Before you complain: We get it. New York State is a big place. The Big Apple is important, but it’s not all of New York. Still, it’s hard to ignore the vastness of NYC. The city is arguably the financial capital of the U.S., and with over 8 million residents its population makes up nearly half of all the people that actually live in the state of New York. Far be it from us to ignore the security concerns of the entire state, of course, but New York City is a wonder in and of itself.
If you’re planning on moving to New York (NYC or otherwise), you’ll want to make home security a major priority. We’ll take a look at what you’ll need to know about home security provider requirements across the state, but NYC will get a little bit of special attention here.
Home Security Provider Requirements for New York State
Oh boy. New York is one complex piece of work when it comes to home security provider requirements and other home security concerns. Let’s start with the basics: Your security concerns.
If you live in New York City or plan on moving there, you might be surprised to know that the property crime rate in NYC is about equal to what it is in rest of the state. In New York City, you have a 1 in 53 chance of being a property crime victim. Statewide, that average is 1 in 62. Almost every New York City neighborhood is low on crime. That includes the Bronx and Brooklyn. It might not feel that way walking down the street sometimes, with shady characters playing craps on the sidewalk outside of the Sterling Street station, but trust us. Your chances of being a victim in your own home are pretty slim. In fact, New York City and New York State are both noticeably below the national average here.
Given the relative safety in the state, is home security still important? Of course! Your chances of being a victim are low, but that does not mean they’re nonexistent. There’s still a significant concern in the state as a whole, and particularly in the city, where population density and a high population still means a large number of incidents occurring.
New York State allows different cities and municipalities to have different rules related to alarm licensing. White Plains, Goshen and Long Island all have individual rules for how businesses can obtain licenses. These rules are long, but can be summarized as such: Businesses need to apply for a license, those licenses must be obtained through the local government, and in most cases they are transferable.
Beyond individual, municipal-based rules, you will not find any statewide laws governing the issuance of alarm system permits or requirements. Thankfully, most municipalities have some kind of rules in place to help govern the process. New York City, for example, requires any businesses to obtain a license through an official application process that will take far longer than a New York minute.
For NYC, the licensing process also includes a test which can be failed, resulting in the denial of the license. NYC licensees must also show proof of proper education to install and maintain such systems, as well as declare on the application whether they have any child support obligations. We’re not sure how that last point is relevant, but hey, it’s there.
For the most part, you can trust that your alarm companies in New York are trustworthy. You will, of course, want to make sure to check with your local municipalities on any rules or regulations regarding registration for yourself as well.
Using Home Security Cameras in New York and NYC
Hoping to get some home security cameras in New York? You’re in luck. While New York does have laws specifically against using security cameras in locations where someone has a reasonable expectation of privacy, you are allowed to put up cameras for home surveillance purposes. The only stipulation, both for homeowners and businesses, is that you must ensure that your cameras come with signs that indicate you are monitoring the area. You will want to make sure that those signs are conspicuous, such that no one could reasonably argue that they had no idea you were surveilling the area with cameras.
Additionally, New York is a one-party consent state regarding audio recordings. This is actually a boon to you, the surveilling party. It means that you can take the risk of having audio installed on some of your home security cameras. The law indicates that at least one party must have consented to the recording, which for the purpose of surveillance, could easily be yourself.
Safety During Natural Disasters
New York is a large state. It’s difficult to pinpoint all of the natural disasters possible in it. However, the state’s location in the Northeast, combined with a significant number of mountains, valleys, rivers, streams, and forests, makes three natural disasters somewhat more common in New York than in some other states: floods, snow storms, and forest fires. Of those, perhaps the most common, and most feared in New York, is the dreaded nor’easter.
Nor’easters are a complex mixture of warm, moist air from the lower Atlantic coastline areas, mixing with cold, arctic air from the northern polar regions. When these two air masses combine, quite often over New York, the result can be highly devastating snowstorms that can cripple the state for days. New York has a history with devastating nor’easters and blizzards many of which occur in December and January.
Those who want to make it out of a New York winter with all of their appendages still in place should ensure they’re ready for the winter. This includes having emergency food and water in your house and your car, extra blankets, and clothes, and a home generator in case the power goes out. If you have a wood fireplace, make sure you have a stockpile of wood and that the fireplace has been recently cleaned and inspected. If you have a gas fireplace, make sure it has been inspected, that you have a CO2 detector, and that you have a healthy supply of gas in the tank.
When the temperature drops, make sure you are keeping your pipes insulated. Frozen pipes can and do explode, causing massive amounts of damage to property.
Home security in New York easy. Local laws should help cover all of your main concerns, including whether or not you can trust the company trying to sell you a security package. And when it comes to worrying about whether they’re fully licensed? Fuggedaboutit!