Can you look after animals at the sites?
Not with our full security service, arrangements would need to be made separately. Some of our House Guards have their own dogs, but these are not allowed inside the properties.
Do security guards have to be licensed?
Absolutely – it is now law that anyone working within the security sector and performing security duties (including keyholding) must be trained, vetted and licensed by the SIA (Security Industry Authority). The SIA are a government appointed body and they have powers of regulation and enforcement – if a person should be found working in a security role without a licence (or have an application being processed) the penalties are severe for the guard and his/her employer. Beware of companies who offer any kind of security service (including ‘house sitting’) if they are not employing licensed personnel.
Do the Guards have children with them?
No, for insurance and safety reasons, children are not permitted on an assignment.
Do the Guards live in the property?
No, not unless specifically requested to do so. Normally they will live in self-contained accommodation within the grounds of the property.
Do we have to provide anything?
Welfare facilities must be available for the guards’ use. There are certain basic requirements that we ask for – a 13 amp 240v power supply (mains where possible, or can be a generator), a clean drinking water supply (again, mains if possible, although certain remote sites have had to use water bowsers), sewage disposal facilities (this may include use of toilet facilities where they exist) and a set of keys for the property. A secure perimeter with a controlled access point is preferable.
Do you keep in contact with your Guards?
All Guards are in regular contact with the office and local authorities, so any situations that arise can be quickly and efficiently dealt with. We have also invested in an electronic guard monitoring system which gives us up to the minute real time information on site activity.
Do you look after furnished properties, say for holiday cover?
If you need holiday cover on a furnished house, you might be interested in our licensed House and Pet sitting service instead.
Do you provide Night Time only patrolling security guards?
Yes, this is one of the services that we are able to offer, but is a more expensive option with a fixed hourly rate.
House Guards Security are registered with Data Protection. Any information provided by you will be stored on a secure internal database and used solely for conducting our business. It will never be released to third parties or used for any other purpose, and will only be kept for the mandatory period required by Inland Revenue after an employee leaves the company.
How do your prices compare with other security companies?
The House Guards Security service is very cost-effective. You get a highly visible presence on site for roughly the same price that other security companies would charge for a patrolling guard on an 8 hour shift (who may not be exclusively at your property, but travelling between several others at the same time). The deterrent factor is higher, and the response time faster due to this, making your property safer from unwanted occupiers or vandalism.
How much notice do you require?
We normally ask for minimum 7 days notice, but if your requirement is more urgent we may be able to react quicker, depending on guard availability.
Is there a limit to the length of the assignment?
No, there is no maximum assignment time period, but there is usually a minimum assignment period of 4 weeks (1 week for House / Pet sitting).
What access requirements do your vehicles have?
Obviously we need to be able to gain access to the property – if there is any restriction we need to be advised of this, and we will decide at an inspection visit which size of vehicle will be most appropriate. As far as possible, we will send the house guard who has the best suited vehicle for the job. If access restrictions are such that vehicular access is not possible for any reason, this will be a deciding factor as to whether we can accept the assignment. Very rarely do we have to refuse.
What sort of people are the Guards?
Our Guards can be from all walks of life, but many of them are ex services, retired or semi-retired, and all are holders of appropriate SIA licenses.
Who is responsible for any charges relating to the property like water, council tax etc?
As the client / property owner, you will be responsible for all service charges relating to the property, whether they be gas, electric, council tax, water rates or ground rent etc.