In addition to all the features such as monitoring options and intercoms, home security systems are best rated by looking at the quality of their sensors and alarms — although there are many of these on their own. To break things down for you quickly, we can tell you now that all of these top ten best home security systems have 24-hour monitoring, as well as monitoring that can be done from the convenience of your cellphone. To gauge the best smoke detectors, wireless sensors and other features though, you really need to review each system separately. We’ve already done that for you below.
FrontPoint Security – $34.99
FrontPoint has by far the best smoke detectors, wireless sensors, heat sensors, door and window sensors, glass break sensors, security cameras, flood protection, carbon monoxide detectors, motion sensors, recessed door sensors, frost sensors, garage door sensors, personal security devices, and sirens — and all at a great price to boot! So what could be bad about it? For starters, this system does not come with the convenience of a two-way intercom, and interactive monitoring and home automation are both considered to be an upgrade, which means you’ll actually pay more if you want these features. But you will get the best protection on the market.
Protect America – $19.99
Just slightly lower on the ratings scale than FrontPoint, Protect America has a 90% (compared to 100%) rating in most areas. That’s with the exception of their door and window sensors, as well as personal security devices, which both scored a rating of 95%. And although interactive monitoring and home automation are still thought of as upgrades with this package, it does come with a two-way intercom system, which many homeowners like.
SafeMart – $19.95
This package received an 80% ranking in most areas, with the exception of their wireless sensors (90%) and their glass-break sensors (85%.) The effectiveness of these systems might depend on the user though as all of SafeMart’s security systems, including those that are wired, are self-install only, which can become a bit tricky. That will include the two-way intercom system it comes with and if you choose, the interactive monitoring and home automation upgrades.
Price Varies between retailers, region, and home size
If you don’t want to install a system yourself, you might like Pinnacle Security, which requires that one of their technicians be the one to do the job. This is partly because the system is entirely wireless, which is a real plus as there is no drilling required and the system cannot be tampered with by thieves. Home automation and interactive monitoring are also available as upgrades, but where this system might fall short is in the motion and sensor ratings. It fell to 70% in all areas, with the exception of their wireless sensors which scored a 75%. But it does come with that two-way intercom system that can be very convenient for homeowners.
ADT – $36.99
For a home security system that costs more than the one in our top spot, we expect it to have the best ratings for all motions and sensors. Sadly, this one only scored 60% in all categories, which might not give homeowners the peace of mind they’re looking for at that high price. That being said, it’s also a good option for homeowners that don’t want to mess with electrical wiring, as there are no self-installation options, making it very easy for you. The interactive monitoring and home automation upgrades are more but you need to remember that this will only add to that already-high price. It does come with the two-way intercom though, and for no extra charge.
Protection1 – $24.99
With a rating of just 50% in all categories, you might wonder just how effective this home security system is at all. But consider that Protection1 brings the best perimeter protection bar none, and you’ll start to see why you may want to consider this security option. It does have a two-way intercom, but is missing the option to upgrade to a home automation system, which could take away some of the convenience of a security system for some homeowners. This is also another one that can’t be self-installed, which could be a benefit or a drawback, depending on what you’re looking for.
LifeShield Security – $29.99
LifeShield Security also scores 50% in nearly categories, with the exception of garage door sensors, of which it doesn’t have any. That can be a real drawback for homeowners who want full security. Home automation is not available as an upgrade, nor does it have the two-way intercom. It is however, still a very effective security system that will provide what’s needed for the homeowner looking for a very basic system.
Price Varies by region, retailer, and home size
If you want to ensure that it’s the price you’ll pay that will always be protected, Monitronics might be what you’re looking for as this system has a limited lifetime warranty. That being said, it also doesn’t have much of the security that you’ll find within the rest of our top ten home security systems. What’s missing are heat sensors, security cameras, flood protection, frost sensors, and garage door detectors. In all other categories, the best Monitronics scored was 40% in most areas. When it came to their door and window sensors though, they only scored a 30%. This security system though, does come with a two-way intercom and home automation and interactive monitoring are both available through an upgrade.
Alarm Zone – $29.95
Alarm Zone is a self-installation security system, but you may need to be pretty handy installing it as the instructions that come with it can be confusing, and you won’t find any additional help online. There are also no heat sensors, carbon monoxide detectors, or recessed door sensors. While there is interactive monitoring, there’s no app for it as there are other systems; and a home automation upgrade is also not available. You will however, get the two-way intercom that many homeowners are seeking.
AlarmForce – $25.00
One of the biggest benefits AlarmForce brings with it is the VideoRelay feature, which allows you to view and speak to individuals that are standing at your door. However, if you’re not home and want to remotely access or control your security system, you won’t be able to. It did receive however, one of the lowest rankings in all categories, getting 30% in the ones that were applicable. The categories that it didn’t score at all in were recessed door sensors and garage door sensors, which AlarmForce does not offer. It does come with a two-way intercom even though home automation and interactive monitoring is not an option. This is also one system that cannot be self-installed, which could be good for those that don’t want to be bothered with wires or electrical work.