Travis Goodreauhttps://www.safehome.org/security-advisors/travis-goodreau/

Learn More About SimpliSafe

Between these two security systems, our favorite is SimpliSafe.

SecureScore™: 8.5/10

Overview: SimpliSafe vs ADT

SimpliSafe and ADT are two of the most widely recognized names in the home security industry. And while they have some of the same offerings, they are very different in many ways.

  • SimpliSafe and ADT are both compatible with a wide variety of third-party home automation products.
  • ADT's equipment requires professional installation; whereas, SimpliSafe's equipment is self-installed, which saves you from having to pay an installation fee.
  • ADT requires a 36-month contract commitment; whereas, SimpliSafe doesn't require you to sign a contract at all.
  • The cost of ADT's equipment is included in the monthly monitoring fee, so there is no upfront expense. However, with SimpliSafe, you have to pay for your equipment upfront, then pay a monthly monitoring fee for that equipment, if you want to have it monitored.
  • ADT has wired and wireless home security system; whereas, SimpliSafe only offers wireless systems.

Similarities: ADT vs SimpliSafe

Here are some of the similarities you will find between SimpliSafe and ADT.

  • Both offer wireless systems; however, ADT also offers a wired home security system option as well.
  • SimpliSafe and ADT both offer indoor video cameras.
  • Both have 24/7 monitoring available.
  • SimpliSafe and ADT are both compatible with a wide variety of third-party home automation options.
  • SimpliSafe and ADT both offer environmental protection features such as fire and water intrusion.
  • SimpliSafe and ADT offer a cellular connection, a Wifi connection, or both.

Differences: ADT vs SimpliSafe

Here are some of the differences you will find between SimpliSafe and ADT.

  • ADT requires you to pay for professional installation and SimpliSafe is a self-installed system.
  • With SimpliSafe, you purchase your equipment upfront and with ADT, the equipment is included in the monthly monitoring costs.
  • ADT requires you to sign a contract and SimpliSafe does not.
  • Overall, SimpliSafe costs less than ADT.
  • SimpliSafe manufactures its own equipment; whereas, ADT uses equipment that is manufactured by other companies.
  • ADT offers outdoor video cameras; whereas, SimpliSafe does not.

Pricing

Even though you pay for the equipment upfront with SimpliSafe, it's still a cheaper option than ADT. This is because ADT's equipment costs are lumped in with its monthly monitoring fees, which are comparatively high, and because they require a 36-month contract. Additionally, you never own the ADT equipment; however, you continue paying the same monthly monitoring fee until you cancel your service. With SimpliSafe, you purchase and own your equipment, then you pay a comparatively low monthly monitoring fee (if you want monitoring) without any contractual obligations.

Let's look at the differences in pricing when it comes to SimpliSafe versus ADT.

SimpliSafe Pricing and Basic Equipment

SimpliSafe offers two options. You can build your own package or use one of their pre-packaged deals.  SimpliSafe has five pre-packaged deals and a video doorbell camera you purchase separately if you so choose. SimpliSafe also offers al a carte options as well, such as their SimpliCam indoor cameras and their smart locks. Additionally, SimpliSafe manufactures its own equipment so you are able to avoid any middleman markups.

Also, the SimpliSafe equipment is very easy to install. There is no drilling and no tools are required. You simply plug in the base station and place your sensors—done.

Here are the five available pre-packaged equipment deals that SimpliSafe offers. These are the retail prices, but keep in mind they frequently run special pricing offers, so look for those as well.

The Haven – $489

  • 1-base station
  • 1-keypad
  • 1-key fob
  • 4-door sensors
  • 2-motion detectors
  • 1-alarm siren
  • 1-freeze sensor
  • 1-water sensor
  • 1-panic button
  • 1-smoke detector

The Knox – $449

  • 1-base station
  • 1-keypad
  • 1-key fob
  • 6-door sensors
  • 2-motion detectors
  • 1-alarm siren
  • 1-smoke detector

The Hearth – $374

  • 1-base station
  • 1-keypad
  • 1-key fob
  • 3-door sensors
  • 1-motion detector
  • 1- alarm siren
  • 1-smoke detector

The Essentials – $259

  • 1-base station
  • 1-keypad
  • 3-door sensors
  • 1-motion detector

The Foundation – $229

  • 1-base station
  • 1-keypad
  • 1-door sensor
  • 1-motion detector

The SimpliSafe Video Doorbell Pro is $169, the SimpliCam's are $99 each, and the smart locks are also $99 each. And, if you would like to add extra entry sensors, they are $14.99 each. You can also buy SimpliSafe's other equipment to add on to any of the above packages as well.

The SimpliSafe monitoring costs are $14.99/mo. or $24.99/mo.

ADT Package Pricing and Monitoring Costs

The ADT monthly cost includes the equipment so you won't have any upfront equipment costs. The other upfront fees start at $125 and the professional installation fees range from $99-$199. ADT offers three different monitoring packages ranging from $27.99 per month to $52.99 per month. And any of those packages can be modified or upgraded to meet your specific needs. Here is a breakdown of the different monitoring plans, including the “bring your own equipment” option, as well as their included equipment and starting prices.

Bring Your Own Equipment Option – Starting at $19.99 per month

If you already have ADT security equipment or other security equipment that is compatible with ADT's system, then you can obtain their monitoring services starting at a low $19.99 per month.

Traditional Package – Starting at $28.99 per month

ADT's most basic package is its Traditional Package. It costs a bit more compared to other brands in the security industry; however, you do get a lot for your money. Here is what you get with this package.

  • Security monitoring equipment
  • 24/7 professional monitoring
  • Professional installation
  • Cellular connection
  • 4-window sensors
  • 4-door sensors
  • Environmental sensors (fire, carbon monoxide, and flood)

You can also upgrade this package by adding additional sensors and other equipment if you so choose. Other optional upgrades include remote security video, a variety of home automation features, remote web and mobile access, and even email and text notifications as well, some of which are included in their other packages. You might also notice that you get more for your money with ADT's Traditional Package than you do with many of their competitors' basic packages. So you definitely get what you pay for. And, many home insurance companies will give you a discount for having environmental sensors in place as well. That means the extra cost of this package and ADT's other packages could potentially pay for itself in what you'll save from receiving that insurance discount. Talk with your homeowner's insurance company to see if they offer any discounts if your home is equipped with environmental protection sensors.

Control Package – Starting at $36.99 per month

With the Control Package, you get everything that comes with the Traditional package and more. Here is what is included in the Control Package.

  • 24/7 professional monitoring
  • Cellular connection
  • 4-window sensors
  • 4-door sensors
  • Environmental sensors (fire, carbon monoxide, and flood)
  • In-home and remotely controlled home automation features
  • Remote arm and disarm
  • Remote Web and mobile access
  • Email and text event-triggered notifications
  • Customizable alerts, schedules, and automations

Video Package – Starting at $52.99

With the Video Package, you get everything from the Traditional and Control packages, and more. This package includes ADT's Remote Secure Video upgrade, which is perfect for those who like being able to access, monitor, and control their home remotely. However, the monthly monitoring fee will cost you a bit more to do so. But being able to tap into your home's live video feed anytime and from anywhere is well worth the cost.

  • 24/7 professional monitoring
  • Cellular connection
  • 4-window sensors
  • 4-door sensors
  • Environmental sensors (fire, carbon monoxide, and flood)
  • In-home and remotely controlled home automation features
  • Remote arm and disarm
  • Remote Web and mobile access
  • Email and text event-triggered notifications
  • Customizable alerts, schedules, and automations
  • Security cameras
  • Live streaming via your mobile device
  • Ability to record and save video clips

ADT gives you plenty of flexibility when it comes to adding optional equipment to your monitoring plan, which helps ensure your particular home security needs are covered.

As you can see, SimpliSafe and ADT's prices are quite different; however, both offer much of the same equipment. The only exception is that SimpliSafe doesn't offer outdoor cameras as yet and has a limited ability when it comes to home automation. And even though ADT's equipment is included in the monthly monitoring price, overall it is a much more expensive option in the long run. This versus paying for the SimpliSafe equipment upfront, then either monitoring the system yourself or opting for their extremely affordable monthly monitoring services.

Features

Here are the different features offered by SimpliSafe versus the features offered by ADT.

SimpliSafe Features

Many of the SimpliSafe features you get will depend on if you opt for a monitoring package and which monitoring package you choose.

  • Visually confirmed mobile alerts
  • 24/7 monitoring
  • Wireless equipment
  • Surveillance cameras
  • DIY installation
  • Environmental disaster protection
  • Remote control (using the mobile app)
  • Deep encryption
  • Backup battery
  • Long-range sensors using micro-antennas
  • Touch-to-wake keypad
  • Open window alerts
  • Heartbeats (built-in diagnostic equipment checks)

ADT Features

Here are some of the features you will get with an ADT home security system. The features you get will depend on the package you choose.

  • Home automation available
  • Custom alerts
  • Z-Wave technology
  • Remote control
  • Video monitoring with live footage
  • Recorded video clips
  • Indoor and outdoor cameras available
  • Environmental protection sensors
  • 24/7 monitoring
  • 6-month guarantee
  • Professional installation
  • Theft protection guarantee

SimpliSafe and ADT have very similar features, but each system has its own specific uniqueness about them.

Contracts & Warranties

SimpliSafe does not have any contract requirements. And, SimpliSafe offers a 3-year warranty from the date of purchase for defective material and workmanship under normal use.

ADT requires you to sign a 36-month contract or a 24-month contract depending on where you live. Your ADT home security system offers a special Extended Limited Warranty/Quality Service Plan (QSP) which covers the repair or replacement costs of your equipment for a few dollars per month.

Installation

SimpliSafe is a DIY installation so there is no installation fee associated with their service. Additionally, the SimpliSafe installation is one of the easiest systems to install. You just set up the base station and place your sensors and that's it. No tools or drilling required. The SimpliSafe system also comes with step by step instructions to help you with the placement of your equipment and sensors.

ADT requires professional installation and doesn't offer any DIY installation options. This means you won't have to do a thing other than pay a small installation fee between $99 and $150. It also means you will have a professional who knows exactly where to place your equipment for the best possible results.

Summary: SimpliSafe vs ADT

Both SimpliSafe and ADT are great options when it comes to home security.

SimpliSafe will save you loads of money in two different ways. SimpliSafe manufactures and sells its own equipment, so they cut out the middleman costs, which saves you money on the equipment. Then SimpliSafe offers two extremely affordable monitoring plans from which you can choose, both of which are lower than others in the home security industry, so you will save money there too. Additionally, SimpliSafe doesn't require you to sign a contract; therefore, there are no cancellation fees either which is another potential savings.

If you don't want to purchase your security equipment upfront, ADT rolls the equipment costs into your monthly monitoring plan, so all you have to do is pay the bill each month. This is helpful for those who don't want to shell out a large amount of money all at once for equipment. However, ADT does require you to sign a long-term contract; therefore, you will want to take that into consideration before deciding.