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The 5 Best Home Security Systems with No Monthly Fees

Want to avoid paying a monthly fee for home security? We’ve got you covered. Check out these top 5 home security systems with no monthly fees and their features to find one that suits your needs.
Updated Dec 7, 2020

Whether you’re a homeowner or a renter, security is an important consideration for your home. If you’re looking for a truly affordable solution, you may want to consider a self-monitored home security system. A self monitoring home security system gives you the power to handle home security your way. The user is responsible for installing, activating and monitoring the system through an app. If something comes up, it’s the responsibility of the user to contact the property authorities. While there is no such thing as a free home security system, self monitoring systems offer consumers more financial flexibility because you’re required to pay little to nothing in monitoring fees. These reputable companies offer a variety of affordable equipment packages and represent some of the best no-monthly-fee home security systems available. And if you decide to add professional monitoring, most of these providers can handle that too.

Here are the Best Self Monitored Home Security Systems

What is the best home security package for you?

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

Compare No Monthly Fee Home Security Systems


SimpliSafe Security

ring logo

Ring Home Security

Abode Security

blue by adt logo

Blue by ADT

Arlo Security Cameras

Pro. monitoring starts at
$14.99/mo.$19.99/mo. (first month is free)$10/mo.$8.33/mo.N/A
Installation type
DIY or ProfessionalDIYDIY DIY or ProfessionalDIY
No contract requiredNo contract requiredNo contract requiredNo contract requiredNo contract required
Trial period
60 days7 days30 days30 days30 days
BBB rating

Best No Monthly Fee Home Security Systems

  • Best Overall DIY Security System

    SimpliSafe Home Security

    Our rating
    Starting at

    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


    • 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 basic monitoring plan

    Research SimpliSafe

  • Best for Flexible Monitoring
    blue by adt logo

    Blue by ADT

    Our rating
    Starting at

    Our Take on Blue by ADT

    Get trusted professional monitoring and an easy-to-install security system with Blue by ADT. Even better, your first month of monitoring is free. As a Blue by ADT customer, you have the option to do a no contract plan. By doing this, you can purchase the equipment and skip the professional monitoring. You can always go back and add professional monitoring to your system if you decide you need it later down the line.


    Recommended Plan
    For front-door protection, we recommend the Blue Doorbell Camera System. You’ll get the essentials and a doorbell camera for your home. Equipment starts at $109.19. Professional monitoring starts at $19.99 per month.


    • Smart home compatibility
    • 7-Day Practice Period
    • 24/7 professional monitoring available
    • No contract option
    • Free self-monitoring


    • Limited Blue by ADT equipment
    • No smart home add-ons
    • Cloud storage costs extra
    • Research Blue by ADT

    Research Blue by ADT

  • Best for Video Doorbells
    ring logo

    Ring Alarm Home Security

    Our rating
    Starting at

    Our take on Ring Home Security

    Ring is a popular DIY camera choice, especially for those that aren’t looking for whole-home security quite yet. Its security systems and cameras together can give you affordable security, monitoring and surveillance without a contract. 


    Recommended Package: 14-Piece Security Alarm Kit


    • Inexpensive equipment and professional monitoring
    • Easy to install
    • A range of security camera devices for outdoor surveillance


    • Video recording not available without a Ring Protect Plan
    • Higher-tiered packages cover more area, but don’t add any features
    • Cellular backup not available without a Ring Protect Plan

    Research Ring

  • Best for Self-Monitoring

    Abode Security

    Our rating
    Starting at

    Our Take on Abode Home Security

    Abode lets you create your home security package based on your equipment and monitoring needs. Choose between self- and professional monitoring for your DIY equipment to give you the best home security at an affordable price.


    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.


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


    • 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

  • Best for Camera Selection

    Arlo Security Cameras

    BBB rating
    Starting at

    Our take

    Founded in 1996, Arlo offers a range of security cameras and systems to help you protect your home. You’ll find several home security system packages, indoor cameras, and lighting options. With Arlo, you will have to self-monitor your system as the company does not offer a professional monitoring service. Security systems with Arlo start around $100 and range up to around $700.


    • HD security cameras
    • Deterrence and artificial intelligence (A.I.) features
    • Compatible with smart assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant
    • Free self-monitoring


    • No professional monitoring option
    • No professional installation option

    Research Arlo Cameras

Self-Monitoring vs. Professional Monitoring

Self-monitoring and professional monitoring both have their perks and draw-backs. We take a closer look at some of the pros and cons of each to help you make the best decision.

Self-Monitoring Home Security


  • Either no or a low monthly fee
  • Avoid false alarm penalties


  • You could miss notifications
  • Connection limitations

Professional Monitoring Home Security


  • 24/7 monitoring
  • Two-way communication with monitoring center


  • Monthly fee
  • Potential false alarm penalties

Factors to Consider Before Buying a Self-Monitored Security System

  • Upfront Cost

    One of the first things you’ll need to consider is upfront cost. With some DIY security systems, financing options might not be available, meaning you’ll have to foot the cost of the entire system upfront. In terms of price, you can expect to pay anywhere from around $100 to upwards of $600 for a DIY security system. Look for one that falls within your price range and includes the devices you want and need.

  • Notifications

    Make sure that the provider you decide to go with allows you to receive notifications. These come in the form of push alerts on your smartphone, text messages, and even emails. Since you’ll be monitoring your own security system, you need to make sure you can get alerts whenever activity is detected or an important event occurs that needs your attention. The good news is that we don’t know of any providers that don’t already have this feature.

  • Ease of Installation

    Will you need tools to install your security system? Or does the system feature peel-and-stick devices? Whichever is required, make sure you’re comfortable with setting up your own system. In some cases, you’ll find DIY providers that offer professional installation for an additional fee. In most cases, however, setting up your control panel, sensors, and cameras should be fairly easy with a wireless setup.  A DIY security system also affords you the ability to take your system with you whenever you decide to move.

  • No Monthly Fees

    Looking to save money? Skip the monthly fees by monitoring your home security system on your own via an app on your smartphone. By going this route, you can get around paying for expensive professional monitoring fees — plus you can take your home security system into your own hands.

  • Avoid a Credit Inquiry from Security Companies

    If you have a less than ideal credit score, don’t worry. There are plenty of quality home security companies that won’t run a credit check on you, including SimpliSafe and Ring Home Security. Read more about the best home security companies that don’t run credit checks.

Bottom Line

Now that you’re familiar with some of the top DIY home security systems with no monthly fee for self-monitoring, you can find the system that’s best for your home. Whichever you choose, all of these providers are great choices and represent the best self-monitored home security systems.

Our Methodology

At Safety.com, our methodology in providing free, quality insight is based on factors such as stand-out features, trustworthy reviews, and brand reputation. To keep our content free, we may collect a commission if you clink on a link or purchase an item through a link you clicked on this page. However, our opinions are our own.



Frequently Asked Questions About Self-Monitored Security Systems

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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