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The 10 Best Home Security Systems of 2020

We’ve reviewed the top home security companies to help you choose the best one for your needs. See why we chose SimpliSafe as the best home security provider overall for easy installation and affordability.
Updated Dec 7, 2020

Compare the Best Home Security Systems

  • simplisafe-logo
    Overall DIY
    Monitoring starts at
    $14.99/mo.*
    Equipment starts at
    $229
    Self monitoring
    DIY & Professional
    Contract
    4.7
  • Abode Security Logo
    All-In-One Security System
    Monitoring starts at
    $20/mo.*
    Equipment starts at
    $229
    Self monitoring
    DIY & Professional
    Contract
    4.5
  • Nest Logo
    Google Assistant Functionality
    Monitoring starts at
    $19/mo.*
    Equipment starts at
    $399
    Self monitoring
    DIY & Professional
    Contract
    4.4
  • ADT Home Security Logo
    Traditional Home Security
    Monitoring starts at
    $45.99/mo.*
    Equipment starts at
    $599
    Self monitoring
    Professional
    Contract
    4.2
  • Brinks home security
    DIY and Pro. Monitoring
    Monitoring starts at
    $39/mo.*
    Equipment starts at
    $199
    Self monitoring
    DIY & Professional
    Contract
    4.1
  • blue by adt home security system review
    Free Month of Monitoring
    Monitoring starts at
    $19.99/mo.*
    Equipment starts at
    $109.19
    Self monitoring
    DIY & Professional
    Contract
    4
  • Vivint Home Security Logo
    Product Lineup and Features
    Monitoring starts at
    $29.99/mo.*
    Equipment starts at
    $599.99
    Self monitoring
    Professional
    Contract
    3.9
  • link interactive
    Locked Monthly Rates
    Monitoring starts at
    $30.99/mo.*
    Equipment starts at
    Request a quote
    Self monitoring
    DIY
    Contract
    3.9
  • Frontpoint Home Security Logo
    Good Customer Service
    Monitoring starts at
    $44.99/mo.*
    Equipment starts at
    $319.95
    Self monitoring
    DIY
    Contract
    3.8
  • Cove Security Logo
    Payment Options
    Monitoring starts at
    $14.99/mo.*
    Equipment starts at
    Around $290
    Self monitoring
    DIY
    Contract
    3.7
*Monitoring price shown is for entry-level professional monitoring service.
**Nest - Contract is required for $19/mo. monitoring plan with Brinks
***Cove - Warranty is based on the monitoring plan chosen.
- Please note that BBB ratings, plans, pricing, and other details can change without our knowledge.

Home Security Deals

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Which home security system is best for me?

Overall, Simplisafe is the best home security system in our opinion, but below are some additional recommendations for specific customer needs:

 

If you’re looking for affordable home security system:

We recommend SimpliSafe, Ring and Blue by ADT. These affordable home security providers have lower upfront costs for equipment packages. Ring currently offers the cheapest professional monitoring.

 

If you rent an apartment or townhome:

For renters, we recommend SimpliSafe, Cove and Ring. The best home security systems for renters offer wireless security systems that you can set up yourself to avoid any installation fees.

 

If you are looking for the highest camera resolution:

We recommend the ADT Indoor Camera as the best for monitored security, and the Nest Cam IQ as the best smart indoor camera. Nest also offers the best outdoor camera with the Nest Cam IQ Outdoor Camera, known for its AI features.

 

If you want the best smart home integrations with Google Home and Alexa:

We recommend Nest Security, which works seamless with Google. Ring Home Security pairs well with Amazon products.

 

If you want the best reliability and customer service:

We recommend ADT for their industry experience in Home Security. Frontpoint Security is recognized for their customer service and overall value packages. 

 

If you want a security system best protects your pet:

Some of the best home security systems for pet owners are Cove, Simplisafe and ADT. Each of these providers will have a professional install your system for you, and offer pet-immune sensors to avoid false alarms.

You can also use our recommendation tool below.

What is the best home security package for you?

Use our Package Finder to find the right package based on your home security needs!

Best Home Security System Reviews

  • Best Overall
    simplisafe-logo

    SimpliSafe Home Security

    Our rating
    9.3
    Starting at
    $14.99/mo

    Our Take on SimpliSafe Home Security

    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. Self-monitoring is free.

    Pros

    • Inexpensive professional monitoring
    • Wireless equipment
    • Cellular monitoring
    • Free self-monitoring

    Cons

    • Mobile alerts not available in the basic monitoring plan
    • No selection of smart home devices
    • Smart home capabilities not available in basic monitoring plan
    • Research SimpliSafe

    Research SimpliSafe

    SimpliSafe Security Packages & Smart Home Equipment

     

    SimpliSafe equipment is attractive, modern and easy to install, and it launches new products all the time. SimpliSafe systems work with Alexa and Google Assistant, so it supports voice commands through Amazon Echo and Google Home devices (sold separately). Note that the system doesn’t include a Z-wave or Zigbee smart home hub.

    SimpliSafe Monitoring Services

    SimpliSafe’s monitoring services are handled by COPS Monitoring, a proven leader with 41+ years of experience serving over 3 million customers. It offers two tiers of 24/7 monitoring plans (one with expanded app functionality, one without) with a Visual Verification option for customers with cameras. Visual Verification lets monitoring personnel review surveillance footage if an alarm is triggered, which SimpliSafe says speeds response time and reduces false alarms.

    DIY Installation

    Customers must set up their own equipment, but according to SimpliSafe, it usually takes less than 30 minutes. The ease of self-installation makes SimpliSafe a go-to choice for renters, homeowners and frequent movers alike. SimpliSafe also offers professional installation starting at $79.

    SimpliSafe Pricing & Value

    SimpliSafe pricing is very competitive. The main question is whether or not the DIY model and pricing structure work for you. With SimpliSafe, equipment packages start at $183 and must be paid for upfront (or financed through PayPal Credit) and monitoring fees are billed monthly. Long-term contracts not required.

    SimpliSafe’s Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic

    SimpliSafe is continuing to provide 24/7 alarm response for customers. This includes responding to alarms triggered for break-ins, fire, carbon monoxide, and medical assistance. SimpliSafe is also continuing to provide technical support by phone and ensures that they are following federal safety guidelines. Learn more here

  • Best for Self-Monitoring
    Abode Security Logo

    Abode Security

    Our rating
    9
    Starting at
    $20/mo

    Our Take on Abode Home Security

    With an all-in-one home security system and lots of smart home compatibility, Abode is an innovator, giving you the ability to choose between self- or professional monitoring.

     

    Recommended Plan
    The Iota All-In-One Security Kit combines motion detection, video surveillance, and two-way audio into a single hub for your home. Equipment starts at $299. Professional monitoring starts at $20 per month.

    Pros

    • Flexible monitoring plans
    • Option for short-term professional monitoring
    • Access to an all-in-one security system
    • Free self-monitoring

    Cons

    • Professional monitoring only available in highest tiered monitoring plan
    • Cellular backup not available in basic monitoring plan
    • Understanding custom home automation features could be difficult for some

    Research Abode

    Abode Security Packages & Smart Home Equipment

    Abode Home Security Equipment

    In terms of equipment, Abode offers the typical do-it-yourself selection of intrusion protection and alarms, plus a few different indoor camera and home automation options. It doesn’t have a carbon monoxide detector or an outdoor camera, which might be dealbreakers for some people. However, the Abode hub supports Z-wave, Zigbee, Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, so you can find plenty of compatible third-party devices.

    Abode Monitoring Service

    Abode offers affordable plans for both self-monitoring and professional monitoring. Self-monitoring through the mobile app is free, which is unusual. Many security providers will charge at least a nominal fee for full access to mobile app monitoring. There’s also a $7/mo. self-monitoring plan that includes cellular backup if the home wifi network goes down. Professional monitoring starts around $8.33/mo., and you can even get on-demand short-term professional monitoring for if you only need it now and then.

    Why Abode is the Best for Self-Monitoring

    Many people who are looking for DIY home security solutions want systems that they can install and monitor themselves. Because of its range of self- and professionally monitored plans, Abode is our top pick for the diehard DIYer.

    Abode Pricing & Value

    Abode is a budget-priced option for tech-savvy people who want to set up and monitor their own system. Equipment and/or monitoring are often steeply discounted if you bundle them together. We’ve seen professional monitoring start as low as $8.33/mo. with the purchase of a starter kit.

  • Best Smart Integrations
    Nest Logo

    Nest

    Our rating
    8.8
    Starting at
    $19.00/mo

    Our Take on Nest

    Access Google smart home technology with a Nest security system. Even better, Brinks will protect your home with Nest for as low as $19 per month.

     

    Recommended Plan
    Keep things simple with the Nest Secure Alarm System. You’ll get two Nest tags for easy arming & disarming and access to Google Assistant features. Equipment starts at $399. Professional monitoring starts at $19 per month.

    Pros

    • Reasonably priced DIY option
    • Contract for professional monitoring is optional
    • Easy to use

    Cons

    • No variety of preset hardware packages you can purchase
    • The cost of month-to-month professional monitoring is higher than contract option
    • Could lose one of the arming/disarming tags

    Research Nest

    Nest Packages & Smart Home Equipment

    Nest Home Security Equipment

    Nest currently has one home security system you can purchase, and that’s the Nest Secure System. It comes with the essentials you need for basic intrusion detection like a base station and sensors. You’ll also be able to use Google Assistant for voice control and additional Google smart devices with the Nest Secure System. Feel free to add on devices as you see fit for your home.

    Nest Monitoring Services

    Brinks Home Security provides professional monitoring for the Nest Secure System. Brinks’ monitoring service for Nest starts at $19/mo. Professional monitoring is optional with Nest – you can opt to self-monitor your home instead. If you choose professional monitoring for Nest, you’ll have access to Brinks’ fast response services.

    Best Smart Home Integrations

    It’s no secret that with Nest you’ll get access to some of the best smart home integrations with Google. If you have a Google smart device such as the Nest Hub, Google Home, and more. For voice control, simply ask Google Assistant to help.

    Nest Pricing & Value

    Nest’s security system is competitively priced compared to other DIY providers. Retailing for $399, the Nest Secure System gives you access to unique equipment like the Nest Guard Hub, two Nest tags for easy arming/disarming, two Nest Detector sensors, two open/close magnets, a power adapter, and additional items for getting started.

  • Best for Money-Back Guarantee
    ADT Home Security Logo

    ADT Home Security

    Our rating
    8.3
    Starting at
    $45.99/mo

    Our Take on ADT Home Security

    ADT is a well-recognized name in the home security business thanks to its top-notch equipment, award-winning monitoring centers and commitment to customer service. For people who feel like you get what you pay for, it’s hard to beat ADT.

    ADT prefers to provide a brief consultation before quoting a custom package. Contact ADT to get started.

     

    Recommended Plan
    ADT’s Video Lite Plan is 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.

    Pros

    • 6-month money-back guarantee
    • $500 theft protection guarantee
    • High-quality equipment

    Cons

    • Must pay for an extended warranty
    • Lengthy contracts
    • More expensive than competitors

    Research ADT

    ADT Security Packages & Smart Home Equipment

    ADT Control Package

    ADT offers one of the largest sets of equipment options on the market. Higher-tier packages include smartphone apps, smart home integration, camera options and more. We appreciate how ADT’s Command panel (available in the Control package and higher) doubles as a Z-wave smart home hub, so you can configure compatible devices from other manufacturers.

    ADT Monitoring Services

    ADT does not outsource its monitoring, like many smaller security providers do. It has six monitoring centers with 7,000 trained operators. These centers are certified by the Underwriters Laboratory (UL) and The Monitoring Association (TMA). They’re also fully redundant, meaning that connectivity has plenty of checks, balances and back-up options so you can count on 24/7 service and quick response time.

    Professional Installation

    ADT security systems require professional installation. This can save you a headache, since it ensures everything is set up correctly and includes one-on-one instruction. If you plan on moving in the near future, know that ADT offers a discounted Mover’s Package to qualified existing customers.

    ADT Pricing & Value

    To determine the price of your ADT system and service, add the costs of equipment, monitoring service and applicable taxes and fees. Note that ADT requires a long-term contract. Installation and early termination fees apply. You may also qualify for ADT specials and promotions.

    ADT’s Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic

    ADT is continuing to provide 24/7 alarm response and is working to resolve residential customer issues by phone as much as they can. If a customer’s issue cannot be resolved over the phone, ADT will send out a technician to help. The company is taking additional steps to ensure their technicians are well and safe by performing wellness checks and making sure each household is healthy before sending help. Learn more here

  • Best for Professional Monitoring
    Brinks home security

    Brinks Home Security

    Our rating
    8.2
    Starting at
    $19/mo

    Our Take on Brinks Home Security

    Like ADT, Brinks has earned a reputation for its commitment to customer service, quality monitoring and top-notch equipment. However, the company focuses primarily on human threats, not environmental threats.

     

    Recommended Plan

    We recommend the Brinks Smart Security Complete package because it balances affordability with quality equipment, including a security camera, touchscreen panel and motion detection. 

    Pros

    • 2-year equipment warranty
    • Impressive industry experience and reputation
    • Flexible installation options

    Cons

    • No equipment for environmental monitoring
    • Touchscreen control panel not available in all packages
    • Lengthy contracts for some equipment packages

    Research Brinks

    Brinks Home Security Packages & Smart Home Equipment

    Brinks home complete video package
    Brinks lets you choose between the Google Nest Secure Alarm System or Brinks’ own equipment packages. The Nest system (purchased through Brinks or major retailers like Google and Walmart) integrates with the entire lineup of Nest products and Google Assistant. Brinks equipment options include basic home security or home security with video, and the alarm panel is also a smart home hub compatible with Z-wave and Alexa devices.

    Brinks Home Security Monitoring Service

    Brinks owns and operates its own US-based monitoring center. Its monitoring service includes a benefit called ASAPer, which simultaneously messages a group of pre-set contacts to determine whether alarm activity is a true emergency or false alarm. Most monitoring center call household members one at a time, which can slow response times.

    DIY Installation with Professional Options

    Brinks security packages are meant to be self-installed. Optional professional help is available through a Nest Pro or Brinks Customer Care for an additional fee.

    Brinks Home Security Pricing & Value

    Brinks provides value by offering a choice of pricing agreements. The Nest option starts at $399 for equipment, and customers can choose between $29.99/mo. no-commitment monitoring or $19.99/mo. with a three-year contract. Brinks equipment packages require a 36-month contract. Equipment starts at $199 for the most basic package and monitoring starts at $29/mo.

    Brinks’ Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic

    In addition to providing 24/7 alarm response, Brinks is continuing to provide on-site service for its customers. Brinks technicians will check in with customers to ask about symptoms before an appointment to protect themselves and those they serve. If you or a family member are ill or are experiencing illness symptoms, Brinks asks that you reschedule your appointment. Learn more here

  • Showing 5 of 10 items

How Do We Rank the Best Home Security Systems?


Learn more about our reviews and ranking methodology here.

Common Home Security Equipment and Features

  • ADT Control Panel

    Control Panel/Hub

    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.

  • LifeShield by ADT Motion Sensor

    Motion sensor

    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.

  • Frontpoint Door and Window Sensor

    Door/window sensor

    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.

  • ADT Indoor Camera

    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.

  • Nest Cam Outdoor Security Camera

    Outdoor security camera

    Keep tabs on your property no matter your location with an outdoor security camera. 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.

  • SimpliSafe VideoDoorbell

    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.

  • Vivint Element Thermostat

    Smart thermostat

    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.

  • Smart lock Image

    Smart lock

    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.

Best Home Security Systems by City

Home Security Stats

Safety.com conducted a home security survey to find out more about alarm system ownership and the motivation behind security alarm purchases. Here’s a few insights about home security systems:

  • About 74% of survey respondents say their home security system or product makes them feel safe.
  • 50% of respondents who own security products wanted to add extra security to their home.
  • 38% of Americans actually own a home security product.
  • 33% of those who don’t own a home security product said they couldn’t afford it.
  • 41% of 18-34 year old respondents (Gen-Z and Millennials) own a home security system or product.
  • About 18% of all respondents own a video doorbell.
  • About 16% of all respondents own a professionally monitoring security system.

Bottom Line: Our Top Pick - SimpliSafe

SimpliSafe Sign

SimpliSafe stands out as our top alarm security provider overall because of their affordable house alarm systems and professional monitoring. SimpliSafe doesn’t hold customers in a contract, but gives them the freedom to decide between DIY and professional installation, as well as self or professional monitoring. SimpliSafe isn’t in the Dark Ages with its technology either — you’ll find a security camera, smart door lock, and video doorbell among the provider’s lineup. With packages starting around $230 and monitoring at $14.99 per month, renters and homeowners alike are more able to make SimpliSafe part of their home.

Home Security FAQs


Jalesa Campbell avatar

Safety and Security Reporter

Jalesa Campbell

Jalesa is one of Safety.com's staff experts on home security, natural disasters, public safety, and family safety. She's been featured on Today.com and elsewhere.

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