Our mission is to create data-backed reports that help you live a safer life. We sometimes earn commissions which support our research.

Best DIY Installed Security Systems 2019

There was a time when getting a security system meant calling a company so they can send a team of technicians to install the security system in your property. It may seem hard to believe, but that time wasn't too long ago. Fortunately, DIY security companies started popping up and now they're almost everywhere. But which of the DIY companies out there is best for you?

What To Look For In A DIY Installed Security System?

When choosing a DIY installed security system, there are really just three things you should look for:

  • The system must be wireless and easy to install.
  • It should be easy to troubleshoot on your own with the help of the company's online resources like video tutorials.
  • The company must have good customer support to help you in case things go south.

Of course, the best DIY security system for you depends on the type of system you're looking for. Are you looking for a self-monitored security system, or one that is professionally monitored? What equipment do you need and what features are you looking for? Do you want a security system with cameras, smart home products, or just home security products? For help in choosing the best security system for you, feel free to check out our home security guide, but for now, let's talk about the best companies that offer DIY installed security systems.

Simplisafe is currently running one of the best promotions we've seen. Check their website for full details.

SimpliSafe

Overview & Equipment

SimpliSafe is one of the companies we recommend if you're looking for a self-installed security system. They offer Wi-Fi-enabled, wireless security systems that can be either used as a local alarm or linked to their partner monitoring company for professional monitoring.

SimpliSafe's equipment portfolio is short and simple, which makes them a good option for DIYers looking for an uncomplicated system. Nonetheless, they cover all the basics when it comes to home security. They offer door/window sensors, motion sensors, and glass break sensors, as well as sirens, wireless keypads, panic buttons, and key fobs. They even offer smoke sensors, temperature sensors, water sensors, and security cameras.

Getting Started

To get started, you will need to purchase the equipment first. You can either choose from their pre-built equipment packages or build a fully-customized system using the sensors and devices that they offer. You can buy everything online, either from their website or from third-party retailers such as Amazon.

DIY Installation

As for the installation, SimpliSafe is wireless with the exception of a few products that needs to be plugged in, such as the Base Station and the cameras. All the sensors and other devices are battery-powered, and most of the time, all you need to do is stick them to a wall, window, or door using the included peel-and-stick adhesive tapes. SimpliSafe will even ship the system to you pre-configured if you bought it from their website to eliminate the need to pair the sensors to the Base Station. There are a few additional steps, however, like assigning names to your sensors, connecting the Base Station to Wi-Fi, and activating alarm monitoring with a subscription. The latter is optional. SimpliSafe's subscription plans include no-contract professional monitoring.

The entire installation and setup process doesn't require the use of an app; everything is done using the user interface of the wireless keypad that comes with the Base Station. In fact, not all SimpliSafe users have access to the SimpliSafe app. The use of the app is reserved to those who have a subscription to SimpliSafe's Interactive Plan ($24.99/month).

If you need help installing the system, you may consult the manual that shipped with the Base Station (or you may view it here). You can also contact SimpliSafe's support line any day of the week between 9AM and 12AM (Eastern Time) or shoot them an email anytime.

SimpliSafe FAQ

  • Are their systems wireless?

    Yes. Most of their devices are wireless, except for a few that needs to be plugged in. For more details about SimpliSafe's equipment and features, check out our full SimpliSafe review.

  • Do they offer professional monitoring?

    Yes. SimpliSafe's monitoring plans start at $14.99.

  • Where can I find instruction videos?

    SimpliSafe doesn't have instruction videos, but you can ask for help from other SimpliSafe users using the user forum.

  • Can I call their support line for installation help?

    Yes. Their phone lines are available everyday, between 9AM and 12AM (Eastern Time).

  • Do they also provide professional installation in case I need it?

    Yes. You can add professional installation upon checkout, but you won't have to pay until you schedule an appointment. If you receive the system and want to install it yourself, you won't be charged. If you schedule an appointment, the fixed rate is $79.

Simplisafe Special Promotion

Simplisafe is currently running one of the best promotions we've seen. Check their website for full details.

Frontpoint

Overview & Equipment

It's no secret that Frontpoint is our #1 pick home security company. They offer professionally monitored security systems with a short 1-year to 3-year contract, and their security equipment is 100% DIY installed.

Frontpoint offers a complete suite of home security, home automation, and video monitoring products. They have almost everything from sensors to garage door controllers and video doorbells. They also provide professional monitoring that covers intrusion, fire, and medical emergency monitoring.

Getting Started

To get started with Frontpoint, you need to buy a system first and then add a monitoring service. Their monitoring plans range between $34.99/month and $49.99/month with a 1-year or 3-year contract.

The entire sales process can be done online. They offer several pre-built equipment packages that you can customize based on your specific security needs. With a 3-year contract and an approved credit, you can get an equipment package starting at $99. Their equipment package pricing reflects a $300 to $500 discount from the regular retail price.

After choosing your equipment and a quick credit check, Frontpoint will send over a monitoring agreement. Once that's signed and everything is paid for, they will ship the system to you and the installation is up to you.

Installation

Frontpoint will ship your system to you pre-configured, which means the sensors are already programmed to connect to the included Frontpoint Hub. Although the system is almost entirely wireless, there are a few exceptions. The Frontpoint Hub, for example, needs to be plugged in, and so are the cameras. However, all the sensors are battery-powered and they connect wirelessly to the hub, so there will be no wires running through your house. There is little to no drilling either. Most of the sensors come with peel-and-stick adhesive tapes and all you'll need to do is attach them to your walls, doors, and windows.

We've had hands-on experience installing a Frontpoint system as well and we can say that it's very easy to install. It took us less than 30 minutes to finish the entire installation and we never ran into any problems. If you do need help, Frontpoint provides assistance. The system ships with an installation guide plus you can watch tutorial videos made by Frontpoint online. If you prefer, you can also get in touch with Frontpoint's customer support team to get troubleshooting help. Based on our experience, Frontpoint's customer support service is among the best in the alarm industry.

Frontpoint FAQ

  • Are their systems wireless?

    Yes, with the exception of the hub and cameras that need to be plugged in and the smart thermostat that needs to be hardwired to your HVAC system. For more information about Frontpoint's equipment, check out our comprehensive review

  • Do they offer professional monitoring?

    Yes. In fact, they require professional monitoring. Frontpoint's monitoring plans start at $34.99

  • Where can I find instruction videos?

    You can find installation support videos and more here.

  • Can I call their support line for installation help?

    Yes. Their support hotline is 1-877-602-5276.

  • Do they also provide professional installation in case I need it?

    No. They ship their products pre-configured, so professional installation is not offered. However, you can call their tech support and a trained technician will walk you through the installation for free.

Link Interactive

Overview & Equipment

If you like Frontpoint, then there's a good chance you'll like Link Interactive as well. Link Interactive is another company that ranks high on our overall reviews. Their equipment offer, features, and services are similar to Frontpoint. In fact, they get their equipment from the same manufacturers that makes Frontpoint's systems: Alarm.com and Qolsys.

Link Interactive offers a wide range of home security products. They are complete with security sensors, and some even come in different models. For example, they have a regular door/window sensor and they have recessed door sensors. They also offer smart home products and cameras.

Getting Started

To get started with Link Interactive, you don't need equipment packages. They will let you handpick your system components one-by-one, so you can get only those that you really need. Much like Frontpoint, all of Link Interactive's products are sold online. One major difference, however, is that Link Interactive gives customers the choice to use an older control panel for free (included in the monitoring service) or upgrade to a much newer and better touchscreen panel for $200.

Once you've built the system you want, Link Interactive will ship it to you. And then, it's all up to you to install and activate the system.

Installation

Link Interactive's systems are entirely wireless except for the control panel and cameras that need to be plugged in. The system comes with a quick start guide that will help you through the installation process. As the system is wireless, for the most part, there's no drilling or hardwiring required.

We've had hands-on experience installing Link Interactive and we've had the chance to compare it to Frontpoint's installation process. Link Interactive is easy to install. However, it requires a few more steps than Frontpoint. The system doesn't come pre-configured, so you'll need to pair the sensor to the control panel first.

If you're ever in a rut, Link Interactive provides video tutorials on some of their products. You can also download product manuals or consult their tech support for help in installing your system. They have a tech support line available Mondays to Saturdays and their website has a live chat feature.

  • Are their systems wireless?

    Most of their products are wireless. Like with the other companies, however, there are exceptions. For more information about Link Interactive's products, check out our full Link Interactive review.

  • Do they offer professional monitoring?

    Yes. Professional monitoring is required. Link Interactive's plans start at $30.99/month.

  • Where can I find instruction videos?

    You can find installation videos on Link Interactive's YouTube channel

  • Can I call their support line for installation help?

    Yes. They are available Mondays to Fridays between 8AM and 10PM (Central Time) and Saturdays between 9AM and 6PM.

  • Do they also provide professional installation in case I need it?

    No, they do not offer professional installation.

Link Interactive is One of our Top Picks for 2019

Flexible Contract Terms · Crash & Smash Protection · All-Inclusive Monitoring

abode

Overview & Equipment

abode is currently our top-rated self-monitored security system. The company is only founded recently, but it has quickly became popular and beloved because they were able to deliver high-quality products and great security features.

abode offers an internet-connected home security system that includes a hub functioning as the brain of the system, various security and life safety sensors, and cameras. They also recently launched a new hub, iota, which has a built-in security camera.

Getting Started

abode is sold solely online. You can get started by visiting their website and choosing a starter kit. They offer starter kits built around the old hub as well as starter kits that come with the newer hub. They even offer kits that come with a 1-year or 2-year subscription to their professional monitoring service. The service is optional. You can add it immediately upon purchasing your starter kit, add it at a later date, or not add it at all. The service is also contract-free, allowing you to cancel anytime without penalties.

Of course, you're free to add more abode components to your system anytime, even after your initial installation. You can also incorporate abode with third-party smart home brands like Alexa and Google Home.

Installation

As for the installation, you can set up abode in minutes. Their systems are wireless and the entire setup process is guided by the abode app. The latter is what makes abode unique. The other companies in this list doesn't offer in-app instructions, mainly because their apps are reserved for customers with a subscription or higher monitoring plan. abode lets all their customers use the app, making them a really strong option for those who want to self-monitor.

If you ever need help installing abode, they have an entire knowledge base that details 20+ setup procedures. You can also reach out to them through phone or email. And if you change your mind and decide to have the system professionally installed instead, abode has partnered with a third-party home integrator that can come to your house to install the system for a small charge.

abode FAQ

  • Are their systems wireless?

    Yes. abode is almost entirely wireless. For a detailed review of their equipment, check out our in-depth abode review.

  • Do they offer professional monitoring?

    Yes, but it's optional. You can use abode as a self-monitored system. If you do choose to add professional monitoring, abode's professional monitoring rate is $20/month.

  • Where can I find instruction videos?

    abode doesn't have instruction videos, but you may read their knowledge base for a detailed explanation of the installation process.

  • Can I call their support line for installation help?

    Yes. You can call them at (650) 443 - 7834 or send them an email at support@goabode.com.

  • Do they also provide professional installation in case I need it?

    Yes, through a third-party home installer. Rates vary depending on your system size and the components you want installed.

Ask a Question