks and jewelry store), it offers UL Certified systems.
- Engineering and Budget Services. This often refers to the construction or renovation phase of the establishment.
- Installation Services. AFA Protective offers design, installation, servicing, and monitoring of fire and security systems. It ensures that your needs are met. The company is hands-on with the installation from start to finish.
It also offers a wide variety of manufacturing partners. They supply the company’s products and devices. These partners are:
- Clinton Electronics
All of its equipment has a one-year limited warranty. It doesn’t charge for labor to repair or replace parts for 90 days after the installation. However, after this period ends, a standard service call charge applies.
Although there is no information written on its site, many customers reported that the service is too expensive. Another customer pointed out that monthly rates could increase after one year, as written on the contract.
Top Tips for Buyers
AFA Protective requires a satisfactory credit score for its customers. The exact score is not written on its website though.
As mentioned earlier, the company first requires an in-house review and assessment. All price quotes are received only after this review. However, expect that the prices you pay will be a bit expensive.
The company can also take over any preexisting security system and devices. This is only possible if you are no longer in a contract with the previous company.
All of the equipment is owned by the company until it’s fully paid for. There is also a 1.5% interest on invoices that are 30 days past due. This can quickly accumulate, so it’s best if you pay in time.
It can also install for renters given that your landlord allows individual alarm systems.
Cancellation and Transfer Policies
Like its pricing, the company gives no information about its contracts and transfer policies. It’s best to contact a representative directly and go over the details.
However, like most security companies, it’s best to assume that you need to pay a certain amount to end your contract early on. Some companies charge 80% of the remaining balance while others require you the full amount.
What’s the Bottom Line?
AFA security system complaints include poor customer service and expensive services. This is coupled with the lack of important information on the website. This might be discouraging to some future customers, but AFA Protective’s array of solutions and partners makes it a really good choice.