Most Affordable Home Security Systems

Home security doesn’t have to cost a fortune. See our list of affordable home security options to meet your match.

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SimpliSafe Image
SecureScore™: 9.2/10
SimpliSafe designs their own products, so you aren’t paying any middle man upcharges. Equipment options range from $99 to $489 with refurbished systems available at 25-30% off. Add monitoring if desired for a low monthly fee.
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abode Image
SecureScore™: 8.0/10
If you're looking for an affordable home security system, Abode is it. Abode is known for its very affordable starter kits. They also have a wide variety of add-on equipment so you can customize and build out your home security home automation ecosystem all at once or one component at a time.
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Frontpoint Image
SecureScore™: 8.7/10
A perennial favorite of ours, Frontpoint home security systems cost $40-$50 monthly for round-the-clock monitoring. We’re also big fans of Frontpoint’s user-friendly dashboard and custom features. It’s not a perfect setup, but it easily makes our list of best affordable systems.
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Top 6 Affordable Home Security Systems in 2023

abode Equipment

  • SimpliSafe - Most Affordable Equipment
  • abode - Cheapest No Contract Home Security System
  • Frontpoint - Best Cheap DIY Home Security
  • Cove Security - Most Affordable Home Security Overall
  • Scout - Cheap Home Security System Equipment
  • Brinks - Easiest to Set up

Protecting your home with a high-end security system doesn’t always mean you have to plop down huge piles of cash. While its true that there are a bunch of security providers out there offering tons of bells and whistles that will cost an arm and a leg, there are plenty of high-quality, low-cost options available to savvy consumers.

In addition, many of these providers run great sales throughout the year. It’s not uncommon to see sales and discounts as much as 40- to 60-percent from top providers like SimpliSafe, abode, and Frontpoint throughout the year. In fact, SimpliSafe is 50-percent off right now. We’ve got all the details on SimpliSafe and other affordable systems right here, so keep reading for the best security systems to protect your home with.

  • 1 SimpliSafe - Most Affordable Equipment

    SimpliSafe Product Image
    SecureScore™ 9.2
    Customer Service
    Features & Technology
    Ease Of Use

    When it comes to affordable, reliable home security, SimpliSafe stands above the rest. Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, SimpliSafe offers low-cost packages with easy installation and affordable monitoring.

    SimpliSafe provides lots of options for home security. It has security sensors, security cameras, and even smoke alarms and water leak detectors.

    If you want a package curated by SimpliSafe itself, you can choose from seven options ranging from the simple four-piece kit designed for apartments to the comprehensive 14-piece kit for larger homes. You can also customize each kit and add components as you see fit. That way, you can maximize the security value you get from your budget.

    • Affordable, easy-to-use equipment
    • Installation is a breeze
    • System is extremely responsive
    • App is well-designed and intuitive
    • New monitoring is a major security bonus

    • Keypad was a little finicky
    • Mounting system could use some work
    • Some pieces of equipment are a little bulky

    All SimpliSafe security systems are DIY installation and renter friendly. You won’t have to drill holes or find a place for unsightly wires. You won’t even need any tools. Just plug in the SimpliSafe Base Station, place your sensors around your home, and in less than 15 minutes, your entire home is protected by the award-winning system. SimpliSafe maintains an online database of all device owner’s manuals, troubleshooting guides, an online help center, and user forums. If that doesn’t solve your problem, they offer customer service phone support 7 days a week from 9am to midnight (Eastern Time).

    As one of the top security systems for renters, SimpliSafe lets you easily move equipment from place to place. Since installation requires no holes or wires, it’s easy to take this system with you when you move. That also means you won’t be charged another installation fee for your new location like many security companies require. There are no long-term contracts with SimpliSafe, so when you move, you won’t have to worry about canceling your contract or drawing up a new one. Moving is stressful enough without having to worry about your security system.

    SimpliSafe offers a system for every size home and every size budget, and here’s some good news: Right now these systems are all on sale for 40 percent off, and they’ll throw in a free indoor camera when you sign up for a Fast Protect monitoring plan — one of the most advanced professional monitoring systems on the market today. If you’re thinking about a SimpliSafe system, now is probably the best time of the year to buy.

    SimpliSafe Security Package Sale Breakdown

    System Name Number of Pieces Regular Price
    The Haven 14 $519.86
    The Knox 12 $479.87
    The Beacon 10 $709.90
    The Hearth 9 $399.91
    The Lighthouse 7 $469.93
    The Essentials 6 $279.95
    The Foundation 4 $249.96

    Pro Tip: SimpliSafe is always offering discounts on these prices — usually we see them marked down between 30 and 50 percent off. For more information, check out our guide to SimpliSafe’s discounts and deals.

    At one end of the spectrum, you can get the fairly basic Foundation package. That comes with a base station, a keypad, an entry sensor, and a motion sensor. That’s sort of perfect for us since we live in an apartment, where there’s only one way in and one way out. At the other end of the spectrum, the Beacon package includes ten separate pieces: a base station, a keypad, two motion sensors, four entry sensors, and two wireless outdoor security cameras. The Beacon’s price tag of $699.90 reflects how comprehensive this system is. Keep in mind that with professional monitoring you will receive 40 percent off plus a free indoor camera.

    Have some specific security needs? SimpliSafe also lets you build your own system, and you can always add cameras. SimpliSafe’s indoor camera, the SimpliCam is priced at $99, while outdoor cameras start at $189.99. For more information on all the various options, check out our full SimpliCam review.

    When it comes to security, SimpliSafe has thought of almost everything. What do we mean by that? Here’s a quick breakdown

    • If your power is out for days at a time, battery backups will keep you protected
    • Keypads will alert the police if they’re smashed by an intruder
    • Professional monitoring is available with no contractual obligation
    • Cellular connections are reinforced by Wi-Fi
    • All signals are encrypted
    • Motion sensors can distinguish between humans and pets

    Just a note: we were already big SimpliSafe fans, but we’ve been particularly impressed by their newest systems. These new systems are smaller, faster, and stronger than ever before. In concrete terms, they’re around half the size of the original SimpliSafe system. The equipment works five times faster. And the sirens are 50 percent louder. Plus, new long-range sensors have micro-antennas built into the devices (such as the glass break sensors) so that these tiny sensors can cover your entire home. These sensors also utilize signal-burst technology so that they provide powerful coverage but conserve power. The bottom line is that SimpliSafe now offers even more protection at an affordable rate.

    Monitoring Options Professional Monitoring Available
    Installation DIY
    Smart Platform Integration Alexa, Google Home, and August Smart Locks
    Equipment Cost From $249.96
    Monthly Monitoring Cost From $9.99
    Contract Length Month to Month
  • 2 abode - Cheapest No Contract Home Security System

    abode Product Image
    SecureScore™ 8.0
    Customer Service
    Features & Technology
    Ease Of Use

    When we’re talking about affordable home security, abode’s low cost systems need to be part of the conversation.

    Based in San Francisco, abode is known for their low cost of entry as well as their wide variety of equipment. How wide is that variety? We give bonus points to companies that tailor their systems to individuals. Abode doesn’t disappoint.

    They’re also really forward thinking when it comes to home automation, and all of their equipment works on the CUE platform. If you want a smart home for a fraction of the cost of more traditional routes, abode is certainly a provider to consider.

    • Competitive Equipment Costs
    • No Long-Term Contracts
    • Fast DIY Wireless Installation
    • 30-Day Equipment Trial Period
    • 1-Year Equipment Warranty
    • Hub With Built-In HD Camera
    • CUE Home Automation Platform
    • Environmental Disaster Sensors
    • No Monthly-Fee Option
    • Low Monthly Monitoring Rates
    • Integrates With Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Z-Wave Compatible Devices

    • Setup Could Be More Intuitive
    • Limited Equipment in Starter Kits
    • No Touch-Screen Panels
    • Customer Service Could Be Improved

    Abode is a well-established presence in the home security industry and offers homeowners quality equipment as well as some pretty interesting smart home integrations. Their packages work with Apple HomeKit, Alexa, and Google to make your life a little easier.

    Abode is certainly affordable. Their starter kits start at just $139.99, and their most expensive systems are only $379.99. Monitoring starts at $7 a month, one of the lowest prices on the market. Even better, though, their pricing is all straightforward. You can buy additional equipment a la carte, for instance, so you never get more than you need. And the company never charges any hidden fees. We like that kind of plain dealing.

    Pro Tip: While they’re already affordable in our book, Abode is always offering some kind of deal to help keep your budget looking healthy. Right now their summer sale can have you saving up to 50 percent off select kits and accessories.

    Abode also offers a pretty wide range of security equipment, from sensors and keypads to smoke alarms and sirens. Indoor and outdoor security cameras are available for around $60, and their wireless video doorbell will only run you $99.99. You can read more about how all of this equipment works in concert to protect your home in our in-depth abode review.

    Monitoring Options Professional and DIY
    Installation DIY
    Smart Platform Integration Alexa, Google Home, and Apple HomeKit
    Equipment Cost From $99.00
    Monthly Monitoring Cost From $8.33
    Contract Length Month-to-month
  • 3 Frontpoint - Best Cheap DIY Home Security

    Frontpoint Product Image
    SecureScore™ 8.7
    Customer Service
    Features & Technology
    Ease Of Use

    Frontpoint stands out among security companies as one of the best systems for customer service, but did you know they’re also one of the best values in the industry?

    Frontpoint bucks the trend of professionally monitored security systems that require professional installation by making the installing process completely DIY. And because of that, there are no installation or activation fees to pay, saving customers hundreds of dollars.

    Moreover, Frontpoint systems are scalable. You can choose from available pre-customized packages on Frontpoint’s website or you can build your own system. You can buy just a couple of sensors or go all-in with security cameras and even smart home products.

    Here’s a summary of Frontpoint’s affordability profile:

    • High-quality GE Equipment
    • Wireless Security Systems
    • Easy DIY Installation
    • LTE Cellular Monitoring
    • Home Automation
    • Indoor & Outdoor Cameras
    • Excellent App Experience
    • 30-Day, Money-Back Guarantee
    • Geofencing Feature

    • Somewhat Expensive Monitoring
    • Limited Service Hours
    • Touch-Screen Panel Sold Separately
    • Outsourced Monitoring Service
    • Limited Keypad Functionality

    Starting at just $129, Frontpoint offers exceptional DIY home security systems with considerable perks like home automation, full system customization, and some high-tech gizmos and gadgets that you can read a little more about in our Frontpoint review. The long and short of it is this, though — if you need a security system that’s going to be as flexible as it is robust, you should definitely consider checking out Frontpoint.

    Here are just a few of the features you’ll get with a Frontpoint system.

    • Frontpoint Home Automation — link up and control all of your smart devices from one location
    • Crash & Smash Protection — your security system will keep working even if it’s damaged by intruders
    • Environmental sensors — be alerted to dangerous conditions with smoke, carbon monoxide, and water leak detection.

    We have more on this in our Frontpoint review, but overall we were very impressed with their offerings. One final thing to say about this system, though.

    While we still consider Frontpoint to be squarely in the “affordable” category, one of the reasons it doesn’t show up higher on this list is due to the required Frontpoint professional monitoring fee. The bill is pretty steep at $49.88 per month, so keep that in mind when you’re pricing out your security system.

    Monitoring Options 24/7 professional
    Installation DIY
    Smart Platform Integration Alexa and Google Home
    Equipment Cost $219.99
    Monthly Monitoring Cost $18
    Contract Length 1-36 months
  • 4 Cove Security - Most Affordable Home Security Overall

    Cove Security Product Image
    SecureScore™ 8.8
    Customer Service
    Features & Technology
    Ease Of Use

    Cove is a relatively new system that lets you protect your home and family on the cheap. Modern features like cellular backup, touchscreen controls, and smart home integrations are all included. Our in-depth Cove review has more details about the system and how it works, and our full breakdown of Cove’s pricing and packages can help you figure out how much this system will cost you. (Hint: Not much!)

    • Simple DIY Installation
    • No Contracts, Month-to-Month Service
    • Smartphone Controls
    • Touch-screen Control Panel
    • 1080p HD Indoor and Outdoor Cameras
    • Alexa and Google Assistant Compatible
    • Low-Cost Monitoring
    • Lifetime Warranty Option

    • App Experience Could Be Improved
    • Limited Home Automation Features
    • No Self-Monitoring Option

    You’d be surprised at how much ‘bang for your buck’ you can get with today’s DIY home security systems. Cove is one such system, offering pretty high-quality equipment for around $150-$300 out the door. And they don’t nickel and dime you. Similar to SimpliSafe and Ring, you don’t have to worry about installation fees or activation fees with Cove.

    That said, Cove does require a monthly monitoring fee, but at only $14.99 monthly for the Basic Plan, or $24.99 monthly for the Plus Plan, you’ll likely have money leftover to really expand your system. For instance, at $49.50 per camera, you can outfit your home with a few 1080p indoor cameras from Cove for a little extra peace of mind.

    And as far as functionality goes, a number of features stood out to us while testing Cove. The easy DIY install took about 10 minutes, the cellular monitoring works very well (the police showed up to prove it!), and Cove also has a “Custom Actions” feature, which gave us some nifty smart home automations we don’t typically see with budget home security systems. There’s a reason we named Cove among the best security systems that work with Alexa, after all. All in all, Cove is certainly worth a closer look if you want reliable home protection at an affordable price.

    Monitoring Options 24/7 professional and DIY
    Installation DIY
    Smart Platform Integration Alexa and Google Home
    Equipment Cost $87
    Monthly Monitoring Cost $50
    Contract Length Month-to-month
  • 5 Scout - Cheap Home Security System Equipment

    Scout Product Image
    SecureScore™ 7.1
    Customer Service
    Features & Technology
    Ease Of Use

    Scout was founded in 2013 through an independent crowdfunding campaign to create affordable, simple, and smart home security systems. Scout has done just that. The company combined the expertise of engineers, designers, and business folks to create beautiful security devices that are affordable and easy to use. Scout systems allow you to customize which devices to include in your system, the components’ color and finish, the actions you would like Scout to initiate in different situations, and the level of support you need. Each customer is different, so Scout believes that each home security system should be as unique as the home it protects. Here’s a summary of Scout’s affordability profile:

    • Low Monthly Rates
    • DIY Installation
    • No Long-Term Contracts
    • Wireless Equipment
    • Wi-Fi Communication w/ 4G Cell Backup
    • Mobile Control
    • Compatible with Smart Home Devices
    • Compatible with Environmental Sensors
    • 60-Day Return Policy

    • No Professional Installation
    • Up-Front Equipment Expense
    • Narrow Range of Scout Products
    • Scout Products On Backorder
    • Backup Power Just 12 Hours

    The DIY installation and wireless equipment make Scout a favorite for renters and homeowners alike, since the system is easy to move and set up. Scout knows about the products it monitors, since all of the devices are manufactured by the company. You purchase all equipment up front as a kit or pieced together to fit your specific needs. Pre-designed kits range from $229 for the Scout Small Pack (8 pieces of equipment) to $319 for the Scout Large Pack (12 pieces of equipment).

    The professional monitoring fee is also reasonable. For $19.99 per month, the Always On+ plan includes professional monitoring and free Cloud storage for the first camera. Or, save a little money by monitoring your own system with the Always On plan, which costs $9.99.

    Scout equipment runs through a hub which works as the brains of the system. You simply plug the hub into your router and it does the rest, wirelessly connecting all your other components to one another. And, you can add lots of other components to your system, including access sensors, motion sensors, door panels, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, glass break sensors, door lock pads, and water sensors.

    It’s easy to automate all of these components as well. The company has always been compatible with IFTTT (If This Then That) technology. It’s why we named Scout one of our best systems that work with IFTTT. Recently, though, the company has added compatibility with both Alexa and Google Assistant. Worried what happens if you should lose power? Don’t worry, you’re still protected. The hub uses a 4G backup battery, so the entire system works even when the lights are out.

  • 6 Brinks - Easiest to Setup

    Brinks Product Image
    SecureScore™ 8.7
    Customer Service
    Features & Technology
    Ease Of Use

    Brinks offers a reliable, high-quality security system with competitively priced monitoring. In our Brinks Home Security review, we noted its longevity in the industry; it’s the second oldest brand next to ADT. Brinks Home Security provides a comprehensive home security system with live monitoring solutions. The company’s products are well designed with industry best services and features. Here’s a look at its benefits and features.

    • Rate-lock Guarantees
    • Affordable Packages
    • Reliable 24/7 Monitoring
    • Indoor and Outdoor Cameras
    • Smartphone Controls
    • 30-Day Return Policy
    • Home Automation Features
    • 2-Year Warranty

    • Most Plans Require a Contract
    • Pricey Monthly Monitoring
    • Professional Installation Only Included in Top-Tier Plan

    Brinks Home Security provides property owners with two models to select from for their property. The Home Complete Model is priced at $39 per month. There is a moderate $19 activation fee for the equipment. For those who want a more advanced system, the company offers the Home Complete With Video. This costs $49 per month and provides some excellent upgrades for the value.

    Want to know exactly how much a Brinks system costs? Read our comprehensive Brinks pricing breakdown.

    The true affordability with the Brinks package comes from the ability to gain live monitoring for the home. Individuals who want to be able to log into their system and see their home – both through a web application and their phone – can do so easily here. The higher valued component also offers cloud video storage to allow for these videos to be stored for a period of time. Live video streaming helps provide a readily available image of what is happening.

    Another reason this system is an affordable option is because it has built-in automation features. Those who are already using home automation through voice assistants, for example, will appreciate just how easy it is to link those systems to this project. Additionally, there are numerous wireless motion sensors for the doors and windows. A touch display is used to access the system. And, there’s also a built-in Hacker Protection component. This helps ward against anyone trying to access the system.  The Hands Free Alarm component even allows users to unlock doors just by walking up to them.

    Overall, the Brinks Home Security system is highly reliable and designed to incorporate the home automation today’s homeowner wants and needs. With live access to a home, it is the ideal choice for many.

    Monitoring Options 24/7 professional
    Installation DIY
    Smart Platform Integration Alexa and Google Home
    Equipment Cost $199
    Monthly Monitoring Cost $39
    Contract Length 36 months

Affordable Home Security Systems

Effective home security systems can guard your windows and doors, detect motion inside your home, and automatically contact dispatchers in the case of an emergency. Many cheap security systems have extra features too. But before we get too far on features, check out these quick stats on affordable home security:

Security System Stats

Systems Tested 14+
Cheapest Option SimpliSafe
Equipment Cost $99-$489
Best For Intrusion Protection

Now, here are points to consider when shopping for cheap home security systems and monitoring.

Home Security System Costs

Home security companies earn revenue in different ways. Some have simple pricing. Others charge not-so-obvious fees. When comparing prices for home security, include any expenses for equipment, installation, activation and monitoring. Total expenses can be the lowest when you own the equipment. The best DIY security systems are typically easy to install, meaning they don’t require a professional to come to your home.

If you do want professional installation, go with Vivint. There, you can build a system with a knowledgeable sales agent and schedule your Vivint installation in one fell swoop. Then, your pro will arrive at your home to walk you through each component of the system and make sure you’re comfortable with it.

How Much is a Home Security System?

So, you’ve decided to buy a home security system. Welcome! As you begin determining how much you want to spend, we think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the variety of options this industry offers for both budget-conscious and high-end users, from easy DIY kits to state-of-the-industry monitoring services, from simple motion sensors to complex control panels.

A no-frills system from newcomer Cove, for example, is a thrifty homeowner’s dream; we reviewed Cove’s DIY security kit with inexpensive equipment and fast setup, and while it wasn’t a flawless experience, we can’t understate the peace of mind we got from a system like this. We spent just under $250 for a full system that included a YI Home 3 security camera at no extra charge, but if you’re looking for more coverage, you can spend as much as $400 on a deluxe kit.

FYI: Other DIY systems, like SimpliSafe and Ring, start even cheaper at around $199 for a package. And Frontpoint, another top contender, is a bit more expensive at about $300+ for a full system.

On the flip side, traditional security packages such as those we’ve tested from ADT, a classic in the industry, are harder to pin down in terms of cost. For our review of ADT, we ordered the equipment and monitoring in one package upfront, with installation included. ADT’s costs aren’t as easy to break down as other brands, but that’s not necessarily unique in the industry. Vivint and Alder security systems are tight-lipped about individual pricing, too, so total costs will likely vary depending on the size of your home, how many people and pets live there, and how much security you’re really looking for.

A final cost consideration is 24/7 professional monitoring. This will range from $10 monthly (Ring Alarm) to $50-$60 per month (ADT and Vivint). But the industry average here is around $25-$35 monthly. Now, if you’re really looking to protect your home on a budget, consider self-monitoring your system to avoid the monthly fee altogether.

Well, that’s that! We hope this helps you with budgeting out your home security system. And be sure to look at our individual home security system reviews to see exactly how much you’ll pay by brand, depending on the level of security you desire.

Security Equipment

Whichever security company you choose, your basic security set will include a control panel, entryway sensors, and motion detection for inside your home. Also with basic monitoring service, the top-ranked companies provide keychain remote controls for wireless systems. These have panic buttons and can arm/disarm the alarm system. Mobile apps are another crucial consideration, and we’re glad to see most security systems these days have them. But keep in mind that the strength of your system’s mobile app depends on which monthly plan you choose – and they’re not all created equal across the industry. Learn which brands do it best in our list of the top home security mobile apps.

Home automation requires specialized equipment, usually controlled from the company's app. To automate your home, you need specialized devices that are compatible with the security provider you want and with the other devices in your system. You can avoid any issues by purchasing an automated system up front, but most companies also offer incentives and easy ways to upgrade your basic system to an automated one. Most automated or smart systems offer remote control for connected cameras, sensors, thermostats, and door locks.


A security system can only protect your family once it is installed and activated, but installation includes potential costs. Many companies require professional installation, which can cost more than $500. Even companies who offer free professional installation often charge for maintenance and repairs. There are also hidden costs to deal with. Wired installation typically costs more than wireless, and homes automation costs more than basic security. To reduce installation costs, choose a security system that allows you to install it yourself.

DIY installation is free and gives you the ability to add to your system as you need. Because you set up the system, you know how to configure it and how to reinstall it if you move. It also gives you the freedom to place devices where you want. Many security systems are wireless and easy to install, but companies that offer DIY installation also offer installation guidance through customer support and online guides, so you're never alone. DIY systems can provide you with the same level of security as professionally installed systems but at a fraction of the cost. When you do it yourself, you can save money on installation costs or avoid them entirely.


Some security companies require a one-time activation fee to start using your system. The fee is separate from installation and equipment costs and is often negotiable. If you move, you may have to pay the activation fee again for your new home. If you're interested in a system that includes this activation fee, it's worth haggling with the company sales department. You can negotiate your way out of the one-time activation fee with many companies if you ask firmly and nicely enough.


24/7 security monitoring can give you peace of mind, but it will cost you. The amount you pay depends on the security package and devices you choose. An automated system will cost more than a basic system, and a system that includes indoor and outdoor cameras, glass break sensors, and motion detectors will cost more to monitor than just a door and window sensor. With each device you add, expect the cost of monitoring to increase. SimpliSafe is one of many top-rated security systems that let you self-monitor. With optional monitoring, you can choose when to monitor the system yourself and when you'd rather a professional do it, like when you go on vacation. Optional monitoring gives you the freedom to make choices.

Security companies often require you to sign a 1- to 3-year monitoring contract up front with automatic renewals after that. Be sure that you want a contract when you sign, because it isn't uncommon for termination fees to charge more than 50% of the remaining contract. With optional monitoring, you pay monthly and have no extra fees to worry about. If you decide you don't want monitoring one month, the company won't penalize you. If you'd like to start monitoring back up the next month, the company won't charge you any extra activation fee either. With long-term contracts, not only will you be locked into a set price and be liable for termination fees, but you will also be locked into a security plan that may or may not work for your home. If you want to transfer to another plan, companies with long-term contracts often charge you to change plans. There is no wiggle room.

The best buy with home security monitoring is monthly optional monitoring. It gives you the protection you need and the freedom to change your mind.


Security systems often include video at an additional cost. When you opt for video, you will be responsible for equipment costs and, in some cases, installation and monitoring. You can buy a stand-alone camera separate from a system that you then monitor from an app on your smartphone or computer. You can also choose complete video surveillance that includes interior and exterior cameras with a professional monitoring plan. Adding video to your home security can cost you nothing (for self-monitored) or can be quite expensive.

If you’re thinking about using cameras with your security system, keep in mind that your video footage must be stored somewhere. The storage your cameras use depends on your security plan and the cameras you use. Cameras that allow you to remotely view live-streaming video often give you a set amount of cloud storage for those video files, or they only give you access to the cloud if you pay the monitoring fee. Some cameras only record when something triggers the alarm, and then those video clips are saved on the cloud or on a local storage device. Some security cameras save video to an internal SD card as well as or in lieu of the cloud. This local video storage could save you the cost of cloud storage but at a loss of convenience. If you want continuous video recording (CVR), you will have to buy a cloud plan to hold the hours of footage. The bottom line with cameras is to know how your videos are stored and how much that will cost you.

You can save money when you buy wireless cameras with DIY installation. If you don't need an entire security system, many companies sell stand-alone cameras that you can self-monitor. You may have to pay to use the company's app or for cloud storage, but these costs are minimal when compared to full-scale professional monitoring plans. To avoid these costs entirely, consider using a system of cameras instead of a monitored security package. Standalone cameras from Reolink, like the wire-free Argus 3 or the pan-tilt-zoom E1, are both great options, and you’ll find much more in our full Reolink analysis. With those cameras, you can record video in 1080p, the standard for HD, and pull up live-streams 24/7 through the Reolink app. You can also download, share, and store videos on the cloud for a low monthly fee.

Extended Warranty

Check with your security company for the extended warranties they offer. These warranties on equipment often come at an extra cost, but it's up to you whether these costs are actually worth the price. Companies offer return policies, and many offer money-back guarantees for a set amount of time. Companies most likely to offer extended warranties are those with monitoring contracts. If you want an extended warranty, you must purchase it up front, but be advised that you will have to follow strict rules so as not to void the warranty. Scrupulous companies will exchange defective items free of charge, so ask questions and read the fine print before you decide on your security company. With the right security system, you won't even need an extended warranty.

Save Money with Home Security Promotions

Home security companies have a lot of competition, with more than 100 companies in the U.S. and more springing up each year. This is great news for security customers, because you can leverage promotions from one company to get the best price for the system you want. Home security promotions can save you hundreds of dollars, from free equipment to discounts on services. You can watch the most affordable companies for deals as they arise, but that may occupy quite a bit of time waiting for that perfect promotion.

SafeHome can save you time and money. We aggregate the best deals, promotions, packages, and prices of the top home security systems on the market. We do the leg work, so you can make the best possible decision for your family. When security companies offer a promotion, we're on it. We regularly update our site with current security system promotions, and we even offer exclusive deals from time to time. At SafeHome, we are dedicated to making communities safer.

Packages and Bundles

Security companies offer packages to save you money, as long as you need all of the equipment that comes in the package. They will also bundle equipment and services together. Compared to systems you piece together device by device, packages and bundles can save you a significant amount of money. Many ISPs (internet service providers) have home security offerings that easily and seamlessly integrate into current bills and services. If you have a reliable, friendly ISP, then you may want to consider adding an alarm system to your current internet bill.

Deals and Sales

Home security companies know that peak break-in season begins in the fall and stretches through the new year, coinciding with the time of year people often give and receive expensive gifts. For that reason, you’ll find some of the best home security deals and discounts during this time. But you don't have to wait for a major holiday to buy a system. At SafeHome, we update our site with the current deals and sales. We know how important it is to find the right security system, and we give you the tools to do that without breaking the bank.

FAQs About Budget Friendly Home Security Systems

Do low-cost home security systems provide professional monitoring services?

Yes, many home security systems, including those with low prices, offer professional monitoring services. SimpliSafe, Abode, and Frontpoint are three options.

Do budget home security systems have upfront costs for equipment?

Yes, some home security systems with low overall costs will have upfront equipment costs. The cost may be lower than other systems. Sometimes, companies that do charge upfront equipment fees do not require long-term contracts and may not require professional monitoring, helping to cut back on those costs if you do not want those services.

What if I don't like the system after I get it? Can I return a home security system?

In most cases, you can return a home security system. Many companies offer trial plans or money-back guarantee for a set number of days or months. This is a great way to test out a system to see how well it works for you.

Do cost conscious home security systems require add-on purchases for home automation?

Yes, in some cases, you may need to purchase additional equipment to build your home automation up.

Do affordable home security systems have long-term contracts?

Not all home security systems that are affordable will require a long-term contract. Some systems do. Abode and SimpliSafe, for example, do not. Frontpoint has a longer contract requirement than other systems.

Do cheaper home security systems come with a warranty?

Yes, in some cases, affordable home security systems will feature a warranty. However, this differs from one company to the next.

Do I have to pay for professional installation if I buy a low cost home security system?

No, you do not always have to pay for professional installation of your affordable home security system. Many companies do not require pro installation and have designed their systems to be DIY.

If I buy a home security system, will I have to pay an activation fee?

Some home security systems require an activation fee. This fee gets the system turned on and working for you. Not all companies require it, but some will. However, some companies will negotiate an activation fee or drop it if it is a part of a promotion.

Features of Affordable Home Security Systems

Top-ranked affordable security systems include all the essentials plus some extras.

Here’s what to expect for about $1/day or less.


Wireless is the wave of the future — especially when it comes to affordable home security. Popular among the DIY crowd, wireless systems offer simple setup so you’re up and running in a matter of minutes. If you’re looking for a low-cost security system to keep your home and your family safe, you’ll be delighted by the countless wireless options you have to choose from.


Some of the best affordable home security companies offer hardwired systems. Wires and plugs, electrical circuits, all that jazz. But don’t worry — hardwired systems typically include professional installation. Some companies make you pay, while others bundle the installation cost with your plan. Hardwired home security systems are geared toward the homeowner who plans to stay put for several years.

24/7 Monitoring

Even the most affordable systems offer 24/7 monitoring. Get round-the-clock protection from the pros for as low as $8-$10 per month. If a break-in occurs, the monitoring center is alerted and takes it from there. Of course, they’ll call you first to get the scoop, and they can send police if needed. 24/7 Monitoring is optional, as many prefer to “self-monitor.”

Control Panel

If a criminal thinks he can break-in and destroy the control panel to stop the alarm, he better think again. Affordable alarm systems feature “Smash and Crash” protection. That’s right, your tamper-proof control panel will immediately alert the monitoring center of suspicious activity. On top of this, control panels today are outfitted with various nifty features. But we’ll let your owner’s manual do the talkin’.

Entry Sensors

Affordable security systems include entry sensors as a standard feature. But the more sensors you get, the more it’ll cost you. Put the magnetic sensors on your doors and windows, or any point of entry. When the magnet is separated from the sensor, the alarm sounds and you’ll be alerted. If you have 24/7 monitoring, expect a call from the call center.

Motion Detectors

Now that the perimeter is secured with entry sensors, it’s time to introduce motion detectors. This low-cost feature leverages infrared technology to scan for activity. The moment it detects motion, the alarm will sound and alerts are sent. Motion detectors are now more affordable than ever, and they’re great for homes with low-trafficked rooms and rooms with valuables like art and jewelry.

Remote Control

It sounds fancy and sophisticated, but Remote Control is a home security feature that comes with many affordable systems. These little remotes are perfect for your keyring. They let you arm and disarm your system with the push of a button. You’ll also be armed with a panic button, allowing you to sound the alarm from anywhere inside or outside of the home.

Mobile Access

You’re going to like this feature. Mobile Access puts your home security controls at your fingertips via companion app. All you need is a smartphone or other mobile device. Depending on your plan, you can remotely arm and disarm the system, view live-stream camera feeds, communicate with visitors, and the list goes on. Mobile Access is an essential feature of affordable systems.


Scale your system to your heart’s content! Expand your home security with video surveillance, motion detectors, glass break sensors, and any number of low-cost add-ons. There are so many options out there that home protection is only limited by your imagination. Expandability is offered by several affordable home security systems, but it’s always worth checking before you buy.

Rob Gabriele
Written By
Rob Gabriele
Managing Editor & Home Security Expert

As a home security expert and Managing Editor for, Rob Gabriele has written and edited over 1,000 articles related to home security. His expertise is in smart home protection with thousands of hours of testing and research under his belt. Formerly a reporter and producer for the USAToday network, Rob has been a writer and editor for over 10 years. He holds a Master’s of Science with an emphasis on writing from the University of Montana, and he currently lives in Indianapolis, IN.