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SimpliSafe vs. ADT: Full Comparison with Pros and Cons for Each

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SimpliSafe vs. ADT: Full Comparison with Pros and Cons for Each

When you think of home alarm systems, there is a good chance that ADT and SimpliSafe are two names that come to mind.

ADT is one of the oldest alarm system companies in the U.S. and it’s hard not to associate them as an alarm industry giant with almost 150 years of history. SimpliSafe is relatively new comparatively but has more than made a name for itself in its 17-plus years in business. 

Even as these two companies both commit to improving home security, they go out about it a little differently. Let’s take a look at these home security systems including their pros and cons and see which one may be right for you. 

SimpliSafe vs. ADT: Side-by-Side Comparison

SimpliSafe vs ADT comparison infographic
SimpliSafeADT
Year Founded20061874
Installation TypeDIY (Professional available)DIY and Professional
Installation Fee$0 if DIY, starting at $99 for Professional$0 if DIY, starting at $150 for Professional 
Monthly Subscription $0-$27.99 monthlyYes, starting at $45.99 monthly
Contract?No long-term contract36-month contract
Money-Back Guarantee60 days6 months
24/7 Customer SupportNo (chat and phone 8 am-midnight EST)No (chat and phone 7 am-midnight EST)
ConnectivityWireless (cellular, broadband, and landline monitoring)Wired or wireless (cellular, broadband, and landline monitoring)
No Contract
SimpliSafe 10 Piece Wireless Home Security System
$429.99
  • Comes ready to install and does not require any drilling or additional wiring. Easy!
  • Optional 24hr monitoring by professionals for 60c per day (USA only)
  • SimpliSafe App available
  • Outside and inside monitoring with wireless and wired camera options
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
02/23/2024 11:10 am GMT
Wireless Self-Monitoring
ADT 8 Piece Wireless Home Security System - DIY Installation - Optional Professional Monitoring - No Contract - Compatible with Google Assistant & Alexa - Graphite
  • DIY security from ADT. Yes, that ADT. Get really smart security you can easily install yourself. With no contract. Backed by the smart security leader with over 145 years of experience. It’s so easy and intuitive to set up that you can do it yourself. Set up your system quickly and easily by plugging in your hub, connecting it to your home’s Wi-Fi network, and placing the sensors where you see fit.
  • This 8-piece DIY Home Security bundle will secure your home or apartment and can grow, adapt, and move with you, as needed! The 8-piece comes with everything you need to protect a 2-3 bedroom home or apartment. Includes 1 base system, 4 entry sensors, 1 motion detector, 1 remote keychain, and 1 yard sign.
  • No strings. Ever. ADT won't lock you into any long-term contracts.
  • Syncs with Google Assistant, Alexa, and other smart home devices for total home control. NOT compatible with ADT professionally installed systems or 5G networks--only work in the United States.
  • Self-monitor your home from your mobile device via our free app! Or opt in for our professional monitoring services for just $19.99 plus tax per month.


We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Please Note: As of July 19, 2023, the ADT 8 Piece Wireless Home Security System is currently unavailable on Amazon. If you are unable to locate this product elsewhere, please check back later.

SimpliSafe vs. ADT: What’s the Difference? 

Pricing

Looking at pricing between SimpliSafe and ADT is a tall order because there are so many different ways to add up costs. First and foremost is the alarm equipment itself which can vary depending on the size of your house, the number of windows and doors, whether you want cameras, how many, and so on.

If you are looking at pricing on the SimpliSafe website, the most basic package starts at $244.96 and includes just enough coverage for one window, one door, a hub, and a keypad. 

SimpliSafe pre-packaged builds can go up from there as you add more sensors for doors, windows, and motion sensors, all the way to $699.90 for their largest pre-build package. You can also customize and build your own packages with SimpliSafe directly on their website or on Amazon to get an accurate number of sensors and cameras based on the size of your home. 

Traditionally, ADT doesn’t even provide costs on its website as they prompt potential customers to call in and get a free quote. There are three separate potential price packages depending on whether you want smart home controls, just standard monitoring, or video and smart home monitoring. Some additional sleuthing around the internet will let you know that best case, a potential ADT package will start somewhere around $599 before monitoring and installation fees. 

Building your own package is also handled differently than SimpliSafe which is a one-time fee whereas ADT opts for low monthly payments. For example, each window and door sensor is only 83 cents monthly but you need to agree to a 60-month contract. A Google Nest wireless camera is $5.15 a month with the same 60-month guarantee so it’s easy to see how quickly ADT costs can skyrocket. 

Monitoring

For any alarm system, monitoring is one of the most critical functions so you can receive a fast response in case of an emergency. For its part, SimpliSafe provides a much more friendly approach toward monitoring with four distinct plans that are easily broken down by coverage. The Unmonitored package is available at no cost but provides no medical/police/fire dispatch and only allows for remote arming and disarming of the system. 

The best monitoring SimpliSafe has to offer is unsurprisingly the most expensive with its Interactive Monitoring plan. At $27.99 a month, you receive complete coverage including unlimited recording for up to 10 video cameras, 24/7 medical/fire/police dispatch, plus cellular communication backups. This plan also provides a lifetime equipment warranty which is a nice bonus not available through many alarm brands. 

ADT’s monitoring pricing is not only more expensive, but it’s also a little less cut-and-dry as far as the total cost. At its lowest cost, the Secure Home package starts at $45.99 a month and includes glass break sensors, alarm siren, carbon monoxide detection, as well as smoke and flood detection. Upgrading to the Smart Home package includes all of the Secure Home support but adds Smart LED bulbs, garage door control, and smart door locks while upping the monthly price to $49.99 a month. 

ADT’s best package is Video & Smart Home, which adds everything from the two previous packages plus indoor and outdoor cameras and a video doorbell, all while increasing the cost to $57.99 a month. 

Installation

When it comes to installation, this is definitely an area where SimpliSafe excels against the likes of ADT. The reason why is because SimpliSafe is built to be installed by the customer, with no prior knowledge of installing an alarm system. This is such a selling point that it’s a staple of SimpliSafe TV commercials talking about how easy it is to install. There is no mounting, drilling, cutting, or wiring, just setting everything up and depending on the size of your alarm equipment package, there is a good chance you can be up and running in under 60 minutes. 

If the idea of installing your own SimpliSafe equipment makes you nervous or if you want help installing video cameras, the company does partner with local vendors. Those prices for professional installation will begin at around $99 and go up from there, depending on the company and the amount of work required. Even so, for most people, SimpliSafe is very much do-it-yourself so there are cost savings right from the start. 

ADT, on the other hand, is mostly all about professional installation. Unlike SimpliSafe which partners with local third parties, ADT is mostly composed of its own group of certified technicians that can assist with installation at costs beginning as low as $150, depending on the size of the installation. ADT had offered a DIY program called Blue by ADT up until recently that was a true self-installation service, but recently discontinued the lineup and offerings so the only option with ADT remains professional installation. 

home security system
SimpliSafe and ADT are both super reliable home security system companies that will offer the protection you’re looking for.

Contracts

Just as self-installation is a major benefit for SimpliSafe, so too is the lack of contracts. Simply stated (no pun intended), there are no long-term contracts whatsoever when you opt for SimpliSafe as your home security system of choice. It’s a definite advantage, and with a 60-day money-back guarantee, it removes quite a few potential barriers to entry for anyone who might have otherwise been on the fence about switching or starting a home security company. 

Contracts are a completely different story when it comes to ADT as you can expect at least some form of an agreement to get their lowest prices. For the most part, ADT’s contracts hover around 36 months with their three standard packages. In addition, attempting to get out of any ADT agreement prior to the expiration of the 36-month timeframe is subject to heavy fees, so that’s something to consider before signing on the dotted line. 

Smart Home

One of the benefits of a smart home is the integration of all of your smart products into one solution. With SimpliSafe, it takes a step into the smart home pool but doesn’t quite dive in. As part of your alarm package, you can purchase a smart video doorbell or smart door lock and they can both work as part of your total package. With the door lock, you can lock and unlock using a pin pad or the app on your phone or you can connect your system to Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant using voice commands. Just know that the use of any voice assistant feature requires the Interactive Monitoring plan at $27.99 a month. 

As for a smart home with ADT, you have a much deeper set of options to integrate your alarm system. The most expensive and expansive package ADT offers is even labeled its Video & Smart Home package. Within this system, you can easily add the Google Nest Wi-Fi router, Google Nest Mini speakers, the Nest Hub and Hub Max, Nest Thermostat, smart door locks, and more. On top of all of the products available directly from ADT, their systems work on Z-Wave technology so you can add any number of Z-Wave compatible products like LED light bulbs, smart plugs, and more. 

SimpliSafe vs. ADT: 5 Must-Know Facts

  • One of the most underappreciated features of SimpliSafe is its secret alarms. These are great for things like liquor cabinets or rooms in a home where you don’t want guests or neighbors snooping. 
  • SimpliSafe requires no long-term contracts as part of their plan while ADT requires a minimum 36-month contract. 
  • SimpliSafe is built for self-installation while ADT advises all customers to use a professional installation service which begins at $150 and up. 
  • ADT integrates well with a smart home across a variety of products while SimpliSafe is limited to one model of video doorbell or smart lock. 
  • Both ADT and SimpliSafe allow complete control of their home security systems through a keypad, key fob, and Android or iOS smartphone app. 

SimpliSafe vs. ADT: Pros and Cons 

SimpliSafe

ProsCons
No long-term contractsNo smart home capability 
DIY installation No 24/7 customer support
Affordable monthly monitoring costsFree tier doesn’t offer monitoring
Multiple package options for equipmentLimited video options
Build your own alarm kitLimited warranty options unless on top pricing plan
FaceTime customer support
Secret alarm sensors

ADT

ProsCons
Smart home functionalityExpensive monthly pricing 
24/7 customer serviceRequires professional installation 
Build your own alarm kitLengthy contract requirements
Excellent video selectionsEquipment pricing is difficult to track online
Largest home security company in the U.S. Limited warranty options
Better smartphone app experience
No Contract
SimpliSafe 10 Piece Wireless Home Security System
$429.99
  • Comes ready to install and does not require any drilling or additional wiring. Easy!
  • Optional 24hr monitoring by professionals for 60c per day (USA only)
  • SimpliSafe App available
  • Outside and inside monitoring with wireless and wired camera options
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
02/23/2024 11:10 am GMT
Wireless Self-Monitoring
ADT 8 Piece Wireless Home Security System - DIY Installation - Optional Professional Monitoring - No Contract - Compatible with Google Assistant & Alexa - Graphite
  • DIY security from ADT. Yes, that ADT. Get really smart security you can easily install yourself. With no contract. Backed by the smart security leader with over 145 years of experience. It’s so easy and intuitive to set up that you can do it yourself. Set up your system quickly and easily by plugging in your hub, connecting it to your home’s Wi-Fi network, and placing the sensors where you see fit.
  • This 8-piece DIY Home Security bundle will secure your home or apartment and can grow, adapt, and move with you, as needed! The 8-piece comes with everything you need to protect a 2-3 bedroom home or apartment. Includes 1 base system, 4 entry sensors, 1 motion detector, 1 remote keychain, and 1 yard sign.
  • No strings. Ever. ADT won't lock you into any long-term contracts.
  • Syncs with Google Assistant, Alexa, and other smart home devices for total home control. NOT compatible with ADT professionally installed systems or 5G networks--only work in the United States.
  • Self-monitor your home from your mobile device via our free app! Or opt in for our professional monitoring services for just $19.99 plus tax per month.


We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

SimpliSafe vs. ADT: Which One is Better? 

The question of whether SimpliSafe or ADT is better is a difficult one that doesn’t have an easy answer. SimpliSafe has the benefit of being a DIYer’s dream setup with low monthly costs but lacks 24/7 customer service and smart home compatibility. ADT is more expensive and requires a long-term contract but there is a certain comfort level of going with a company that has been around for more than a hundred years. 

If you are comparing solely on price, SimpliSafe is the better option while ADT is the better option for those who don’t want to have to worry about setup or monitoring.

In the end, these are both really strong options that are better than no home security at all, and if price matters most, SimpliSafe is the way to go. If not having to worry about setup or customer service is a top concern, go with ADT.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long are the contracts with ADT? SimpliSafe?

When it comes to contracts, most of ADT’s plans require a 36-month or three-year agreement. SimpliSafe does not require any form of long-term contract. 

Can you pay for installation with SimpliSafe if you don’t want to self-install?

Yes, you can find a professional installation service through a third party from SimpliSafe with costs starting at $99. 

What type of customer service is offered for ADT and SimpliSafe?

ADT offers 24/7 customer support online and through an 800 number plus a chat service. SimpliSafe offers daytime customer service through phone and online chat from 8am to midnight Eastern Standard Time (EST).  

Does ADT offer any type of self-installation package?

ADT used to have a service called Blue by ADT but they have since canceled this service in favor of their professionally installed home security packages. 

Can you cancel ADT or SimpliSafe at any time?

If you attempt to cancel any ADT contract before it expires you are responsible for 75% of the monthly service charges for the balance of the initial term. There is no cancellation fee for terminating your SimpliSafe service as they have no contracts. 

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