How Much Does it Cost to Install an Intercom Door Entry System?
In our never-ending quest for greater, more effective security, an intercom system offers pinpoint control over who enters your home or business, particularly if it includes video surveillance.
An intercom door entry system for your business helps improve security for both employees and visitors. When someone comes to your building, the staff member operating the intercom system ascertains his or her identity before allowing access to the building. This bars unauthorized admittance and helps you monitor who enters your facility.
In addition to the main entrance, you can also install an intercom system at a service or delivery door for even greater security.
How Do Intercom Systems Work?
With an intercom door entry system, you have a link – audio, video, or both – between the heart of your facility and an entrance or lobby area. If the person operating the intercom does not have visual access to visitors, such as a window, adding a video camera and monitor adds an extra layer of security. Installation may be hard-wired or wireless, and both options offer their own benefits.
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Wireless systems offer greater flexibility for the person monitoring the system. Depending on your setup and features, the staff controlling the entry system may not even need to be in the building. Some wireless setups allow anyone with a connected device to grant or deny access to the building.
A hard-wired system works only if you have a dedicated workspace operating the intercom. If you prefer more flexibility, you probably want to go with a wireless option.
An audio-only intercom handles the basic security functions of a door entry system, but provides reduced security, since the person granting access cannot see the person he or she is letting into the building. Of course, if the staff member in question has a window that opens onto the foyer or lobby, seeing the visitor seeking entrance presents no challenge. This possibility does, however, reduce the safety of your staff.
How Much Does an Intercom System Cost?
The cost to install an intercom system varies widely based on numerous factors, including:
- Wireless or hard-wired
- Video surveillance
- The number of consoles you need
- Your vendor
Pricing starts as low as $150 for a one-way, single camera intercom with two consoles installed in offices near the entryway being monitored. Add another $200 to $300 for installation. As camera quality improves, the price goes up. Cell phone quality images take the average price for this setup to the $500 to $1,000 range. At the higher end, you're looking at up to 10 consoles, allowing much greater flexibility as to which staff members monitor your intercom system. Prices can top $10,000 for systems that include video, movement, and sound security, plus the ability to store data.
A system designed to monitor the lobby or reception area, with IP protocol video, display screen, microphone, and speaker, costs around $300 for the equipment and another $200 to $300 for installation. The same setup with one-way video starts at around $150, plus installation. More technologically advanced reception/entry systems with greater feautres may cost in the $5,000 range.
As far as security goes, a one-way system is really all that you need. It also allows you to mount the entryway camera higher up, protecting it from vandals.
Additional Considerations with an Intercom Entry System
With so many options available, you need to look carefully at your needs. For example, if you have a separate entrance for deliveries, you likely want a two entry setup, including video cameras at both entrances. There's no sense in installing an intercom entry system for the main entrance and then leaving a service entrance unmonitored.
Installing an intercom system in a residential setting is also quickly growing in popularity. Most homeowners no longer feel the need to answer their door to just anybody. What's more, the number of people who work from home or operate a home business has increased significantly, and answering a ringing doorbell is an unwanted distraction for most home-based workers. And, as with commercial intercom applications, the extra level of security these systems provide offers great peace of mind.
Note that, while wireless systems tend to cost a bit more than their hard-wired counterparts, you have a great deal more flexibility. This is particularly true if the system allows you to access it from any connected device, since you can keep an eye your front door from pretty much anywhere that you have an Internet connection.
Before choosing a system or signing on the dotted line, obtain quotes from at least three vendors. Look carefully at what the proposals include. To be sure they're truly comparable, you need to know whether the price includes installation, a warranty, or any type of service.