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Last Updated: Apr 2024

Best Home Security Systems of 2024
Protect what matters most

Need a home security system? Enjoy 24/7 professional monitoring, custom alerts, and remote arming functions. Compare the best security systems below.

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Our Best Home Security Provider

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We find the 10 best options, so you can make informed decisions on tons of products and services.

*Nest Doorbell Professionally Installed Free: Requires 36-month monitoring contract starting at $56.99/mo. with QSP (24-month monitoring contract in California, total fees from $1,367.76), and enrollment in ADT EasyPay. Offer includes installation of one (1) Nest Doorbell with minimum purchase price of $599 after promotion is applied depending on geographic location. Maximum discount $229. Nest Doorbell includes wired or battery options. Offer available for new ADT customers only. Limit one per customer, not combinable with other offers. Upon early termination by Customer, ADT may charge 75% of the monthly service charges due for the balance of the initial contract term. Quality Service Plan (QSP) is ADT’s Extended Limited Warranty. Service and installation charges vary depending on system configuration, equipment and services selected. Google and Nest Doorbell are trademarks of Google LLC. Some features, including mobile notifications, remote control, video streaming, and video recording, require working internet and Wi-Fi. Minimum OS requirements are available at g.co/home/req. iOS is a trademark of Cisco and is used under license. Expires 03/31/24.

†$100 ADT Visa Reward Card: Requires 36-month monitoring contract starting at $28.99/mo. (24-month monitoring contract in California, total fees from 695.76), and enrollment in ADT EasyPay. Requires minimum purchase price of $449. One (1) Visa Reward Card valued at $100 is redeemable seven (7) days after system is installed, wherein an email is sent to the customer's email address associated with their account with a promo code. The customer must validate the promo code on the website provided in the email and a physical card will be sent in the mail. Installation must occur within 60 days of offer expiration date to receive card. Applicable to new and resale sale types only. Card is issued by Pathward, N.A., Member FDIC, pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. No cash access or recurring payments. Can be used everywhere Visa debit cards are accepted. Card valid for up to 6 months; unused funds will forfeit after the valid thru date. Card terms and conditions apply. Expires 03/31/24.

Theft Protection Guarantee: Customer may receive reimbursement of up to five hundred dollars ($500) of Customer’s homeowner’s insurance deductible (if any) if, and only if, ALL requirements for Theft Protection Guarantee are met to ADT’s reasonable satisfaction. Customer must request reimbursement within 60 days of property loss. Request must be mailed to ADT and include: Theft Protection Guarantee certificate signed by Customer, a letter from Customer requesting reimbursement, a copy of the police report, and a copy of the accepted insurance claim. ADT reserves the right to reject any application for reimbursement that does not comply with all of the requirements.

ADT Money-Back Guarantee: Money-back guarantee only applies after ADT has made attempts to resolve a system related issue and has not been able to resolve that issue within the first six (6) months of your contract. Equipment must be fully removed before a refund will be processed. Conditions preventing normal system operation cannot be caused by the customer.

GENERAL: Additional charges may apply in areas that require guard response service for municipal alarm verification. System remains property of ADT. Local permit fees may be required. Prices and offers subject to change and may vary by market. Additional taxes and fees may apply. Satisfactory credit required. A security deposit may be required. Simulated screen images and photos are for illustrative purposes only.

©2024 ADT LLC. All rights reserved. ADT, the ADT logo, (800) ADT-ASAP and the product/service names listed in this document are marks and/or registered marks. Unauthorized use is strictly prohibited. Third-party marks are the property of their respective owners. License information available at www.ADT.com/legal or by calling (800) ADT-ASAP. CA ACO7155, 974443, PPO120288; MA 172C; NC Licensed by the Alarm Systems Licensing Board of the State of North Carolina; 2736-CSA, 2397-CSA, 2381-CSA; NY 12000305615, 12000261120; PA 090797; MS 15019511.




Professionally installed vs. DIY home security systems

Many companies are moving towards do-it-yourself installation, with contracts that require less of a commitment. These security systems are typically easy enough for you to set up at your house on your own and can be integrated with Alexa or similar digital home management systems and linked up with your mobile devices. DIY systems don't require wiring into your electrical system, which is a big part of what makes the installation easy.

It also means that if you move, you can take the system with you quite easily.

On the other hand, you may want to go with a professionally-installed system. These systems can be more pricey, but they typically come with the option for professional monitoring, as well as warranties and customer support. In addition, you most likely won’t be responsible for repairs, and with the professional installation, you'll be more assured that everything is set up just right.

What are the different types of home security systems?

Local Alarm system - This is the most basic sort of alarm out there. Local alarm systems include sensors on the doors and windows of a house or business which will set off an alarm in the event that somebody trips the sensors. Think of the alarm set up on a storefront after hours. These systems are not monitored by a central control station or any company operators and cannot be controlled remotely.

Wired home alarm system - These are systems that use a number of sensors connected to a central control panel which can be used to shut off the system or alert the authorities. These systems are typically linked to a central call center, which will be notified if the alarm is set off, at which point the monitoring service can contact the homeowner or the authorities.

Wireless alarm systems - A wireless system uses radio frequency transmitters to signal the control panel if someone trips your alarm. It will then set off the alarm.

All of the 3 main types of systems can be linked to a monitoring service which will contact you and/or the authorities in the event of a security breach. This is optional and tends to require an extra charge, typically on a monthly basis.

The features you should expect in a security system

There are home security systems for just about any budget, and how much you pay will for the most part be linked to the set of features that come with your system.

Here’s a look at a few of them:

  • Remote Access

This feature allows you to keep control of the reins of your security system even if you’re far away from your home. With remote access you can link your security system to your mobile device and receive instant notifications in the event of a security issue. You can also use remote access to alert the authorities or get an instant live feed image of what’s happening inside your house, depending on the plan you purchased.

  • 24/7 Professional Monitoring

With 24/7 professional monitoring, you’ll always have somebody watching your back, including during the daytime hours, when most break-ins happen. Even if you’re at work or unable to reach your mobile device, a monitoring service will keep an eye on your system if anything is set off, and can contact you and/or local law enforcement in the event of break-ins.

  • Wireless connection

The old days of security systems that ran through the phone line and could be cut by a burglar with some wire snips are long gone. With wireless systems you will always be online without any cumbersome wires, and if the WiFi goes down for any reason, many of these systems have safeguards in place that will keep them online.

  • Cameras

Cameras both inside and outside your house are a big part of securing your house and making sure that you can keep an eye on things even when you’re far from home. These systems can be linked to your mobile device so you can monitor what’s going on at your house from your phone or tablet (or desktop computer) and zoom in, out, and pan across the property.

  • Fire and Flood Monitoring

Many home security systems come with sensors that can spot heat and humidity - letting you know of fire or water damage in your house. You can also find home security systems that detect carbon monoxide leaks.

  • Smart doors and locks

The classic deadbolt just got an upgrade. These smart locks can be set up so that whenever someone approaches your door you’re given a notification—including live video footage of the visitor. Some even enable 2-way audio, so if you’re curious who’s on your doorstep in the middle of a work day, you can ask them yourself. These locks can also be controlled remotely, so you don’t need to worry about whether or not you locked the door when you left for work.

  • “Crash and Smash” protection

Not every burglar has the same level of finesse. Sometimes, a more...forward approach is used. With most security systems, the homeowner is given a few seconds to shut off the alarm before police are notified. Many burglars will try to quickly smash the security system panel after breaking in, so as to shut off the alarm. Subtle? No, but often effective. Security system companies know about this trick, and many security systems are set up to detect this sort of sabotage and trigger the alarm anyway.

Which system is right for you?

There’s no single security system that will work for everyone. You may find that all you want is a simple smart lock that alerts you when someone visits your doorstep, or a full portfolio of security measures, including cameras inside and out with remote access, flood and fire monitoring, and full-time professional monitoring from a call center that will watch your back.

Deciding what’s right for you is a matter of looking at your budget and deciding which measures you think are worth the investment. Regardless of how extensive the package is, even just a few security measures is an improvement.

Security and peace of mind

A home security system is an affordable way to provide a level of protection and peace of mind for the biggest investment in your life, and the place you and your family plan to build your dreams. Take a look at your budget and what you want in a security company, and in no time you should be able to find the best home security with the right mix for you.


Our Top 3 Picks

  • 1
    ADT

    ADT

    • Best forProfessional monitoring and reliable customer service
    • PriceFrom $45.99/month
    • Money-back guaranteeSix months limited

    ADT is a reliable home security company with more than 140 years of industry experience. They offer a range of services, including 24/7 monitoring, professional installation, and a variety of equipment options such as cameras, door and window sensors, and smart home devices.

    Andrew Sinden, Cybersecurity Expert at StarLinkHow, remarks that ADT is a "reputable firm with a long history of offering trustworthy and complete security solutions." This sentiment is especially reflected in ADT's many positive customer reviews and six-month money-back guarantee—the longest full refund window on our list.

    Why we chose ADT: They use smart home integrations and provide comprehensive 24/7 protection. You can even monitor your home and control your security system from anywhere in the world with their mobile app.

    Our experience: The installation was seamless and quick—the technician also helped us set up the mobile app and put up a yard sign saying the house had a security system installed.

    Pros
    • 24/7 professional monitoring
    • Customizable security systems
    • Mobile app has overwhelmingly positive reviews
    Cons
    • Fixed three-year contract
    • Professional installation required
  • 2
    Vivint

    Vivint

    • Best forActive crime deterrence
    • PriceFrom $19.99/month
    • Money-back guaranteeN/A

    Vivint is a highly rated company that provides a range of smart security kits. Their app gives you complete control of your home, letting you switch your lights on and off, monitor security cameras, and lock and unlock doors directly from your phone.

    Raj, Chief Editor at WireQuality, calls Vivint "an innovative home technology provider" and remarks on their dedication to "ease of use, seamless connectivity, and enhancing safety and convenience for homeowners."

    Why we chose Vivint: Vivint's professional installers evaluate your home before suggesting equipment, so you get personalized service from day one. They even provide energy management services to save you money on electric bills.

    Our experience: We liked Vivint's Smart Deter technology, which wards off potential burglars with sounds and lights as soon as security sensors detect them.

    Pros
    • Innovative Smart Deter technology
    • Customizable security solutions
    • Integration with smart home automation devices
    Cons
    • Unclear money-back guarantee window
    • No DIY installation options
  • 3
    SimpliSafe

    SimpliSafe

    • Best forQuick, wireless installation
    • PriceFrom $27.99/month
    • Money-back guarantee60 days

    SimpliSafe provides user-friendly, dependable, and customizable wireless security systems with 24/7 monitoring. You can choose the level of service you need for installation - professional or DIY, as well as the level of monitoring you'll need. 

    Eric Lee, Co-Founder of real estate investment firm REI Insiders, mentions that "SimpliSafe is a great budget option, and it's easy to install and use." Most of their devices are also plug-and-play, such as video doorbells and smart locks.

    Why we chose SimpliSafe: SimpliSafe's wireless systems don't require professional installation, although they offer this as an option. And, all their contracts are month-to-month, so you don't have to commit to a yearly agreement like with other companies.

    Our experience: It's straightforward to set up the monitoring system and mount components with the attached sticky pads. Access to customer service was also convenient—we especially liked their live chat feature.

    Pros
    • Easy, no-drilling installation
    • Works over WiFi and cellular networks
    • No contracts
    Cons