Cartoon neighborhood with security system signs by Alarm Reviews

Choosing a Home Security System Made Easy

Last updated March 28th, 2019.  Skip the intro? Go straight to the top 20 list or compare.

gold trophy iconLooking for the best home alarm system? Home safety is crucial to have - especially in this day and age. At Alarm Reviews we have tested and reviewed dozens of home security systems.  We even compiled 28 reasons why to buy one here.

burglar iconThe FBI reports "there are over 2 million home burglaries every year in the U.S. Users with a home security system are 3x less likely to become victims." Security systems give peace of mind, something that is nearly impossible to get back once a home has been tampered with.  Protect yourself from the worse case scenario by using one of the alarm systems below. 

20 Best Wireless Home Security Systems - 2019 Guide

#1 - Frontpoint Security

frontpoint security equipment

The Frontpoint security system has the best features of several security system providers wrapped up in one. In 2016 they upgraded all their equipment making them a better all around security provider. What stood out the most were the overwhelming positive customer reviews they have gotten. Best of all? You aren't selling your kidney just to get it. Low starting and monitoring costs.

A look into what you can do with Frontpoint:

Standard touchscreen panel. Typing your pass-code in is old school. This is a unique touchscreen panel with updates of the weather, your neighborhood and more. Think of it as a mini mart tablet. Also, not so large that you may be embarrassed by it and hide it in the closet as is common with older, bulkier panels.

Control your home with ease. Their home security app is available for free on iOS or Android smart devices. Users can connect their cameras, automate lights, door locks and thermostat through this app.

The advantages and disadvantages of Frontpoint are:

  • Fire & carbon monoxide protection included
  • Smash and crash technology
  • Geo services
  • Good vibe to company and great customer support
  • 30 day money back guarantee
  • Clean user face on equipment and app control
  • A+ BBB rating
  • Outdoor surveillance camera available
  • Purchase most equipment upfront
  • Shorter history in industry

When testing their alarm system there wasn't much we could find wrong with it. Sensors functioned as advertised and they carry a 3 year warranty. If you are not comfortable with setting up your own system then you will want to go with our #2 pick below.

Our rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Read FrontPoint Security's full review here

Get Frontpoint by calling 855-861-8730

Visit Frontpoint


#2 - ADT Monitoring


The ADT Monitored home security system has kept up with the competition. Close to 8 million people use their alarm system. Why is it in the top 2? Because it comes with professional installation so users need not worry about setting it up wrong. All of the authorized dealer technicians are licensed professionals able to do the job right.

A glance into how Pulse operates:

Using ADT Pulse app. Once installed you gain login access to their free mobile app. With it, you can check notifications given by the Pulse alarm system at any time as well as view live video feed from security cameras.

Move with you. We liked the point that they don't heckle their customers when moving. You can usually get a brand new alarm system installed at your new place for very low cost.

Best reputation. They have 6 large monitoring centers nation wide. Reliable security equipment and most satisfied customers in the home security niche.

The advantages and disadvantages of the Pulse system are:

  • Professional installation done for you (Highly recommended for most users!)
  • Basic to advanced system depending on user needs
  • Long history with lots of users
  • Two-way over voice control panel
  • Easy to use interface on mobile app
  • $850 in free equipment
  • They don't update your security system unless asked for. Some users have had their system for over 10+ years without an upgrade. Remember to ask for upgrade after 3-5 years.
  • Installation fee (although to most it's better than doing it their-self)

Their monitoring stations are each backed up by one another. If one fails, another one in a different location automatically takes on your monitoring. On each burglary simulation performed, the control panel siren went off and we were called in less than 30 seconds. The biggest complaints of the other alarm systems are malfunctions of the security system not being connected properly to monitoring when it is triggered by a break-in. That being the primary use of a security system, the ADT Monitoring specialists reliability is worth every penny.

Our rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

Read our ADT Home security reviews

Call 888-285-0760 for a Free Quote

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#3 - Vivint


The Vivint Sky Smart Control System is basically like having a mini tablet on your wall. Vivint started out offering home security systems only but now they have ventured off into many areas including internet and solar energy. Due to the rapid growth and new expansions they seem to not have home security as their primary focus anymore.

Looking more into the smart control package:

Luxury home automation. This smart alarm system is continually being updated and worked on. Vivint's security system now falls more into the home automation niche. If you need only basic security services and don't care for all the 'bells and whistles' then don't choose this.

Ding dong, the bad guys caught. Newly added is the doorbell camera. You can view what is happening on your door step from your phone through a doorbell camera. This is ironic as now you can see the Vivint sales rep and not answer the door!

The pros and cons of Vivint Sky smart control:

  • High grade technology automation
  • Can take over existing Honeywell or ADT systems
  • Sky touchscreen panel only available through Vivint
  • Lots of equipment to choose from
  • High monthly monitoring fee
  • Complicated for non-technical people
  • 42-60 month contracts


The Vivint Security System has continued to improve what it can offer for your home. It is not a great solution for renters or smaller residences but for those with a mansion and want the best of the best then this is a good purchase. Smart control service from any smart device worked well when testing. Not the most affordable package but if you plan on living at your current residence for the next 5-10 years, this could be a good fit.

Our rating: 4.4 out of 5 stars (4.4 / 5)

Read the full review of Vivint here

Get a custom quote by calling 855-298-7671

Visit Vivint

#4 - Protect America

xti5 security system with sensors

The Protect America Security System will get you the most bang for your buck. The platinum plan is $42.99 and comes with 14 window / door sensors + motion detector + panel + mobile control. It is an easy-to-do self-installation so literally you can get away with $0 starting costs. It is very reliable because it is comprised of General Electric top grade equipment. For those wanting customization, there are some cool upgrades available.

A look into how it all works:

Enough equipment to cover the whole home. While you may find good promotions elsewhere what usually is not included is enough equipment to cover every point of entry. You don't have to worry about skipping out on securing the kids' windows or other places with this one.

Fastest response time. When doing our home invasion test, Protect America monitoring was the fastest to call in under 30 seconds consistently. Many complaints of the new all-in-one camera systems that other companies have are that they don't trigger the alarm and get the police called.

The advantages and disadvantages of the Protect America are:

  • Best value for your money
  • Re-branded in summer of 2017 including fully upgraded alarm system
  • Quickest monitoring response time
  • Several cool add-on features including: cameras, flood sensor, GPS device and backup touchscreen panel
  • Great promotions with up to $1400 in free equipment
  • 20 years in business
  • B+ BBB rating
  • $0 installation and $0 activation
  • Easy to be deceived by their $19.99/mo price, this is for landline only and not very practical.
  • Basic panel and limited home automation available

To avoid high out of pocket costs, some people settle for getting less security equipment than originally desired. While those in town-homes and apartments may not need a lot of equipment, it's a good choice or those who do. Our third best may not win the most visually appealing award, but at least it's reliable.

Our rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Read Protect America's full review here

Get a quote by calling 888-936-2878

#5 - Link Home

Link Interactive security system bundle

The Link Interactive 2gig system isn't the first thing that comes to mind when shopping around for a home security system. And that's what we like about it. It has gone largely unnoticed even though it's been available for over 50 years. It is a great all-around package with a standard touchscreen panel and several wireless sensors to cover the entire home.

A deeper look into what it can do:

More advanced than most think. Geo-fencing feature can automatically disarm the alarm system when your smartphone enters a certain perimeter of the control panel (up to 150'). Controlling lights and thermostats with this Z-wave compatible security system is easily do-able.

Low-cost monitoring. Less than $1 a day usually carries a * and some fine print with it. Not here. $29.99/mo gets you a full set of equipment with active monitoring.

The advantages and disadvantages of the Link Interactive 2gig system are:

  • Lowest cost for home automation monitoring
  • Touchscreen panel
  • Quality security cameras available
  • A+ BBB rating
  • Portable system (great for renters)
  • Free mobile alerts
  • Z-wave features for advanced users
  • Positive customer ratings
  • Website looks old and outdated
  • Generic look and appeal to brand

Although there isn't as much hype around the Link Interactive alarm system it shouldn't be overlooked. They use for their free smart control app. After ordering, you will receive a package with activated equipment that requires self-setup.

Our rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Read Link Interactive's full review here

Call a rep at 855-534-7784

Visit site button

Video comparison ranking the Top 5:

#6 - Honeywell Lynx Touch L7000 with Wifi and Z-wave Module

honeywell lynx touch L7000 with smartphone display

The Honeywell lynx touchscreen with WiFi capabilities is a rock solid product. Honeywell is used by hundreds of dealers and exceeds $3 billion in sales a year. Their backup batteries exceed the life of any other sensors. If you want to get a Honeywell home Alarm System installed then check out this company. If you buy this one as a DIY project just know ahead of time that you are required to find a monitoring company.

Further investigation into the Honeywell Lynx Touch L7000 Alarm kit:

Large LCD display. Don't plan on watching TV from this, but the touchscreen is a nice full 7" color display. Z-wave features open the possibilities of some pretty cool things, see what here.

Techie required. Installing the Lynx Touch L7000 requires a professional to drill and run the wire(s), install the modules and plugin control panel. Although it comes with a guide we don't recommend trying this as your next DIY project.

The ups and downs of the Lynx Touch L7000:

  • Used by professional technicians
  • Comes with 3 door/window sensors, key fob and motion sensor
  • Good fit for the skilled techie
  • Great for small to medium sized businesses
  • A reputable brand name with durable security equipment
  • Control with Z-wave and smart devices
  • Expensive, $400 for basic setup
  • Requires a skilled professional to get up and running
  • You're required to find and connect to a monitoring service
  • No free move with you service

This package made #6 on our list because of the Honeywell brand. This standalone touchscreen alarm kit may not be your best option of a quick setup. However, once installed one can count on it working for years to come.

Our rating: 4.3 out of 5 stars (4.3 / 5)

Read the full Honeywell review here

#7 - Protection One (currently undergoing brand change)


The Protection One smart control package covers the average users' needs. Using a variation of the Honeywell Lynx panel in our #6, the digital alarm package comes with 3 window/door contacts, a motion detector and a key fob. This brand is on a slippery slope downwards, having once been our #3 recommendation in 2014 and dropped to #7 in 2016.

A deeper look into what it is:

Generic compiled package. Nothing new with this alarm package. We've seen this offered for the past 25 years. Throw together a bunch of GE or Honeywell equipment, use a third party app to connect it all and stick the brands logo on it and charge the customer. This is what they've done whereas our top 5 all have unique security systems.

Primarily for businesses. The digital voice package is good for home owners but Protection One is all-around a better choice for small businesses. If you operate a physical store then you may want to look into this, otherwise the top 5 have you covered with better equipment at a better price.

The good and the bad of Protection 1:

  • Installed by professional technicians
  • Uses Honeywell brand equipment
  • Multiple backup monitoring stations
  • Expensive start-up costs including installation and activation fee
  • Requires a skilled professional to install
  • Nothing unique to equipment or smart phone app
  • High monthly costs for home automation
  • Now sold by door to door sales reps

The Protection One Digital Alarm Package came in 7th because it has been around for several years. It is not the latest and greatest equipment nor the best deal but you can trust it to work.

Our rating: 3.6 out of 5 stars (3.6 / 5)

Read the full review of Protection One here

#8 - Scout Alarm

scout security

The Scout Alarm System is new to the market and quickly gaining popularity. Designed with a modern look, they market to millennials and those with a keen sense of home fashion. The system is bought piece by piece so you only get what is needed. The sleek look of Scout Alarm System comes in three different styles; White, Black and Wood. You won't find a choice in looks elsewhere.

More about Scout:

Better looks equal higher costs. They say you get what you pay for in life and for the unique look of this alarm system it holds true. However, it is more affordable then one may think. A hub is $130 (1 required per home), door/window sensors are $29 apiece, motion detector is $49 and accessories ranging from $2-10. Total setup total averaging between $300-500.

Quick self-setup. Like our #1 and #3 pick, you put the pieces where they belong. It can be bought online, gets shipped and then DIY setup. We were able to set it up on a 4 bedroom home in under 1 hour.

Relies on mobile control. The modern design of the control panel has taken away the basic ability of turning it on and off easily by hand. While using the mobile app is convenient, sometimes it's easier to still do it the old way on a keypad or touchscreen panel, which cannot be done with this.

What we did and did not like about the Scout Alarm:

  • Modern and visually appealing
  • Fast installation
  • Easy to add on more equipment later
  • Low monitoring costs available
  • Automatic arm and disarm
  • Do good looks equal the good functionality? Home security systems are not typically shown off like a new car or toy so it would be making looks not as important (our opinion)
  • Not compatible with any other security equipment
  • Short history / very new company
  • Reports of app glitches
  • No security cameras or automation available

When you compare the good with the bad you end up in a pretty safe neutral area with the Scout Alarm System. The biggest risk one takes in buying it is that they are new to the market.

Our rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Read the full review on Scout Alarm here

#9 - iSmartAlarm iSA3 

iSmartAlarm iSA3 White

The iSmartAlarm iSA3 is fancy and affordable. It was hard to find something wrong with it when testing this alarm system. The main thing to know before buying is that it is a self-monitored system. Therefore, if you are away from your phone (on vacation or at work) and someone breaks in it is as if you didn't have an alarm at all. Like #8 Scout, it has a modern design to it.

More details of the iSA3 iSmartAlarm:

Preferred or deluxe: The Preferred Security System Package comes with: 2 window/door contacts, motion detector, 1 hub and 2 key fobs. Plan on adding another 2+ door contacts for the average home, a cost of $60 for 2. Or you can get the deluxe package for $230 which comes with 4 window/door contacts.

How smart is the iSmartAlarm? When testing for performance the app notified us of 9/10 home intrusions. The motion didn't set off the alarm one time. The window and door contacts tested positive each of the 10 times. Their app has an easy-to-use interface and simple navigational controls. It's not the smartest one in its class but it will get the job done.

The good and the bad of iSmartAlarm:

  • Unique self-made equipment
  • Low cost yet high quality
  • Easy to add on sensors later
  • HD security camera available
  • Easy to use free app for iOS or android
  • New to market
  • Self-monitored system. Not going to call the police or fire department!
  • Mixed customer reviews, many claiming app did not work when needed

We were most impressed with the iSA3 by iSmartAlarm's design and affordability. However, with no monitoring available it defies the point of having a home security system installed for occasions like vacation, date night, kids at home by themselves or while at work. If you are someone who wants to rely on a gun or their own defense, this will at least get you forewarned at a good price.

Our rating: 3.7 out of 5 stars (3.7 / 5)

Read the full review of iSmartAlarm here

#10 - Samsung SmartThings

samsung smartthings kit

The Samsung SmartThings Monitoring Kit is simplicity at its finest. Nothing too fancy or new about this, which is why we like it. It will secure a couple doors and a large space for $250. It has some add-on features when enabling Z-wave. It's a great kit for techies who want to try to incorporate new things into their home automation hub.

A better look into the SmartThings Home Alarm System Kit:

Doesn't Samsung make phones? Several companies have jumped into the home security industry in the past few years and Samsung is one of them. (Others include AT&T digital life, DirecTV and Xfinity Security, all of which we do not recommend.) Luckily Samsung knows how to manufacture quality technology products.

The reliability of the hub: A hub is required as it is the brains of the system. Their biggest complaints on Amazon reviews are that while away their hub has gone offline, therefore taking down the entire system.

The good and the bad about SmartThings:

  • Proprietary equipment
  • Affordable
  • Simple
  • Customization settings for the tech savvy
  • Not a stand-alone security brand
  • Self-monitoring
  • Hub malfunctions and system may go offline
  • Comes with limited equipment (2 door sensors and a motion)

If you are looking to buy a security system so you don't have to worry about what's going on at home then make sure to choose one that can be monitored. With the Samsung SmartThings you may not get too much peace of mind since you are the one on-call 24/7. If you are fine with that then this would be an affordable option.

Our rating: 3.4 out of 5 stars (3.4 / 5)

Read the full review on Samsung SmartThings here

#11 - General Electric Simon XT.  The OG of Alarm Systems

GE simon XT wireless kit

Tried and tested.  The Simon XT is in more homes (in the MILLIONS) than any other security panel.  That being said, it is time to move on with technology and leave this gem behind.

The 80-649-3N-XT General Electric Simon XT Security System is by far the most sold and used alarm system of all time. From 1995-2010 nearly every security dealer used this for their customers and many companies still do. It didn't get in our top 10 because it is now outdated by better touchscreen panels and sensors but we couldn't ignore the Simon XT.

More information on the GE Simon XT:

Lasts for years. If you go into any home that had a security system installed in the past 20 years, chances are you would find this one. It was one of the first wireless systems offered and has great functionality. Can be turned on and off with a simple 1 button push. The key fob has the ability to be used as an emergency pendant for elderly. It is Z-wave compatible and continues to keep up with most of the current trends.

Used by the masses. Home safety wasn't as much of a need in the 1900's as it has become in the 2000's. The Simon XT has been the most used home security system through both generations and is used by dealers throughout the world.

The pros and cons of General Electric's SimonXT:

  • Millions of units sold and used
  • Durable equipment with highest reliability rate
  • Trusted by brands such as ADT & Protect America
  • Integrate and work with existing Honeywell sensors
  • Outdated
  • Must find your own monitoring
  • Requires drilling to connect panel to outlet
  • Limited home automation capabilities

If you just need something you can rely on then don't feel ashamed of using what works! It does require a professional to install and activate unless you get it pre-activated from a company like Protect America.

Our rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Read GE Alarms full review here

SkylinkNET SK-200 Connected Home Security System

The SkylinkNet SK-200 has a motion sensor and control panel different from others. The motion sensor has 110 degree detection with adjustable sensitivity which makes it great fit for those with pets. No other alarm system has a custom motion detector.

A look into what else you can do with the SK-200 by Skylink:

Build as you grow. Many can't afford all the equipment they want right away. With the SK-200, you can buy separate pieces and add onto your alarm as time goes by. Prices are very affordable with the main package costing $150, extra door sensors are $20/each, $25 for motion detector, $20 for key-fob, $20 for water leak sensors and $90 for IP security camera.

WiFi capabilities. It comes with an ether net cable to connect with the hub. When testing, it was easy to connect a smartphone to the IP camera. When using the SK-200 camera, the video stream was choppy. Don't count on seeing high quality footage from their security camera with 3G or 4G internet.

The good and the bad about of the SkylinkNet SK-200:

  • Easy to use app for iOS or Android device
  • Stores recent activities and creates a history log of alarm settings
  • Supports up to 100 sensors so you can really get carried away with building a fortress
  • No contracts
  • Can add high end Skylink surveillance cameras to the system
  • Self-monitored. If you're unable to check your phone at the time of a break-in then its goodbye to whatever the criminal takes
  • Not visually appealing
  • No live customer service

If you think you are better off running the end to end solution by yourself then this is a good choice. It is not ideal for most home owners as it's not too convenient. The equipment is nothing to 'ooh and ahh' over. It will be interesting to watch how Skylink grows over the next few years or if they fade out like hundreds of others have.

Our rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 / 5)

Read Skylink's full review here

#13 - AT&T Digital Life (Undergoing yet another brand change)

AT&T Control panel

AT&T decided to make their own brand of home security equipment calling the system 'Digital Life'. It is new to the market and available for current users who have AT&T cable. They take our unlucky 13 spot and will most likely drop to #20 by the end of the year.

More about the Digital Life package:

Out-of-pocket costs. To get this system up and running takes quite a bit of money in starting costs. Anything more than the standard 3 door sensors and 1 motion detector will be out-of-pocket costs.

New to monitoring. Careful before trusting their monitoring stations to have you covered 24/7. This isn't a overnight success service as they have tried to make it be one.

The good and the bad of AT&T security:

  • Unique alarm system
  • App functions that work well
  • Automation features available but at a high cost
  • Worst customer ratings of all top 20
  • High monitoring services
  • May not be available in your area
  • Promotional pricing
  • High startup fees

The only logical reason we came up with to buy the Digital Life package is if one wants their TV bill & home security bill to be one. Customers are abandoning this system faster than new ones are signing up for it.

Our rating: 2.8 out of 5 stars (2.8 / 5)

Read our full review of AT&T Digital Life here

#14 - Piper 'All in One' Security 

piper security bundle

The new Piper All-In-One Security System claims to be a motion sensor, camera, control panel and siren in an all-in-one home security device. How well did it work when we tried it out? Not all that great. It is so new to the market that it needs more testing done. Our opinion is they made it available to consumers too soon. Most of their negative reviews come from customers saying the app has several glitches and that the all-in-one device isn't as practical as it appears.

A better look into what the Piper All-In-one Device is:

3 in 1. The main unit of Piper was engineered to be a siren, motion detector, smart security camera. So do you end up saving money by getting a 3 for 1 deal? Unfortunately not. It is priced at $350 which can purchase a full home security system with any of our top 10.

Still a need for additional sensors. It comes with 1 door sensor which isn't practical. You will need at least 3-4 to cover the areas this camera isn't going to cover. Another option would be buying 2-3 of the cameras which adds up quickly.

The pros and cons of Piper:

  • Modern and classy looking
  • Free Piper smartphone app to control the all-in-one device
  • HD camera with night vision
  • Monthly fees to store camera footage on their cloud based server
  • Not monitored
  • Poor customer reviews saying it doesn't work as advertised
  • Made in China
  • Doesn't actually replace the home alarm system. Seems they know it too since it comes with a door sensor.

A good choice for those with spare money who like to try out new gadgets. We were impressed with the design and the features they put all together. We are not impressed with them claiming it replaces the alarm system as a whole. It is a step ahead of the #15 Canary who thinks it doesn't need the aid of any other sensors.

Our rating: 2.8 out of 5 stars (2.8 / 5)

Read the full review of Piper here

#15 - Canary All-in-One Device

canary is all in one security black device

The Canary All-In-One Home Security Device claims to have replaced the window/door sensors, motion detector and security cameras all with 1 device. We tested it for practicality in replacing a standard alarm system.

Examining the Canary All-In-One security device:

Cool but costly. At $180 per device, don't get fooled into thinking all-in-one means you only need one to protect all your home. If you imagine with your own two eyes where you would place this, that's what it covers. Great for large areas but not practical for 1 per room. By the time you put one in each location needed, you are going to be over $1000 in costs.

Mix 'n Match. You can choose between black or white. If you want window/door sensors you will need to choose a different company's equipment. This can turn into a headache pretty quick.

False alarms. When testing it, we along with several customers noticed the software didn't always function as advertised. Because it is so new to the market there is a lot of glitches that have yet to be worked out.

The good and the bad of the canary device:

  • Modern and sleek looking
  • Self-branded app, unique to the system
  • Easy and quick setup
  • Night vision
  • Automatic arm and disarm
  • New to market, get ready to be a lab rat
  • Recently in 2017 now made all devices require monitoring plans.  Defeating the ultimate purpose and primary goal of the device.  Users are furious over their new policies as of August 2017.
  • Impressive but expensive
  • Its smart learning is not as smart as claims to be
  • No home automation or energy controls
  • No optional sensors to add
  • Several negative complaints about device or app not functioning when needed

Yes it may look good in the living room and one can brag that it is fulfilling multiple uses but when the time comes that a burglar breaks in we wouldn't want to rely on this like we would the standard security system offered by others.

Our rating: 1.6 out of 5 stars (1.6 / 5)

Read our full review on Canary Security here

#16 - Golden Security

Golden Security touch screen keypad LCD panel with security camera and wireless sensors

The Golden Security bundle package comes with an impressive amount of equipment which made us really dig deep into this system to see if it was of quality. The outdoor siren is not legal in most cities or states and the panel is outdated. The rest of the equipment has decent quality expect a few sensors would not work shortly after buying.

A better look into what you get with the Golden Security:

The bundle. For a mere $225 you get: 1 panel, 5 motion sensors, 6 door sensors, 5 key fobs. 5 key remotes is a bit of an overkill, only 1 or even 0 are needed with smart phone controls now. Also included is 1 IP camera and 1 wired siren (not useful). All of this for less than the cost of one Piper All-In-One Security system reviewed above.

Quality or lack thereof. If you have a large house and need to slap-up some security then use this for the low cost. But the sensors aren't made with the same quality that Honeywell, GE and others have. You can't buy individual sensors to add on later and you are on the hook if anything breaks because there is no warranty.

The good, the bad and the ugly about Golden Security:

  • Get tons of equipment for a low one-time fee
  • Camera is included and not an added expense
  • Positive reviews from customers on Amazon
  • Enough key fobs you can give one to every kid or neighbor
  • Outdated control panel
  • Siren needs wiring to be installed
  • Poor quality of equipment
  • No smart phone app

If you simply want the most bang for your buck than this one is for you. It's still better then going down to the local hardware store and getting something out of their home goods area. You don't get a warranty or customer service. The guide that comes with it is not much help. If you get this one and feel all on your own assembling it, don't blame us!

Our rating: 2.3 out of 5 stars (2.3 / 5)

#17 - Simplisafe2

simplisafe2 wireless home security system 8-piece package

The SimpliSafe2 Wireless Security System for your home looks nothing like the others. While every other hub out there is square or rectangle, the SimpliSafe2 went with a tall cylinder shaped piece. While we weren't impressed by the visual side of this system, thousands use it to protect their home so we had to give it a try.

A deeper analysis of the SimpliSafe wireless package:

Designed for the elderly. They know their target audience and cater to them well. It's advertised on Dave Ramsey towards an audience of 50-70 years of age. The equipment style is also made blander for them. The bright red panic buttons stand out which serve a dual purpose as a medical alert pendant.

Happy customers. They have over 7,000 reviews left on Amazon alone averaging 4 stars and above. While it may not be the latest and greatest, it performed well when testing.

The pros and cons of SimpliSafe 2 8-piece plus package:

  • Trusted and used by thousands
  • Like the name states, a very simple product
  • Medical pendant integrated
  • Monitoring available
  • Live customer service available
  • Expensive for what you get
  • Not visually appealing
  • Cannot integrate with any other types of alarm systems

Just because we're not a fan doesn't mean it's not a good product. It looks like something at a rest home but if that fits your needs it may be the perfect match. It hasn't been upgraded in years and our opinion is they could really reduce the size of their hub.

Our rating: 2.6 out of 5 stars (2.6 / 5)

Read SimpliSafe reviews here

#18 - Wolf-Guard GSM

If you're sick of seeing white security equipment, then check out the Wolf-Guard GSM with auto dialer's black base and its blue back lighting keypad. This was definitely cool and futuristic 10 years ago. Times have changes and our top 5 security systems come with touchscreen panels. We are sad to say that Wolf-Guard is no longer ahead of its time.

A glance at what it is:

The GSM auto dialer. Think of it as a pager from back in the 1990's, or as a notification on your smart phone now. You can preset a phone number for it to call anytime the alarm system is tripped. While this was a feature that was once popular and cool, it has been updated and replaced by apps and notifications.

The large amount of equipment per package. We can't argue on this one. The Wolf-Guard GSM package comes with a large amount of equipment all for $160. The equipment is low quality even though the looks of it don't indicate that. It requires a professional to install, so don't count on this being a simple DIY project.

The ups and the downs about Wolf-Guard GSM system:

  • Get a lot of starting equipment, more than needed by most houses
  • Low costs
  • Different designs
  • Out of date
  • Requires drilling and running of wires
  • 1 star overall review on Amazon
  • Not compatible with other brands
  • No warranty or direct customer service
  • No BBB record

If this was 2005 it may be at the top of our list. But going out of your way for something that will only give you a headache and possibly not work well isn't worth it. However, if $150 and over 20 sensors sounds like a deal you want to try, then please let us know how it was in the comments below!

Our rating: 1.2 out of 5 stars (1.2 / 5)

#19 - Insteon 2582-222 

Insteon 2582-222 equipment

The Insteon 2582-222 Starter Kit will get you going in the right direction to protect your belongings but comes up short and leaves you paying for more than you get. The starter package has some great equipment but not enough to keep out the crooks. If you have an existing system (maybe you moved into a home with one) then this is a good upgrade to integrate automation.

A deeper glance into what you get with the Insteon 2582-222 Starter Kit:

Combo pack: A security camera, a hub which is unique only to them, 1 door sensor and 1 motion detector. Not too practical for the average user. Plan on adding 2+ additional sensors for $35 a piece which can be purchased through Insteon.

A giant box hub. At least it looks okay on the outside but a bit bulky for our times. If you purchase the Insteon 2582-222 Starter Kit plan on hiding the hub of the system in a closet or utility room.

The good and bad of this starter kit is:

  • Good starter bundle
  • High grade security camera
  • Average price at around the $230 range
  • Will need to buy add-on sensors
  • Bad customer service
  • Hard to follow installation guides
  • Bulky hub box required
  • Small customer base

The majority of the Insteon 2582-222 Starter Kit are white and labeled GE, so it isn't actually a self-made home security system. While not making our top 10, it's not the end of the world if you buy this to upgrade an existing system.

Our rating: 2.7 out of 5 stars (2.7 / 5)

Read the Insteon Review

#20 - Visonic PowerMax Home Security

Visonic powermax kit

Someone had to come in last place.  We hope this POS doesn't end up in your home but here is the quick glance at it anyways. The Visonic PowerMax home management kit comes in last place at #20. A unique but complicated interface really made for some interesting tests. The door sensors do not have peel and stick technology and require drilling.

More about the PowerMax kit:

Basically basic. We were surprised to see this one is even for sale. It is as average as one can get in 2018 and is hard to setup. No authorized security dealers carry it. Nothing to connect to smart phone or that route. One really has to go out of their way to find the PowerMax by Visonic.

The good, not-so-good and horrible about PowerMax:

  • It made our top 20...barely
  • Unique equipment
  • Wired system
  • Outdated equipment
  • Smart phone connection unavailable
  • No Z-wave or automation
  • No customer support

The bad list could go on and on. There you have the top 20, now check out the best of the best in our comparison chart below.

Featured Comparison

 FrontpointADTProtect AmericaVivintlink interactive
HeadquartersVirginiaIndiana, USTexas, USAUtah, USAUtah, USA
Sales Line855-861-8730888-285-0760888-936-2878855-298-7671855-534-7784
Standard Windows, Motion, Door & Glass SensorsYesYesYesYesYes
Touchscreen PanelYesYes(+)YesYes
Key Remote (On/Off) FobYesYesYesYesYes
C02, Fire and Flood Sensors YesYesYesYesYes
Mobile & Tablet ControlYesYesYesYesYes
CamerasIndoor & Outdoor & Doorbell Indoor, Pan TiltIndoor, Pan TiltIndoor, Outdoor, Pan TiltIndoor
Z-Wave TechnologyYesYesYesYesYes
Advanced FeaturesLight Control, Automated Door Locks, Temperature & Energy ControlPulse® Automation & MoreGPS Security, Medical PanicVivint Sky, Doorbell Camera, Advanced home automationDoor locks, Thermostats, Plugin light automation
FrontpointADTProtect AmericaVivintlink interactive
Installation$0One time Fee$0$0$0
EquipmentOne time Fee
Smoke, C02 & FloodIncludedIncluded(+)(+)(+)
Overall Ratings
Customer Reviews54.543.54

Security System Equipment Basics - Features and Tips

Equipment Device:Features:Tips:

Control Panel

The standard panel comes in all sizes and brands. Whether it is Honeywell, GE, 2Gig or DCS it has the same function which is the hub of the system. In a wireless setup it will be the only piece of equipment that plugs into a power jack. These come with 3-7 day backup battery that way if power is off for multiple days you are still secured.If you do not want to mount it on your wall you can hide it in closet and still turn it on and off with key remote or smart phone. You may also want to get a secondary panel for your Master bedroom, garage etc. for convenience although this is not important with mobile control available.

Secondary Control Panel

Great looking touchscreen panel that is a companion to the standard touch panel. Most companies offer one like this (or a keypad) to put in a convenient spot. It's smaller, thinner and better looking with weather and other information available. Save yourself a trip down the stairs at night when turning your alarm on. Apps on smartphones have basically replaced this but many (primarily the elderly) prefer to set it manually.

Window / Door Sensors

One piece connects to your door and the other the window. Creating a magnetic field, anytime your alarm is turned on and the magnetic field is broken this sets off the alarm. Gone are the days of having to take apart your door or window to get these installed, they are wireless with ion lithium backup batteries. Don't get one for every single window in your house. Instead, use a glass break or motion sensor to cover multiple windows. Get enough for each door leading to outside. Can also be used to secure a shed or detached garage if within 100-200 feet of control panel.

Motion Sensors

The look varies from company to company but the purpose stays the same. Motion sensors use thermal energy (heat waves) and detect anything over 40 lbs. Great for hall ways, living rooms and areas with lots of windows. Not recommended for single rooms. Don't put one in a garage or shed due to high temperatures. Use for large open spaces. Can be turned off using 'Stay mode' while windows and door sensors remain on. This is nice for night time and when you want to walk around while keeping the security system on.

Glass Break Detectors

If you have a big pet over 40 lbs and can't get a motion sensor then this is your best bet. They can cover up to 40' diameter in your home. How it works: When glass breaks, it bows and sets off a really high pitch frequencies. This sensor picks up those high pitch waves and sets off the alarm. Although very uncommon, some people have reported these going off when breaking a glass plate or cup. We recommend not setting one up in your kitchen. These can save you money by putting 1 in a room that would otherwise require 5+ window sensors.

Smoke Detector

What makes this one different from what you already have? This one is directly connected to the fire department and monitored by your security company. Now if your house catches on fire with you not home the fire department can get there before it is too late.You don't need to go all out with these. 1-2 per home should do just fine. Some companies charge additional monthly fee (up to $9.99) for fire protection. If that's what they tell you, bag it and go with someone else, this is a standard feature. However, to get a smoke detector may be an upfront equipment fee.

Carbon Monoxide Detector

Much like the smoke sensor, you may already have these in your home. C02 is a poisonous gas and silent killer. This will set of the alarm (good for at night) any time there is carbon monoxide detected in the air.Unless your very paranoid, we recommend buying a cheap C02 detector at Walmart for $10-15 rather than a security company who will charge you $99+. However, the cheap ones are not monitored but will still sound off when c02 is detected


Quick and convienent, the keyfob is still a luxury in the 21st century. Works 150-200 ft from the main control panel. 1 button arms it, 1 disarms it, 1 panic and 1 for Stay mode (which means doors and window sensors on, motions off). Keep one in the car and one near the bed for quick and easy on and off access to the security system. Although mobile control is nice, this can still trump that with adding it to your keychain. Also, the panic button has a dual purpose and can serve as a life alert panic button for the elderly or disabled.

Security Cameras

Going on a date and want to check in on the kids? With a security camera you can access live feed from your phone and know what's going on anywhere you go. Live data may be choppy or delayed depending on your internet connection. Most companies offer pan-tilt camera or fixed. You can control the pan tilt from your phone (make it move left or right). Have a baby? Use this to serve a dual purpose as a baby monitor as well. Also, many companies have outdoor camera's available and if they don't you can get a fixed camera and set it up near a window to record your porch, driveway, shed etc.

Mobile & Tablet Control

This is a new standard across the board and should be expected at any package above $29.99 typically. Even without a touchscreen panel, Simon XT control panels can use a 3rd party mobile app to control your system. Turn it on and off from any smart phone or smart device at any time. Make sure to have this with any modern security system you are choosing. When getting setup, replace any Key fobs offered by the company for extra door/window sensors. Use your phone instead of a keyfob to get extra equipment. Hint not always recommended. Keyfobs can still be more convenient to keep in a car or hidden place at times. 2nd tip: Have your kids download the app and learn how to turn on and off the alarm.

Burglary & home security statistics info-graphic:

crime statistics and security system tips infographic

Competition has driven down price. Because there are several brands to choose from, competition has driven down prices to make purchasing a home security system a reality. For a dollar a day or less, one can have one up and running right away. Comparing that to other utility bills like TV, internet or phone,it's apparent that home security costs less and is more important.

hand controlling home automation controlsSmart home automation systems. The home security system has evolved over the last decade. Homes being torn apart for wiring is no longer necessary. Most of the security systems reviewed offer free smart control. Rushing inside the home to turn the panel off can now be bypassed with a tap on a smart device from any location.

Show it off. Imagine controlling your lights, thermostat and view live video feed from your security cameras. What was once available only to the rich and famous has made its way to the everyday consumer.

Our process of ranking the top 20 home security systems include:

1 - Nationwide. Unexpected moves happen and the last thing you need is a cancellation charge. Small companies have their perks but also many disadvantages. Each one reviewed here is available throughout the nation.

2 -Wireless. It's 2018. No need to get an alarm system that requires a renovation to install. Note: Control panels and security cameras may need to plug in to a power source. Other than that, all motion and window sensors reviewed are wireless.

3 - Affordable. You're not going to have to "sell the farm" to secure your home.

4 - Reputation. Thanks to door to door salesmen, many consumers have been scammed over the years expecting a 'free security system'. A good history and customer support base greatly impacted the ratings of these companies.

5 - Available to all. Some companies only allow home owners to buy their system. We made sure to include those that are available for renters and owners. You need to protect your possessions and loved ones whether you rent or own your home.

Helpful tips when choosing a smart home alarm system

When deciding what security system should go in a home consider these questions:

- How much security system equipment do you really needed?
- Are all the gadgets of a smart-home system needed or would a simple system suffice?
- Professional or self installation?
- Do I want a security system with a long history of performance or am I okay with trying out a newer device?

The FTC published an article regarding the safe purchasing of home security systems. Below we cover these and other concerns of those who have asked us for help.

What equipment is really NEEDED for the home to be protected?

For door / window sensors: A sensor on each door leading to outside is vital. The actual garage door typically doesn't have it's own sensor. The door leading in and out from the house to the garage should be. The average home has several windows it is a users preference whether or not to get a sensor for each one. To save money, add a motion sensor to the hallway. That way if a burglar breaks in from any of the room windows the hallway motion detector will catch them. However, for parents with children on the ground floors we do recommend getting a window sensor or security camera for each room.

Living room, kitchen, and hallways: A motion detector can see up to 40'+. It is infrared, picking up heat waves over 40 pounds. If there is a large dog that stays inside the home, a glass break detector should be used in its place. This device captures the high pitch frequency of glass shattering and sound off the alarm. Get 1 motion or glass break sensor per large area. Upstairs is usually bypassed since burglars will break-in on the basement or main floor.

Home security cameras & automation: This one is completely up to you. Basic systems can get the job done, but smart home control is beginning to gain popularity worldwide. Basic smart control is now included with almost every security system so you get it whether you need it or not, but as for the extras like smart thermostat and security cameras that decision is up the user. They are nice to have but users are always surprised by how often they end up not using most of the home automation features.

What is the normal cost when purchasing a home security system?

Anywhere from $99-500 upfront and a $30-60 monthly monitoring rate. Anything over these prices should make a consumer skeptical and do further research of the company and what you are actually paying for. Make sure to read over any monitoring agreements that come with it as well. Promotions continually change but it is easy to find a good deal where the company will subsidize the cost of the alarm system if you use their monitoring.

DIY Self setup or professional installation?

Because of the simplicity of the equipment now, self-install is easier than most think. DIY security sensors have two sided tape so all you have to do is peel and stick the equipment where you want it. Each system comes with how-to guides and support. What is our recommendation? Get a professional to do it. An alarm system isn't a DIY project you want to mess up on, your loved one(s) safety is risk. Although nearly all of our top 20 reviewed here are D-I-Y, our #2 pick will do the best professional installation at only $99. A low price to pay for not having to worry about setting it up incorrectly.

Top Security Systems Recap

Rank Home Security System Starting Cost
3Protect America$0
5Link Interactive$49+


There is no monetary value one can put on a family's safety. Having a 'protected by' sign at the front of a home is the first crime deterrent, having an affordable home security system to back it up is the best. With several brands competing against another costs have become very affordable. In 2018, there is no excuse for one not to have their home protected.

We hope you liked our in-depth analysis and testing results that we have shared to help save time, money and a headache of deciding which to buy.

^ Click here to go back to the Top 20 ^

67 User Reviews
  1. 08/05/2019 at 13:38

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    05/02/2018 at 12:05

    i have been installing alarms since 1965,I am still doing it to this day. My favorite system which is the DSC panels. I still push people to do hardwired systems but they are much less common now and the quick DIY setup ones seem to be users favorites.

  7. Jerry Regier
    04/05/2018 at 12:28

    Does anyone have a comment about AMPSmart Security?

    • 04/06/2018 at 12:39

      Check their full review, there are over 100 reviews left there about AMP (most of which are not good).

  8. Tara
    10/30/2017 at 22:20

    What about CPI? How is it ranked?

    • 11/02/2017 at 11:59

      We reviewed CPI but because it is a local company we did not list it on the top 20 national security system list. Check it out here:

  9. Bryan
    09/24/2017 at 07:02

    Top ten all are by far more expensive when include monitoring which IMHO today with the self notification and camera to see what is going on are all outdated and over priced. I will go with free and self monitoring all day long before paying $39-almost $50/Month for what I can do free with the new technology. Think about it monitoring fees at $40 month in three years adds up. For half that amount you can have cameras and alarms to glory all which dial multiple phones if an alert is set off. Good Bye to those never ending monthly fees is my opinion had enough of that with cable and more of the same monthly fees.

    • 10/03/2017 at 12:08

      Hey Bryan. All good points! The top 10 are great for the average consumer and user. Most people don't want to try to wrap their minds around all the different CCTV and technicalities of running their own camera system and then connecting it through multiple apps to alarm system. Also, when monitoring it yourself if you don't answer your phone (vacation, work) there is no monitoring to get the dispatch called to your home which is the point (for most people) of an alarm system. For those with the minds to figure it all out themselves then go for it! If you like convenience and having all your equipment function under 1 app (instead of 3-4 for each different equipment set) then $30-50/month isn't much (especially when you compare it to other home bills like Internet, phone, cable). They also like having customer service, free updates for new equipment. There is some disruption going on in the space, agreed!

      • Innocent
        06/15/2018 at 11:13

        I share your view, Alarm Reviews. Me for one like having all my pieces of equipment organised in one app. This makes it easy for me to control all from one point. I naturally don't like complicated and complex situations. I don't mind the price, so far it's of value, easy to handle and I can afford it, I go for it.

  10. Leo hernandez
    08/14/2017 at 18:53

    I see a lot of people saying that the sales rep sell you or try to sell you things you don't need, I'm sorry, but if you are being sold something is because you showed interest in it and wanted it, you don't get sold a nest and door lock unless that's what you wanted and even decide to pay for it.

    • 08/16/2017 at 11:15

      That's true Leo. Most of those comments come from the companies with door to door sales reps which are much harder to say no to than an online advertisement. Especially when they are taught that every 'no' they get is closer to a 'yes' and are only paid by commission from sales.

  11. Vedard Alarm
    07/06/2017 at 23:04

    A good article for the home security system companies comparison with pros and cons. Plenty to digest and figure out which to choose now!

  12. Herth Ariehle
    04/05/2017 at 10:37

    my colleague was needing TX Fort Worth Alarm Permit App - Fort Worth a few weeks ago and was informed of a web service that hosts 6 million forms. If others are searching for TX Fort Worth Alarm Permit App - Fort Worth.

  13. Mark Toniz
    02/15/2017 at 11:52

    Just love it :)

  14. Jimmy
    01/13/2017 at 03:41

    Affordability is the bottom line for me. All the flashy home automation gadgets don't appeal. Just be careful when looking at good deals to save a buck, Xfinity will screw you over in the long run if you sign up on their promotional offers. Better to get a higher starting cost that stays the same then to have to deal with a fluctuating MMR down the road.

  15. Krupal
    01/13/2017 at 03:36

    Great information. I actually opted for Protect America following the guide I read here. It's really good, I strongly recommend.

  16. Vincent
    01/13/2017 at 03:32

    Mine has been outdated and I really need the best now. My experience with General Electric Simon XT Wireless Security System wasn't really a good one. Though not so bad. Still don't know the one to go with.

      05/10/2018 at 11:32

      vincent , as i said the dsc panel is pretty amazing,it also has capabilities (wireless). its easy to install,the programming is a little tricky, but you can always call tech support to help with that.

  17. Perpi
    01/13/2017 at 03:28

    Hi.. Jarlath you're actually a vivint user? It's great to know, I actually went through the reviews here I was considering going for it, though I was curious to see any review directly from a user. I'm glad you did. I will go for it. Thanks all.

    • Jarlath
      03/01/2017 at 15:12

      Yes Perpi, This is coming a bit late, I actually make use of vivint, its pretty cool, excellent security system with good services. I'm sure you might have started using it now, if not do not hesitate to opt for vivint its good. Cheers.

      • Patrick
        03/01/2017 at 15:14

        Thanks Jarlath, I did already. Quite efficient, everything is just okay.

  18. Jarlath
    01/13/2017 at 03:24

    Superb guide! I've been using Vivint, is really nice. Actually the monthly monitoring fee is high but its really worth it. No regrets at all.

  19. Bright
    01/13/2017 at 03:16

    Just wondering if any of the good security system could be purchased and shipped to someone elsewhere. Who does the installation then? just want to know the possibility. Thanks.

    • 02/02/2017 at 16:01

      Yeah, our #1, 3 and 5 recommended are all shipped to you. You get the alarm system in a box that comes pre-activated and then stick the sensors to the necessary areas. No wires or drilling necessary, the control panel comes with back up sensor and typically that and any security cameras purchased will be the only thing(s) needed to connect directly to a power source. Each of those companies also provides technical support to get it up and running. If this sounds uncomfortable for you then go with ADT or Vivint who will send the tech out for you.

  20. Cindy
    01/13/2017 at 02:58

    Thanks Alarm Reviews, I got the security system I actually need. Your reviews played a vital role. Keep it up.

  21. Jake
    01/13/2017 at 02:55

    Piper Security Camera system is indeed relatively new. I had wanted to try using it, but the negative reviews from users actually turned me down. I think they need to make some changes to get going.

  22. Michael
    01/13/2017 at 02:34

    Thanks Alarm Reviews for putting this guide together, so much information I don't know if I am more confused or less than when I started ;). Probably going to choose ADT or Vivint so I get a quality system done for me, I'm okay with paying a little money out of pocket for the best overall experience.

  23. Mitchelle
    01/13/2017 at 02:27

    After going through the review here I opted for the Protect America Wireless Home Security System. It has been so nice. Works exactly as reviewed here. Thanks for an accurate review. That was a perfect guide.

  24. Kerri
    11/27/2016 at 00:29

    Adt and front point are the ones I'm considering! I'm just going to see who gives me the best deal...

  25. Paula
    11/26/2016 at 20:11

    What's that little fob looking thing with the adt system. Can you set the alarm with a punch of the button?

    • 12/01/2016 at 12:42

      Key remote to turn it on and off remotely. Works at a distance up to 150' from the main control panel. Still very useful, you can also use their app (most companies provide one now) to turn it on and off from a phone. You can always turn the security system on and off by entering the key code but it is just less convenient then the new (as of the past 5 years) methods.

  26. Kathy
    11/26/2016 at 03:23

    I love all these wireless systems,but just curious how long the batteries actually last for??

    • 12/28/2016 at 16:44

      Most of them are ion lithium batteries and each panel has a backup. They last for 5 to 8 years and will beep and notify the company monitoring them that they need to be replaced before dying. Most people never have to change out their sensors in the lifetime of the security system but if you do it is easy or they will send out a rep (for a small fee) to do it for you. By the time you need a replacement battery you may qualify for new security equipment or some people switch to a new company for better promotional offers.

  27. Tammy
    11/26/2016 at 03:08

    Don't let a company sell you a bunch of equipment you don't need. Make a list of what you do and don't want before talking to a sales rep so you don't stray off from it!

  28. Sammie
    11/24/2016 at 01:21

    Just make sure the equipment you get is high quality equipment. Lower cost doesn't mean high usually means cheaper equipment that doesn't work as well.

  29. Nicky
    11/22/2016 at 01:24

    Interesting, some of these seem really outdated and some seem over the top. I just need to find middle ground equipment that works great. Which is that ?!

    • 11/23/2016 at 11:50

      Middle would be ADT (888-285-0760) or Protect America Nicky. Over the top would be Vivint and outdated are numbers 10 thru 20. Thanks

      • Joan
        11/26/2016 at 02:55

        Wow outdated is 10 through 20?! Wow... I'm really shocked to see how they don't try to keep up! Thanks for the info!.

  30. Kevin
    11/22/2016 at 01:20

    Is the price what everyone is concerned about? How about our safety first? I'm picking the company that has the better response time in getting help for me!

  31. Bethanne
    11/21/2016 at 21:06

    Wow I didn't realize that these were not extremely expensive!! I was told by someone that I wouldn't be able to afford it. Thanks for this detailed list so I can figure out what's right for me!

  32. Taylor
    11/21/2016 at 02:21

    Scout is definitely aimed towards the millennials foe the different fashionably looks and all app related. But the high price and glitches are not worth it for me!! :)

  33. Kelsey
    11/21/2016 at 01:13

    You know what I'm loving is my security door bell. I love seeing who's out front before I even open the door!! Best invention ever!! You should ask your company if they have it available!

    • 11/21/2016 at 14:36

      Hey Kelsey, we did a separate review of the top doorbell cameras, check it out by clicking our name above.

  34. George
    11/20/2016 at 02:42

    I don't think I would get any system where drilling and running wire has to be completed. I don't want all that nonsense. I don't care how cheap and how much equipment you get with it. You will regret that decision when you stop their service and you have holes everywhere.

  35. Shelby
    11/20/2016 at 01:51

    It's hard to have the money up front for a lot of people and this way you don't get locked into a contract regarding the equipment.

  36. Grace
    11/20/2016 at 01:16

    $400 startup cost from Honeywell is just insane. Do people really pay this when there are so many other cheaper companies out there?

  37. Tonia
    11/19/2016 at 07:33

    The most detailed reviews I have come across regarding security systems. Seems like there isn't much deviation from one company to another, more of a preference, convenience and price! Much better than going with the locals who charge $90/month with $1500 installation fee.

  38. Ed
    11/10/2016 at 02:51

    I just don't understand this whole canary all in one canister thing. Plus it's new, I don't want to be someone's test dummy and put my safety at risk. I just don't understand how it works.

  39. Charles
    11/07/2016 at 00:57

    I don't know about anyone else, but I'm not going with a company that I've never heard of before. I feel safer with a company that is well known for security like ADT.

  40. Chrissy
    11/06/2016 at 19:35

    Protect America works perfectly for me. I have a smaller condo and don't need a ton of equipment. But I think if I move to a larger place, I might go with a different system to get more equipment for my money. But for now, the equipment they gave me is exactly what I was looking for and easy to install.

  41. Theodore
    11/04/2016 at 15:51

    With an increased awareness of safety and a heightened sense of security being demonstrated among homeowners for the protection of self and family. It is not surprising that the choice for the best home alarm system remains a tough one. Your review has done a more than commendable job in making clear gray areas in the search for a good and reliable home alarm system. Nice work!

  42. Helga V.
    11/04/2016 at 15:38

    Amazing review! The quality of service and durability of gadgets are two very important criteria I considered before choosing an alarm system for my home. I opted for Protect America. The monitoring system of Protect America has been above satisfactory. I definitely would recommend.

  43. Chrissy
    11/04/2016 at 02:28

    I'm really interested in the Vivint system. I have a small place and I think this would work perfectly for what I want, but I'm not sure if I can handle it. I'm not an expert at technology but I'm fairly good at figuring things out. It has a great rating....I'm really considering it and considering calling them up. Thanks for this post or I would have never have known about this company.

  44. Amber
    11/03/2016 at 21:06

    Great post!! You are right about people waiting until it happens to them to get an alarm. That's what we did! I went with ADT and love them. I didn't know about asking for Ann upgrade though. I was considering switching but now I'm just going to ask for my upgrade. 🙂

  45. Salman
    10/24/2016 at 16:38

    I'm not sure you were being fair to SimpliSafe. While it may not be the best, it beats many competitors with a reasonable monitoring price. The up-front price is rather high, for what you get, but it works in the long run. Fortress plans to have a monitoring plan in a few weeks; like Wolf-Guard, the equipment looks outdated.

  46. Tyron R
    10/20/2016 at 11:48

    In my quest for the best security system for my home, I stumbled on this site from a search result. Now I can say I have found peace of mind because this detailed review has helped greatly in choosing which I should use for my home. For now, I am going to try doing it myself with FrontPoint. Can you add additional insight about companies and the contract (lengths) each has?

    • 10/24/2016 at 08:42

      Hey Tyron, Sure thing! Here they are: ADT - 36 months (standard). FrontPoint - 36 months Protect America 36 months Vivint 42-60 months Monitronics - 36 months Scout - 24+/- months LiveWatch - 60 months XFINITY - 24 or 36 months AT&T Digital Life - 36+ months Before signing any agreement make sure you understand everything over the phone. We also don't recommend anything over 36 months. Most all of these companies will relocate a security system to your new home (free or $99) one time during the 3-5 years.

  47. Sharon
    10/19/2016 at 22:25

    I stay alone and I have been wondering what set of security equipments I needed to stay and feel protected. It was all mentioned in your detailed post. Thanks for the enlightenment.

  48. Jay
    10/14/2016 at 10:03

    Nice to know there are some companies that can take over my existing Honeywell equipment and upgrade the other stuff to wireless. I'm glad the top 10 you have listed all offer mobile control, I don't see the point in getting one if you can't control it from smart tablets. $50 a month for your wife to sleep better and know what's going on in the home is not a bad deal! Thanks guys

  49. Dallin Symons
    09/27/2016 at 11:37

    Options 10 through 20 look like a crap shoot. I will definitely be going with a brand I can trust and that can move with me to my next location without re-signing a lease on the equipment or new contract. Now that everything is wireless and they all have smartphone connect, it seems to be a matter of pricing and preference over who has the best overall security system.

  50. Diane
    09/22/2016 at 00:57

    Very informative and helpful comparison. This post will help customers decide which one is the best for their home security. Thank you for noting down their comparisons so that it would be easier for us to see how they differ from one another. There's no doubt that each company has superior offer but we could only opt for only one.

  51. Pat
    09/13/2016 at 13:52

    Thanks. I'm glad you emphasized home automation in your review process. Not much point to having an alarm system that can't be controlled by smart devices. I see more similarities in this top list than I do differences, it seems hard for any of the companies to be really unique. It comes down to a matter of dollars and preference.

  52. Dan Sourthard
    09/13/2016 at 11:09

    Great review of all these different monitoring options. I'm a firm believer if you are going to get a security system make sure it is being monitored. Not a fan of the new 'self monitoring' systems where you only get phone notifications. This puts alot of pressure on the user. Heck, I miss half the phone calls I get as it is, I would hate to miss a home break-in alert and know the cops never got called because of it.

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