If you live in Columbia or are moving there and considering a new home security system, we’ll introduce you to some of the best options in the area so you can narrow down your choices and make a final decision.
According to Neighborhood Scout, Columbia’s property crime rate is more than twice the national average. In 2018, the FBI crime report listed almost 5,000 incidents of larceny-theft, with over a thousand burglaries, nearly 800 car thefts and just over 650 cases of aggravated assault.
Local Spotlight: CPI Security — Local Security Provider
CPI Security has been offering home security to customers in the Carolinas, including Columbia, for 25 years. The company emphasizes award-winning in-house monitoring and an ongoing connection to the local community, including a long list of charitable ventures. CPI offers a wide variety of equipment packages, including indoor and outdoor security cameras, smart home automation and touch screen control hubs.
CPI Security plans start at $29.99 per month and all of its packages are wireless, so you don’t need a landline phone connection. Equipment packages start at the minimum possible and range all the way to fully loaded customized security and automation solutions. CPI offers professional installation and will even integrate with your previous provider’s equipment.
Calling itself “the largest privately held security provider in the Southeast,” CPI offers home security solutions in nine different states. The company offers three plans with professional installation and monitoring, and boasts an award-winning monitoring station to help keep customers safe.
ADT is known for its longevity in the industry and its certified monitoring centers. Choose from one of ADT’s four packages or customize to fit your needs.
★ Recommended Plan ADT’s Video Lite Planis nothing minor — you’ll get motion detection, smart home capabilities, and video surveillance. Equipment starts at $599. Professional monitoring starts at $54.99 per month.
Winner of the 2020 IoT Breakthrough Award for its outdoor camera, Vivint is a leader in home security with its expansive equipment lineup and features.
★ Recommended Plan Vivint’s Smart Home Service has a ton of features and devices to help you protect your home to include the basics plus home hazard monitoring devices. Equipment starts at $599.99. Professional monitoring starts at $29.99 per month.
Flexible equipment configuration
Flexible payment options
Variety of cutting-edge smart home devices and features
Keep those pesky burglars away with a SimpliSafe security system. Choose from a range of packages and equipment, and get inexpensive professional monitoring.
★ Recommended Plan We recommend The Barrington if you’re interested in SimpliSafe. This package combines intrusion detection and video surveillance. Equipment starts at $388.93. Professional monitoring starts at $14.99 per month.
Inexpensive professional monitoring
Mobile alerts not available in the basic monitoring plan
No selection of smart home devices
Smart home capabilities not available in basic monitoring plan
Nationally recognized for its customer service, Frontpoint is a top contender in home security with a range of packages you can choose from.
★ Recommended Plan For the basics—a hub, sensors, and signage—Frontpoint’s Safe Home Starter plan comes at an affordable price. Equipment starts at $319.95. Professional monitoring starts at $44.99 per month.
Renter-friendly services and equipment
Good customer service
Outdoor camera, doorbell camera only available as add-ons
Factors to Consider When Buying a Home Security System
Price & Contracts
Are you looking to pay for your equipment upfront or finance over a period of time? You’ll also need to decide whether you want to commit to a contract or have the freedom to cancel your provider’s service without penalty.
Choose between 24/7 professional monitoring or self monitoring. Both have its perks – with professional monitoring, a specialist is available around the clock to help, and with self monitoring, you’ll be in charge and can avoid a monthly fee.
Want a professional to install your security system for you, or would you rather install it on your own? Most providers either require professional installation, DIY installation, or offer a choice of both.
As the brain of your security system, the control panel allows you to arm and disarm your security system, manage smart home devices, and in some cases, speak with a monitoring center specialist via two-way communication. Learn more about the control panels offered by ADT, Vivint, and Brinks.
As one of the sentinels in your home, the motion sensor captures unusual activity, and your system lets you know. Some providers have motion sensors that are designed to be pet-friendly, avoiding pets under 80 pounds to help prevent false alarms. Learn more about motion sensors here in our post.
Door/window sensors are sentinels for your entry points. Most have a discreet profile so they’re not easily seen, but once an entry point is breached, your control panel sounds an alarm to let the intruder know they’ve been caught. Learn more about the door/window sensors offered by Frontpoint, Protect America, and SimpliSafe.
Indoor security camera
If you want to be able to monitor the interior of your home, communicate with family members, and check in on pets, then choosing an indoor security camera is a great option. Most indoor cameras feature HD video, come with night vision, and have two-way communication. Learn more about indoor security camera options offered by SimpliSafe, Vivint, and Abode.
Outdoor security camera
Keep tabs on your property no matter your location with an outdoor security cameras. Most outdoor cameras have weatherproof features, night vision, and some even have deterrence features. Learn more about the outdoor security camera options offered by ADT, Vivint, and Frontpoint.
Video doorbell camera
Check your front doorstep without having to leave work with a video doorbell camera. Most video doorbells have built-in two-way communication and night vision. Learn more about the video doorbells offered by Guardian Protection, Vivint, and SimpliSafe.
With a smart thermostat, you can potentially improve your home’s energy efficiency. Most smart thermostats allow you to program them, creating a schedule for when your home’s heating and cooling system turns on. Some will also automatically adjust themselves based on certain conditions. Learn more about the smart thermostats offered by Vivint,Frontpoint, and ADT.
Go keyless with a smart lock, designed so you can easily lock or unlock your door via app. Some smart locks have a keycode feature, allowing you to set unique PINs for family members and or professionals who may need to access your home. Learn more about the smart locks offered by Guardian Protection, Protect America, and Scout.
Can’t decide? Compare top providers side-by-side: ADT vs. SimpliSafe, Vivint vs. Frontpoint, and more.
Which of these home security providers offer smart home devices?
CPI Security offers many home automation equipment options such as automatic locks, thermostats, garage door openers and lights. Family First Security also offers a variety of home automation solutions.
Researched by the
The Safety Team is a group of experts that handle provider research, product reviews and recalls to make your home safety and security search as easy as 1-2-3.