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The Cost of Access Control in Places of Worship

March 3, 2020 jill Blog
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Houses of worship and the buildings around them are meant to be safe places for members and visitors to practice their faith in worship, study and fellowship activities.

These religious spaces are also often utilized by community groups when services and church-related meetings and activities are not taking place.

There was a time when churches kept their doors open 24/7 with the goal of offering safe sanctuary whenever it was needed.

Unfortunately, however, to ensure the security of members and visitors, as well as the buildings themselves, that is no longer an option.

A reliable, secure and convenient access control system is a must-have for your facility.

Today, there are a multitude of options with many different features and benefits, including keypad, biometric and smartphone. Likewise, access control pricing can vary significantly system to system.

Here is a look at some average costs:

Keypad System

While keypad systems can offer one of the lowest cost options ranging from a few hundred dollars up to thousands with hardware, wiring and installation, they also present one of the least secure options. Codes are easily shared with others, and even physical deterioration of the numbers on the keypad can give someone direction on which numbers are part of the code. In addition, a keypad can easily be hacked into.

Telephone Entry (Buzzer) System

A building telecom entry system can start as low as $450 for the intercom and installation (a basic buzzer system) and go as high as $10,000 or more when you add in high-quality video, storage, reception features and more.

Physical Keys/Locks

When keys are lost or users leave an organization and don’t return the physical key they’ve been given, changing the door locks or re-keying the lock is critical to ensure a safe environment. Whether you need to simply rekey the lock and purchase new keys or change out the lock hardware all together is impacted by several factors. Either way, you’re going to spend anywhere from $100-$400, possible even more if in an emergency or an after-hours situation.

Biometric System

On average, prices range from a total $2,500-10,000 per door when you factor in the biometric scanner, electronic locking system, software integration and installation. Although Biometric systems, which use fingerprint, handprint or iris scanning to gain access can be costly, there is no need to purchase and manage keycards.

Key Card System

A card and reader access solution generally costs $1,500-2,500 per door. That number includes $1,000-1,5000 for the reader, software and installation, $3-5 (plus shipping) per keycard, and monthly service fees that can range from $10-100.

Smartphone System

Smartphone-based access offers an affordable option that does not involve the purchase and management of keycards, costly hardware, or the need to connect to a local network. Many owners and managers are upgrading to a smartphone-based system to solve a variety of issues left out there from other systems mentioned above. They offer many reasons for changing, some obvious and some you may find surprising.

No matter what type of access control solution you consider for your unique situation, remember that every solution must begin with an electric lock, which comes with its own costs.

This information is courtesy of VIZpin, which designs, manufactures and markets a complete access control solution that includes cloud-based management tools (ACaaS), low-cost Bluetooth controllers and smartphone apps, www.vizpin.com.