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Home Security Systems NYC

Whether you’re an NYC native or planning to move to the Big Apple, it’s good to start thinking about a home security system. New York City is the largest city in the United States based on population, with over 8.7 million residents as of 2020. As in most larger cities, the crime rate in New York City tends to be high compared to more rural areas. This post will discuss both the crime rate in New York, and what you can do to protect yourself and your home from crime while living there.

New York City Crime Rate

There are two major classifications for crimes. Property crimes include burglary, larceny, and theft. Violent crimes involve an attempt to physically harm someone. For example, robbery is essentially burglary with the intent to harm someone if they get in the way of the crime. Burglars sneak in and out, robbers don’t care who they have to hurt in order to steal what they need.

New York is perhaps most famous for its historical murder rate. Over the past few years, these crimes have been decreasing. Burglaries have also been decreasing in recent years, in part due to new policing strategies and the end of the rampant cocaine pandemic of previous years. In fact, over the course of the last ten years, burglaries have decreased by almost 50%. The NYPD reports that overall crime (including robbery/burglary, larceny, and assault) is on a downturn.

Because New York City is still a huge city, its property crime rate is still higher than the national average. This is simply a risk you take living in a large city like New York City. These are the numbers for each kind of property crime in 2016:

  • Burglaries: 164.9 per hundred thousand residents
  • Incidents of Larceny-theft: 1,267.4 per hundred thousand residents
  • Motor Vehicle Theft: 86.4 per hundred thousand residents
  • Total Property Crimes: 1,518.7 per hundred thousand residents

Violent Crime in New York

As mentioned above, New York is famous for some of the violent crimes that have occurred there over time, but the violent crime rate has been decreasing in recent years. When we say “violent crime” we don’t just mean crimes in which someone is physically injured, although this is an important aspect of violent crime. Violent crime also includes crimes in which there is intent to physically harm another person. So homicide, rape, and assault qualify as violent crime, but so does armed robbery. The nationwide violent crime rate is 382.9 crimes per hundred thousand people. Below, you can see the numbers for New York City.

  • Homicides: 3.4 per hundred thousand residents
  • Rape and sexual assault:14 per hundred thousand residents
  • Robbery: 198.2 per hundred thousand residents
  • Aggravated Assault: 357.2 per hundred thousand residents
  • Total Violent Crimes: 585.8 per hundred thousand residents

Once again, if you live in New York City, keep in mind that crime may be falling, but you still live in a large city, and crime is always higher in larger cities than smaller ones.

Over the past several years, the decrease in violent crime can be attributed to the hard work of law enforcement officials. They have cooperated with mayors including Dinkins, Giuliani, Mike Bloomberg, and Bill de Blasio. Some people say that due to some policy decisions on the part of Mayor de Blasio, the crime rate has increased in New York in recent years.

COVID and NYC Crime

Unsurprisingly, when NYC residents were not leaving their homes during the 2020 coronavirus pandemic, the crime rate decreased significantly. Since the city has reopened, crime is rising once again. One statistic that seems to have increased steadily since the beginning of the pandemic is domestic violence. It’s difficult for victims to escape their abusers if they cannot leave their homes. Mental health is at a low among many citizens, and unfortunately this means that some situations become violent. Once again, the reopening of New York should help to mitigate some of the domestic violence problems, but it remains an issue.

Finding a Safe Neighborhood in NYC

Keeping in mind the statistics on crime, many New York residents want to live in the safest areas of the city. Historically, New York began as a tiny Dutch town called New Amsterdam. Eventually the city shifted to British control, and began expanding inland. Neighborhoods arose, including Harlem, Queens, and Brooklyn. Poorer neighborhoods tended to have less policing and wealthier people tended to move uptown. Washington Square used to be an upscale neighborhood, but is now incorporated into the middle of the city.

Today, there are areas that are known for being safe in New York City. Some of these neighborhoods include Greenwich Village, Battery Park, and Murray Hill. Greenwich Village has been around for hundreds of years and has been redesigned and renovated many times. It is located in the lower West Side. Battery Park City is a more recent addition to the NYC neighborhoods and is found in lower Manhattan. Murray Hill is located on the East Side near many historical areas including the Empire State Building. All of these neighborhoods are beautiful and relatively safe, but they are also incredibly expensive. Small apartments can cost five or six hundred thousand dollars.

Whether you decide to live in Greenwich Village or Brooklyn Heights, you should keep an eye on what you can do to protect your home and your family. Cove offers DIY Home Security for a great price, giving you the peace of mind you deserve.

The Home Security System: An NYC Invention

The first fully-integrated home security system was invented by a New Yorker in 1966. Marie Van Brittan Brown was a black woman who was born in Queens, New York City in 1922. Because both she and her husband worked full-time, and her neighborhood in Queens was known for being unsafe, as well as for the slow response times from the local police force, she decided to take her home security into her own hands.

Her initial home security system design consisted of a security camera with a monitor, peepholes in her doors, a two-way communication system using microphones, and an alarm button to reach the police immediately. The monitor of the security camera could be placed anywhere in the home to monitor who was outside, and the two-way communication system allowed Brown to ascertain the identities of her visitors before opening the door.

The Two Kinds of Home Security Systems

Today, there are two basic divisions in the home security industry, and both have stemmed from Van Brittan Brown’s initial invention. The first classification is traditional home security. This kind of home security generally incorporates a contract of 3 to 5 years and is sold by door-to-door salesmen. Most of these systems require a technician to install. Wired systems are more difficult to install than wireless systems, and can often become unreliable in the face of environmental adversity. Most of these systems do require an installation fee, although some are now offering a self-installation option.

The second division of home security is DIY home security. This kind of security is rising in popularity due to its impressive flexibility. The most important difference between DIY home security and traditional security is the lack of a contract. DIY security is ideal for the modern millennial living in NYC. Installation of many DIY systems takes less than a half hour to complete. DIY systems are ideal for people in renting situations, or for those who move fairly often. With most DIY systems, you will not need to drill any holes in your walls. And especially with Cove's security system, ease of installation is ensured by our easily-removable adhesive strips on the back of each sensor.

Good DIY Home Security System Options

If you are a renter in New York City, DIY Home Security is probably for you. DIY home security options are generally much less contract-based than other options, although you will still have to pay a fee if you want professional monitoring. If the DIY home security approach sounds a little better to you than the traditional approach, you might want to look into one of the following options:


Cove is a fairly recent addition to the DIY home security market. As a company, we pride ourselves on our customer service, great prices, and lack of a required contract. Choosing a Cove security system gets you great monthly rates, usually between 15-35 dollars depending on the level of monitoring you decide on.

All of Cove's equipment is manufactured in house. This means that you won't have to worry about your equipment being hacked as easily as equipment that is purchased from another company. When you order your Cove system, it will ship within one business day and arrive at your home 3-5 days afterwards. If you are unhappy with your security system once it arrives, you can return it for a full refund for up to 60 days. So there is very little risk associated with purchasing a Cove system.

Cove has two kinds of packages available: set and personalized. The set packages start at 229 dollars. If you choose a personalized package, you can customize it using any of the equipment we have available.

Our equipment includes the following:

  • Touchscreen Control Panel: Cove’s touchscreen control panel is totally wireless and communicates with the central monitoring station using 4G cellular connection. The panel is easy to set up. Some users report that they are able to set the whole system up in 10 minutes, simply by following the instructions on the control panel.
  • Security Camera: Cove offers one high-end security camera called the YI Indoor Security Camera. This camera is best used in the interior of your home. It has night vision and two way communication capabilities, and records its feed directly to the cloud, cutting out the need for an SD card.
  • Sensors: Cove offers a motion detector, door sensor, window sensor, and glass-break detector. Each of these sensors serves a different purpose within the system.
  • Environmental Detection: Cove offers several environmental detectors in addition to their burglar alarms. These detectors include a smoke detector, carbon monoxide alarm, and water leak sensor for older homes. All of these sensors are monitored, meaning that if an emergency occurs when you’re away from home, you’ll know about it anyway.
  • Medical Alert: A home security system is a great way to reach authorities, even for health reasons. Cove takes advantage of this by incorporating a medical button into the system. If you are a caregiver for an elderly or disabled loved one, this button could be the difference needed to save a life.
  • Keyfob/Mobile app: Cove’s keyfob and mobile app are integrated with the security system. This means that you can see what’s going on at home from wherever you are.
  • Smart Home Integration: Cove integrates with Alexa and Google Assistant, so you can control your system using only your voice if needed.

Cove’s monitoring team works around the clock to take care of your security system. If you decide you’d rather monitor your system yourself, though, we do offer that option for you, and you are welcome to take it.


SimpliSafe is another DIY security provider. They are a good choice as long as you are not concerned about your system being hacked. They do not encrypt all of the data in the system. SimpliSafe offers smart home integration with Alexa and Google Home, just like Cove.

Pricing for the SimpliSafe system is comparable to the Cove system as well, ranging from $229-$489. The cheapest bundle from SimpliSafe includes a central control hub, entry detectors (for doors and windows) and a motion detector. If you want a camera included in your system though, you’re out of luck. You need to purchase a SimpliCam separately if you want your system to have camera capabilities. The SimpliCam costs 99 dollars.

Monitoring with SimpliSafe ranges in cost from 15-25 dollars per month. You can decide on the level of monitoring you want for your system, whether that is self-monitoring or limited professional monitoring.


Google Nest is another home security system that is gaining popularity in the DIY market. It tends to be more expensive in large part because it involves automation as well. The most basic package is around 400 dollars. These systems include sensors, cameras, and even a smart thermostat to regulate the temperature of your home and prevent the pipes from freezing. The monitoring costs for this kind of system range from 5-30 dollars per month.

Blue By ADT

ADT has recently joined the ranks of the DIY home security industry with a new system that is available without a credit check. This system is called Blue by ADT. Blue is also no-contract and uses DIY installation, following in the footsteps of companies like Cove and Simplisafe. Blue uses many of the same kinds of tech that the traditional ADT system uses. If you are looking into DIY home security, you may consider Blue, but take a look at some of the less well-known companies like Cove as well; they will very probably give you a better deal for the same or better security.

Traditional Options

If you’re not a renter and you’re okay with making a long-term commitment to a security system while you’re living in NYC, a traditional security system may be what you’re looking for.


Alder Home Security was founded in 2008 by Adam Schanz. Most of Alder’s sales come from traditional door-to-door contact. Alder tends to do a lot of business in the southern USA, but has salespeople in each state in the continental US.

Unlike most traditional home security companies, Alder does not require a credit check. Your credit score will not affect your monthly monitoring rates or your ability to get a security system from them. The monthly monitoring fee ranges from 35-52 dollars a month, depending on how many cameras you install around your home. With Alder, you will have to sign a contract. Whether the contract is 3 or 5 years may also affect your monthly rate. You can choose to install the system yourself or have a technician install it for you.

The Alder security system incorporates the following pieces of equipment:

  • Alder Simple Panel: This panel is a touchscreen control panel that is wireless and connects via a cell connection to the monitoring team. From the panel you can set up your system and arm and disarm your system.
  • Keyfob and Mobile App: Alder’s keyfob and mobile app give housemates a way into the security system using guest access.
  • Fire, Carbon Monoxide, and Flood Alarms: Alder’s environmental detectors are fully monitored. Whether your home has a carbon monoxide leak, a water leak, or a small fire, you can catch it early and save lives.
  • Door and Window Sensors: The entry sensors can be placed on each ground level window and door to make sure potential intruders can’t get in through the usual ways.
  • Motion Sensor: These detect motion within 45 feet of the sensor, with a 90-degree viewing angle
  • Security Cameras: Alder has two cameras. Alder’s Kami Outdoor Camera is able to keep an eye on everything outside your home whether at night or during the day. The indoor camera allows you to monitor the interior of your home at the same time.
  • Medical Pendant: Like Cove, Alder offers a medical pendant to help protect your loved ones in times of emergency.

Alder offers a 30-day money back guarantee, so if you don’t like the system, you can still send it back. Make sure you read the contract thoroughly before signing it to make sure that you understand everything.


ADT is one of the most commonly used security companies in the US. It’s a good option for basic home security without too much extra tech. ADT is contract-based and requires a credit check. If your credit is below a certain level, you will be charged a high monthly monitoring rate.

ADT equipment packages include the following elements:

  • Monitoring Keypad: Unlike Cove, ADT’s alarm panel is a basic keypad. It does have some useful functions, however, including one touch access to authorities.
  • Security Cameras: Like Alder, ADT offers two cameras, one indoor and one outdoor.
  • Alarms for Doors and Windows: Again, this is an aspect of most home security systems to protect your most vulnerable points of entry.
  • Motion detector: For keeping an eye on your home’s interior if you don’t like cameras.
  • Smoke and Fire Alarms: ADT’s fire alarm is professionally monitored.

ADT charges $36.99-$52.99 per month for professional alarm monitoring costs. If you have lower credit or other factors, you may expect to pay more each month. ADT has a 99 dollar professional installation fee. ADT is a good option, but don’t jump in without researching your other options as well.

Stay Safe in the Big Apple

If you’re planning on living in NYC, let us at Cove help you to stay safe. As you can tell, we know our competition well, and we know that we can give you more. Learn more about Cove’s DIY smart home security systems today by visiting our website, covesmart.com. And stay safe out there.

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