Known for its innovative home automation features, Vivint offers professional 24/7 monitoring to homes across the U.S. Vivint’s cutting-edge technology includes add-ons like an intuitive smart thermostat, an indoor camera with two-way communication and a garage door control that lets you close it from your smartphone. One major pain point is that Vivint requires long contracts, which can be a problem if you don’t want to be locked into a long-term commitment. But, if you’re fine with a four- or five-year contract, Vivint’s worth a look.
Even if we didn't get a military discount (I'm in services) I still would have gone for ADT. Almost all of my fellow comrades are using ADT in their houses and they don't have any complaints yet. Though obviously military discount is always sweet. It goes on to show how caring and patriotic a company is towards their nation. No home security company I know of does that I think.
The outside camera is hit or miss and has been since the system was installed. Overall, I'd say it works about 75 percent of the time. ADT has been out twice to fix it with neither visit making any difference. While it has a nice wow factor, the camera isn't really a lynchpin of the system, so I'm not overly concerned with it. Still, it is a primary component and you're paying for it, so overall it could use improvement.
A smart lock is typically part of a robust smart home security setup, but you don't have to invest in a full-blown system to use one. If you're using a home automation hub to control things like lighting and thermostats, you can add a Z-Wave or Zigbee smart lock to the system without much effort. Alternately, if you don't have a home automation hub, look for a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth lock that comes with its own mobile app. Smart locks use standard pre-drilled holes and are fairly easy to install. Some models use your existing keyed cylinder and deadbolt hardware and attach to the inside of your door, while others require that you remove your existing interior and exterior escutcheons and replace the deadbolt and strike hardware.

†Total package includes 6 door/window sensors. No substitutions allowed. Labor charges may apply. Licenses: AL-17-1104, AZ-ROC217517, AR-2008-0014, CA-ACO6320, CT-ELC.0193944-L5, DE-07-212, FL-EC13003427, DC-602513000006, GA-LVA205395, ID-ELE-SC-39312, IL-127.001042, IN-City of Indianapolis: LAC-000156, IA-AC-0036, KY-City of Louisville: 483, LA-F1082, LA-F1914, LA-F1915, ME-LM50017382, MD-107-1626, MA-1355C, MI-3601205773, MN-TS01807, MS-15007958, MO-City of St. Louis: CC354, St. Louis County: 84959, MT-247, NE-14451, NV-68518, City of Las Vegas: 3000002944, NJ-34BF00021800, NM-353366, NY-Licensed by the N.Y.S. Dept. of State UID#12000317691, #12000286451, NC-1622-CSA, OH-53891446, City of Cincinnati: AC86, OK-1048, OR-170997, Pennsylvania Home Improvement Contractor Registration Number: PA022999, RI-3582, SC-BAC5630, SD-1025-7001-ET, TN-1520, TX-B13734, ACR-3492, UT-6422596-6501, VT-ES-2382, VA-115120, WA-602588694/PROTEYH934RS, WV-042433, WI-City of Milwaukee: PAS-0002790, WY-LV-G-21499.


It’s easy to see why SimpliSafe is a crowd favorite—especially among renters. Its no-contract, DIY approach caters to families on a budget, and it’s endorsed by money whiz Dave Ramsey. It’s a solid home security choice, but the lack of home automation features keeps it from rising higher on our list, though it did recently add a security camera to their offerings.
Smart locks can be opened and closed using a mobile app and will send a notification when someone locks or unlocks a door, and most allow you to create permanent and temporary access schedules for family members and friends based on specific hours of the day and days of the week. Features to look for include geofencing, which uses your phone's location services to lock and unlock the door, voice activation using Siri (HomeKit), Google Assistant, or Amazon Alexa voice commands, support for IFTTT, and integration with other smart home devices such as video doorbells, outdoor cameras, thermostats, smoke alarms, and connected lighting.

†Total package includes 6 door/window sensors. No substitutions allowed. Labor charges may apply. Licenses: AL-17-1104, AZ-ROC217517, AR-2008-0014, CA-ACO6320, CT-ELC.0193944-L5, DE-07-212, FL-EC13003427, DC-602513000006, GA-LVA205395, ID-ELE-SC-39312, IL-127.001042, IN-City of Indianapolis: LAC-000156, IA-AC-0036, KY-City of Louisville: 483, LA-F1082, LA-F1914, LA-F1915, ME-LM50017382, MD-107-1626, MA-1355C, MI-3601205773, MN-TS01807, MS-15007958, MO-City of St. Louis: CC354, St. Louis County: 84959, MT-247, NE-14451, NV-68518, City of Las Vegas: 3000002944, NJ-34BF00021800, NM-353366, NY-Licensed by the N.Y.S. Dept. of State UID#12000317691, #12000286451, NC-1622-CSA, OH-53891446, City of Cincinnati: AC86, OK-1048, OR-170997, Pennsylvania Home Improvement Contractor Registration Number: PA022999, RI-3582, SC-BAC5630, SD-1025-7001-ET, TN-1520, TX-B13734, ACR-3492, UT-6422596-6501, VT-ES-2382, VA-115120, WA-602588694/PROTEYH934RS, WV-042433, WI-City of Milwaukee: PAS-0002790, WY-LV-G-21499.

I have had ADT since 2002 and as of today I'm canceling the service! After a recent move, they tried charging me more money for less equipment, sent me a bill for over $400 because of "early cancellation" although I had an appointment scheduled for a new installation, and removed a payment from my bank account after the service had been discontinued. They gave us a huge hassle for stopping service at a house we no longer lived in! Anything (equipment changes, moves, etc.) starts a new three year contract. In the amount of time I have had ADT services, I could have bought and paid for multiple, more cost effective services, not to mention the level of customer service. I am done!
ADT offers 24/7 professional monitoring of your home security system 365 days a year. Beyond its most basic equipment package and monitoring plan that look like the rigorous security systems of the latter part of the 20th century, ADT now also offers home automation through its app, ADT Pulse. This includes a control panel with Z-Wave compatibility, giving you the flexibility to add whatever smart home devices you’ve already got in play, from lights and locks to appliances.
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