The crew was knowledgeable, professional, and made sure that I understood what was being installed and how to use it. By the time they left, I had everything up and running, had been personally tutored in its use, and had set up basic accounts and access credentials for the main system, the web portal, the remote monitoring software, and the third-party equipment ADT installed for me.
Like many other entry sensors in the kits on this list, these little devices are made up of two pieces connected by a magnet. Attach the alarm to your window or door (one piece on the door, one on the frame) and when an intruder opens it, the magnetic connection separates and triggers a 100dB alarm. Reviewers love this product for its easy installation and budget-friendly price tag.
Think of the Basic packages as “monitoring + alarms and sensors” and the Pulse packages as “monitoring + alarms and sensors + home automation.” These ADT monitoring packages range in cost from $27.99 through $58.99 per month; you can add additional equipment and service so everything is customizable to your home. To put that in perspective, ADT costs less than most cable TV packages while potentially saving hundreds, if not thousands, in damages.

SimpliSafe doesn’t require contracts, which tells us that it is confident in the service it provides and doesn’t need to lock you down. SimpliSafe offers low-cost cellular monitoring starting at $15 to $25 per month depending on whether you want mobile access. The only company with a similarly low monitoring cost is Scout, but it doesn’t offer the same range of equipment that you can get with SimpliSafe.
Many of ADT’s higher-end home automation offerings are customizable (although this will affect your final price). There’s a vacation mode that arms the system, keeps a steady temperature, and turns lights on and off to suggest that someone’s home. You can also set up situational operations. For example, if the sensor detects a fire, you can automate doors to unlock and the air conditioner to shut off, slowing the circulation of smoke.

In the beginning I didn’t think I needed a home security system, my dog was enough. But events happened that made me reconsider. ADT has been a great company for our home. They are professional and are available any time I have a question. The system has been easy to use. I feel much better about working nights knowing my home and loved ones are now protected.

The SimpliSafe system requires a professional monitoring subscription to receive alerts. That’s because it relies on a cellular connection rather than internet, so someone needs to send you an SMS text. There’s no option to receive automatic in-app alerts. You’ll have to upgrade to the $25-per-month plan to save yourself the task of keeping a constant eye on the video feed. (That’s still $10 less than Frontpoint’s cheapest plan, though.)

ADT’s Control Package offers its basic coverage and more. It also starts with a $125 upfront equipment fee, but with a monthly monitoring fee of $36.99, it adds home automation, giving you more control over the features and systems within your home regardless of whether you’re on site. In addition to remote web and mobile access, you can receive email and text notifications for various security triggers.
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