Home Alone? Never.
Does your family have that one movie they watch every Christmas? A recent (and very unofficial) office poll has revealed “Jingle All The Way”, “A Christmas Story” and “It’s A Wonderful Life” as perennial favorites. It sounds lovely… gathering together as a family to celebrate the season by watching your favorite Christmas movie. But what if your family leaves you home alone for Christmas vacation?
That is just what happened to a kid named Kevin McCallister in the movie “Home Alone”, which happens to be my favorite holiday movie. While his family is flying half way around the country he is left to fend for himself. When his family figures out what they have done, it takes them several days to find the means of transportation back to the house. While home alone, Kevin is met with the challenge of fighting off two would-be burglars. The movie is entertaining (I watch it every Christmas, after all) but with the recent developments in technology, I can’t help but notice all the easy ways to fix Kevin’s situation.
Several capabilities of today’s home security system would have been very helpful from the start…
- A family with a security system should have remembered to turn the alarm ON when leaving the property for several days. Remember that a security system left unarmed is a very useless investment. (A family that cares enough about protecting their house should at the very least remember to count all kids before leaving as well.)
- For entertainment’s sake, let’s say the alarm was armed while Kevin was left sleeping in the attic. Having indoor motion sensors tied to your security system would have guaranteed that the alarm would go off as soon as Kevin started moving inside the house. If an indoor sensor had been tripped then the family and police would have definitely been contacted within seconds of the alarm going off. Possibly before they got to the airport, and definitely before they got on the plane.
- Alerting the proper authorities when an alarm sounds is a function built into your home security system package. When an alarm comes through, a trained agent at the monitoring center will contact you. If they can’t reach you, they will dispatch emergency personnel within seconds. Monitoring your home security system is not only integral to your safety when an intruder has been detected, but it’s also good for detecting that you did, in fact, leave your son at home.
- With the proper home security system in place, a family that leaves a house without arming their system can do so remotely from their smartphone. With this technology, homeowners can adjust their thermostat, lock their doors, and arm their security systems from their smartphone. Realistically, this wouldn’t have helped Kevin. But it’s a cool feature of our home security systems so I thought I’d mention it.
- Many things can be added to the security system to help deter possible intruders. Video cameras, outdoor motion sensors, and lighting can all help increase your home’s security. The possible burglars in the movie would not have been able to make it through a door or window without the police being called immediately. Criminal hijinx: suspended. Movie: over.
With the proper precautions, the family would have never made it to the airport, Kevin wouldn’t have had to hurt those poor burglars, and Buzz’s tarantula would have stayed put. However, the movie would have been a real dud and probably only 7 minutes long had the McCallisters had a home security system in place. As far as I know, though, your life is not a movie. And when it comes to adventures in home security, most homeowners prefer that life is just that: a real dud.