Searching for a home security system is an important choice and I hope you find the reviews helpful. If you do, please take a moment to share it with your friends. Whether your home just got broken into, you want to prevent a break-in or want piece of mind picking the right alarm system for your family is essential. When you are searching for a home security system here are some of the things that you will probably want in your system:
- A system that uses fully wireless sensors
- Cellular communication is a must (no cutting landline phone)
- Full online management of the system (arm, disarm, sensor & panel history, email and text alerts)
- Outdoor rated, wireless (except for power) video cameras with live remote viewing & in the cloud video clip archiving.
- Self installable and self maintainable
- Transparent, no haggle pricing for all upfront equipment and monthly monitoring fees.
Should you go with ADT or Brinks or other?
I originally started doing research as we had just bought our first home and our realtor had given me ADT’s phone number and a supposed special pricing offer. I had heard about ADT and knew they were a large company, and for some reason I liked their commercial showing all of the numbers shoot around and surround your home showing it’s secure so I figured what the heck and gave them a call. Before we move forward with our review I want to be upfront and let you know that we are affiliated with some of the products that we mention on our site. We always are honest with our reviews and our goal and intention is to have the best and most complete reviews to help people decide which alarm system is best for them! We only recommend companies that we have either used ourselves, maintain the highest standards, or thoroughly vetted.
I called ADT and they offered some me a “special” of $99 home installation, and that included 3 sensors, 1 motion sensor and a key fob. I told her that for right now I needed to do some research and talk to my wife and figure out what we wanted to do.
I started doing research and reading nearly every online review possible for ADT. For the most part, people were less than satisfied. You have to pay for professional installation, you cannot really take the security system with you if you move. You are also obligated to 24-36+ month contracts. Worst of all, their system is proprietary, so you if you want to change providers you can’t. The large companies like ADT put a “local” code on your alarm panel that prevents you from switching to another monitoring company. If you choose a company that is DIY there is no lock code to worry about and you can choose whichever monitoring company you would like more easily.
FrontPoint Home Security
Long story short, my wife and I decided against ADT, and we came across FrontPoint Security.
FrontPoint Security is Anglies List A rated, and have a 5 star rating on Yelp here in the Phoenix area where we are located. Once you place an order you can expect your system to arrive two – three days later, with free shipping. It takes an additional 30 minutes to install the system, and about another 15-30 minutes on the phone to activate the system.
For those that love technology, you will be thrilled. Don’t worry, you don’t need to be tech savvy, but for those of you that are–you will be in nerd heaven. Their online management portal lets you rename all of the sensors any way that you would like, and the assigned names are sent back to the panel wirelessly. If anyone opens a door you can see it online in about 8 seconds. You can set up alerts and notifications for nearly every single type of scenario, such as, “Your daughter didn’t get home and disarm the panel by 3:00PM after school.” scenario. The wireless video cameras (other than power) are always available to stream to your smartphone or can be viewed online. It will record video clips, and also send you alerts to view those clips based on either alarm panel, sensor events as well as motion detection events. You can also scope the motion detection to specific times of day. If the monitor center loses communication with the panel (if it was perhaps smashed or malfunctioning) they immediately reach out to you.
They also have an awesome mobile app that is fantastic. They even have a dedicated version for tablets. Anything that you are able to see on their website you can see in their app. You can see sensor and panel history, live video feed as well as any recorded video clips that were trigged by specific conditions that you set. The app also supports geo-fenced alerts that tell you if you have left the house, but perhaps forgot to arm your panel. It will even text you when you’ve left the garage open for longer than an hour.
One thing to note is that the upfront cost is about the same or a little more because you are purchase and own the equipment which in my point of view is a big bonus. They have sensors, control panel, motion sensors, glass break sensor, keychain remote, touch screen, smoke and heat sensor, wireless camera, carbon monoxide sensor, freeze sensor, garage door sensor, panic pendant, water / flood sensor, wireless light control are all available for purchase. They have upfront pricing available that can be seen here: http://shop.frontpointsecurity.com/checkout/view and their prices are in line with their competitors which we respect (no unexpected fees here)!
In the end, I highly recommend FrontPoint. For $49.99 / month for their high end monitoring plan that includes every kind of alerting and monitoring that you can think of, live as well as recorded video functionality from as many cameras as you would like to purchase.
They also offer basic monitoring which is $34.99 / month. There are cheaper options out there, but they are not quite as functional. FrontPoint have met all of our criteria and we feel like we are getting our money’s worth, and if we ever decide to move (hopefully not for a long time) we will be taking our system with us!