Updated October 11, 2017

Frontpoint Review: Top Security, What's the Catch?

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Frontpoint is one of the top DIY home security system on the market. But is it right for your home? Read on for the pros and cons.

Frontpoint

Overall Score

4.3

Discount

4.0

Home Security

5.0

Customer Service

5.0

Equipment

4.5

Mobile App

5.0

Packages

4.0

Cancellation

3.0

Installation

4.0

Yard Sign

4.0

Home Automation

4.5
5-point scale (the higher, the better)

Pros and Cons

  • Excellent customer service
  • Easy installation
  • Plans start at $34.99/month
  • Equipment cost

Bottom Line

Best all-around home security system

Installing a home security system is a good way to deter would-be burglars - but with so many to choose from, finding the right one can be a challenge.

Frontpoint is one of the top providers of residential security systems. The system is wireless, and easy to install. They have 3 service levels, ranging from $34.99 to $49.99 per month.

Plus, it comes with a 30-day risk free trial with no hidden fees.

But does it make sense for your budget?

We give you the full rundown of what you need to know about Frontpoint. Read on to decide whether it's right for you.

How Frontpoint Works

Frontpoint offers a DIY-type home security system. DIY means you install the system yourself. But you still get the advantage of a professional security monitoring service for a monthly fee.

The security equipment and monitoring services come under different tiered 'plans'. Each plan have different monthly fees, depending on the features provided.

Frontpoint's 'Protection' plan for example, offers just basic wireless security system and security monitoring. Their higher tiered 'Interactive' plan however, will have added features such as geo-location services, mobile notifications, and remote access to your security system. We'll discuss this further in the subsections below.

On top of security equipment, Frontpoint also provides 24/7 professional monitoring service. Once an alarm is triggered, a notification is sent to the monitoring center. They then alert the local authorities, which are dispatched to your house.

What is a monitoring center? Frontpoint works with Rapid Response Monitoring Services (RRMS), which is a professional security monitoring company. They provide alarm monitoring services for fire, burglary, medical, and other emergency signals.

RRMS has been certified by safety consulting and certification company Underwriters Laboratories (UL), and is one of the best security monitoring companies in the U.S.

10 REASONS WHY FRONTPOINT IS WORTH IT

Nothing is perfect, but is FrontPoint good enough for your house? Let's explore the pros and cons of Frontpoint security.

Here's a brief list of what makes Frontpoint a standout in the home security field.

  1. Great customer service: Among the different home security companies, FrontPoint consistently ranks among the highest in customer service. Frontpoint is not the cheapest alarm system on the market, but high quality customer service is essential when you are looking for a professionally monitored home security system. If your security equipment malfunctions or you have difficulty setting it up, will your problems be resolved quickly? Overall, customers report being very happy with Frontpoint.

  2. 100% cellular monitoring: You get the reliability of 100% cellular monitoring, which means the system isn't dependent on an internet connection or landline. So you don't have to worry about burglars cutting your phone line. Some security companies charge you extra for cellular monitoring, but Frontpoint provides it at every tier.

  3. Customization and control: Frontpoint gives you flexibility and guidance on where to put the wireless sensors and what kind you need. The company's website has an interactive tool to help you decide on where to put them, and because it is a do-it-yourself system, you have total control on where everything goes.

  4. Portability: If you decide to move, you won't have to leave your security system behind. Frontpoint's equipment is mobile - you can take it with you to your next home.

  5. All-inclusive monitoring: Some companies charge extra for monitoring services for things like the presence of carbon monoxide or signs of flooding. With Frontpoint, these are included in your security package.

    Keep in mind, though - the monitoring is inclusive, but you still need to buy the equipment.

  6. Self install: Instead of waiting around for an unknown technician to come out and install your security system, you can set up Frontpoint on your own in just a few steps. Setup is easy.

    Did you know: In 65% of household burglaries where violence has occurred, the victims knew or recognized the offender.

  7. Security alerts: If you're constantly on the go, you'll appreciate being able to receive text or email alerts for any security-related activity at your home. This feature is available for the two higher tiers.

    Did you know: Residential burglaries happen more often than you think. In 2012, there were roughly 5,800 burglaries a day. That's 1 burglary every 15 seconds.

  8. Crash and smash protection: If burglars break into your home, they may try to disable your alarm system by smashing the control panel.

    With Frontpoint, once a sensor has been tripped (for instance, the front door has opened), the Frontpoint system will send a "pending alarm" to the monitoring center. If the alarm system hasn't been disarmed by a specified time (e.g., 30 seconds), then the central monitoring station knows something is up.

    This way, your system still protects you, even if a burglar opens the front door and smashes the control panel before the alarm siren goes off. This is available for the two higher tiers.

  9. Z-wave compatibility: At the highest tier plan, the Frontpoint control panels incorporate industry standard Z-wave technology, allowing you to automate certain features in your home (including lighting and door locks).

  10. Money-back guarantee: If you're not happy with your system, you can return it within the first 30 days for a full refund.

3 REASONS TO CONSIDER ANOTHER SECURITY SYSTEM

There are a few things that might persuade you to go with a different company.

  1. The up-front cost: The upfront equipment cost could get high. Frontpoint offers either a 1-year contract, or a 3-year contract. To get the best security equipment discount, you would need to sign up for the 3-year contract, which will then come with a $300 equipment credit.

    But if you only want to try it out for 1 year, you are expected to purchase at least $99 worth of equipment for the lowest tier, and $199 worth for the higher two tiers. Even with the cheapest plan, that's at least $35 a month for monitoring, plus the equipment you need to buy to get started.

  2. You want somebody else to set it up: While some people embrace the idea of putting in their own security system, others may just feel more at ease with a professional install.

  3. You'd prefer a lifetime warranty: Frontpoint offers a 3 year equipment warranty. If you're planning on keeping your security system for the long term, a three-year warranty probably might not be long enough. With some security companies, you can get a lifetime warranty on the equipment you buy.

Who Frontpoint Works Best For

If you don't want long contracts, Frontpoint is for you. They have a one-year option, which is great if you don't want a huge commitment. Frontpoint also has one of the best customer service in the industry, which is a big plus.

However, Frontpoint isn't the cheapest. The one year contract requires a minimum equipment purchase of $99, although the control panel alone, (a necessary component) already costs $239. Expect to pay more than $400 upfront, just to get started.

For better savings, Frontpoint's three year plan offers a discount of up to $300 for equipment purchases. Still, as a first-time customer, expect to pay more than $150 when you first start out.

If costs are an issue for you, you may want to consider Protect America instead, which can get you started on a basic security package for only $19.99.

Lastly, keep in mind that all of Frontpoint's plans are for wireless connections only. If you prefer a landline connection, look at Protect America's plans instead.

Frontpoint Pricing

© CreditDonkey

When you're buying a Frontpoint system, there are two separate cost considerations to keep in mind. The first is the monthly monitoring service, and you have three tiers to choose from.

This chart shows the three tiers and what each plan supports:

 

Protection Plan

Interactive Plan

Ultimate Plan

 

Benefits and Features

Home Security
$34.99 / mo
$44.99 / mo
$49.99 / mo
Customer Service
Mobile App 
Contract
Installation
Do It Yourself
Do It Yourself
Do It Yourself
Yard Sign
Home Automation  
Control Panel
Door Lock  
Door Sensor
Glass Break Sensor
Motion Sensor
Outdoor Camera  
Security Camera  
Thermostat  
Water Flood Monitoring
Window Sensor
Z-Wave  

Blank fields may indicate the information is not available, not applicable, or not known to CreditDonkey. Please visit the product website for details.

  • Protection Plan, $34.99/mo.: The Protection Plan is the most basic option. With this plan, you'll get 100% wireless system and cellular monitoring as well as round-the-clock monitored service for intrusion, fire, carbon monoxide leaks, and water damage. Frontpoint also alerts your local authorities if you need emergency medical assistance.

  • Interactive Plan, $44.99/mo.: The Interactive Plan gives you all the same features but you also get email and text alerts, remote access and control with the mobile app, lighting control, geo location services that integrate with your cell phone, and Crash and Smash Protection.

    Tip: With geo location services through your smartphone, you set up custom features like getting a notification when you forgot to arm your alarm system after you leave home. Geo services are helpful for the busy family to stay protected.

  • Ultimate Plan, $49.99/mo.: The Ultimate Plan combines all the benefits of the first two plans and also includes live video streaming, automated door locks, HD and night vision capabilities, motion-activated video recording and energy management controls.

Please note that while the plans support certain monitoring capabilities, you would have to purchase the appropriate equipment. All three plans come with one base controller and two door or window sensors. But you'll probably need more than that. Equipment such as glass break sensors, flood sensors, and security cameras are at an additional cost.

There's no installation fee or shipping fees, but when all is said and done, you will have spent hundreds on equipment (a typical total is around $300 just for the equipment). Frontpoint does counter some of the expense by offering discounts based on credit approval and contract length. For instance, if you sign up for a 3-year contract, you'll get a $300 discount toward the cost of equipment.

Otherwise, you are expected to purchase at least $100 worth of equipment. The minimum equipment fee for the Protection Plan is $99. For the Interactive and Ultimate Plans, it increases to $199.

USING THE SECURITY APP

Frontpoint's mobile app is available for all smartphone and tablet devices. With it, you can monitor and control your system remotely. Here're some other things you can do with the app (depending on your account plan and equipment):

  • Arm/disarm your system
  • View your live video stream
  • Turn lights on/off
  • Receive notification alerts when someone enters or leaves your home.

iPhone: Download Frontpoint app from the App Store.
Android: Download Frontpoint app from Google Play.

FRONTPOINT EQUIPMENT

© CreditDonkey

With Frontpoint, you'll need to choose and buy the equipment. At the very least you'll need a standard control panel, and door/window sensors for each of your entry points. However, that's the most basic bundle. For a more complete system, consider getting motion detectors, smoke detectors, and maybe even a HD camera for video surveillance.

Here's a rundown of Frontpoint's security equipment.

  • Security camera: Want video surveillance integrated with your alarm system? There are three different cameras you can choose from with your Frontpoint system: wireless indoor, wireless outdoor, and pan-and-tilt. The wireless cameras offer a stationary view, but the pan-and-tilt camera gives you the ability to view a larger area or zoom in on a specific part of your home.

    Tip: With the Ultimate Plan, you can mix-and-match up to 4 video surveillance cameras.

  • Control panel: The control panel is the command center for your home security system. The system comes with the standard keypad digital panel (Simon XT), but if you're a technophile, you do have the option to upgrade to the fancy touch screen panel (Qolsys IQ panel). Both the Simon XT and Qolsys IQ panel feature cellular operation and Crash and Smash protection. In the event of a power outage, both panels have an emergency backup battery. That way, even if burglars cut the power, your Simon XT digital panel or Qolsys IQ touchscreen panel will still work.

    Tip: If your kids don't have cell phones and you still want them to be able to arm/disarm the system, you might want to consider buying a keychain remote. The keychain remote is a convenient way to arm and disarm the house. There is even a emergency panic button.

  • Motion sensor: Motion detectors are designed to alert you when someone is in your home if you're away. Frontpoint uses wireless sensors that easily connect with the control panel, so there's no time-consuming wires to run and holes to drill.

    Tip: Motion sensors are useful to secure large areas. Frontpoint motion detectors are pet friendly. Experiment with placement to minimize the risk of false alarms.

  • Image sensor: Image sensors are a step up from motion sensors. It combines a motion sensor with a camera. Not only do you know if motion is detected, you'll capture a still image of what triggered the event. You can see for yourself who triggered the image sensor on your cell phone.

  • Z-wave: We've already briefly touched on Z-wave communication and how it works. Essentially, this technology automates your home by allowing you to remotely control your Z-wave compatible lights, door locks, and thermostat temperature. Turn your house into a smart home. Imagine being able to unlock the front door, turn on the living room lights and change the temperature from the convenience of your smart phone.

  • Glass break sensor: While some thieves target the front door, others prefer to come in through the window. Frontpoint's glass break sensors are designed to detect the sound of glass breaking and issue an alert so you'll know instantly if your home has been broken into.

  • Door sensor: The door sensor is a two-piece unit that alerts the control panel when a door is opened. These sensors can also be used on windows in conjunction with the glass break or motion sensors, and you can get a separate sensor for your garage door. The door and window sensors are wireless, powered by a tiny battery that last for years.

    Tip: You can configure the app to push instant alerts to your smartphone when sensors are triggered, even when the security system is not armed. For instance, you might want to be notified whenever your kids open the back door.

  • Yard sign: Frontpoint customers receive one 10-inch x 10-inch weather-resistant yard sign and smaller window decals to deter thieves. Additional signs are available for $3.99 each.

KEY FEATURES

What do some of these terms mean? We break it down for you.

  • Central Station: A central station or monitoring station is the team of people dedicated to monitoring your alarm system.

    When your alarm is triggered (e.g by a burglar or fire) or shows anything out of the ordinary, the system will alert Frontpoint's monitoring center. A monitoring officer will then try to call you to verify the situation. If you're not at home, or didn't pick up their call, they'll contact the authorities. The authorities are then dispatched to your home to respond to the emergency.

    Frontpoint partners with Rapid Response Monitoring, a highly accredited monitoring company in the U.S.

  • Cellular Monitoring: Cellular or wireless monitoring refers to how your alarm system communicates with the central station. In this case, the signal is sent via cellular connection, as opposed to the more traditional landline/ cable connection.

    The advantage of cellular monitoring is that burglars won't be able to disable your security system simply by cutting/unplugging your phone line. This makes it more secure than landline monitoring.

  • Crash and Smash technology: Sophisticated burglars will sometimes break into a home and immediately destroy a security system's control panel before it can send a signal to the monitoring centers.

    With Frontpoint's security system, as soon as a door is opened, the system is placed in a 'special' status and monitored to see what happens next - if the system is disarmed, nothing happens. But if it's an intruder, the system goes through the normal activation process, and the monitoring station will contact the authorities.

  • Interactive Security system: With Frontpoint's Interactive or Ultimate plan, you'll get access to the Alarm.com mobile app, which lets you do everything the control panel does. You can remotely arm or disarm your security system, view recent activity, get email and text message alerts, and even add video surveillance which can be viewed from your mobile phone.

  • Home automation: Frontpoint's security systems are compatible with Z-wave technology, allowing you to remotely access and control electronic devices and home appliances such as your lights and thermostat. Being able to turn on your lights while you're away gives the impression that you're home, instead of the old-fashioned approach of having "lights on timers". Z-wave can also be integrated with your alarm system to:

    • Program a light to turn on or off, in conjunction with an alarm event.
    • Program a light to turn on or off, in conjunction with your alarm system being armed or disarmed.
    • Program a light to turn on or off, in conjunction with a door opening or closing - based on time of day.

    This makes home automation more than just remote control of your lights - it also makes it a functional feature of your home security system.

  • Geofencing: Frontpoint's security systems allow you to establish a "geo-fence", which is an invisible ring around a designated location. You can program it so that any time you (or your smartphone) enter or exit this geo-fence, a set of rules or settings will automatically go into effect.

    For example, you could set a geo-fence around your home with the rule that once you leave this geo-fence, you'll receive an arming reminder telling you to arm your security system. You can also have another geo-fence around your workplace to automatically set the temperature of your home thermostat when you go into work.

    You can set multiple geo-fences, and also have multiple users, with each individual having their own rules and settings.

CUSTOMER SERVICE

Customer service is available from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET on the weekends. Overall, Frontpoint's customer service tends to get high marks across the board in terms of knowledgeable and helpful representatives.

We looked at Glassdoor, the site where employees and former employees can anonymously review their employers to get a peek behind the curtain. And the good news is, most employees would recommend Frontpoint to a friend. Frontpoint appears to value a good work-life balance, something we would surely appreciate in the event we call in for help.

SELF INSTALLATION

Frontpoint equipments come ready to use, and are easy to install. Below, we provide a brief guide on how to install the basic equipment, like the control panel, door/window sensors, and motion sensor.

First, when you receive your Frontpoint package, make sure you have all the equipment you ordered. You should at least have a standard control panel, and door/window sensors.

Next, you'll need to activate the setup wizard app, which will help you with the installation process. In your Frontpoint package, they'll include a setup card which has a unique code. Enter this code in the setup wizard app, which you can access from your smartphone or tablet at Frontpoint.com/setup. This will activate the wizard app, which will guide you through the process.

The first thing to install is the control panel. Place it in a central location, and plug it in to the power source. Then, let the setup wizard app search for the control panel. Once you've found it, connect it to your wireless network.

Next, the wizard app will tell you to install the door/window sensors. The first thing to do is name the sensor. You should name it according to its designation, like "Front door" for example. After that, you'll need to physically install the sensor.

To install the sensor, first wipe the surface so it's free of dust. This will allow the adhesive to hold. Then make sure it's dry, before peeling the stickers off each part and sticking it onto the surface. Hold it in place for 60 seconds, and you're done.

Next, install the motion sensor. As usual, name the motion sensor as prompted by the wizard app, and designate where you want to install it. The motion sensor should be high enough so it's not obstructed by objects in the room, but low enough so it also captures as much of the room as possible. Again, clean the surface, peel the stickers, and hold the motion sensor in place for 60 seconds. The wizard app will then detect your motion sensor. If it finds it, you're done.

Once you've installed all your sensors, the setup wizard will tell you you're ready to activate. To activate your account, just set your customer portal and app password, and hit next. That's it! Your system is installed and active.

If you have any problems, just give Frontpoint a call. Their customer service team is on standby to help you.

NEGATIVE REVIEWS

While reviews of Frontpoint are overwhelmingly positive, we did find a few unsatisfied customers with negative reviews out there.

A number of users, for example, reported having problems with defective or faulty equipment while others ran into issues with billing. Some customers also complained of having a less than stellar customer service experience. From our research, we noticed a Frontpoint representative made a point of contacting each Yelp user who reported a problem and offered to follow up, but it's not clear how many cases were actually resolved to the customer's satisfaction.

COMMON COMPLAINTS

Aside from reviews, we also took a look at Frontpoint's record with the Better Business Bureau. Of the 96 complaints registered, 49 involved an issue with equipment or monitoring services, while 31 centered on billing and collection issues. These seem to be the main problem areas. 10 complaints were listed for the sales and advertising strategies, and only a few about delivery experience and warranty issues.

One thing that many people consistently had a problem with was the three-year contract Frontpoint requires customers to sign once the 30-day trial period expires. If you're not sure whether you're going to stick with Frontpoint, you need to pay close attention to the risk free trial period expiration date to avoid incurring any extra charges.

In more than one instance, customers reported that they were required to pay a hefty cancellation fee for terminating their contract early (past the 30-day trial period, but before the 3 years is up).

HOW IT COMPARES

© CreditDonkey

To give you an idea of how Frontpoint stacks up, we compared it to other top home security companies.

Frontpoint Security vs ADT

ADT, a household name in the home security business, has a few things in common with Frontpoint. For instance, you can use email and text alerts, you have remote access and control over the system, and both use industry standard Z-wave technology.

As far as the features go, life safety monitoring, environmental monitoring, and heat monitoring aren't included. Professional installation is required; the fee is usually $99 for a standard package and it starts at $199 for ADT Pulse, which is a complete home automation system. ADT is currently offering an $850 equipment package for free when you sign up for a security plan, but a 3-year contract is required.

 

Frontpoint

ADT

 

Benefits and Features

Home SecurityPlans start from $34.99/month to $49.99/month. All plans offer 100% wireless and cellular system with 24/7 professional monitoring. $49.99 Ultimate Plan supports video streaming, automated door locks, and advanced thermostat control.Plans start from $28.99/month to $58.99/month. All plans include 24/7 monitoring for burglary.
$58.99 ADT Pulse Video Plan includes remote secure video and smartphone control.
Customer ServiceMonday to Friday from 8am to 11pm Eastern. Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm Eastern. 24/7 Monitoring.24/7 customer support and monitoring.
Return Policy
30 Days
6 months money back guarantee if there is a problem ADT cannot resolve
Warranty
3 Years
After 90 days, there is a charge for servicing broken equipment. Or you can choose to pay a monthly fee for equipment warranty
EquipmentMinimum $99 for lowest tier/$199 for upper tier
Basic equipment included
Mobile App
Alarm.com mobile app
ADT Pulse app allows you to activate alarm, check sensors, watch live video feeds, control lights and appliances, adjust thermostats and view history of home activities. Available on App Store and Google Play.
Contract
1 year or 3 year contract
3 year contract
Installation
Do It Yourself
Professional installation available.
Yard Sign
ADT-branded yard sign
Home AutomationAutomate your lights, door locks, and thermostats using Z-Wave technology.ADT Pulse allows you to arm/disarm your house, control your lights and thermostats remotely.
Control PanelStandard control panel includes cellular technology. Optional touch screen control panel upgrade.ADT Pulse touchscreen control panel allows you to know alarm status, arm/disarm your alarm, control lights, check weather, and view live video from security cameras. Also allows you to quickly send an immediate alarm (medical, fire, or police).
Door LockSupports Z-Wave door locks.ADT Pulse door locks allow you to remotely lock/unlock your door from any internet-connected device.
Door SensorWireless door sensors. Recessed door sensors available. Garage door sensors available.Wired and wireless door sensors. Wireless door sensors can be installed yourself with no drilling or hardwiring necessary.
Glass Break Sensor
Detects if a pane of glass is shattered
Lowest Monthly Price
34.99
$28.99
Motion SensorPet-friendly wireless motion sensors.
Outdoor CameraWireless outdoor camera (requires power)
Security CameraIndoor and outdoor wireless camera options available (requires power)
ThermostatSupports many Z-Wave thermostats
Touch Screen
Water Flood Monitoring
Window SensorWireless window sensors.
Z-Wave
Discount
Home Security
Customer Service
Equipment
Mobile App
Packages
Cancellation
Installation
Yard Sign
Home Automation

Frontpoint: Pricing information including fees, features and contract length was obtained on January 13, 2016 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

ADT: Pricing information including fees, features and contract length was obtained on January 8, 2016 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

FrontPoint vs SimpliSafe

If committing to a lengthy contract is an issue, SimpliSafe is a great alternative to Frontpoint since there's no contract required. You have five packages to choose from, starting with the Economy package that's priced at $229.96 and going up to the Ultimate package, priced at $539.85. All packages include the equipment you need to get started, and you have 60 days to try it out and get your money back if you're not satisfied.

Installation is DIY and the system uses cellular and wireless technology. You can monitor your system remotely from the SimpliSafe app and set up alerts, although video streaming and camera monitoring aren't an option. Similar to Frontpoint, you only get a three-year warranty on equipment versus the lifetime warranty ADT offers.

 

Frontpoint

SimpliSafe

 

Benefits and Features

Home SecurityPlans start from $34.99/month to $49.99/month. All plans offer 100% wireless and cellular system with 24/7 professional monitoring. $49.99 Ultimate Plan supports video streaming, automated door locks, and advanced thermostat control.$14.99 Standard Alarm Monitoring
$24.99 Interactive Alarm Monitoring includes SMS/Email Alerts and Smartphone Control
Customer ServiceMonday to Friday from 8am to 11pm Eastern. Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm Eastern. 24/7 Monitoring.9am to 6pm Eastern, 7 days a week. 24/7 Monitoring.
Return Policy
30 Days
60 days
Warranty
3 Years
3 years
EquipmentMinimum $99 for lowest tier/$199 for upper tier$229 for basic package, or build your own
Mobile App
Alarm.com mobile app
SimpliSafe Home Security app allows you to arm/disarm remotely and monitor sensor status. Requires Interactive monitoring subscription plan and SimpliSafe2 system.
Contract
1 year or 3 year contract
No Contract
Installation
Do It Yourself
Do It Yourself
Yard Sign
Home AutomationAutomate your lights, door locks, and thermostats using Z-Wave technology. 
Control PanelStandard control panel includes cellular technology. Optional touch screen control panel upgrade.
Door LockSupports Z-Wave door locks.
Door SensorWireless door sensors. Recessed door sensors available. Garage door sensors available.
Glass Break Sensor
Lowest Monthly Price
34.99
$14.99
Motion SensorPet-friendly wireless motion sensors.
Outdoor CameraWireless outdoor camera (requires power) 
Security CameraIndoor and outdoor wireless camera options available (requires power)
ThermostatSupports many Z-Wave thermostats 
Touch Screen
 
Water Flood Monitoring
Window SensorWireless window sensors.
Z-Wave
 
Discount
Home Security
Customer Service
Equipment
Mobile App
Packages
Cancellation
Installation
Yard Sign
Home Automation
Online Community

Blank fields may indicate the information is not available, not applicable, or not known to CreditDonkey. Please visit the product website for details.

Frontpoint: Pricing information including fees, features and contract length was obtained on January 13, 2016 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

SimpliSafe: Pricing information including fees, features and contract length was obtained on August 4, 2016 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

Frontpoint vs Protect America

If you want to save on equipment costs, take a look at Protect America. Protect America offers up to $1,400 in free equipment with a 3 year contract.

 

Frontpoint

Protect America

 

Benefits and Features

Home SecurityPlans start from $34.99/month to $49.99/month. All plans offer 100% wireless and cellular system with 24/7 professional monitoring. $49.99 Ultimate Plan supports video streaming, automated door locks, and advanced thermostat control.Plans start from $19.99/month to $54.99/month. All plans include free equipment, no installation fees, and 24/7 monitoring.
$54.99 Cellular Monitoring Plan includes cellular connection, smartphone control, automated door locks, and lighting control.
Customer ServiceMonday to Friday from 8am to 11pm Eastern. Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm Eastern. 24/7 Monitoring.Monday to Friday 8am to 9pm Central. Saturday to Sunday 9am to 7pm Central. 24/7 Monitoring
Return Policy
30 Days
14 days
Warranty
3 Years
Lifetime
EquipmentMinimum $99 for lowest tier/$199 for upper tier
Basic equipment included
Mobile App
Alarm.com mobile app
SMART Connect app allows you to arm and disarm your security system remotely, monitor sensor activity, view live video, and control locks and lights. App is available on App Store and Google Play.
Contract
1 year or 3 year contract
3 year contract
Installation
Do It Yourself
Do It Yourself
Yard Sign
Home AutomationAutomate your lights, door locks, and thermostats using Z-Wave technology.Supports Z-Wave Door Locks, Lights, and Thermostats
Control PanelStandard control panel includes cellular technology. Optional touch screen control panel upgrade.
GE Simon XT
Door LockSupports Z-Wave door locks.
Door SensorWireless door sensors. Recessed door sensors available. Garage door sensors available.
Glass Break Sensor
Lowest Monthly Price
34.99
$19.99
Motion SensorPet-friendly wireless motion sensors.
Outdoor CameraWireless outdoor camera (requires power) 
Security CameraIndoor and outdoor wireless camera options available (requires power)Indoor use only camera. Up to 2 streams
ThermostatSupports many Z-Wave thermostats
Touch Screen
Simon XT Touch Screen
Water Flood Monitoring
Window SensorWireless window sensors.
Z-Wave
Discount
Home Security
Customer Service
Equipment
Mobile App
Packages
Cancellation
Installation
Yard Sign
Home Automation

Blank fields may indicate the information is not available, not applicable, or not known to CreditDonkey. Please visit the product website for details.

Frontpoint: Pricing information including fees, features and contract length was obtained on January 13, 2016 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

Protect America: Pricing information including fees, features and contract length was obtained on January 13, 2016 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

Frontpoint vs Vivint

If you want the latest in technology with professional installation, take a look at Vivint.

 

Frontpoint

Vivint

 

Benefits and Features

Home SecurityPlans start from $34.99/month to $49.99/month. All plans offer 100% wireless and cellular system with 24/7 professional monitoring. $49.99 Ultimate Plan supports video streaming, automated door locks, and advanced thermostat control.Plans start from $39.99/month. All plans include 24/7 monitoring, remote access, and touchscreen control panel. Smart Protect Plan starts at $49.99/month and Smart Control Plan starts at $60.99/month.
Customer ServiceMonday to Friday from 8am to 11pm Eastern. Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm Eastern. 24/7 Monitoring.
24/7
Return Policy
30 Days
 
Warranty
3 Years
Lifetime Warranty
EquipmentMinimum $99 for lowest tier/$199 for upper tierSome basic equipment included, with minimum of $99 equipment activation fee
Mobile App
Alarm.com mobile app
Vivint SkyControl Mobile App allows you to arm/disarm your system remotely, lock/unlock doors, adjust thermostat settings, view live and recorded video, and manage lights.
Contract
1 year or 3 year contract
3.5 to 5 years
Installation
Do It Yourself
Professional Installation
Yard Sign
Home AutomationAutomate your lights, door locks, and thermostats using Z-Wave technology.
Control PanelStandard control panel includes cellular technology. Optional touch screen control panel upgrade.
Door LockSupports Z-Wave door locks.
Door SensorWireless door sensors. Recessed door sensors available. Garage door sensors available.
Glass Break Sensor
Lowest Monthly Price
34.99
38.99
Motion SensorPet-friendly wireless motion sensors.
Outdoor CameraWireless outdoor camera (requires power)
Security CameraIndoor and outdoor wireless camera options available (requires power)
ThermostatSupports many Z-Wave thermostats
Touch Screen
Water Flood Monitoring
Window SensorWireless window sensors.
Z-Wave
Discount
Home Security
Customer Service
Equipment
Mobile App
Packages
Cancellation
Installation
Yard Sign
Home Automation

Blank fields may indicate the information is not available, not applicable, or not known to CreditDonkey. Please visit the product website for details.

Frontpoint: Pricing information including fees, features and contract length was obtained on January 13, 2016 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

Vivint: Pricing information including fees, features and contract length was obtained on January 8, 2016 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

Frontpoint vs Live Watch

If you don't want a contract and want the flexibility to cancel anytime, take a look at LiveWatch.

 

Frontpoint

LiveWatch

 

Benefits and Features

Home SecurityPlans start from $34.99/month to $49.99/month. All plans offer 100% wireless and cellular system with 24/7 professional monitoring. $49.99 Ultimate Plan supports video streaming, automated door locks, and advanced thermostat control.Plans start from $19.95/month to $49.95/month. All plans include 24/7 monitoring.
$29.95 Mobile Pro Plan includes smartphone control.
$39.95 Total Home Plan includes home automation.
$49.95 Total Home+Video Plan supports video streaming.
Customer ServiceMonday to Friday from 8am to 11pm Eastern. Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm Eastern. 24/7 Monitoring.Monday through Friday from 7am to 9pm Central. Saturday from 8am to 5pm Central. 24/7 monitoring.
Return Policy
30 Days
45 days
Warranty
3 Years
Lifetime
EquipmentMinimum $99 for lowest tier/$199 for upper tier
$99 for basic equipment
Mobile App
Alarm.com mobile app
LiveWatch app (requires LiveWatch Interactive services) allows you to arm and disarm your home security system remotely, view sensor activities (up to 10 sensors), get notifications on system events and pending alarms, and view video from cameras (if applicable). App is available for iPhone, Blackberry and Android.
Contract
1 year or 3 year contract
Cancel anytime with no fee
Installation
Do It Yourself
Do It Yourself
Yard Sign
Home AutomationAutomate your lights, door locks, and thermostats using Z-Wave technology.
Control PanelStandard control panel includes cellular technology. Optional touch screen control panel upgrade.
Door LockSupports Z-Wave door locks.
Door SensorWireless door sensors. Recessed door sensors available. Garage door sensors available.
Glass Break Sensor
Lowest Monthly Price
34.99
$29.95
Motion SensorPet-friendly wireless motion sensors.
Outdoor CameraWireless outdoor camera (requires power)
Security CameraIndoor and outdoor wireless camera options available (requires power)
ThermostatSupports many Z-Wave thermostats
Touch Screen
Water Flood Monitoring
Window SensorWireless window sensors.
Z-Wave
Discount
Home Security
Customer Service
Equipment
Mobile App
Packages
Cancellation
Installation
Yard Sign
Home Automation

Frontpoint: Pricing information including fees, features and contract length was obtained on January 13, 2016 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

LiveWatch: Pricing information including fees, features and contract length was obtained on January 8, 2016 from published websites and is believed to be accurate, but not guaranteed.

BOTTOM LINE: IS FRONTPOINT WORTH IT?

Frontpoint is consistently rated as one of the best home security systems around with great customer service. It has a lot to offer if you're a homeowner looking for all-inclusive high quality monitoring at an affordable price.

There are some downsides, however. The 3-year commitment may be too long for some homeowners, and the upfront equipment purchase is a little steep.

As far as the monthly expense goes, it's not a wallet-gouger but you have to be sure that you're comfortable with a three-year contract before signing on the dotted line.

Rebecca Lake is a journalist at CreditDonkey, a home security comparison and financial education website. Write to Rebecca Lake at rebecca@creditdonkey.com. Our data-driven analysis has been recognized by major news outlets across the country and has helped families make savvy financial and lifestyle decisions. (read more)

Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are those of the author's alone. Please support CreditDonkey on our mission to help you make savvy financial decisions. Our free online service is made possible through financial relationships with some of the products and services mentioned on this site. We may receive compensation if you shop through links in our content.

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