New Technology Seeks to Bring Security to Vacant PropertiesBy - 11/19/2015
UPDATE: COPR’s campaign didn’t make it, and they seem to have gone AWOL after the failed attempt. But if you’re interested in making a vacation home secure, you might want to check out this article.
Most crowdfunding campaigns aim to make a genius product available to the masses. But there is one project, approaching the task from a different angle.
COPR is trying to hit two birds with one stone. One, they want to produce an innovative security product. Two, they want to give back. But first, what is COPR?
COPR is a team of residential real estate investors and insurance professionals who joined forces to find a way to protect investment properties. One of their biggest concerns is community blight. Many real estate experts consider community blight a disease. Blight happens when people start moving out of their residential homes leaving vacant properties behind. And vacancies attract crime, and crime can ruin and eventually destroy a neighborhood.
One cure for community blight is home security. Empty residential investments are magnets to copper thieves, vandals, sometimes even drug activity. But keeping a vacant property secure is difficult. Some home security companies use a cellular signal but are aimed at residential properties. Other home security solutions require internet connections which is something most vacant properties do not have. The solution is innovation.
COPR’s Anti-Blight Innovation
The VP Smart Tower is a security system built into a box. It stands around 3 feet tall and houses a wireless, cellular control panel, a Z-Wave strobe siren, and two image sensors (a motion detector that takes pictures). There are also additional pieces of equipment like 5 door/window contact sensors, 2 LED light bulbs with a light control module, and a key fob.
In theory, the VP Smart Tower includes all the components you would find in any other security system. So why not install a security system? Well maybe you should. But VP Smart Tower is designed for investors with multiple properties. Portability is one of its greatest advantages. Everything you need is already in a box that you can also easily install and uninstall.
- wireless and cellular
- DIY installation
- No phone line or internet needed
- No long-term contracts
- Can be easily moved between properties
- Built-in storage
Much Bigger Goal—Giving Back To The Community
Selling the VP Smart Tower isn’t COPR’s ultimate goal. COPR wants to use this product to help fight community blight.
COPR has set a goal of $100,000. Part of which will facilitate the production of the first VP Smart Towers. $15,000 will then be donated toward providing security systems and monitoring services to each of COPR’s non-profit partners — Habitat For Humanity Detroit and Manheim Park in Kansas City. Both non-profits are individually taking action to fight community blight in their local area, and both cannot afford to put security systems into every empty home.
The $15,000 fund will be used to provide security systems and monitoring services for such empty homes. This is to potentially decrease the attraction of crime and to revive blighted neighborhoods.
If you support their campaign, you are supporting innovation while also supporting local communities’ fight against blight. But what’s in it for you?
If you’re interested in VP Smart Tower, you can preorder one for yourself from the IndieGoGo campaign. Early backers have a chance of getting the VP Smart Tower at a discounted price of $999. That price will be given to only 30 backers. The rest will pay the retail price of $1,199.
If you’re not a real estate investor but want to help COPR with its cause, you can still back their campaign and receive a perk. There are perks that you can choose from, like a home security starter kit, upgrade of your existing system, smart home starter kit, or the addition of smart thermostats and video surveillance to your system. Plus, there’s an incentive — back their campaign and they’ll scrap off $9 from your monthly monitoring bill for 1 year.
Interested? You can visit their IndieGoGo campaign to see more details, read about the monthly fees, and to choose a perk that would work best for you.