The Selection of a Security Solution
The old security system contract was expiring. The Board of Directors at The Grand at Olde Carrollwood condominium community association wanted to expand the security system and its coverage. Rod Graber is a Community Association Manager (CAM) with FirstService Residential, and was serving as the Property Manager at The Grand at Olde Carrollwood at the time.
Graber was challenged by two things. First, the Board members asked Graber to really look into whether United Security Alliance actually covered lightning damage, because no other company would.
Graber and the Board were very skeptical of this coverage.
Graber was also challenged by a technical issue. How would they add surveillance on a pool area that was in a remote location several hundred yards away from the clubhouse? The other security system integrators claimed they’d have to dig up the ground and hardwire the system. That was going to be pricey, he said.
United Security responded differently. They insisted a wireless system transmitting back to the clubhouse would be a better solution than a hardwired system. The other vendors disagreed. So, United Security set it up onsite and proved it in front of everyone with a successful demo.
“It looked really good, actually. We decided that was definitely the route we wanted to go,” says Graber.
The competitors still wouldn’t recommend it, even after the demo. One refused to. He insisted it would never work and he wasn’t going to be responsible. Another said he’d do it, but he brought up all the reasons it would be a problem.
“United Security said there shouldn’t be any problems,” Graber says. And, it turned out there weren’t.
Skepticism Calmed by Raving Fans
Graber vetted United Security and checked all the references, who gave glowing recommendations.
“Each one of them said [United Security] did cover lightning, they did give good service, and they did show up when they said they would.”
The references even gave examples. Graber drove 30 miles across town to talk to a property manager whose security solution was managed by United Security, to personally see a wireless system that would be similar to the Grand’s.
“He showed us the equipment and how it was set up. He couldn’t stop talking about how good they were. He turned out to be one of the greatest salespeople for them, even though he was working for another property management company,” says Graber.
Put to the Test
The Board elected to go with United Security because of the quality, technology, positive thinking, attitudes, and warranties.
The Grand now has video surveillance on and in the clubhouse, front pool (behind the clubhouse), and the back pool which is roughly 1200’ behind the clubhouse, across a pond. It is all wireless and working wonderfully.
They also have access control on the clubhouse, front pool gates and the back pool gates. Additionally, they have a monitored alarm system on the clubhouse.
After installation, a rather large lighting strike did occur and affected the equipment. The door wasn’t working and the cameras were out. Graber followed the support instructions. He talked to a support manager who was able to log on, analyze the situation, and send someone onsite. Many new components were required, they had a good idea what the problem was, and the support technician brought everything with him.
Graber said they didn’t tell him later in the day that they figured out what the problem was, and that they would have to order equipment. They didn’t tell him it take a few days or a week for it to come in. They fixed it onsite.
“They came with the [equipment] and by the end of the day, the system was back up and running again,” says Graber, who was dealing with several other problems caused by the lightning strike at the time. “It was one more thing they took off my plate and I didn’t have to deal with.”
During the selection process, the Managed Services solution was definitely a factor in choosing United Security. First, “full service” meant United Security even carried the risk of covering lightning damage. Secondly, it allowed the Board members, who were not in a position to purchase all the equipment up front, to get the technology they desired.
“Now they could have the technology they wanted, and they wouldn’t have to get a loan to do it,” says Graber.
For More Info
Graber says the thing he likes most about Unity Security is that the company is full of genuine people. The service and product they’re providing to the industry are also superior to other security companies’ that he’s seen.
For an on-site, comprehensive analysis of common areas of loss related to security and safety in your community, please call (866) 620-0505 to schedule your first visit by a United Security representative.
For more information, visit www.USASolutions.com.
About The Grand at Olde Carrollwood
The Grand at Olde Carrollwood is a residential community in Tampa, Florida. There are 244 condominium units in a park-like community. More info can be found at www.thegrandatoldecarrollwood.com.