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Dan Tiernan, COO Jan 2, 2020 2 min read

Should You De-bulk your Community Alarm Services in your HOA? The Start of the New Year is a Great Time to Review Your Bulk Alarm, Cable and Internet Agreements.

For those Condominiums and Homeowner associations with Bulk Agreements, January is a great time to again review your Bulk agreements.  It’s likely the association’s greatest budgeted expense and with resident needs changing, increased Internet use and streaming, and with your snowbird board members in town, it’s probably one of the best times of the year to get everyone on the board’s attention and participation as needed. 

Some associations have included home alarm monitoring (fire and burglary) as an additional amenity for owners via a Bulk agreement with alarm service providers.  These alarm bulk agreements were typically
entered into by the developer as one of the initial amenities for the community.  Like bulk Cable agreements, the per-home costs were often at a highly reduced rate compared to retail (up to 50% discount or more) and the unit owners receive a base level of alarm monitoring services.

Today, home security systems are much smarter than they used to be, and they’re also evolving away from traditional pricing structures that required landline phones and long-term contracts.  Alarm services are now provided not only by companies like ADT, but also Comcast, AT&T and Hotwire.  There are also over-the counter consumer wireless options with cloud monitoring solutions.  Add in new equipment options like smart locks, video doorbells, security cameras and smart home integration, and we now have an overwhelming number of choices. According to Jay Abbazia of Broadband Agreement Specialists, a bulk agreement consultant, “The changes in alarm services and technology offerings have made Bulk alarm arrangements less desirable and more difficult for many boards to justify.”

Conversely, Mr. Abbazia commented that  “Bulk Internet is being added to the Bulk Cable renewal and new agreements by many associations, as almost everyone today needs and uses Internet, and it has virtually become a “commodity” like water and electricity.  Moreover, for the price of “retail” Internet paid by many residents, associations can potentially negotiate Bulk Cable + Internet for only a few dollars more.  The savings to unit owners can be very significant even when there are “snowbirds” in the community.”

For Associations with Bulk Cable, Internet, Phone and Alarm agreements coming up for renewal in 3 years or less, you may want to consider contacting a Bulk Agreement consultant at a minimum to discuss the Bulk agreement(s), association Bulk agreement trends, and potential moving forward options for your community.  In our experience, those associations that are prepared well in advance of their Bulk agreement expiration dates are the ones that are most likely to secure the best arrangements that meet their association’s needs, at the lowest negotiated costs come renewal time.” 

Campbell Property Management has worked with many bulk agreement specialists, including Broadband Agreement Specialists, Inc.  As part of their Concierge Partnership for Success program, Broadband Agreement Specialists, Inc. will complete a no-cost, no-obligation non-legal Informational Review of your Bulk agreement and billing as part of their initial evaluation process.  Once you pull your association’s Bulk agreement and billing statement from your files, you may want to consider contacting them by phone or email to take advantage of their Informational Review process.  They can be reached at 954-889-1967 or