SimpliSafe Home Security Review

You can’t beat simple, well-priced security that everyone can use

SimpliSafe
SimpliSafe
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
  • Icon Blank
    Price: $19.99–$29.99/mo.
  • pro
    Easy to use
  • pro
    Easy set up
  • con
    Lacking home automation features
Brianne Sandorf
Jan 22, 2024
Icon Time To Read6 min read

If you’re interested in SimpliSafe home security, you’re in the right place. I’ve researched and tested SimpliSafe systems many times over the years, and I have all the information you need to know if it’s right for you.

SimpliSafe's biggest benefit is that it's straightforward to set up. It's also more affordable than our other favorite security providers, and the company makes its own equipment rather than using the same old generic stuff that every service uses.

The most significant drawback is the home automation. As in, there's almost no home automation.

Need a little more info? Keep reading to dig deeper.

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SimpliSafe monitoring plans
Plan
Price
Monitoring type
Mobile app access
Smart home support
Details
Self-Monitoring w/ Camera Recordings$9.99/mo.Self
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Icon No  DarkNo
Standard Monitoring$19.99/mo. Professional
Icon No  DarkNo
Icon No  DarkNo
Fast Protect$29.99/mo. Professional
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Icon Yes  DarkYes

Data as of 01/10/2024.

How did Reviews.org research this review?
Info Box

Crafting this review included hours of testing and research through the hands of the writer.

Why SimpliSafe?
Megaphone

Several years ago, home security was a more exclusive industry. It was only available to people who owned homes and were wealthy enough to fork over exorbitant monitoring fees. SimpliSafe was created to combat those issues. Founded in 2006 in Boston, the company offers home security products that are more affordable than traditional home security. And the easy, no-drill setup means you can use SimpliSafe in apartments and rental homes.

SimpliSafe pricing and monitoring

SimpliSafe prices are on the lower end for home security. While it’s one of the more expensive DIY systems, it’s a bargain compared to traditional options. You don’t have to shell out several hundred dollars for a basic equipment package; SimpliSafe’s fundamental option costs around $250. You also don’t have to spend $40 a month for monitoring. The most expensive SimpliSafe option tops out at $29.99.

You can choose between a self-monitored plan and two professionally monitored plans with SimpliSafe. Self-monitoring means you have to keep an eye on everything yourself as your home’s personally-appointed security guard. It’s more affordable, but it’s hard to pull off. After all, you can’t always watch your phone for alerts. You have to work, sleep, and go to the movies sometimes. And when you do, no one’s watching your home.

The company’s two monitoring plans include 24/7 Fast Protect™.  Security professionals watch your alarm all day and all night, and if there’s a problem, you receive priority police, fire department, and ambulance dispatches. Supposedly. According to its website, SimpliSafe will request a priority dispatch on your behalf, but there’s no guarantee you’ll receive one. (Either way, you might want to proactively contact emergency services yourself if you ever need them.)

Our recommendation

I recommend SimpliSafe’s Fast Protect monitoring plan for most people. It has all the features that put the smart in smart security system, like mobile app access and smart home capabilities. At $29.99 a month, it’s the most expensive plan, yes. But overall, it’s the best option for most households.

SimpliSafe security equipment

SimpliSafe makes the majority of its own equipment. Most prominent national security providers and small local ones tend to use the same equipment from the same manufacturers. So equipment-wise, it doesn’t matter much which one you sign up with—you usually get the same thing. But SimpliSafe is different! You can’t get its sensors, cameras, or lock through any other service.

The equipment offerings are also flexible. Seven different preset equipment packages suit various square footage and layout needs, so you can get all the gear you need whether you live in a sprawling mansion or a one-bedroom apartment. If none of those work for you, you can either add equipment to your package or make a custom combination just for you.

SimpliSafe equipment package comparison*
Package
Price
# of pieces of equipment
Learn more
The Foundation$249.964
The Essentials$279.976
The Lighthouse$469.937
The Hearth$399.919
The Beacon$709.9010
The Knox$479.8713
The Haven$519.8614

Data as of 01/10/2024.

* Does not represent all equipment packages SimpliSafe offers.

As for what I don’t love about SimpliSafe’s equipment, well, I wish it had more home automation capabilities. I talk more about that in a later section. For now, know that you'd be better off with Vivint if you want a super-smart security system setup.

What equipment SimpliSafe offers

SimpliSafe has a better-than-standard equipment selection. It offers both security equipment and hazard sensors that can sense water leaking from pipes, smoke wafting in the air, or abnormal temperatures. 

  • Base station
  • Keypad
  • Entry sensor
  • Motion sensor
  • Glassbreak sensor
  • Water sensor
  • Smoke and carbon monoxide sensor
  • Smoke detector
  • Temperature sensor
  • Smart lock
  • Panic button
  • Key fob
  • Extra loud siren
  • Yard sign
  • SimpliCam® indoor camera
  • Smart alarm indoor camera
  • Outdoor camera
  • Video Doorbell Pro

SimpliSafe equipment security features

The equipment you get from SimpliSafe comes outfitted with two features that make your life safer and easier: SmashSafe and SimpliLock™.

If the alarm goes off and an intruder destroys the equipment , SmashSafe will still send the signal to SimpliSafe (if you have professional monitoring).

SimpliLock™ allows you to put your lock on a timer. For instance, you can set your door to lock at midnight every night.

SimpliSafe cameras

I recommend adding cameras to any home security system, and SimpliSafe has four to choose from:

  • SimpliCam® indoor camera
  • Smart alarm indoor camera
  • Outdoor camera
  • Video Doorbell Pro

If you want to keep an eye on the inhabitants of your home, SimpliSafe offers two indoor cameras to choose from.

The SimpliCam® indoor camera is ideal for more private parts of your home. It only videos your home when you remove the shutter from the lens. In contrast, the Smart Alarm Camera works best in higher-traffic areas. You can place it in an entryway to immediately capture and deter any intruders that might enter. When the camera is armed, its person-specific motion detection triggers a siren.

SimpliSafe also offers some outdoor options. The HD outdoor camera works best in an outdoor spot not covered by a video doorbell (we’ll get to that in a minute). It has 140° vision and 8X zoom to make extra sure that it doesn’t miss a thing.

Last but not least, the SimpliSafe Video Doorbell Pro is the best way to know who’s coming and going. Its person-detection feature identifies and tapes family members, neighbors, delivery people, trespassers, intruders, package thieves, and anyone else at the door.

All SimpliSafe cameras feature two-way audio so you can hear what’s happening, speak to visitors, and shout at trespassers as needed.

You can view all camera feeds and clips through the SimpliSafe app. If you don't sign up for a monitoring plan, you can still look at the live feeds but can't rewatch any footage from the past.

SimpliSafe home automation

SimpliSafe’s automation is so-so, with just three integrations available for your home.

The system is compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, which is useful, but it doesn’t have any other smart home integrations, like Z-Wave, Zigbee, or IFTTT.

SimpliSafe Alexa and Google integration

The Amazon and Google integrations allow you to arm your home security system using just your voice and an Echo or Nest Hub.

You can’t disarm your system with your voice, though, for safety reasons.

These integrations are available with any SimpliSafe plan.

SimpliSafe August integration

SimpliSafe also works with three of August’s excellent smart locks:

  • August Wi-Fi Smart Lock
  • August Smart Lock Pro + Connect
  • August Smart Lock + Connect

If you opt in to the Fast Protect plan, you can lock and unlock your door straight from the SimpliSafe app.

If you have a lower-tier plan, you can still get an August smart lock, but you can’t directly connect it to your SimpliSafe security system.

SimpliSafe mobile app

Speaking of the SimpliSafe app, it’s easy to use. But the amount of function you have wholly depends on the plan you pick.

If you want to do anything through the app besides arm and disarm your system and view the camera feed, you need to sign up for a paid plan. The Self Monitoring plan adds the ability to rewatch camera clips, and the Fast Protect plan gives you access to smart home features, like locking and unlocking your door.

SimpliSafe installation

SimpliSafe is a DIY system, meaning that you—yes, you—install it yourself.

Luckily, SimpliSafe is a “peel and stick” system. There’s a sticker on the back of most of the equipment. You just press it where you want it—no wiring involved, except with some cameras. Then you connect everything wirelessly to the base station through the SimpliSafe app. That’s it.

If the camera installation seems daunting, or if you don’t want to set the system up on your own, you can arrange for professional installation at the time of purchase. You just have to pay an extra $124.99 up front. Personally, I don’t recommend paying for this unless you need cameras installed and you can’t figure them out (and also don’t have a tech-savvy friend who’ll do it for free).

One other thing: with a DIY system like SimpliSafe, you want a good internet connection. Contrary to popular myth, the basic SimpliSafe system isn’t dependent on Wi-Fi. It uses a cellular connection to communicate between pieces. But things may go more smoothly if it’s hooked to your Wi-Fi. Also, the cameras don’t work without it.

If you don’t have reliable Wi-Fi, try our zip tool to see what services are available at your address.

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Enter your zip code to see internet service providers in your area.

SimpliSafe customer experience

Ease of use is a big part of customer service, and SimpliSafe shines in that arena. The SimpliSafe systems I’ve set up were quick and easy to use—I’ve had the whole thing ready in half an hour, tops.

I’ve also had a good experience with SimpliSafe’s customer reps. I once had to call over a billing issue, but the person I spoke with was very professional and immediately resolved the problem in a timely fashion.

And while I see some not-so-good experiences on ConsumerAffairs, TrustPilot, and Reddit’s r/SimpliSafe, most people generally seem satisfied with the service.

How does SimpliSafe compare to other companies?

Compared to other top home security options, SimpliSafe is the most affordable option. SimpliSafe’s most expensive plan is the same price as Vivint’s cheapest plan and just $1 more than ADT’s.

When it comes to equipment and home automation, SimpliSafe doesn’t compare as well. Vivint has stunning equipment, most of which you can’t find anywhere else, and its app has fairly advanced smart home capabilities.

Meanwhile, ADT has more smart home compatibility than SimpliSafe. But it uses generic equipment. It’s surprising that such an expensive service has minimal innovation, especially considering that SimpliSafe offers all-proprietary equipment for such a low price.

SimpliSafe pricing compared to other home security systems
Product
Monitoring price
Installation type
Contract length
Learn more
SimpliSafe
$19.99–$29.99/mo.DIYNo contract
Vivint
$29.99–$44.99/mo.ProfessionalNo contract or 5 years
ADT Shield
$28.99–$59.99/mo.Professional3 years

Methodology

I’ve been hands-on with SimpliSafe numerous times in homes and apartments. I also have experience using its top two competitors, Vivint and ADT, which gives me a better understanding of how the three compare.

I’ve quantified these personal experiences to create the star rating you see on the page. First I give each security system up to one star for price, equipment, cameras, home automation, and customer experience/company reputation. Then I add all the stars together and hey presto! I have a rating.

Brianne Sandorf
Written by
Brianne Sandorf
Brianne has a degree in English and creative writing from Westminster College and has spent 6+ years writing professional, research-based content. Before joining Reviews.org, she wrote safety and security content for ASecureLife.com. Her pieces and quotes are published across the web, including on MSN.com, Social Catfish, and Parents.com. Hobbies include wearing a seatbelt, wearing a life jacket, and keeping her arms and legs inside the ride at all times. Contact her at brianne@reviews.org.

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