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Top Home Security Systems for 2016

Looking to secure you home? We reveal the top rated home security systems

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Top Rated Home Security Systems

When it comes to our homes, families, and belongings, we all want to do everything we can to keep them safe. However, without the top home security system, our homes are at risk to all sorts of danger.

A home security system not only makes your home harder to rob, but it also makes it less attractive as a target for burglars. In my extensive research, I've come up with some of the best home security companies for this year. Here are a few of the most attractive.

Top Home Security Systems: What to Consider

When you are looking for the best home alarm system, you need to make sure you choose quality products that are backed by a reputable, reliable provider. You should avoid taking any chances when it comes to something as important as this. My top home security system reviews should make it faster and easier for you to make an informed decision.

An important part of protecting your home is to ensure that you have the right home security system in place. These systems can make a significant difference to the security of your property and the safety of your loved ones. Also, having a good home security system installed means that both you and your family can enjoy valuable protection and peace of mind.

The Need for the Top Home Security Systems

The U.S. has some corners and counties that are quite peaceful and violent crime rates are low. If you live in a place like Cavalier County, North Dakota, you may not need a world class security system with all the bells and whistles. However, if you happen to live near other people, especially in the major cities, some form of home security doesn't hurt.

According to an FBI estimate, there are over 2 million burglaries a year and $4.6 billion in lost property. With numbers like these, it's clear that protecting your home is something worth giving serious consideration.

...there are over 2 million burglaries a year and $4.6 billion in lost property.

The FBI also reports that around 30 percent of burglaries happen through unlocked doors and windows and 60 percent are by forced entry. That's why it's a good idea to protect your entry points with an alarm. Although a home security system can't stop a break-in, it can act as a deterrent. Burglars prefer an easy target. So much so that it's said that you are 300% more likely to be broken into if your home doesn't have a home security system.

With a home security system, your home is a more difficult target. The loud noise an alarm makes and the potential for a home monitoring service sending the police severely limits the amount of time a burglar can get in and out without being seen.

If you are worried about your home security, take a look at your options.

Finding the Top Rated Home Security Systems

Company Monthly Fee Installation Fee Visit Site
Monthly Fee from $19.99 Installation Fee FREE Visit Site
Monthly Fee from $36.99 Installation Fee $99 Visit Site
Monthly Fee from $53.99 Installation Fee $198 Visit Site
Monthly Fee from $44.99 Installation Fee $99 Visit Site

There are many home security companies out there and even more DIY home security products to choose from. But since the security of your home is such an important topic, finding the perfect system for you is vital. If you are looking at home security companies, you can check their reputation by first looking at their Better Business Bureau standing.

...you are 300% more likely to be broken into if your home doesn't have a home security system.

Just like any company, a high BBB rating can mean a commitment to customer service. Next, you can look at the company's history. How long have they been in business? Longevity doesn't always mean an organization is reputable, but long-standing companies at least have a track record to reference.

Top Security Systems Include Smart Home Technology

Home security systems can just come with the basics, or you can choose a variety of additional products, based on what the company offers and what you need. A typical alarm system comes with a control panel and sensors that are placed on all the entry points, including windows. Beyond that, you can choose a myriad of different security products like intercom systems, security cameras, remote access and home monitoring services. The necessity of these extras depends on what you think you need for your home and area.

Smart home systems that give you remote access to your home from a tablet or a smartphone can give you peace of mind if you are away from your property for extended periods of time. However, if you just need some protection while you are away during the day, you may only need a basic alarm system. Think about what you need, and make sure you are dealing with a company that offers it.

Top Home Security Systems: Costs and Fees

From the decision to set up, there are a few different costs involved in getting a home security system. First, you have to purchase the equipment; then you have to have it installed and, if you want it, you have to pay monthly monitoring fees. However, some of these costs are better with certain providers. Some offer free installation, so you only have to pay for the equipment. If you choose the home monitoring options, you may be able to buy a package that incorporates the cost of installation and equipment into the monthly fee, which means no upfront costs. Other companies will charge for installation and offer no self-installation option.

If you choose the home monitoring options, you may be able to buy a package that incorporates the cost of installation and equipment into the monthly fee, which means no upfront costs. Other companies will charge for installation and offer no self-installation option.

Top Security Systems Options

There are a variety of home security systems, and it's important to decide which type of system you want. You can choose a simple self-installed system or a more complicated monitoring system.

Wireless Security Systems

Some companies allow you pick a self-install option. In this case, you would buy the equipment and either install it yourself or hire your own professional. The easiest to install is a wireless home security system, where the control panel communicates with the sensors digitally. Because of this, it makes for the number-one DIY home security system. These aren't as reliable as hard-wired systems because they can pick up interference from other electronics and even neighboring systems. However, their easy and non-intrusive installation makes them a popular choice for apartments and renters.

Wired Security Systems

Professional installed wired systems are hard to tamper with and are more reliable than even the foremost wireless home security system. These involve running wires through the walls to connect the control panel to the sensors. Installing wired systems is intrusive and complicated and best left to a professional.

Home Monitoring Systems

A home monitoring system is a security system that notifies a monitoring company when an alarm is triggered. The company then accesses the alarm to determine if it is false or legitimate and then notifies the police. These systems connect to a monitoring service via three different methods: landline, cellular and broadband. Cellular is the most reliable and (typically) the most expensive. If your telephone line and the internet go out, you'll still have a working monitoring system. However, broadband connections are faster and cheaper.

Installation Process with the Top Home Security Systems

Once you've chosen what kind of system you want, it's much easier to decide how you are going to install it. Wired and monitored systems are typically the most complicated, and it's a good idea to hire a professional. In fact, some home security companies won't give you the option to install a security system yourself.

If you are dealing with a wireless system with no home monitoring, installation should be straightforward, and you will most likely be able to do it on your own.

Meet the Best Home Security Companies

1st
  • Monthly Feefrom $19.99
  • Installation FeeFREE

Protect America Home Security Review

  • Pros
  • Availability of intercom systems
  • No upfront costs
  • Lowest price guaranteed
  • No installation or equipment fees
  • 100% wireless
  • Cons
  • Outsources monitoring

Protect America is an excellent home security provider that offers wireless security systems and home monitoring. They offer home monitoring packages with no extra costs for installation or equipment. Those costs are, instead, factored into the monthly monitoring fee. However, they outsource the actual monitoring service to another company. The company also offers extra features like intercom systems and remote control from a mobile device. Protect America also has a lowest price guarantee where they work with you to find the best price.

2nd
  • Monthly Feefrom $36.99
  • Installation Fee$99

ADT Home Security Review

  • Pros
  • 130+ years of experience
  • Wide variety of products
  • Automated and remote system monitoring
  • Around-the-clock security monitoring
  • 6-month satisfaction guarantee
  • Cons
  • Costly installation fee
  • No self-self installation option
  • High price tag

ADT is one of the most well-known and long standing names in home security with its roots beginning as a telegraph company in the 1860s. Today they offer a wide range of home security products including home monitoring and remote system control. There is no self-installation option which means you have to pay for a costly professional installation.

3rd
  • Monthly Feefrom $53.99
  • Installation Fee$198

Vivint Home Security Review

  • Pros
  • Interactive monitoring comes with all packages
  • Ability to customize packages
  • Range of useful tools and resources on the website
  • Working towards improved service since rebranding
  • Cons
  • Limited to cellular packages only
  • Still experiencing issues with service/poor reviews
  • Not BBB accredited and has no rating from the bureau

Vivint is another solid security system and monitoring service. Vivint offers cellular monitoring, which is the most reliable monitoring. However, they don't offer faster methods like broadband connections. Each of their packages comes with home monitoring service and some come with security cameras and remote, mobile device interactive monitoring.

4th
  • Monthly Feefrom $44.99
  • Installation Fee$99

Frontpoint Home Security Review

  • Pros
  • Self-installation option
  • Excellent customer service department
  • Free relocation
  • Customizable packages available
  • Wireless technology
  • Cons
  • No 2-way intercom system
  • No snapshot functionality
  • Not licensed in some states

Frontpoint Security is a relatively new provider, starting in 2007, although its founders have decades of home security experience. Frontpoint offers a variety of home security products and even allows you to customize your security package. They also offer wireless systems, home monitoring and remote access. The packages are relatively, competitively priced and they even offer free relocation if you move.

Finding the Top Home Security System

Home monitoring is when your security system is connected to a monitoring service that will notify the police when an alarm is triggered. These systems can often detect fire, carbon monoxide leaks and even flooding as well as break-ins. When an alarm is triggered, the monitoring service will call the residence.

If you answer during an emergency, the service will notify the proper authorities immediately. If you answer during a false alarm, you give the caller a pre-determined password to let them know everything is okay, and you don't need assistance. If no one answers, the company will call the police.

It is always advisable to weigh the pros and cons of a product before coming to a decision. Based on the above criteria, I found the best home security to be offered by top picks that include FrontPoint, Protect America and ADT, all of which offer superior protection options and industry-leading customer service.

Is Alarm Monitoring Worth the Extra Cost?

Alarm system monitoring doesn't have to be a huge expense, but it does add yet another bill to your stack so people hesitate to invest in it for their homes. Every individual has to decide, based on their budget but more importantly based on other factors, if alarm system monitoring is a good use of your money. Here are some different scenarios when alarm monitoring is often worth the added expense.

Protecting Valuables

Do you have things in your house that someone might want to steal? Do other people know you have them in your home? Anyone with a big flat screen TV, tablet, computer or any kind of electronic will benefit from alarm system monitoring. Same goes for people with expensive jewelry, valuable art or even just mementos you don't want to lose. There's a high chance investing in alarm monitoring saves you either money or memories somewhere down the line.

Protecting Loved Ones

If you live with a friend or family member, you're putting them in danger in addition to yourself by not investing in alarm system monitoring. The level of danger you're placing them in varies wildly based on factors like the surrounding neighborhood and other security measures put into place, but there's always going to be more risk if you forgo alarm monitoring.

If you're tight with your money it might smart for you to remind yourself that you're spending not just on yourself but the people who matter to you the most.

Peace of Mind

Robberies happen all the time, but it's true that a lot of people can go their entire lives without getting their houses broken into. Even if you're almost certain that your house will never be broken into, alarm system monitoring may be worth the cost simply for the peace of mind it provides you with. With that system in place, you no longer have to fret and worry nearly as much and can be comforted by the fact that you've taken steps to protect yourself and the ones you love.

Alarm system monitoring costs some money, but the benefits you reap from the expense are hard to ignore. The dollars spent on alarm monitoring are almost always ones spent wisely. If it seems like something you're interested in, check out some of the best home security systems out there and get started.

Advice for Finding the Top Home Security Systems

The security of your home is imperative, and there are many things to consider. For more information on securing your home, take a look at our home security advice section. Here are some topics you may want to learn more about:

  • Do I really need home monitoring? Home monitoring can protect you from more than just intruders. Today, services that alert the authorities when someone breaks into your home can also detect fires, carbon monoxide and even flooding. Monitoring systems are a good idea for extra security especially in homes with small children, elderly or if you are away for extended periods of time.
  • How can you avoid false alarms? A false alarm every so often is bound to happen. Thunderstorms and clumsy birds shaking your windows are sometimes enough to trigger alarms. However, some companies charge fees for too many false alarms, so it is a good idea to know how you can avoid them.
  • How can alarm companies identify false alarms? Alarm companies have to be careful with alerting the authorities to false alarms. Law enforcement in some cities won't even respond to certain alarms because of too many false alarms. However, alarm companies work to report break-ins and other emergencies more accurately.
  • How can you improve your home protection? There are many things you can do to protect your home, beyond installing a simple security system. Burglars tend to choose easy targets. The more you can make your home look like a difficult target, the less likely your house will be robbed.
  • Can burglars interfere with your security system? No house is one hundred percent burglar-proof, but can your alarm system be beaten? Simply having an alarm company sticker in your window will deter some burglars, but if they are persistent, some systems are weaker than others.
  • What do you need in your system?

Top Home Security Systems Recap

While there are plenty of options available when it comes to choosing a home security provider and system, it is important to take key factors into consideration. This includes factors such as reputation, reviews, suitability of products, and costs.

It is vital that you look at the overall picture when choosing a provider rather than focusing on just one particular aspect. This can help to boost your chances of making an informed decision.

If you also want to protect your home and belongings financially, you should also look at the best home insurance companies. You can also look into the best identity theft protection if you are worried about security outside the home.

If you have elderly loved ones or you could use some extra personal monitoring when you are home alone, it could be worth investigating the best medical alert systems.

Best Home Security Systems FAQs

What is a security system and how does it work?

A security system is a methods or means by which a home or other building is secured through a system of inter-working devices and components that trigger alarms when an intruder enters. Security systems work on the principle of securing entry points and interior spaces.

How do alarm systems work?

Alarm security systems have three main features-sensors, control panel, and monitoring service. Sensors are small devices used to detect the presence of a person or thing on your premises. They're placed on door frames, windows or any other entry point throughout your home. Some sensors are designed to detect broken glass, while others are strictly activated by movement. Any activity gathered by a sensor is sent directly to a control panel. The control panel is the core of the alarm system and is used by the affiliated monitoring center to disarm or alert the authorities of potential danger. With most home security companies, the control panel is monitored around the clock, 24/7. While a triggered alarm may send thieves or intruders running for the hills, it's more often than not recommended to have your system on constant monitor.

Should a technician install your home security system or should you DIY?

When it comes to a home security system, safety should be your number one priority. There are, however, two distinct ways to set one up in your household. The do-it-yourself route is rather simple if you know the basics. In a DIY security system package you'll receive the mountable keypad, window, door and motion sensors. A technician-installed system is more exact. A professional technician makes a trip to your residence with the installation equipment in hand. When you opt for professional installation, the home security company will typically throw in the equipment at no extra charge (compared to the do-it-yourself option). Conversely technician-installation is highly recommended if you're dealing with a complicated or wire system.

Do I need a security system?

A security system is important for your home with the rising incidences of burglary in the country. Following this trend, investing in a security system can help make your home less of an easy target for burglars.

Is a home security system affordable?

Yes, it is. Home security providers have worked hard to ensure home security is affordable to homeowners. Also, research shows compelling benefits to home security like peace of mind and risk mitigation, which can outweigh the costs for many homeowners.

What is home automation and how does it work?

Home automation allows access to all control devices in your home from your smart phone or other mobile devices. Lights, electrical outlets, heating and cooling systems are linked to a remotely controllable network.

Do I need a security system if I live in an apartment?

In the same way a security system can benefit a house, an apartment security system may be a good idea. However, check with the building association to make sure a system meets codes and regulation for your building before installing.

What is the best security system?

The best security system is one that suits your lifestyle and your home. By simply taking a good look at your home you can easily choose which the best security system for you. Consider factors such as if your home as a pre-existing system in place.

Is it possible to get a home security system without a phone line?

Yes, it is. With the evolution of wireless technology, you can get a wireless security system. The system is linked to a cell tower near your home and a cell transmitter in your home.

What features can I include in my security system?

While considering the features, look at the technological advances in security systems. However, a security system should always contain alarms, sensors, door chimes and a control panel. If you want to be automatically connected to the proper authorities during an emergency, you should also consider connecting to a remote alarm monitoring service.

Can I move with my security system?

This one depends on the system you have installed. It is possible to move with a "do it yourself" system as it means uninstalling from one location and reinstalling in another. In the case of contracted monitoring services, the contract dictates the possibilities. Plus, a wired system is difficult to move.

Should I install a wired or wireless home security system?

It depends on your security needs. Wireless systems provide an easier installation and can be used in areas where wired systems can't. On the other hand, wired systems provide an edge in reliability.

How do I decide which home security equipment I need?

Selecting the right home security equipment can be frustrating if you don't know where to start. Studies show that 90% of break-ins occur in either the front or rear doors so defending these entry points is critical. If you have a multi-level home, install floor and window sensors on the ground floor first, then work your way up securing the entrances in order of accessibility. Depending on the amount of your budget, you can outfit your home in a range of different tools.

Keypad

The primary purpose of a keypad is to create a central point which communicates wirelessly to additional parts in your home (window, door, motion sensors). When one is triggered by an intruder, the keypad receives a message that the premise is being entered and depending on the settings it may alert an outside monitoring center. Newer technologies have allowed many keypads to be designed sans the need for a landline or Ethernet cable.

Touch Screen

A Touch Screen is common in multi-level structures where the primary control center is located on the first floor. Through this device, you can monitor and even adjust thermostats, door locks, and lights. What's more, you can usually configure it to your smartphone or tablet for on-the-go notifications.

Panic Buttons

Companies like Frontpoint Security Solutions, have what they call "panic pendants" which allow homeowners to alert police or medical personnel of trouble immediately. You can conveniently fit these devices in purses, pockets, or kids' rooms. These monitoring devices are especially popular with older individuals due to the increased likelihood of injury and invasion.

Most companies allow you to tailor your security system with the monitor devices of your choosing. At an additional cost, you can pick and choose exactly the features you'd like installed.

If I lose electric power, will my alarm still work?

Home alarm systems operate on what's known as a low voltage system. Basically, what that means is that the systems are supplied power through the wall from a large transformer, not directly from your house power. So in essence, your system has an AC power adapter and a built-in battery pack. The back-up battery supplies power the alarm up to several hours after the fact. On average, these batteries have a lifespan of anywhere from three to five years. After that time, it is recommended to either replace it with a new, unopened battery or have the old one tested using a voltmeter.

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Advertiser Disclosure

In order for MoneySavingPro to remain a consumer free service, many of the companies covered in our industry reviews compensate MoneySavingPro for new sign ups.

However, the results of our comparison tools, the rankings of the providers and the information presented is not affected by compensation. Indeed, many of these companies approach us for an advertising partnership after we have already written a published their reviews.

While we try to research and review as many providers as possible in the 100+ industries we cover, we have not reviewed every company available.

Our rating system is independent of compensation and reflects our true understanding of the industry and the company based on a variety of factors. The companies that receive the highest rating will always be the providers that we believe offer the best value to the consumer.

Advertiser Disclosure

In order for MoneySavingPro to remain a consumer free service, many of the companies covered in our industry reviews compensate MoneySavingPro for new sign ups.

However, the results of our comparison tools, the rankings of the providers and the information presented is not affected by compensation. Indeed, many of these companies approach us for an advertising partnership after we have already written a published their reviews.

While we try to research and review as many providers as possible in the 100+ industries we cover, we have not reviewed every company available.

Our rating system is independent of compensation and reflects our true understanding of the industry and the company based on a variety of factors. The companies that receive the highest rating will always be the providers that we believe offer the best value to the consumer.