Compare Top Providers
Pro. monitoring starts at
|Professional||Professional||Professional||DIY or Professional||DIY|
|36 months||36 months||42-60 mos. or pay for equipment in full||None||None|
Smart home compatibility
|Option to extend limited warranty||1 year warranty||120-day equipment warranty||3-year limited equipment warranty||3-year limited equipment warranty|
About San Francisco
San Francisco, known for its steep rolling hills, painted ladies and cable cars, is a popular tourist destination. The city is not only the home to iconic landmarks like the Golden Gate Bridge and former Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary, it’s also home to over 800,000 residents. The city’s population continues to grow, largely driven by the rapid pace of job growth and a very low level of unemployment.
According to the FBI Uniform Crime Report, property crime and larceny-theft are the highest occurring crimes in San Francisco, with 47,402 and 36,991 offenses known to law enforcement, respectively. Residents have a high risk of becoming a victim of a property crime, with an estimation of 1 in every 16 people. Installing a home security system helps protect your home, family and belongings, minimizing the risk of a break-in.
San Francisco, CA Crime Statistics
According to the FBI Uniform Crime Report, property crime and larceny-theft are the most often occurring crimes in San Francisco, with no sign of slowing down. In 2o18, the San Francisco Chronicle wrote that SF ranked as the number one city in the country for property crime. This is mainly due to an “epidemic of auto break ins.” Here are the top four ranking crimes and offenses known to law enforcement in San Francisco:
- 6,190 incidents of violent crime
- 47,402 incidents of property crime
- 36,991 incidents of larceny-theft
- 5,433 incidents of motor vehicle theft
Home Security Systems in San Francisco
- Best Overall DIY Security System
SimpliSafe Home SecurityOur rating9.9Starting at$14.99/mo
Our take on SimpliSafe Home Security:
SimpliSafe is our top pick for inexpensive monitoring, durable equipment and reliable services that simplify home security. You’ll have all the right devices and features to give you peace of mind — even when the unexpected happens.
★ Recommended package: Barrington
- Inexpensive professional monitoring
- Wireless equipment
- Cellular monitoring
- Mobile alerts not available in the basic monitoring plan
- No selection of smart home devices
- Smart home capabilities not available in the basic monitoring plan
- Best Home Security for Industry Experience
Our Take on ADT Home Security
ADT’s a well-recognized name in the home security industry. It offers traditional security that requires professional installation and monitoring at a steep price.
★ Recommended Plan
- 6-month money-back guarantee
- $500 theft protection guarantee
- High-quality equipment
- Must pay for an extended warranty
- Lengthy contracts
- More expensive than competitors
- Best for Personal Service
Founded in 1946, Bay Alarm Home Security has plenty of experience protecting homes. The company offers fully customizable plans to suit your home and budget. With great equipment and integration with smart devices, Bay Alarm’s security systems can give you peace of mind and control over your home safety.
★ Recommended Plan
Custom: Bay Alarm does not offer pre-bundled equipment packages. You’ll need to consult with a Bay Alarm representative to select the best equipment for your household, which may include wearable medical monitoring devices, fire and smoke detectors, and security cameras and sensors. A custom package allows you to get exactly what you want without having to pay for extras that you may not use, which is often the case with pre-bundled packages.
- Patrol and Response program
- Complete life safety system
- Fully customizable packages
- Minimum contract of 36 months required
- Lack of specific pricing on the website
- Lack of contract details on the website
- Best Smart Home Security
Our Take on Vivint Home Security
Vivint has an extensive line of smart security equipment that you can expand over time. The downside is that you’ll have a long-term contract if you finance your equipment.
★ Recommended Plan
Vivint’s Smart Home Service is our recommended plan because it unlocks a larger selection of smart home devices, as well as video monitoring.
- Month-to-month contract option if equipment is purchased upfront
- Backup battery included with the Sky Control panel
- Extensive equipment features, including Vivint Car Guard
- Long contract if equipment is financed
- Installation can take 3-4 hours
- Short (120-day) equipment warranty and service guarantee (unless you purchase Premium)
- Best Pet-Friendly Home Security
Our Take on Frontpoint Home Security
Frontpoint lets you choose both your package and monitoring plan to help build the perfect home security system for renters and homeowners alike. Monitoring can be costly, but free DIY installation helps lower costs without reducing reliability or protection.
★ Recommended Plan
Our recommended Frontpoint plan is the Safe Home Starter equipment package combined with the Ultimate monitoring plan, which will give you access to a smartphone app for monitoring your security devices.
- No lengthy contracts
- Excellent customer service
- Variety of equipment to choose from
- Monitoring fees are relatively expensive
- Short (30 days) trial period
- No professional installation option
Best Home Security Systems of 2020
Common Home Security Equipment and Features
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
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.
FAQs About San Francisco Home Security Systems
Yes – Bay Alarm is a highly-rated local company that only operates in California. They offer landline and cellular systems as well as a home automation solution.
The biggest differences between the two are cost and installation. DIY security systems are usually more cost effective and are installed by the customer. Professionally installed security systems are installed by the provider and are typically more expensive due to installation and any add-on fees.
Every provider listed above has home automation integration.