Editor's Note: Want Cutting-Edge? Think Residential!

I have covered the security industry as a journalist for more than 10 years — all from the commercial side of the equation until I took over as Editor-in-Chief of SD&I in September. To me, the residential side of the security industry was honestly no more than alarm systems and panels and do-it-yourself camera systems. In fact, I even considered putting up my own DIY camera system (well, the cameras would have probably been nicer than the ones you can find at Best Buy) to compliment my home alarm system.

After a few short months covering the residential side of our industry, I realized pretty quickly that my naiveté was definitely showing. Sure, business owners and security managers want to keep watch over their properties when they are not there, and they want a certain degree of remote control over those properties; however, their needs might actually pale in comparison to Joe Homeowner.

The homeowner’s total control over his or her residence hits them where it matters most — in the pocketbook. Being able to control the home’s security settings from a smartphone is just the beginning.

Today’s home control systems are revolutionizing the homeowner experience, and the best part is that these controls — once limited to gazillion-dollar houses in Beverly Hills — are now available to the average Joe. Today’s homeowner can remotely control security, access control, video, air conditioning, energy use and more with the touch of a button. As Telular’s Shawn Welsh puts it in his article (page 30), “You, the (security) dealer, are now the customer’s ‘spare key’ — your customer will never again pay for a locksmith.”

Security dealers — especially the independent and smaller ones — stand on the precipice of something great as we head into 2014 and beyond. It seems to be our regular mantra in these pages: Those who embrace the cutting edge and offer their customers exactly what they are asking for now — and will be asking for a year from now — will thrive; those who do not will fall by the wayside. This is especially true in the residential market, where giant telecommunication and cable providers are elbowing into the space once solely occupied by the security dealer.

Be sure to take a close look at the latest and greatest from the residential security market starting on page 22. You will learn about the technology trends in home control that will have your customers salivating; and you will learn how to sell and manage them as well.


The Fast50 is NOW OPEN!

Speaking of embracing the cutting edge, those security integrators who have done so are very likely destined to be a part of our annual Fast50 program — SD&I’s ranking of the 50 fastest-growing integrators.

The Fast50 is now open for submissions! You can check out the ad on page 15 of this issue, or you can visit www.securityinfowatch.com/sdifast50 for full details. Once you are ready with your numbers from the past three years, please visit the link and click the “enter here” button to get started. Just as a reminder, the rankings are totally free to enter; and all revenue numbers submitted are kept under a strict non-disclosure promise. Our formula ranks the fastest-growing integrators based on an aggregate number that averages year-to-year growth over three years — this means that the playing field is level for all firms, regardless of size.

If your cutting-edge business has been growing, you have absolutely nothing to lose — only recognition on a national stage to gain...enter today!