The 7 Best Home Security Systems for the Money

Latin American mother and son leaving the house and locking the door using an automated security system - focus on foreground.
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If you have any concerns about the security of your home, and you want to add a layer of protection and put to rest anxieties, you may want to consider a home security system.

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These can protect against not only burglary and other break-ins, but offer peace of mind during bad weather or in case of fire or flood, especially if you are out of town.

Here’s a look at seven of the top security systems and their features to help you choose the best one for you.

Ring Alarm

  • Starter equipment price: under $200
  • Monthly monitoring: Between $3 and $20/month

The Ring system may be the most well-known because its price point makes it very accessible. Monthly monitoring starts at $3 per month, and you can choose from four equipment packages for less than $350 (and several for more). 

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Ring is “no-frills home security,” according to Safewise.com, but it will serve the basic function of intrusion detection if a door or window is opened, and motion detection. It’s a great place to start for home security that won’t break the bank.

Simplisafe

  • Starter equipment price: $229
  • Monthly monitoring: $17.99/month standard plan. $27.99/month interactive plan

SimpliSafe is a little bit more expensive than the Ring Alarm, but it can be a great way to test the waters.

SimpliSafe does not require a contract and has a 60-day money-back guarantee with easy setup. The equipment is “stylish” and “affordable,” according to Safewise.com. Additionally, SimpliSafe is partnering with RapidSOS. If your alarm gets triggered, certain data will be sent directly to 911 dispatchers. You have the ability to opt in or out of the professional monitoring as well.

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Blue by ADT Home Security System

  • Starter equipment price: $219.99
  • Monthly monitoring: $19.99/month

When you purchase the ADT Home Security System, you’re paying, first and foremost, for the name and reputation of this company that has provided security for over 140 years. ADT also has monitoring centers all over the country providing 24/7 monitoring, for additional reliability. Smart home control is available. While Blue by ADT starts at $19.99 per month, if you want additional security perks such as video monitoring, smart home control or mobile app access, you may pay as much as $60 per month or more.

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Abode

  • Starter equipment price: $279
  • Monthly monitoring: Starts at $6/month 

Abode offers a number of services including smart home compatibility, optional self-monitoring and custom home automation. This system is better for “smaller living spaces,” according to Safewise.com. It offers two plans, the standard at just $6 per month and the more popular pro at $20 per month. For the pro, you receive professional monitoring, cellular backup, homeowners insurance discounts with Branch and can choose from either a smart security kit or an Abode Iota security hub.

Abode can also sync with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant or Apple HomeKit.

Vivint

  • Starter equipment price: $599
  • Monthly monitoring: $29.99/month

Vivint, according to Safewise.com, is known for “[m]arrying smart AI tech and high-end security equipment [which] launches Vivint beyond average home surveillance systems to tackle today’s most pressing security concerns.” This is a more advanced security system, which centralizes all you need in one home security app. It includes a “smart deter” detection of lurkers, customizable smart security packages and free in-home consultation. There are multiple contract options but the $29.99 per month will give you the best features for the best price.

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Link Interactive

  • Equipment price: Starter package under $245
  • Monthly monitoring: $30.99-$47.99/month

Link Interactive distinguishes itself with an astonishing 48 sensors for windows and doors, as well as sensors for such things as firearms and a backyard grill. Safewise.com says that it is one of the systems that really aims to protect “your whole home,” not just your front door. The gun lock has a tilt sensor and a special three-digit lock to reduce the chance of accidental discharge of the weapon. It offers contracts as short as 12 months.

Frontpoint

  • Starter equipment packages: $392.40 and up
  • Monthly monitoring: $49.88/month

Frontpoint may be among the costliest on this list in terms of monthly monitoring, but it offers the most monitoring features, according to Safewise.com. For that monthly fee, you have access to the mobile app, security cameras, smart home equipment and life safety monitoring. In addition, installation is free and easy, and there are no contracts for monitoring. If you aren’t sure, you can sign up for a free 30-day trial. Safewise also praises its “outstanding customer service” and says it delivers “more security monitoring features” than other systems.

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About the Author

Jordan Rosenfeld is a freelance writer and author of nine books. She holds a B.A. from Sonoma State University and an MFA from Bennington College. Her articles and essays about finances and other topics has appeared in a wide range of publications and clients, including The Atlantic, The Billfold, Good Magazine, GoBanking Rates, Daily Worth, Quartz, Medical Economics, The New York Times, Ozy, Paypal, The Washington Post and for numerous business clients. As someone who had to learn many of her lessons about money the hard way, she enjoys writing about personal finance to empower and educate people on how to make the most of what they have and live a better quality of life.

 
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