The most obvious starting point to finding a residential security service in London is to conduct online research. Type a relevant search term such as ‘residential security services london’ into your favourite search engine. See which companies rank within the top three or four search results and review their websites to confirm that they provide residential security services.
Out of the three or four companies, shortlist those that appear to be the most professional and the best match for your requirements. Contact the residential security companies on the shortlist by email or phone and ask some probing and pressing questions regarding their company, background and services.
Ask for a quote and compare the prices against each other. Then decide if these are within your budget and which company seems like the best one that reaches your criteria. Remember, you get what you pay for, and cheap is not always cheerful!
It would help if you understood the difference between manned guarding services and residential security services. Both services are employed to protect property with manned guarding being the most common and often seen at commercial properties wearing uniforms at gatehouses, warehouses and building sites.
Residential security guards and operatives should have received specialist training and should be close protection (CP) trained. Close protection operatives receive longer and a higher level of training compared to standard security guards.
Clients often ask us how to choose the best security guard to protect their property.
There are a few options with regards to finding the perfect security guard to protect a house. The best way is to contact a local private security company and enquire about their security services. Security companies that specialise in close protection are your best port of call.
Private security companies specialise in providing residential security guards. They will also have the best knowledge and experience in the subject, enabling them to expertly advise you. Their residential security guards will also be legal and licensed, security screened and vetted, tried and tested, as well as insured for these services.
The security service company can always be held accountable should anything go wrong. Like all major purchases, you should shop around and obtain quotes from only reputable companies with proven ability and experience in supplying residential security services.
Many House Managers and Personal Assistants reach out to household staffing agencies to hire their security because they know no better. Would you contact a security company to hire a Nanny? No, so the same goes for hiring residential security guards. You should contact a security company and cut out the ‘middleman’. You can guarantee that the household staffing agency is subcontracting the security to a security company and making a cut of the profit.
The least recommended route to contracting a security guard is to hire the security guard directly. Those taking this approach run the risk of not knowing who they are, whether they are who they say. How would the inexperienced tell if a security guard is qualified, experienced and licensed to work in private security? Direct hires will not be security vetted or screened and may not even be insured. There is no one to be held accountable for their actions. Also, where would you find them, Facebook, Gumtree? Then you have to sift applications and hold interviews. Of course, this is a cost-cutting method. Still, it is also the most time-consuming and risky way of hiring a security guard. A direct hire certainly will not be the perfect security guard to protect your house.
Central London is the hub and main pool of resources for security service providers in the UK. Find residential security services in London via a professional private security company such as Westminster Security.
You should check the legitimacy of your chosen companies. Many so-called ‘high-end’ security companies claim to have teams located worldwide, supplying a ‘first-class’ service to a myriad of world leaders. However, you should conduct some due diligence on potential providers. You will often find that their company accounts on Companies House suggest a very different picture than that portrayed on their websites or social media. It is doubtful that they have as many operatives, contracts, or high-net-worth clients as they claim. Those that do will not shout about it!
Insist on meeting upper management so that you can speak to them face-to-face and get a feel for them and the services they claim to be able to provide you. Ask them questions such as problems that they may have encountered on previous residential services. It is improbable that a residential team has never had problems to overcome within a private household. Enquire about the origin of the operatives. Ideally, you should request CPOs that have already worked within a private home.
Ask for yourself or a senior member of your household to meet the proposed operatives. Unfortunately, many security companies will bank large numbers of CV’s so that they can impress potential clients with an extensive database of candidates. However, if you probe you will find they have never met, interviewed or screened many, if any, of their operatives.
Someone who has just returned from military operations or close protection operations in a hostile environment is unlikely to be the right candidate for a private household. Working within a private home or residence brings forth individual challenges that residential security operatives must understand, appreciate and overcome. Residential security is not for everyone.
Both parties should appreciate that it may take time to find the exact right candidates for the residential security team. Not everyone’s face will fit within the household. As the client, it is your right to say someone is not suitable. After all, it is your home!
A reputable residential security company should request a meeting with you and ask questions regarding your property, personal history, and known threats if any. It is advisable to hold the first meeting away from the property to be protected. Meeting at a neutral venue ensures that you are happy with the security provider before inviting them to view your property. The residential security firm should then ask to complete a security survey of the property. They can then ascertain what level of security exists and if any improvements are required to offer you the best protection.
Many security companies and individuals underestimate the requirement for recruiting the right candidate for a private home. Working as a residential security team member is often more sensitive than other areas of the close protection sector due to the proximity and length of time spent in and around the principal’s family and personal space.
If there are children within the property, you must insist that potential candidates are checked with the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). You may know this by its previous name Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) check. Request a current and enhanced level of DBS as this is a more in-depth check. Close protection operatives must undergo an enhanced DBS check every three years on renewal of their SIA license. If a CPO commits a crime during that period, they will automatically lose their license. So, be sure to check the online SIA license register to see if they are legally licensed to work in the private security sector.
Westminster Security provides residential security services in London, throughout the UK, Europe and Worldwide.