alarm photo

Can you put a price on home security? How about a price on pet services?

What sort of price tag can you place on your home alarm system that is designed to protect you, your loved ones and your valuables?

We recently moved into a new home (back in my home state of New Jersey, for those following along) and naturally we wanted to activate service with the alarm company.

There was already a box and keypad installed with a sticker announcing the company that installed it and had previously provided monitoring.

I decided to give them a call to find out the details.

After about a twenty minute phone call with the nice gentleman (the owner of the company), I learned a few things:

  • This is a family-owned alarm company, dating back several decades.
  • Monthly monitoring fee would be $21.00.
  • The owner told me that his son would be calling me the next day to set up a time to do the installation.

We felt confident with the conversation and the company and was willing to go forward.

I waited 3 days and still no word from the son who was to get in touch.

I decided to call the company back since we wanted to get the alarm set up sooner rather than later.

I was surprised to get a recording and was prompted to leave a message. This left me a bit uneasy as I began to wonder what would happen if my alarm was actually going off?

I left a message, anyway.

Four days have past since leaving that message and not a call back from either the son or the owner.

I did the next best thing and called ADT (one of the leading nationwide alarm companies) and booked service immediately with them.

The only stipulation: Their monthly monitoring fee was literally double my original quote of $21.00. ADT was charging me $42.99 for monthly security.

I was all too happy and ready to pay it and move forward with ADT with all the confidence and security in the world.

This entire situation reminded me of the pet industry we all work in.

Isn’t this similar to the pet owner hoping to find the lowest possible price for a similar service? (Trust, confidence and security is what both pet sitters and ADT are selling.)

Next time a potential client balks at your fees, ask them if they have a home security system. Then, ask them how they would feel at night going with the cheapest company to protect their home and everything inside.

In any case, this entire scenario just reminded me how valuable of a service we as pet sitters continue to provide, and that you should never undersell yourself, or apologize for the fee for service you choose to charge (whatever that fee is set at).

Final thought: To this day, I have still received no return phone call from the original alarm company.

What can we make out of this? I look forward to your thoughts in the comments below.


  • Our Pet Sitter

    Hello Josh: The account of the original alarm co. brings me back to childhood. Father was full of old adages. One of which I love, & fits in perfectly. “Penny wise & pound foolish”.

    As a matter of fact, just the other day, I received an e-mail for three dogs w/meds & two parrots. The owner rebuffed my fee, maintaining it was prohibitive. In point of fact, the charge wasn’t in accordance w/the work required.

    Is that so? If I had the nerve; my query to her: “what does she consider a satisfactory fee?!” Point in fact: for the locale; my fees are close to rock bottom.

    • Joshua Cary

      Great points. Sometimes you can simply never win with some potential clients. They will most likely always remain just ‘potential!’ Thanks for sharing your story.

  • Dawn

    What a great story/point to be able to make with clients. Overcoming price objections is a tricky with clients. This article will be at the forefront of my mind and reply to future potentials!

    • Joshua Cary

      It is all about overcoming price objections, Dawn, isn’t it? All too often that becomes our biggest obstacle. I’m happy this story resonates with you.

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